This is ponderous. For six years Karl Rove outmanuevered and outsmarted Democrats, it seems, at every turn. “Where is OUR Karl Rove?” Voices would ask from the left. “We need someone not afraid to play dirty!”
Well, it appears our guy is Rahm Emanuel, outgoing chief of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and widely credited with putting the House back into Democratic hands. But we’ve covered that before, have we not?
Emanuel has been called by some “Bill Clinton’s Karl Rove.” During the President’s 1992 campaign, according to Wikipedia, Emanuel insisted that Clinton schedule a lot of time for fundraising rather than campaigning in New Hampshire. After much dispute within the campaign about the issue, Clinton eventually agreed, embarking on an aggressive fundraising campaign across the nation. The fundraising paid off later, providing the campaign a vital buffer to keep buying television time as attacks on character issues threatened to swamp Clinton’s campaign during the New Hampshire primary. Clinton’s most serious primary rival, Paul Tsongas, later withdrew, citing a lack of campaign funds.
Emanuel reportedly told British Prime Minister Tony Blair, “This is important. Don’t fuck it up,” prior to Blair appearing in public with Clinton for the first time after the Lewinsky scandal emerged.
Earlier this year, Congressman Emanuel stood on the floor of Congess and condemned conservative writer Ann Coulter for slandering the widows of 9/11. He said, and I quote: “The hate she spews is the same kind of hatred we’re battling in the war on terror. As a country of thought and reason, I urge all of us to reject it. I must ask my colleagues on the other side of the aisle: Does Ann Coulter speak for you when she suggests poisoning Supreme Court Justices or slanders the 9/11 widows? If not, speak now. Your silence allows her to be your spokesman.”
Yes, Emanuel is the “fighter” we’ve longed for. He’s not afraid to do or say what it a takes to win. Yet now that we have our Karl Rove, there are whines from the left that he isn’t fit to lead. Why? Because he may have done something we all secretly were hoping he did back before we won. He may have been behind the Mark Foley e-mail leaks.
Oh, the horror to think Emanuel may have engineered the whole sordid thing. He may have stretched the truth a wee bit on national TV. He may have known about Foley back in 2005 (back when the Foley story was originally shopped to the TV Networks, remember?) and he may have timed it to come out mere weeks before the election to further expose the stink of the Republican congress.
To all my “progressive” lurkers – what do you think would have happened if the proverbial shoe was on the other foot? Do you think Republicans would have sat on that information about a Democratic congressman? It would have been on the CNN and FOX news tickers 24-7, Drudge would have been blaming Bill Clinton, and Democrats would once again be wringing their hands in frustration over how the GOP beat us once again on the “family values” plank.
So take your high horse riding “more progressive than thou” act somewhere else. This was one the most important elections of our lives. The people charged with winning it did what had to be done. If you can’t stomach the reality of politics and of the enemy we face, the game isn’t for you.