Listen up, White House UPDATE | Arkansas Blog

Friday, June 11, 2010

Listen up, White House UPDATE

Posted By on Fri, Jun 11, 2010 at 6:49 AM

The New York Times today editorializes on the White House's snotty response to the defeat of Bill Halter by Sen. Blanche Lincoln. It overlooks Democratic voter discontent at its peril.

For the White House to minimize the efforts of unions and others who helped support that challenge suggests a tone-deafness to the growing restlessness in the Democratic Party.

... Some of the anger toward Mrs. Lincoln is anti-incumbent sentiment, which we’ve seen in other races this year. But much of it was more specific. Many on the left were unhappy with her for opposing a public option in the health care law, for opposing bills making it easier to unionize and for being more concerned about deficits than about stimulating the economy and creating jobs.

... Clearly, many of the voters who complained that Democratic officials had lost their phone number after being elected were also referring to President Obama. Many Democrats don’t understand why the administration and Congressional leaders are giving in to trumped-up Republican fears about the deficit and not doing more to revive the economy. Rather than dismissing such concerns and ridiculing efforts at change, the White House should consider just how powerful they have become. There are virtues to pragmatism, but it should be in the service of an underlying principle.

Here, by the way, is a play-by-play on how labor and progressive groups and bloggers encouraged Halter to enter the race.

ALSO: Circuit Judge-elect Wendell Griffen, a Halter supporter, has a lot to say on his blog about the White House's putdown of his supporters. In short, "we are not field hands." A longer excerpt:

Workers and progressives are not field hands for Senator Lincoln, the White House, or anyone else. We support candidates whose records and values square with what matters to us. We're concerned about seniors who can't afford their medications. We're concerned about families who can't afford to help their children attend college because government policies helped corporations move jobs out of the country and favored banks over students concerning student loans.

Workers and progressives disagree with politicians who agreed to loan money to Wall Street banks and Detroit auto manufacturers to keep the economy afloat but were unwilling to loan money to working families trying to avoid foreclosure of their homes. We disagree with politicians who realize the need for federally-funded crop insurance for the nation's farmers—a public option that Senator Lincoln has never opposed—but who don't believe that what is good policy for the farm crop should be good policy for the farm workers who produce the crop.

On these and other issues, a Democratic label alone no longer will earn our support. As Jesus said, people are known by their fruit. We supported Halter because Lincoln's voting record doesn't square with our needs and aspirations. That wasn't flushing money down a toilet. It was acting to replace an insensitive politician by supporting someone whose aspirations and values matched our core values.

Tags: , , ,


Comments (5)

Showing 1-5 of 5

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-5 of 5

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Among the last words from Kenneth Williams: 'Finger Lickin' Good Fried Chicken'

    What's purported to be a final-words essay from condemned prisoner Kenneth Williams was distributed today by Deborah Robinson, a freelance journalist in Arkansas.  He reflects on his execution, his victims, reactions of inmates and big servings of fried chicken, which he says are given to all inmates on execution days.
    • Apr 27, 2017
  • Mitch Landrieu on the removal of Confederate tributes in New Orleans

    You want to hear the words of a strong mayor? Read the speech delivered by New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu on the removal of the last of four Lost Cause tributes in the city. THIS is a strong mayor. Brilliant.
    • May 22, 2017
  • Baseball fans have a new place to stay

    If you missed out on Razorback baseball home games this year because you couldn’t find a great place to stay, your problem is now solved: Staybridge Suites of Fayetteville is now fully renovated and located directly across from Baum Stadium, with free parking for hotel guests.
    • May 22, 2017


  • Arkansas vs Ole Miss at War Memorial stadium in Little Rock, Saturday, Oct. 13, 2018. After leading for much of the game, Arkansas lost 37-33 when Ole Miss scored the game winning Touchdown with less that 2 minutes left. 
  • Margaret Clark Adventure Park
    New sculptures, preschoolers play area dedicated in Riverfront Park in Little Rock.

Most Recent Comments


© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation