Tuesday, February 16, 2010

February 16, 2010

       Democratic Senator Evan Bayh of Indiana is retiring.  So is Democrat Chris Dodd of Connecticut.  Both men followed their fathers into the Senate.  You can't inherit a seat, of course, but if your father has one, you probably grow up with a pretty good idea of how to get one.      I think, as regular readers know, that the Senate doesn't work very well these days, so I was struck by some of the things Bayh said announcing his departure. "Congress is not operating as it should," Bayh said.  "The people's business is not getting done."  He's got that just exactly right.      Why?  Because it's getting harder and harder to be a moderate, as Bayh is. CNN's Gloria Borger said Bayh "feels that he doesn't have much of a home in the Democratic party anymore.  Just as much as we see see the centrists in the Republican party shrinking, you also see the centrists in the Democratic party shrinking.  I think these folks are looking for a home."  And of course Republican John McCain of Arizona is retiring too.  Not a centrist, of course, but not an orthodox conservative either.      What happens in a legislature with more conservatives, more liberals, and fewer moderates is that gets harder and harder to compromise, and compromises are how you legislate.  Sorry, Senate.  Hard times ahead.   And for that matter...Sorry, America.
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