Randy Shaw: After last week’s budget deal, it is clear that Barack Obama, the Democratic Party, and progressives would all benefit from the President facing a primary challenge in 2012.
Paul Loeb: Most campuses are relatively quiet, with students inhabiting what a University of Wisconsin Green Bay student called “a bubble of insulation,” one that leaves crucial political debates barely visible in the distance.
Paul Loeb: For all the strengths of online engagement, people still need to gather together, eat, joke, flirt, tell their stories, attach names to faces, and ultimately build deeper levels of trust.
Paul Hogarth: Four years after the first netroots convention, the bloggers are back in Vegas – with an eye on the November 2010 elections. Voters still want change like they did in 2006 and 2008, but now that Democrats control both Congress and the White House there’s a real fear that Republicans could benefit.
Paul Hogarth: The anti-incumbent mood is not confined to the racist Tea Parties on the Right – but is just as potent on the Left, where progressives are disenchanted by a President who promised hope and change, only to capitulate to Joe Lieberman to pass a health care bill that requires us to all buy private insurance.
Tina Dupuy: Whitman has said that her cap on donating to her own campaign is $150 million dollars. She spent half of that on the primary. This is a governor’s race. One state. Just to put this into perspective, in 2008 John McCain spent $350 million total to run nationally for president. That’s all 50 states.
Robert Reich: Obama has no ass to kick until he’s in charge. Obama should take over BP’s rescue operation. That’s the only way the public can be sure all necessary resources are being put to the job, that public risks are being properly weighed, and it’s getting the truth.
Randy Shaw: The nonsense and political disinformation around the politics of the BP oil spill is stunning. Each day we are told that President Obama’s entire agenda has been undermined by BP’s reckless action, despite all evidence to the contrary.
Anthony Samad: The sophistication of the black voter is always called into question lately. The black community gets blamed when somebody’s issue (ballot initiative) doesn’t win or somebody’s candidate takes a fall…it’s the black voter’s fault. Voter turnout wasn’t high enough, or voters didn’t “get in” in time to make a difference. Most of the time, our community does get it.
Michele Waslin: Immigrant advocates will be asking themselves what role immigration played in the primaries. The fact is that the immigration issue probably plays a small role, if any. Quite frankly, Members don’t have much of a record on the issue for voters to base their votes on because Congress has been too scared to take on the issue and see what their constituents say about it. But the sentiments behind the immigration debate echo what we saw in the polls—the public has grown tired with inaction.
Paul Hogarth: But with no real competition among Democrats to replace Schwarzenegger, progressives have been nervous that Brown will not excite the base. This left much of the weekend’s drama on down-ballot races, where competitive primaries meant candidates for Lieutenant Governor and State Insurance Commissioner sought the Party’s endorsement going into June 8th. And while there’s much controversy around that process, it’s a good thing for Democrats.
Joseph Palermo: Peter Baker’s profile of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel in the New York Times Magazine raises some interesting questions about President Barack Obama’s top aide. For Emanuel, it seems that all politics are electoral politics. He wouldn’t know a social movement if he saw one.
In order to get anything meaningful through this session of Congress, then, the President will have to give Congressional Democrats far more leadership and more cover. Doing so is harder now than before the recess, when he was still basking in the afterglow of a honeymoon and 60% favorabilities.