November Silliness

Flickr/<a href="">moon child</a> (<a href="" target="_blank">Creative Commons</a>).

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), the powerful chair of the House Energy and Commerce committee, thinks it could be good for liberal Democrats to lose some of their more “difficult” allies. The Hill reports:

In an interview with The Hill, the Energy and Commerce Committee chairman expressed confidence that Democrats will retain the House, and suggested he won’t miss some of the Democrats who won’t be back next year.

“I think a lot of the House seats we’re going to lose are those who have been the toughest for the Democrats to pull into line—the Democrats that have been the most difficult,” Waxman said.

Over at Daily Kos, Markos Moulitsas writes that “Waxman channels many of us”:

It’ll be November’s biggest irony—the voters will turn against Democrats in significant numbers because of the economy, or better put, the lack of jobs. But it won’t be Democrats who supported a larger (more effective stimulus), or job benefits extensions, or aid to states, or other measures designed to deal with our shitty economy.

Rather, it’ll be the Blue Dog Democrats who think their voters care more about deficits than jobs that will take the brunt of this beating. And really, to them, good riddance.

My biggest worry won’t be over the size of a decimated Blue Dog caucus, but how many truly good Democrats get taken out as collateral damage.

This is silly. Absent special considerations (like law-breaking or electability), liberals should always prefer more liberal candidates to less liberal candidates. There are no Republicans in the current Congress with more liberal voting records than even the most conservative Democrat. In a two-candidate race between a conservative Democrat and a very conservative Republican, why would a liberal prefer the Republican? As far as Waxman goes, a more GOP-leaning House (even if the Dems maintain control) will mean more Republicans on his committee (and the House overall), and even harder lifts on tough votes. Just look at the Senate. Harry Reid has less margin for error than Nancy Pelosi, and that means legislation that’s more conservative, not less so. Politics is not always about choosing between the guy you love and the guy you hate. Sometimes it’s about choosing between the guy you hate and the guy you hate more.


Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

payment methods

We Recommend