Winds of change are blowing, hard

Respected students of Congress, Thomas Mann and Stu Rothenberg, now predict the House will flip to the Democrats.  Polling data is coming out of 2nd and 3rd tier House races showing Democrats leading.  New polls showing Democrats now very competitive in the VA and TN Senate races, ones needed to gain Democrats the Senate.  No incumbent Democrat is trailing in a race for Governor, Senate or House.   It is increasingly looking like a nationalized election against Republican governance. 

But no one should be that suprized.  As we've been writing in this space for close to three years, the central political development in America today is the utter failure of conservative and Republican governance.  Even without the aid of hundreds of millions of dollars of television ads that are about to be launched, the American people have figured out, on their own, that the guys running Washington today have blown it.  Big time.  Bush bet the house on Iraq and huge tax cuts for those with means, and has lost. 

Washington is about to change.  The corrupt, arrogant, ineffective and partisan era of Bush, Cheney, Frist and DeLay is coming to an end.  New people will rise to power.  New issues will be tackled.  A new agenda will be pursued.  Those on the losing side will suffer as those who have come before them have, as many of us have on the progressive side who have stuck it out in DC these past few years. 

For progressives, we now have two important tasks.  First, as we plan our governing agenda, we should focus on a few important things and get them right - bringing a lasting peace to the Middle East, creating greater fiscal integrity, making efforts to restore broad-based prosperity, passing immigration reform.  We should avoid the temptation to do too much, or punish the losing side to too great a degree. 

Second, we should work hard on attaching the words arrogant, corrupt, ineffective, partisan, etc to the Republican and conservative brand.  While I do not have partisan animus to those that have run the country this past few years, I do have incredible American animus towards them.  They have weakened our country.  They have worried about themselves and their power and not about us.  They have run up trillions of debt.  Hurt our prestige.  Left our people poorer.   Not attended to urgent national challenges.  Left people to die in New Orleans. 

We have an obligation to not let them get away with their time in power.  We need to label their movement and their politics for what it has been, and do what we must to prevent this kind of government from returning.   We need to work on finding the words to capture this time, and invest a great deal of energy in defining it for future generations. 

While NDN no longer has a federal PAC and has not been involved in these elections by supporting candidates, I am proud of all that we have done to help bring a new path for the nation, and end this disapointing era.  We have spoken out, aggressively, about these conservative failures; offered a new agenda for the nation; worked hard on two critical issues, immigration and making globalization work for all Americans; we've helped teach progressives how to use a new set of powerful tools to get our message out; we've studied and discussed the changing demographics of the nation, helping progressives imagine and build a new majority coalition around a New America;  we've run cutting edge media campaigns across the nation in English and Spanish, reaching tens of millions with our modern and optimistic message; we've helped create a new whole new way of investing monies into building a modern progressive infrastructure suited to our day, our media and our challenges. 

No matter what happens this fall this period of American history is drawing to a close.  Let us committ ourselves, as a network and community, to ensuring that the next era, whatever it is, restores the great promise of our extraordinary nation.  I am proud of what we've done here at NDN, but remain humbled by all the work that must be done.