Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Dodd boom update

Chris Dodd did a live chat sponsored by firedoglake yesterday. He remains way out in front of the other democratic presidential contenders on the FISA/telecom immunity issue, and on all other constitutional issues as well. Biden has signed on in an unequivocal manner, but though Obama and Clinton backed Dodd up yesterday (it must be noted, five days later), their statements of support were riddled with weasel words. Glenn Greenwald:
    Dodd is not the planet's greatest orator and is never going to be. But he has something, at least right now, that is far more important: authenticity and passion about defending the Constitution and the rule of law, along with the resolve to accompany those convictions with action, even if it risks alienating his "friends and colleagues" in the oh-so-august Senate...

    ... Contrast Dodd's leadership and conviction on this matter with the complete passivity and invisibility of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Both candidates finally issued statements last night purporting to set forth their views on telecom amnesty and the FISA bill -- but did so only because they were forced to, after they learned that several blogs, in conjunction with MoveOn, intended to launch efforts today to pressure their campaigns finally to say where they stood on the Dodd filibuster.

    Whatever that is, it's the opposite of "leadership." And it is this passivity and amorphous, shapeless, inspiration-free invisibility that has come increasingly to characterize both of their campaigns, along with the leadership of their party. That is why Dodd's relatively mild actions have generated such intense enthusiasm and support -- a drop of water to someone stranded in the desert will seem like a royal feast...
And that's the way I see it too. The number one qualification for the office of president should be the ability to take in all sides of a problem, listen to advice, and come up with the best possible solution without regard to politics. But what good can that quality do for the country if you're not willing to take a firm stand on behalf of your own best solution, and lead opinion around to agreeing with it?

For whatever it's worth, my feelings about the primary race are firming up.

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