Monday, July 31, 2006

Divided We Stand

Peter Beinhart has an interesting piece in this week's New Republic in which he argues, contrary to popular belief, that the Republicans are more seriously divided than the Democrats. He has a point. On issues from immigration to deficit spending to stem cell research to Iran and North Korea, the Republicans are more divided than ever. On the other hand, he argues, the Democrat's "underlying unity is obscured by the war of words between the party's Clinton-dominated Washington establishment and its insurgent, Deaniac activitsts. But that fight is about rhetorical style, political strategy, and, above all, power." Again, he has a point. The left wing is no longer split between proponents of big government and third way moderates. The weak link in his argument, however, is just how divded the Democrats are over Iraq. Beinhart glosses over this by stating that a withdrawal, which he assumes is imminent, will reduce the importance of the issue. I disagree. With the situation in Iraq looking grimmer by the day and the Republicans digging in for a long battle, it seems unlikely that this issue will go away any time soon--certainly not before 2008.


At 4:19 PM, Blogger Sean said...

True, but the Republicans still seem to be more effective in forcing their members into line when necessary. That has been their strength for years - when the time comes they can force everyone to toe the party line.


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