February 2, 2005

"How can you call yourself a political party?"

Here's a dialogue from last night's Hardball that really struck me. Host Chris Matthews is talking to Amy Goodman of Pacifica Radio‘s “Democracy Now":
MATTHEWS: Amy, just think right now. I know this is freeform thinking and it‘s right on the spot. But think of who you think of right now as having the true voice of the hearts and minds of the Democratic Party. List a couple of people you think are the true voice of the heart and mind of the Democratic Party right now in 2005 in February.

GOODMAN: Well, I don‘t think it is so much about individuals. I think it is about positions. It is about people taking strong stands.

MATTHEWS: No, who? Well, give me an example of somebody you think speaks for the Democratic Party right now.


GOODMAN: Like against Alberto Gonzales, like against Condoleezza Rice.

MATTHEWS: But who? Who do you trust now? Who has the true voice of the Democratic heart and mind right now? Who is it? Who do you recognize? Give me three or four names of people you think are true Democrats.

GOODMAN: Well, I‘m not going to give names. I would talk about positions.

MATTHEWS: Why not?

GOODMAN: Because I think it is positions that matter. And we shouldn‘t focus on personality.


MATTHEWS: If you can't say who your leaders are, how can you call yourself a political party? I mean, what are the Democrats if they don‘t have a leader?


GOODMAN: I think it is about—I think the Democratic Party...

MATTHEWS: Who speaks for progressive America?

GOODMAN: I think the Democratic Party, what we should be talking about is positions that have to do with preserving Social Security, that have to do with being against torture.

MATTHEWS: Yes. Well, that‘s why you‘re losing. Why you‘re losing. now is, you can‘t even point to your leaders.

At least George Bush is the leader of the Republican Party.

GOODMAN: It‘s not about my leaders. It‘s about...

MATTHEWS: Name a leader. Name a leader that you trust.

GOODMAN: It is not about my position. It is about not my thoughts about people.


GOODMAN: It is about positions. And I think that‘s what counts.


MATTHEWS: Well, that‘s the problem. If the Democratic Party is tongue-tied about who their leaders are, that‘s the beginning of the problem.

No comments: