The New York Times has reported that Indiana Democrat, Evan Bayh, has decided against running for another term in the U.S. Senate. Bayh is a middle-of-the-road Democrat that has been popular in Indiana and had a reasonable chance of being reelected. Therefore, this surprising news deserves further analysis.
One September 22, 2009, this Blog posted a story title “Evan Bayh – Putting America First” praising the Senator for taking on his Democrat Party on the issue of the deficits. That posting was prompted by Bayh’s September 18 Op-Ed in the Wall Street Journal that including the following statements:
- America is on an unsustainable fiscal path that threatens our future. Changing course is imperative, and Democrats should lead the way.
- Last month the Office of Management and Budget predicted that the national debt will increase by $9 trillion over the next decade – $2 trillion more than forecast just four months earlier. Government net interest payments exceed $1 trillion in 2019, up from $382 billion this year.
- The consequences of all this will not be benign. A world saturated with U.S. currency will eventually look elsewhere to invest, causing the dollar’s value to drop; foreign creditors, their confidence shaken by our fiscal profligacy, will demand higher payments to keep holding our debt.
- These events will diminish our global influence, because fiscal strength is essential to diplomatic leverage, military might and national significance.
- Worst of all is the legacy we will leave. From the “Greatest Generation” we inherited an America that is the strongest, most affluent, freest nation on earth. On our present course, our children will not. We violate a fundamental part of our national character by taking from our children to satisfy our desires today.
- Congress’s initial reaction to our fiscal peril has not been encouraging. The $410 billion omnibus spending bill passed in March increased.
- We can take the path of least resistance and ignore the impending day of reckoning. Or we can do what is necessary to right the fiscal ship of state and lay a foundation for prudent, progressive government for a generation.
Bayh concluded his editorial by stating: “I believe Barack Obama will choose the responsible course. If he does, he will find kindred spirits in our party prepared to help.” Obama has proven Bayh wrong on this conclusion.
Why has Bayh decided to leave Washington? There are various possibilities. Let us begin with the “benign” ones. Bayh could have decided to take a pass on the election for fear of losing to a Republican challenger. This is unlikely given his popularity in Indiana and he was previously a two-term governor. It is also possible that Bayh just got tired of the job. This too is unlikely given that he is only 54 years of age and just six months ago made the impassioned plea in the Wall Street Journal to his Party.
No, it is likely that Bayh decided to leave Washington for some or all of the following reasons:
- Given President Obama’s actions since Bayh’s September editorial, it is likely Bayh concluded the President is not taking the “responsible course” with the deficits.
- Bayh fears the type of economy issues occurring that he raised in his September Wall Street Journal editorial.
- Bayh sees a major defeat coming for the Democrats in this upcoming November elections. As the minority party, remaining senators like Bayh will not only hold little power, but they also fear the retribution the Republicans will put on them for the partisan “goings on” that Obama, Reid and Pelosi have laid on the Republicans in the past year.
It is astounding how incompetent the Democrats and President Obama in particular have been since they were given the authority by the people to lead by mandate in the 2008 elections. The speed in which they squandered this mandate is a testament to incompetence and arrogance. Through slick marketing and with the incompetent Republicans that preceded them, the Democrats were successful in electing a President without experience to manage or the skills to learn on-the-job. This is not the conclusion of one Blogger, but the voices of the Evan Bayh’s of the country and of the electorate of Virginia, New Jersey and Massachusetts.
The handwriting is on the wall. There will undoubtedly be a change of control in Washington this coming November. However, for those of us that have been disappointed with the current Administration; let us not get too excited. Let us remember that prior to the current inept group running the country we had another inept group that led the American people to a frustration level that resulted in what we have today.
The time is ripe for real change in Washington. It is time for real people, real citizens, people that have actually produced something to govern. Our founders envisioned that the country would be managed by citizens, not professional politicians. If we continue to put these Progressives from Ivy League schools in power, we should not expect any different results.