Wednesday, March 29, 2006

The Democrats have a plan

By The (liberal)Girl Next Door

The Democrats have rolled out their plan for national security and it looks pretty good. And the best part is, it’s short. The brochure is comprised of ten pages, but that includes the title pages and both an English and Spanish version. The actual plan is only three pages long and it’s filled with easy-to-digest, specific solutions to security problems that have stumped the GOP. There are a few good swipes at the Republicans as well. Even the title,
Real Security: The Democratic Plan to Protect America and Restore Our Leadership in the World, is a reminder of what Bush and the Republicans haven’t been able to do. (You can get more information and download the brochure here. -- MJWS)

There is no windbagging, no unnecessary words or complicated concepts, just clear-cut objectives and specific dates. Energy independence by 2020, securing loose nukes by 2010, screening of 100% of cargo containers, a promise to eliminate bin Laden, finishing the job in Afghanistan, and making significant progress in Iraq this year so that troop redeployment can begin. Reading this plan I get the sense that the Democrats are not as clueless as they’ve led us to believe, a pleasant surprise for sure.

The fearmongering seems to have been kept to a minimum as well. I was a little concerned that the Democrats would use the fear card in order to wrestle control away from Republicans this fall, but there is only one reference to the “danger” of outsourcing our port operations and they handled the bird flu pandemic hoopla in a reasonable fashion. Instead of scaring people about it and encouraging them to spend all of their money on stockpiles of food, water, and survival gear, the Democrats say they will invest in the public health infrastructure, train health workers, and make sure that first responders have all of the equipment they need for any disaster, natural or otherwise. All common sense stuff that doesn’t involve building a new bureaucracy or giving money to big pharmaceutical companies for useless antibiotics, the Bush plan up to this point.

I hope that this brochure makes it into the hands of voters across the country. It is a great first step and it takes the security issue away from Republicans. I’m hoping this is the test plan and that there will be more to come, a health care plan and perhaps an economic plan as well. As long as they keep it short and to the point, it’s hard to see how they won’t make gains in November. They are speaking directly to the concerns of the American people, they are promising to fix the critical gaps in security that Republicans have been unable to tackle, and they are doing so without nuance.

So far, so good. I hope they can keep it up.

(Cross-posted at The (liberal)Girl Next Door.)

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