Nervous Blue Dogs: Hey, maybe we should postpone some of these liberal agenda items

Another clip from Hengler, this time catching Axelrod phoning it in. Watch to the end or you’ll miss the requisite flattery from Andrea Mitchell. Consider this a continuation of the last post: If, as Ax lamely insists, NY-23 is a big deal while Virginia and Jersey are mere local races portending nothing for The One’s agenda, why do Blue Dogs seem more fidgety than usual? Ed linked Politico’s piece about center-left anxiety a few hours ago, but this one from The Hill is fun too:

Vulnerable House and Senate Democrats want their leaders to skip the party’s controversial legislative agenda for next year to help save their seats in Congress.

In the run-up to the 2010 midterm elections, they don’t want to be forced to vote on climate change, immigration reform and gays in the military, which they say should be set aside so Congress can focus on jobs and the economy…

Lincoln said that lawmakers should focus on passing healthcare reform and wait until next year to effect financial regulatory reform and reduce unemployment.

“That’s an awful lot to bite off and chew for right now,” said Lincoln, who described herself as “not in a hurry” to tackle climate change, an issue she has some jurisdiction over as chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture Committee.

Sen. Evan Bayh (D), who is running for reelection in conservative-leaning Indiana, said “jobs should be our top priority and we shouldn’t do anything that detracts from that,” echoing a sentiment of many colleagues in similar positions.

Many more quotes at the link. Believe it or not, this isn’t Axelrod’s feeblest spin of the day: Elsewhere, he insisted that Owens’s win should actually reassure Blue Dogs about ObamaCare, which I guess means we now know who the unnamed White House official who spoke to Stephanopoulous is. The punchline to all this? Owens isn’t even especially progressive. He’s a “conservative Democrat” who was disowned by Kos as a “Lieberdem” and who’ll end up doing plenty of squirming about these very same agenda items lamented by the Blue Dogs if he wants to keep the seat next year. He beat Hoffman because he was a moderate in a moderate Republican district with the full backing of the “moderate” Republican nominee who’d been in the race until last week. And he still only beat him by a few percentage points.

Below the Axelrod clip you’ll find Madam Speaker adding a little spin of her own. Persuasive as ever.

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David Strom 8:41 PM on January 30, 2023