It’s ENERGY, Stupid!
Democrats have the perfect winning issue to run with. According to this Thomas Friedman column (sorry, the link is only available if you subscribe to that elite, nose-in-the-air New York Times — which I don’t), energy independence is America’s number one national security issue. Democrats have the chance to make “energy independence” (and hence “national security”) synonymous with the Democratic party.
Bill Clinton’s pit bull, James Carville, has determined this after taking numerous nationwide polls. Carville said “no matter how we ask the question, that’s what comes up.”
Maybe you think there’s a liberal bias since the surveys were taken by James Carville. Carville only contacted “likely voters,” so if anything the polls are biased to the right. (You know the drill — Conservatives always vote come hell or high water, and Liberals only vote if the weather’s nice, they’re not too stoned and there’s nothing on the tube.)
One of the survey questions was worded: “Which of the following would you say should be the two most important national security priorities for the administration and Congress over the next few years?”
42% said “reducing dependence on foreign oil.” 26% said “combating terrorism.” 25% said “the war in Iraq.” Tied for 21% were “securing our ports, nuclear plants and chemical factories” and “addressing dangerous countries like Iran and North Korea.” 12% said “strengthening America’s military.”
One of Carville’s associates said “When we lay out different plans for how to deal with Iraq, any plan that also includes energy independence tops any other plan that doesn’t...There is frustration that leaders have not taken this up.”
Friedman says “It’s no longer enough to have energy security as part of a 12-step program for American renewal. No, it needs to become a defining issue of what Democrats are all about. People should associate energy security with Democrats the way they associate tax cuts with Republicans.”
His column ends with “So when they tell you that…reducing dependence on foreign oil is voters’ top national security priority, you know that this issue has finally arrived. The party that captures it most credibly will be rewarded. Hello? Anybody listening?”