Thursday, November 5, 2009

Are Democrats Rattled? You Bet, Cooper Says

Posted By on Thu, Nov 5, 2009 at 7:17 AM

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This week's GOP victories in New Jersey and Virginia have rattled moderate Democrats, and they'll desert President Obama on health care now. At least that's what Republicans are saying. But in case you've been laughing it off as more silly Republican spin, Rep. Jim Cooper is here to set you straight.

In this morning's LA Times, Cooper calls the election results a "wake-up call." As if reading straight from GOP talking points, he says, "There are going to be a lot more tensions between the White House and Congress. They've been under the surface so far -- and they're going to come out in the open."

It doesn't matter that Obama remains popular with voters, Cooper says, even those who chose Republicans in this week's elections. "Lesser mortals need to be worried about their independent voters because they have shifted strongly against Democrats in recent months. Independent voters tend to look at the issue, not the party, and they don't like a lot of what Congress has done."

Excuse me? Did Cooper switch parties and not tell anybody? If you need proof that he's not the least bit worried about a Daily Kos-inspired challenge from the left, here it is. You won't hear Cooper challenging Democrats to stand tall and stay true to their principles. To the contrary, Cooper is telling his Blue Dog buddies to run like scalded dogs.

As if on cue, Rep. Bart Gordon has announced he won't vote for health care reform in the House. He's quaking in fear over his reelection challenge from Lou Ann Zelenik, a Republican so weak she couldn't even win a state House primary race last year. Zelenik criticized Gordon yesterday for not saying where he stands on the health care bill and, like magic a little while later, Gordon announced he's against it.

Update: Real Democrats say elections won't stop health care reform.

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