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THE USUAL SUSPECTS ‌ How I Became a Democrat

OK, Bush sucks; now what's the game plan?

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All right, I'm in. You can turn off CNN, stop e-mailing me the New York Times editorials, and stuff a sock in Keith Olbermann's piehole. You've done it. You've closed the deal.

I'm ready to vote Democrat.

I am prepared to walk into that elementary school gymnasium on Nov. 7 and pull a straight "D" ticket (at the federal level, anyway). The man who proudly ran Pat Buchanan's campaign in South Carolina in 1992 is ready, willing, and able to vote Democrat early and, in the proud Democratic tradition, often.

Speaker Pelosi? No problem. Majority Leader Reid? Absolutely. I don't care how much cash he rakes in off unreported Las Vegas land deals. I say "Let it ride!"

I haven't voted to send a Democrat to Washington since my college "Fight The Power!" days. I can count on one hand the Democratic candidates I've supported for any office — mostly elected positions involving the pursuit and restraint of unleashed pets.

But other than the economy, George W. Bush has screwed up nearly everything he's touched, and this Congress is spending more time covering asses than Mark Foley at a high school Twister tournament.

I'm not alone, either. Some politically savvy conservatives argue that it's time to send the GOP leadership a message that, despite popular belief, it is possible to suck so badly that even the Kool-Aid Conservatives will notice. These pundits believe two years in the wilderness will bring the GOP back to the straight and narrow in 2008.

It makes sense in a twisted, masochistic, "I read Machiavelli when I was a freshman but didn't quite grasp the concept" sort of way.

Regardless, I'm a shameless bandwagon jumper and I'm ready to cast my lot with the party of Roosevelt, Truman, and McCain (mostly) — let's go Dems!

I only have one small question first. Nothing complicated. Should be easy.

What are you (sorry — make that "we") Democrats going to do about Iraq and the Islamists?

See, I'm a one-issue voter. Republican loyalists are right that, by voting Democrat, I'm raising taxes or supporting racial quotas or screwing up the chance for a truly conservative U.S. Supreme Court. But you know what? I don't care.

There is only one vital issue facing our nation and threatening the future for my children, and it is the growing Islamist threat facing Western civilization. How are we going to win in Iraq and confront the challenge of radical Islam as it continues to spread into Europe and beyond? That's my only consideration as a voter.

And given the nonstop, around-the-clock bashing of President Bush's foreign policy by the Democrats and their allies in the media, it's clear that they agree that Bush isn't getting the job done.

Mission accomplished? Please. How about "Mission Not Royally Screwed Up"? That would be an improvement.

So my new Democratic friends and I are together on the "Bush Sucks" thing, great. But I think I must have missed a meeting or accidentally deleted an e-mail from MoveOn.org or something, because I still haven't seen the Democratic plan to fix Iraq and kick terrorist butt. Could someone please point me to the page of Time magazine's recent "Barack For President" issue with the "How To Win the War on Terror" bullet points? Thanks.

Wazzat? You can't? Comrade, what do you mean there isn't a Democratic strategy for terrorism? Of course there is. There's gotta be. I mean — seriously — what kind of political party has no war plan at a time when we're actively at war? When 135,000 troops are in the field, and where six weeks ago we foiled a plot to blow 10 American aircraft out of the sky?

Hello?

C'mon guys, I'm not kidding around. I'm ready to go — Hillary, Kennedy ... hell, I'll vote Ned Lamont if I have to. But there's got to be a Democrats' "How we defeat the woman-beating, homosexual-executing, book-burning, anti-Semitic, knuckle-dragging Islamists who want to kill us" position paper somewhere. Right?

It's like the John McCain detainee bill the president just signed. Sure, Democrats overwhelmingly opposed it, but that was just politics, I'm sure. Once you're in power, you'll be waterboarding Al Qaeda detainees on Tuesdays and Thursdays instead of the current Mon-Wed-Fri schedule, right? After all, the Democrats' position on stopping terror can't be to leave Iraq, stop wiretapping, end coercive interrogation, and reveal our secret tracking of terror money abroad in the New York Times. That's crazy.

There's got to be a real Democrat war plan, and I want in on it. How Democrats would use force, how abandoning Iraq to the Islamists will actually help stop them in North Africa or southern Europe. You know — the plan?

I'm just waiting on you, Democrats, and then I'm off to stuff the nearest ballot box. Some say I'm going to have a long wait, but I don't believe them.

We Democrats know how to keep hope alive.

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