Zell’S Bells
From the December 22, 2003, issue of National Review


A National Party No More: The Conscience of a Conservative Democrat, by Zell Miller (Stroud & Hall, 237 pp., $26)

With the retirement of Georgia Democrat Zell Miller, the U.S. Senate loses one of its most impressive members. He has just published a memoir, A National Party No More, which offers an unsparing indictment of the direction of today’s Democrats — and some sound advice and analysis:


There is always a lesson to be learned from studying the British. Remember how the Conservative party with towering figures like Margaret Thatcher dominated that country’s politics for 18 years until the Labour party led by Tony Blair was able to reclaim power? It happened because Blair took his party kicking and screaming toward the middle of the political spectrum. The extreme left wing of the party was obliterated . . . If Clinton had followed through and governed as he had campaigned, it would have happened here for the Democrats.

Clinton appears once again as the Democrats’ Nixon — the gifted leader who used all his political skills for personal short-term victories, and left his party worse off than he had found it. Someday, though, just as Republicans found their Reagan, the Democrats might find their Miller.