Rich, I think your analysis of the WaPo poll is absolutely on target, and it jibes with the political realities of the moment. After all, what exactly was the Democratic Party to do after November 2004? The obstructionist agenda made perfect sense. If, for example, they had joined with Bush in the effort to reform Social Security, Bush (and by extension, the Republicans) would have gotten all the credit. And if they had let up on judges, they would have depressed partisan Democrats the way partisan Republicans were depressed in the 1980s by the conduct of House Minority Leader Bob Michel and by Senate Minority Leader Bob Dole. I don’t think what the Washington Democrats are doing is good governance. But they are playing the hand they’ve been dealt, and they’re not just folding.
Where and when it becomes a problem, though, is in the upcoming 2006 and 2008 elections — when both parties have to broaden their appeal. Naysaying is not a good way to change the nation’s political direction.