The Corner

Kerry Blows It Again

A few weeks ago, Bill Buckley wrote a column about John Kerry’s proposed campaign theme, “Let America Be America Again.” He warned Kerry that the author of those words—poet Langston Hughes—had praised Stalin, and would thus not be helpful to the Democrats’ campaign. Well, I just got an e-mail from the publicist at Random House—and guess who has just written a preface to a new book of Langston Hughes’s poems? Our friend John Kerry! It seems the left-wing cachet of Langston Hughes among Kerry’s supporters outweighs, for candidate Kerry, the losses he will sustain among moderate and conservative voters. The conventional wisdom—which I unapologetically endorse—is that Democrats can only win nationwide if they convince voters they won’t go back to their pre-New Democrat big-taxing socialist reflexes. This development—along with Hillary’s recent comment about taxes needing to be raised for the public good—indicates to me that leading Democrats are rejecting that conventional wisdom, and bearing left. Just a couple more steps in this direction, and they will find themselves on the wrong side of a Goldwater/McGovern-level blowout.

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