From the Left



Republicans Happily Watch Democrats Destroy Themselves

Clarence Page, Tribune Content Agency on

A couple of recent studies by experts who examine what makes us Americans tick politically have found that conservatives are happier than liberals. My response, why shouldn’t they be?

More than a century ago, Ambrose Bierce was moved in his classic “Devil’s Dictionary” to define the conservative as, “A statesman who is enamored of existing evils as distinguished from the liberal who wishes to replace them with others.”

That well describes the Democrats’ current fix as polls show President Joe Biden slipping badly.

Even among Black voters, polls from the Pew Research Center, Quinnipiac University and Morning Consult all found Biden’s approval rating slipping into the low 70s or 60s, which is weak for any Democrat in these times.

It is not obvious why his ratings among Black voters have fallen so far, although some researchers say it could be part of a backlash against vaccine mandates and a steeper decline in Biden’s ratings among unvaccinated Black voters.

Fortunately for our public health, at least, a late-September survey by Kaiser Family Foundation found the racial-ethnic vaccination gap to be closing, with 70% of black adults, 73% of Hispanic adults and 71% of white adults having received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.


But Black voters also have been widely disappointed with the inability of Democrats to stop the Grand Old Party’s lawmakers from undercutting voting rights in what Biden himself has called a “21st-century Jim Crow assault” and “the most significant test of our democracy since the Civil War.”

A compromise Freedom to Vote Act that would have expanded vote by mail, made Election Day a holiday and established automatic voter registration failed even to come to a vote because of solid Republican resistance.

Most of the president’s news lately seems not to be much better.

Among Democrats, the hope has been a recovery in approval ratings on the heels of Biden’s Build Back Better Agenda of economic and infrastructure benefits. But it already is being trimmed back in Senate negotiations, with Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, the two centrist Democrats pushing for cuts that have not pleased the party’s progressive wing.


swipe to next page


blog comments powered by Disqus


Bart van Leeuwen John Cole Chip Bok David M. Hitch Ed Gamble Jack Ohman