Sunday, October 28, 2012
I wanted to write a blog last week about the late Senator Paul Wellstone, on the anniversary of the. Death of Paul Wellstone but I had a hectic week that even took me away from blogging for a day and had other things to write about and I'm going off of a memory from ten years ago about how I. Felt about Senator Wellstone but what I remember about Senator Wellstone from 2002, is the same man I remember about him from 1996 when I first heard his name and saw the Progressive Democrat get elected. To the US Senate from Minnesota, a State that clearly leans Democratic but doesn't go very far to the left or right, one thing that made Senator Wellstone incredible, because he clearly. Wasn't a Centrist or a Moderate-Liberal but a hard core Progressive Democrat who was proud of his ideology and articulated it very well, I didn't agree with him on much as it related to. Economic Policy but at least I always knew what he believed and the guy I remember from 2002, is the same guy I remember when I first heard of him in 1996. As probably the most Progressive Senator in Congress and one of the most Progressive Members of Congress period, as well as one of the. Most honest Members of Congress as well.
There are several things I respect about Senator Wellstone and they all get back to why he was a Senator. That politics and government were about the people, how can we best serve the people to help them make their lives as good as possible, especially for people who aren't doing as well. As the rest of the country, he was about country meaning America and the American people, he wasn't anti success or anti wealth but he believed that all Americans should have the opportunity. To do as well as the special few and that wealth shouldn't be concentrated in a few hands but wanted an Economic System that worked for the whole country. Whether you agree with the policies that he favored to accomplish that or not, thats what he believed in, he was called the first member of the. 1960s generation to be elected to the Senate, which would've been 1990, not a direct quote but pretty close. He had sorta this hippy boomer idea that American Capitalism wasn't the problem but that it had to work for everyone, not just the special few.
Two things I think of when I think about Senator Paul Welltone, his opposition to the Iraq War back. Before it became unpopular and arguing that Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11 and it would take our focus off of Al Qaeda and his opposition to No Child Left Behind in 2002 again while that. Bill was still popular, saying that it would lead to more Unfunded Mandates onto the States and make it harder for States to fund Public Education, he was write on both fronts and thats. The mark of a great Leader someone whose right about issues and can express their views on them, when they are popular or unpopular.
|Source: Mike Gardner- President Lyndon B. Johnson, leaving The White House in 1969|
I'm guessing Lyndon Johnson was ready to leave the presidency and had enough. 1966, was a really rough year for President Johnson and the Johnson Presidency. House Democrats, lose over forty seats in the House and three in the Senate. Because of the Vietnam War and how unpopular it was. Plus with the Republican Party and House Republicans, finally figuring out how to campaign and win in the South. Richard Nixon of course was a huge help there and he campaigned for a lot of House Republicans and House Republican candidates and did that in the South. Which helped him with his 1968 presidential campaign with all of these new Freshman Republican Representatives, who now owed him favors.
1967, the war gets even worst for the Johnson Administration in Vietnam. And now he's having a lot of problems with his own party in Congress. Starting with Senate Democrats holding Vietnam War hearings that started in 1965, but continued through the next Congress in 1967. Several Senate Democrats are now weighing presidential bids against their party leader in President Johnson. Like Robert Kennedy, Eugene McCarthy and George McGovern. The anti-war movement and the New-Left emerges in the late 1960s. And they're against President Johnson and calling him a war criminal, and war monger and a few things that you can't say on network TV, even today.
1968, was the topper with LBJ now being the most unpopular elected politician in America. And now there's talk if he can even win the Democratic nomination for president, let alone with the presidency against Richard Nixon, Nelson Rockefeller, or George Romney, in the Republican Party. By March 1968, President Johnson decides that he's had enough and doesn't want to run for reelection and announces that to the country. But 1968 is just getting started with two great political leaders, Senator Robert Kennedy, and Dr. Martin King, both being assassinated. There racial riots in Chicago, Detroit and Los Angeles. The Democratic Party, is now divided between their mainstream Progressives, which LBJ represents and their Far-Left. LBJ, was really smart not to run for reelection in 1968.
Mike Gardner: NBC News- Lyndon Johnson's Last Day as President