In one of his last columns William Safire makes an interesting prophecy about the political future of our nation. He says, “If I were starting out in politics or its commentary today, I’d become a Democrat.” Coming from one of the most staunchly Republican pundits I have ever read, that is an interesting statement.
His reasons offer a ray of hope to the democratic party today and a voice of warning to the Republicans who currently hold power. To the republicans he says, “The G.O.P. personality will split in a couple of years, as all huge majorities do in America. Idealistic neocons will be challenged by plodding, pragmatic paleocons, who, by fuzzing the party’s present character, will someday lead it down the road to defeat.” and to the Democrats he suggests that they can begin to win again if they will “take advantage of its bantamweight agility and ‘stand for something.'”
In some ways I am starting out in politics in that I figure that I still have at least 30 years worth of political participation ahead of me. I could not agree more with Mr. Safire that joining the Republicans represents jumping onto an old champion racehorse – lots of victories behind it, but not many left in front of it. Siding with the Democrats gives the newcomer an opportunity to help shape an up-and-coming champion which will start to produce greater and greater victories so long as discipline and principles are vigilantly maintained.