In the author’s school of thought on political strategy, posturing is not becoming to the posturer, and thus achieves greatest success when it is camouflaged. Take, for instance, the defintition of marriage amendment that the Republican Congress trotted out earlier this month out of the blue and in the midst of vigorous national debates over immigration, right-to-privacy vs. national security, and oil prices. Opinion polls showed the Republicans had lost their ability to excite even their core supporters, so they dropped everything to hoorah an issue guaranteed to always stir up the GOP faithful. And they were immediately (and rightfully) called out by the press and everyone else for pre-election posturing. This was chronicled at length in the inaugural article on this very blog on June 5.
So take that article, entitled “An Embarassing Lack of Imagination,” and replace “marriage amendment” with “Flag Burning Amendment.” For Monday on the Senate floor debate began on a constitutional amendment to reverse the 1989 Supreme Court ruling that flag burning was a protected form of speech. Indeed, eschewing debate on more pressing matters the Senate is taking up debate on an issue no more exigent now than it was a month ago, a year ago, or even seventeen years ago. And lo and behold, today the press is calling out the Republican Congress for it.
Yes, it happens every election. But its poor strategy in the view of the author. What is going on is clear for all to see. Worse still, the proposed flag burning amendment is not a wholly galvanizing issue among the GOP. It disrespects the issue by politicizing it, and its shows yet again an embarassing lack of imagination on the part of the GOP leadership. On the other hand, maybe the Congress are simply trying to rush through all the campaign promises from last election. Ah, procrastination. The author would know nothing about that.