Dancing with the Base that Brought You
This story is astonishing. If the GOP does not deliver on new oil exploration in a time of $60 a barrel oil, it will provide ammuntion to every cynic who believes that the Congress is incapable of acting on any issue that is remotely difficult. After the war, the courts, and the defense of marriage, energy exploration was the hot button in the past three elections, and not just because of the cost of gas, but also because it represents the defeat of environmentalist posing by clear-eyed science and the belief in progress. I doubt the Speaker will be swayed, but if this measure fails in the House, it will be an invitation to the base –every bit as compelling as the failure to confirm Roberts would be in the Senate– to sit out ’06.