The Democrats of New York's 24th congressional district are facing the birth of a new political reality that ought to alter their calculations of their party's conceptual positioning. The question is whether they realize it's the case.
The new reality is the alienation of the political left. At the height of Democratic victory, progressives are realizing that the Democratic Party has never intended to speak to their interests. All the promises of liberal reform from the last eight years are being exposed as crass manipulation used to bring the Democrats back into the centers of power.
The Blue Dog Coalition, of which Michael Arcuri is an enthusiastic member, represents the sort of Republican-lite ideology which is alienating increasing numbers of Democratic voters. The Republicans themselves cannot gain the attention of these disenchanted voters, given the way that the Republicans have abused the public's trust so conspicuously, for so long.
So, who can step into this breach, to take advantage of this political moment? In the 24th District, the Green Party may be doing so.
This week, sensing the opportunity created by the Democrats' disappointment, the Green Party of Tompkins County has re-organized, electing new officers and endorsing two candidates for local office in 2009. Most of Tompkins County is in Mike Arcuri's congressional district.
Will the Green Party challenge Arcuri from the left in 2010? Wait and see...