They went after Barack Obama, and he proved more popular and more resilient than Team Hillary. They went after Howard Dean, and he didn't cave. They went after Bill Richardson, and he didn't give in. Now, they have come for our Speaker, Nancy Pelosi.
Hillary Clinton's big donors see their dreams of a Senate confirmation hearing and a post as Ambassador to the Bahamas dying before their very eyes, and so they are making threats. Senator Clinton's fundraisers, indignant that after all of these years of effort on behalf of Bill and Hillary they may not become overnight guests in the Lincoln Bedroom, and irate that all their money may not buy them a plum foreign assignment in the next administration, told Howard Dean that he had better find a way to get Florida and Michigan seated at the Democratic Convention -- or else they'd pull their money from the Democratic National Committee.
But their ploy didn't work.
Then, James Carville famously branded Bill Richardson a "Judas" for letting his conscience come before his jobs.
Bill Richardson laughed.
And now, the same fat cats who took on Howard Dean, and failed, are going after our good Speaker, Nancy Pelosi. They are once again threatening to pull their money from the Democratic National Committee. The reason this time? Speaker Pelosi said that the superdelegates should follow the will of the people and that the superdelegates should pick the nominee who has the most votes and the most delegates.
To those whose dream is gladhanding at the Atlantis Resort, this was an outrage! They immediately fired off a letter to Madame Speaker. They wrote:
"We have been strong supporters of the DCCC. We therefore urge you to clarify your position on super-delegates and reflect in your comments a more open view to the optional independent actions of each of the delegates at the National Convention in August."
In other words, the donors, the money people, believe they are more important than the hundreds of thousands of people who have made small donations to the candidates. They believe that their money buys them a greater say in our democracy than the say that you have and that I have.
Are they right? I guess that Hillary Clinton has told them that they are indeed correct.
Now, the big $$$ people expect that they will roll over Nancy Pelosi. They will wave wads of cash at her, and hope that their threats cause her to encourage the superdelegates to pick a candidate, without paying heed to what the people want.
Speaker Pelosi is tough. I look forward to her response to those who seek to bribe her.
The Speaker won't be the last Democrat threatened by a desperate group of people, clinging to the last vestiges of a presumed power. After Senator Obama, Chairman Dean, Governor Richardson and Speaker Pelosi, Team Hillary will come after anyone who dares see things objectively. They will come after anyone who has the gall to speak up. They came for them. They'll come for me, too.
Is this the future of the Democratic Party? Is this what we want? If this is how Senator Clinton's team deals with their fellow Democrats; how would a President Clinton ever get anything accomplished in a bipartisan way?
Back in the early '90s, Senator Clinton told Jim Cooper, the Congressman from Tennessee with a health care proposal that was more moderate than hers, that she would crush him and he would regret ever speaking to her. She told Bill Bradley that she would demonize anyone who stood in her way on health care. She icily dismissed Daniel Patrick Moynihan's questions about her program.
Let's remember, Jim Cooper, Bill Bradley, and the late Senator Moynihan are and were Democrats. Hillary's plan went down in flames. So did the Democrats in the 1994 elections.
Can we really take eight more years of the Clintons in the White House?
The Obama campaign, and all good Democrats, should follow the wisdom of Dalton, bouncer at the Double Deuce: Dalton said, "Be nice until it's time not to be nice."
Democrats, it's time to send a message to Team Hillary, the team that is trying to take down the Democratic Party. It's time not to be nice.