Ick. And it just goes on and on like this, with Lizza gushing about how tough and manly the new Democrats are, like a star-struck Chris Matthews rhapsodizing over Action Flightsuit Dubya With Deciderer Grip. He's completely bought into the Republican narrative that American voters prize manliness over all other qualities (like, say, honesty or competence). Oh, and get this: He says the Macho Dems are in the image of the brilliant wizard masterminds who are solely responsible for their victories, Chuck Schumer and Rahm Emanuel. It is to laugh. Or cry.
NANCY PELOSI’S carefully crafted introduction to the American people last week seemed to reinforce some stereotypes of the so-called mommy party. On the day she made history as the first woman to be elected speaker, she appeared on the House floor, surrounded by children and bedecked in pearls.
But even as this nurturing image dominated the news, the swearing-in ceremony on Thursday was notable for another milestone in gender politics: the return of the Alpha Male Democrat.
The members of this new faction, which helped the Democrats expand into majority status, stand out not for their ideology or racial background but for their carefully cultivated masculinity.
“As much as the policy positions is the background and character of these Democrats,” says John Lapp, the former executive director of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee who helped recruit this new breed of candidate. “So we went to C.I.A. agents, F.B.I. agents, N.F.L. quarterbacks, sheriffs, Iraq war vets. These are red-blooded Americans who are tough.”
Mr. Lapp even coined a term to describe these manly — and they are all men — pols: “the Macho Dems.”The return of Democratic manliness was no accident; it was a carefully planned strategy. But now that the Macho Dems are walking the halls of Congress, it remains to be seen whether they will create as many problems for Democrats as they solved. After all, these new Democrats have heterodox political views that could complicate Democratic caucus politics, and their success may raise uncomfortable questions for those Democrats who don’t pass the new macho test.
And finally, one last little tidbit of wankery I wanted to point out:
In the Senate, Mr. Schumer’s tough-guy caucus includes Jon Tester, a husky Montana farmer with a buzz-cut, and Jim Webb, the former marine from Virginia who turned his son’s combat boots into an effective electoral prop. Upon arriving in Washington, he promptly picked a fight with President Bush at a White House reception.Yes, that's right, Webb cunningly lured Bush into his trap by avoiding him for the whole reception, and letting the word get out that Bush should not bring up his son who almost got killed, and then allowing Bush to get close enough to have this exchange:
"How's your boy?" Bush asked, referring to Webb's son, a Marine serving in Iraq.The liberal perfidy, it burns! How could he be so mean to Nice Mr. President like that?
"I'd like to get them out of Iraq, Mr. President," Webb responded, echoing a campaign theme.
"That's not what I asked you," Bush said. "How's your boy?"
"That's between me and my boy, Mr. President."