What if the Democrats win?

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In what strikes me as a sign of desperation, Republicans have been trying to scare people with the prospect of what the Democrats might do if they take over Congress. Socialized medicine! Tax hikes! Impeachment! The destruction of the country! You just know that a bunch of people are going to go trick-or-treating as Speaker Nancy Pelosi this year, claiming it’s the scariest thing they can think of.

I won’t get into the silliness of such claims, like the National Review claiming Charlie Rangel would eliminate 529 savings plans or abolish the child tax credit — all because he said he couldn’t think of a single Bush tax cut he liked.

Then there’s the little matter of Pelosi specifically ruling out impeachment proceedings.

And I’ll content myself with briefly noting that Democrats have been in charge for much of this century and the country is still standing, still a superpower, still the biggest economy on earth, and best I can recall we haven’t been invaded and conquered during that time.

Set all that aside. Let’s assume the Democrats are in fact Communists in Donkey dress, and if elected they will shed their disguises and put a bust of Lenin in the House chamber.

So what?

Even if the Democrats take both the House and the Senate, they will not command veto-proof majorities. Bush may have to exercise his veto pen for once, but his vetoes will stick unless his own party revolts against him. And the Republican minority will use all the procedural tricks they’ve decried for the past decade — filibusters, Senatorial holds, what have you — to derail Democratic bills they don’t like.

The most significant threat, in fact, doesn’t involve Pelosi at all; it involves Harry Reid. Because if the Democrats manage to take the Senate, they can block a lot of Bush’s judicial appointments. But even that power is limited; they can block, but they can’t nominate. And Bush can make recess appointments, or simply make hay out of all the judicial vacancies the Dems are letting pile up.

So the plain fact is that all the nation risks by letting the Democrats take over is a two-year standoff with the White House. That may actually be a good thing; but in any event I’d rather risk that than let the GOP remain in charge after the hash they’ve made of things in the past six years.

It’s time for a change. Republicans had their chance; let’s see what the Democrats can come up with.

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