Monday, November 22, 2004

Shadow Cabinet?

Well, well, well. It looks like The Daily Kos might have stumbled across a good idea. They recommend that the Democrats form a "shadow cabinet" (similar to what is done in Britain or Australia) to respond to actions taken by the real (Bush) cabinet.

Though there are obviously significant structural hurdles to implementing this, I don't think they are insurmountable, and the upsides of having a shadow cabinet are very positive (I should note that I think these same positives apply to whatever party is in the minority, which right now happens to be the Democrats). It would provide one-stop shopping for media outlets looking for Democratic responses to GOP plans. It would give the Democrats their own "bully pulpit" to combat the institutional one given to the party in power. It could serve to elevate and sharpen Democratic critiques of flawed Bush policies. And that's just for starters, the possibilities extend well beyond that.

I disagee with Kos' implication that the cabinet should be partisan by default, preferring that it simply propose good policies. If the good policy happens to agree with the GOP's, then so be it. But considering the nature of the Republican party, it doesn't seem likely that the Democrats will run out of things to principally oppose any time soon.

Any nominations for who to serve where?

1 comment:

N.S.T said...

It isn't as if the dems, or the Republicans when they aren't in power, can't make themselves heard. Thye have weekly radio addresses, press releases and press conferences, and (haha) the entire media at their disposal. Such a cabinet would have to be partisan by default, as simply proposing policies concurrent with those of the administartion would be redundant. Finally, the fact that the dems lost the election says it all, and this would be the same if the election had gone the other way: the people don't want or need a) a separate body to validate their views(in the case of a dem voter) or to criticize the views of the other party. The parties are relatively effective at getting their messages, their views, and their rationale across, and an extra body-- much like most of this post-- would be superfluous and redundant.