2 thoughts on “Is Glenn Reynolds a libertarian?

  1. That was neither the first nor the only post he’s done on the topic. And the Hotline item he links to was interesting.

    Most of Reynold’s posts have been links to people with various perspectives and areas of expertise, analyzing the wiretap issue from all different angles. I don’t think approaching this issue as an occassion for anti-Bush point-scoring ought to be a libertarian litmus test.

  2. The Hotline post is bunk.

    – To keep with their point about Cleland: In 2002, the GOP was targeting Democrats in red states (Missouri, Georgia) with the Homeland Security tactic. In 2006, their incumbent Dem targets are in the blue territory of Michigan (Stabenow) and Washington (Cantwell). I think you need only look at the lack of traction Republicans got in 2004 against Washington’s Patty Murray for her “Osama is doing good things for the third world” comment to see how much tougher that terrain is for these issues.

    – As I documented in my Nov. Reason story, polls have shown Americans getting more and more skeptical of government power since the spike in support after 9/11, which really influenced the ’02 results. Right now pluralities of independents and Democrats think the the Patriot Act “goes too far.”

    – Insofar as the GOP will attack Democrats on national security, they don’t even need the pretext of their votes on stuff like this. Some of the most brutal ads of the ’04 cycle were directed against challengers in Pennsylvania House races. Republicans attacked Ginny Schrader (PA-08) and Lois Murphy (PA-06) because the former had screened “Fahrenheit 9/11” and the latter had gotten money from MoveOn. The anti-Murphy ad claimed Murphy supported the Taliban’s rape and torture of women because MoveOn had been against the Afghan war. (It was a dynamite ad – at crucial points the words “RAPE” and “TORTURE” were flashed on the screen.)

    I think all of these factors were in Democrats’ minds when they filibustered. They knew the GOP would attack them (Ken Mehlman said they would “pay a price” in 2006), but they did it anyway.

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