Judis is known in left circles as a “socialist conservative” and is even accused of DLC/Blue Dog tendencies in the more liberal left. For the past three decades he’s been the voice the more orthodox left loves to hate, because he always calls for moderate tones in politics with an incrementalist approach to progress. He is the one calling for support of Democrats who can win and has often “punched the hippie,” at least on cultural issues (although activists jumped the gun during the 1980s when he called for the left to reclaim “family values” when a lot of them unfortunately didn’t bother to read the article before issuing knee-jerk responses). He is the last wonk you would expect to call Obama a wimp for pushing compromise, but there it is. During the 1990s, I had arguments with socialist friends about whether Judis is legitimately even “liberal” anymore, and when I pointed out that he still identifies as a “socialist,” one friend laughed and said, “just wait about 10 years.” Well, it’s been about 17, and this is what he’s writing:
THIS IS IMPORTANT because Obama may now be facing his own crisis of the Union. Over the last four decades, the Republican Party has transformed from a loyal opposition into an insurrectionary party that flouts the law when it is in the majority and threatens disorder when it is the minority. It is the party of Watergate and Iran-Contra, but also of the government shutdown in 1995 and the impeachment trial of 1999. If there is an earlier American precedent for today’s Republican Party, it is the antebellum Southern Democrats of John Calhoun who threatened to nullify, or disregard, federal legislation they objected to, and who later led the fight to secede from the union over slavery.
Read the rest of the uncharacteristic opinion. Maybe he isn’t a leftist anymore. Maybe that’s how goofy the GOP has become.