So Hard to Say GoodBayh

(Yes, the obvious pun is “Bye Bayh,” but I’ve seen no less than four separate political blogs already use that, not to mention one of my friends suggesting it and Steve Clemons’ slight variation on the theme, so in the interest of variety I’m trying to play a different chord on the same instrument.)

So. Evan Bayh is out. I’m late in commenting on this because I resisted doing so for most of the day, which in turn is because even the pun-related bases have already been covered by other, sharper analysts. However, I do feel like I should say something, if only because the callow, perfectly coifed Indiana Senator has been a bête noire* of mine for so long. Yglesias, as usual, puts it best:

Obviously, Evan Bayh’s never been my favorite Senator. And the more one learns about both the manner of his departure, and the thinking behind it, the clearer it is why. Simply put: He’s an immoral person who conducts his affairs in public life with a callous disregard for the impact of his decisions on human welfare. He’s sad he’s not going to be president? He doesn’t like liberal activists? He finds senate life annoying? Well, boo-hoo. We all shed a tear.

What this whole thing most reminds me of is Palin’s abrupt departure from the Alaskan state house over the summer. In both cases, it came off as a tactical move by a political sociopath who realized that s/he had already milked his/her current position for as much press attention and moolah as it was likely to yield. And for that reason alone, I find it difficult to mourn the potential loss of yet another seat for the Democratic Party in 2010; because Glenn Greenwald was spot on when he called Bayh “the pure expression of virtually every attribute that makes the Beltway so dysfunctional, deceitful and corrupt.” The absolute worst case scenario is that he gets replaced with someone every bit as monstrous as he is, but who happens to be a Republican. Either way, good riddance.

*Which is French for “pretentious phrase to use on a blog but go to hell imaginary critic because I can use whatever term paper-caliber prose I want.”


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