As any kid whose ever tried to buy ice cream with arcade tokens knows, there’s a difference between change and tokens. On Nov. 7, American voted for change. But we got tokens. Let’s review.
Boyda’s slogan running up to the 2006 midterms was “Had Enough? Vote for Change!” This meant, amongst other things, a new approach to the Iraq war. Boyda’s campaign Web site suggested that we needed to “establish a realistic plan for Iraq,” and asserted that the violence in Iraq was “a direct result of the current administration’s poor planning for the occupation of Iraq.” Sound good? Well, it did to a lot of Kansans, who elected her in something of an upset over five-termer Jim “Really Good at Running” Ryun.
It was something of a surprise then, when on Jan. 4, now-Congresswoman Boyda appeared on ABC News singing an awfully different tune. Charlie Gibson, the show’s host, was interviewing her for a segment called, “Washington’s Freshman Talk Iraq Policy.” Nancy made a fool of herself rather quickly. While the segment’s two other featured Democratic freshmen attacked Bush’s proposal for an Iraqi troop surge of 20,000 – 40,000, Nancy proclaimed, “I think we’re going to vote to support what the commander- in-chief and head of military asks to do. At least, I am certainly going to vote to support it.” When Charlie Gibson clarified her position as “If he wants the surge, he’ll get it,” Boyda went further. “Yes… He is the commander in chief, Charlie. We don’t get that choice. Congress doesn’t make that decision.”
That’s right – Nancy Boyda, elected in no small part because of discomfort with Iraq (if we liked her, we would have voted for her the first time she wanted us to), has now declared she will do whatever her “commander-in-chief” wants. Beyond that, she’s suggesting that she doesn’t have the power to do otherwise – you know, that those Congressional votes are just so that C-SPAN has something to keep the viewers interested. Apparently, her grasp of the American system of governance is weaker than our collective grasp of men’s fashion. Honestly, when Charlie Gibson is the smartest person in the room, something is either seriously amiss, or he’s locked himself in a closet alone.
Perhaps the best part of the interview was when Gibson suggested that low poll numbers and election results suggested voters were discontent and looking for… a change? Boyda, get this, said, “They should have thought about that before they voted for President Bush not once, but twice.” Hear that? The reason that Nancy Boyda isn’t doing her job is because voters in the previous election were more Republican than they are now. Thanks a lot, voters. More fundamentally, Boyda just thumbed her nose at every person dumb enough to vote for a sign that just said “Vote for Change!” And here we thought that if Kansans wanted a Congressperson who would just say and do whatever Bush wanted said and done we’d have re-elected Running Man.