So here’s Reid, close up like he’s the big man in town, hitching his arms and comin’ at ya.
Says last night’s caption: Senator Harry Reid, the Democratic leader, controls the next steps on the economic stimulus bill. Control? What stands out more is the sense of aversion, the lack of eye contact with you and me, and the body language of the guy just behind. (Likely a typical downward glance, but I can’t help reading “hang dog.”)
Maybe that’s because the parliamentary victory Reid won yesterday over the Pugs was mostly evidence of futility. If Reid and Pelosi had hung tough and together, they could have channeled the glare of the stock market hysteria two weeks ago to leverage Bush into a joint House/Senate deal. As it played out instead, Pelosi went her own way, and got left in the hallway by Paulson and Boehner. So now, we see Reid looming large … over a slow-motion train wreck.
With the economy supposedly tanking and that supposedly urgent, bipartisan slam-dunk of a stimulus package going the same way, we’re looking for leadership. Harry looks like he couldn’t find his suspenders.
image from: Senate G.O.P. Blocks Additions to Stimulus Bill (NYT)
Still Not Making Trouble (Digby)
Update 8:04 pm: Okay, Harry got it done … but by taking the deal worked out unilaterally by Pelosi, and largely driven by the White House.
(image: Brendan Smialowski/NYT. Washington. February 6, 2008. nytimes.com)