It's a tough time to be a Democrat.
When Democrats run into each other in elevators, they exchange glances and sigh. Or make little whimpering sounds.<WC> <WC1><WC>
<WC1>They read post-Denver bloggers like Andrew Sullivan ("Obama has instantly plummeted into near-oblivion.") and find themselves spending their evenings watching "House Hunters International." The real estate market in Cuzco, they note, is sort of intriguing.
Democrats walk around repeating the comeback lines they would have given if they had been debating Mitt Romney in Colorado. ("Maybe you need a new accountant? Yeah, and a new calculator, and a new <WC>.<TH>.<TH>.<WC1>") <NO1>They tell each other that now it's all up to Joe Biden.<NO>
They wander around the neighborhood, buttonholing perfect strangers, demanding the name of one — one! — tax loophole that Mitt Romney has actually said he'd close.
Democrats are going bipolar. Half the time they are grabbing at random bits of hopeful information. (An Esquire/Yahoo poll shows most Americans would rather go on a road trip with Obama!) Half the time they are in total despair. Nothing makes them happy. Show them that cute picture of the lioness befriending the orphan baby antelope that's gone viral, and they will point out that the only reason the antelope is an orphan is because the lioness ate its mother.
Before falling asleep, they think about how smart Joe Biden is when it comes to foreign affairs.<WC> <WC1>Everything reminds them of the election. They hear Diane Sawyer talking about people who've gotten meningitis from steroid injections and they do not think about alternate therapy for back pain. They start yelling at the TV: "Yeah! Let's not have overreaching federal regulation of those compounding companies! Let the states do it. The states are great at this stuff!"
Democrats spend all their waking hours thinking about the swing states. If Wisconsin starts looking wobbly, their day is ruined. They leap out of bed in the morning and race to the computer to see where the trend lines are going in Colorado.
Calm down and leave Colorado alone! Also, stop talking about getting into a bus and going door to door in Ohio. Research shows that undecided voters are most likely to be swayed by their friends and neighbors. East Coast Democrats, no one in Zanesville is going to believe you are their neighbor.
Democrats miss Seamus.<WC> <WC1><WC>
<WC1>Yes, those were the days. When the very mention of "Mitt Romney" would instantly lead to a discussion of the dangers of transporting an Irish setter to Canada on the roof of a station wagon.
"Has Seamus peaked too early?" a worried Democrat asked me in Texas a while back. At the time, I thought that anybody who is a Democrat in Texas had so many things to worry about, it was a miracle he could even remember the dog's name. But now it's clear that he was totally right. Seamus was so June.
All Democrats have now is Big Bird. Plus worrying about whether they're talking too much about Big Bird.
<NO1>Plus Joe Biden, who has a very nice smile<NO>You have to calm down, Democrats. Romney hasn't turned into some new supercandidate. You were just underestimating him during September. He's the same old Mitt. This week in Des Moines, Iowa, he told an editorial board that he doesn't have any plans for pushing anti-abortion bills if he's elected. ("There's no legislation with regards to abortion that I'm familiar with that would become part of my agenda.") Meanwhile, back at headquarters, his spokeswoman was assuring National Review that he "would, of course, support legislation aimed at providing greater protections for life."