The indictment comes at a tough time for Democrats. Public assessment of their performance since taking charge of Capitol Hill in January has been worsening, polls show. On Democrats' other big election issue – the war in Iraq – they disappointed antiwar activists last month by approving President Bush's war-funding request for this fiscal year.
'The Jefferson case was much less important to Democrats when they were in the minority,' says Julian Zelizer, a congressional historian at Princeton University in New Jersey. 'Coming after a watered-down ethics bill, the story is about failing to reform a system they promised to change.'
'For those frustrated on Iraq as well, it becomes part of an ongoing story on whether the Democrats can follow through on what they promised.
Wednesday, June 6, 2007