LOSING THE NEW YORK POST. I didn't pay much attention to electoral politics or polls way back in 1991-92, but the day The New York Post ran the headline "10 Million Americans Out of Work/George May Be Next," (as I recall -- I've got the original somewhere in New York) I knew that George H.W. Bush's days in office were numbered. Once you've lost The Post, you've lost the nation; the scrappy right-wing tabloid doesn't easily abandon a Republican President. After that, I pegged Post headlines as a pretty good finger in the wind, and, in 2004, I looked for similar signs of discontent. They never came; The Post stood by its man. Until now. Today's headline is the first I've seen that crosses the same kind of emotional barrier as the one predicting the first Bush's defeat: "Washington to New York: Terror? What Terror?". It declares today the day that Washington (i.e., D.C. Republicans) abandons the War on Terror, a fight which holds a special resonance for New Yorkers right and left, regardless of their views on the war in Iraq. The New York Daily News, meanwhile, goes with a riff on this Gerald Ford-era classic as the inside hed, "Feds to city: Drop Dead," and calls for Michael Chertoff's head.
Finger in the wind reading: The wind at the Democrats' back is really starting to pick up.