The Hagel nomination probably isn’t in terminal danger, no matter how comically awful his confirmation performance was. Although it’s interesting to note that Team Obama is striving to paint Hagel as the victim of mean Republican hecklers, which could be their way of setting up an exit strategy for him, via the Media Martyrdom Express.
But if the outcome does appear to be in doubt, Obama could resort to the old tried-and-true tactic of marching some small children onstage to demand Hagel’s confirmation. That always works. In fact, I think Republicans should start lining up children at all their press conferences, too. Let the next “fiscal cliff” drama be conducted against a backdrop of adorable moppets holding up signs that show how much debt Barack Obama has piled on their shoulders. Let the next gun-control conference hear from children whose parents have saved their lives by using legal firearms.
I envision this escalating into a child-prop arms race, with increasingly large teams of tousle-haired scamps brought forth to support all Washington initiatives, until we’ve got supply-side Cub Scout troops pitted against tax-and-spend peewee soccer teams. The adult politicians would become even more superfluous than they are now. Or else we’d have bilateral human prop disarmament, and we could go back to reasoned discussion, instead of emotional manipulation.