Rep. Rahm Emanuel, the chair of the House Democratic Caucus, is quoted in the New York Times today trying to throw "cut and run" jargon back at Republicans:
The resistance to finishing the appropriations bills is not going over well with Democrats, who have accused Republicans of acting irresponsibly. The unfinished business could also prove a distraction for members of the incoming majority who would like to spend the first weeks of 2007 moving ahead with their own agenda rather than cleaning up from 2006.
"They cut and run from the troops by not doing their oversight, and now they are cutting and running from the country by not passing the spending bills," said Representative Rahm Emanuel of Illinois, who will be the chairman of the Democratic caucus next year.
It's reminiscent of the conservative attempt to counter criticism of the Boy Scouts' ban on gay leaders and members by portraying the group's critics as themselves discriminatory. But turning jargon around in this way is unlikely to work. The reason is basic cognitive science: when a speaker uses a phrase like "cut and run," it triggers associations with the concepts that are linked to that phrase. Needless to say, those associations are unlikely to be favorable to Democrats in this case.