The Vietnam War caused the biggest political division in the United States since the Civil War. It also radicalized a generation and drove a president from office. Yet Democrats are using a photograph of two of the Vietnam War’s leading characters to try to rally the party and raise money.

The fund-raising outfit that helps elect Democrats to the U.S. Senate has opened the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Online Store “just in time for the holidays.”
Yes, there are the typical campaign buttons you’d expect. But besides being the first in your neighborhood with a fashionable DSCC mug, this year’s holidays also can be celebrated with a framed photo of President Lyndon Johnson, conferring with his secretary of defense. That would be Robert Strange McNamara, an architect of the American troop escalation in Vietnam.

“Every purchase helps get Democrats elected,” the DSCC says.

Nineteen Democratic-held seats are up for grabs in elections next year,  out of 38 races, and Democrats will have to fight hard not to lose seats in the 2010 mid-term elections.

Republicans shouldn’t feel left out in the cold on gift-giving. There are plenty of websites offering  up ideas that showcase their stars.

For those who really want to get into the holiday spirit, the Sarah Palin wine glass or “can cooler” might be right up their alley.