Edition: 022517 – Words: 813 – Audio: 07:44
As this is being written the democrats have elected a new committee chairman, former Obama Labor Secretary, Tom Perez, and everyone seems… united? I suppose all that will come true or not as time and events unfold. But what’s been nagging at me is all this bally-who about the Dems being in such disarray after Trump’s win and the subsequent losses in congressional seats and governorships.
It wasn’t that long ago when the polls heading into the election were predicting a Democratic win and the Republicans were reportedly in disarray. What planet am I on here??
Look, I am no political strategist by any means. My current stage of political activism is going into verbal tirades directed at the TV set when my common sense detects idiocy (which is very often lately). Yeah, I blog my discontent as well, but I call that “coping therapy”. My point is all I have available to form opinion is what I see and hear.. and read. What I heard before the election was that Trump’s maverick behavior, moral conduct, coupled with his total naivety of politics, was alienating a large segment of the Republican Party, especially in Congress. Politicos like Speaker Ryan and others were teetering on the edge up until the end, in proclaiming their undying support to Trump because this guy had an explosive mouth, each day saying something controversial and contrary to traditional Americanism.
Before the election the Republicans were in a tail spin; ultra-right loved Trump, moderate and conservative Republicans held back. Some astute people predicted a Trump win by this rust belt, traditional democrats-gone-republican segment of voters, but few listened to them, and certainly no party leadership.. because those polls showed differently. Had the Dems won the election we’d be talking about the Republicans in turmoil.. not the Dems.
So I suppose I have a question or two here… If Clinton won the popular vote by some 3 million plus, does that not suggest the Democrats were in tune with the feeling of most of the country? I don’t see the “turmoil” in all that. Yes… the Democrats surely need to re-examine the electoral vote strategy of what key states to visit to acknowledge any voter segment feeling disenfranchised.. but to me that falls under election strategy, not a complete party re-organization. Loosing governorships and congressional seats IS a big deal. That could be for any reason, and less about a liberal philosophy being out of step with some national reality.
The Democrats were by and large in step with supporting Hillary. There were mumblings about her email “baggage”, but at that time there was very little discontent within the democratic ranks. Now, the Republicans were, and are, a different story. There was no question that prior to the election there were a fair number of traditional Washington Republicans who expressed a reluctance and wariness with Trump.. before AND after the primary. Also, this premonition by some voices that the rust belt states would carry the electoral votes and hence the election, was not a mainstream Republican belief at the time either. Given the general “disbelief” in Trump on a daily basis with conservative traditionalists, and the aligning of the conservative extreme right faction welcoming all that Trump bravado nonsense, the GOP was the party in disarray.
Where are we at now? The Democrats have always been united. But that does not mean they are getting the message out or being responsive to very important voter demographic segments of the country. I contend it’s the Republicans that are in a mess and don’t realize it yet. Take note.. the Republicans didn’t win the election, Trump won. That’s how he sees it. He’s filling the White House with many inexperienced ultra-conservatives. Anything that can be interpreted as being a “Trump Republicanism” is largely not traditional Republican philosophy.. and certainly nothing like Reagan (I don’t know why people keep insisting Reagan alone is some hallmark of Republicanism).
I am sure, dear reader/listener, you recall not too long ago that no sooner did Trump win that all the congressional republican apprehension evaporated and now they proclaim to be the kumbayah party. Ryan was the big one for that.. leading the pack. It was all an unnerving display of trading one’s personal moral convictions (against Trump) on what is right and wrong, for political expediency.
But be that as it may, there are still a number of “closet Republican traditionalists” in Congress… of the likes of McCain and Graham.. who are balancing their comments and opinions regarding the President. I don’t feel one bit confident that the GOP is all that…. united. There’s a defining conflict with traditional Republican philosophy, and this idea that Trump even has a philosophy is an aberration. He has an agenda, not a philosophy. One also wonders if his staff has their own agenda. Scary times ahead, folks.
Carry on America