Monday, April 09, 2018

How Inherently Evil Is The Democratic Establishment? Less Than The Republican Establishment?


If you've been around DWT much over the last year or so, you've probably become familiar with the artwork of Nancy Ohanian, formerly the editorial cartoonist of the L.A. Times, currently a nationally and internationally syndicated editorial illustrator. She's been helping Blue America raise money for our candidates with her art and this week she offered us for auction just not works on paper but works on aluminum, which are usually very expensive. She gave me a choice of works and I picked one of Bernie and one of Elizabeth Warren, my guess for the winning 2020 presidential ticket. (They're two separate caricatures; Bernie is up top... and here's Elizabeth.)

Before they can win the nomination, they have to get through a Democratic Establishment stinking of corruption, a Democratic establishment that would rather see 4 more years of Trump than see the real change that would be heralded by the election of a Bernie ticket to the presidency. Oh, no, I'm not joking and I'm not wrong. Chris Smith touched on it-- maybe inadvertently-- in his Vanity Fair piece on Friday.
Bernie Sanders is weighing a 2020 presidential run, traveling the country and showing that the lefty, populist fervor that made him a surprisingly strong challenger to Hillary Clinton hasn’t gone away. In the meantime, the Democrats are gaining momentum toward retaking Congress in the 2018 midterms. What’s interesting is that the two trends don’t seem to be intersecting: so far, the blue wave isn’t a Bernie wave.

In rural western Pennsylvania, Conor Lamb won a narrow special-election upset in a heavily Republican district by running a largely centrist campaign: in favor of fracking, not in favor of single-payer health care. In suburban Chicago, incumbent Dan Lipinski, a throwback Blue Dog Democrat-- anti-abortion, anti-Obamacare-- won a primary in a reliably liberal district by defeating a Sanders-endorsed progressive challenger, Marie Newman. And while dozens of Sanders-inspired candidates are on Democratic primary ballots this fall, their chances generally don’t appear a whole lot better. The reasons are as varied as the 435 congressional districts, but one consistent hurdle appears to be unchanged from the 2016 Sanders-Clinton presidential battle, despite provoking so much controversy: state parties, and the Democratic National Committee, are weighted in favor of entrenched candidates and traditional big-money interest groups.

“For Tom Perez to be a disappointment as the new leader of the D.N.C., I would have had to have high expectations,” says Corbin Trent, a former Sanders operative who is now communications director for Justice Democrats, one of the most prominent groups launched in the wake of the 2016 election to try to elect progressive Democrats. “When we have a Democratic Party that won’t stand behind candidates with a huge capacity to generate grassroots donations and activity, they’re not interested in letting the democratic process shake out.”

Trent points to the state of Washington as one midterm example. East of Seattle, a seven-term Republican congressman is retiring, generating an eight-way scramble for the Democratic nomination. The early favorite, Kim Schrier, has been fending off complaints from her rivals on the left that the state party is trying to clear the field on her behalf. Two candidates backed by Justice Democrats in other Washington districts, Dorothy Gasque and Sarah Smith, have run up against bureaucratic obstacles. “The state parties are still working to put their thumb on the scales in something as basic as voter file access,” Trent says. “I had hoped that one of the lessons of 2016, especially with the D.N.C., would be that a fair fight is in everybody’s best interest. But that doesn’t seem to be the case.” (The head of the Washington State Democratic Party has said she’s staying neutral. “The D.N.C. does not get involved in congressional primaries, and the state parties operate according to their own bylaws,” a D.N.C. spokeswoman says.)

Nina Turner, the head of Our Revolution, the Sanders-founded political group, is more worried that Democrats are once again selling their ideological soul in the name of racking up political victories, and will end up repeating the same lack of enthusiasm for their candidates that helped elect Donald Trump. “People say Lamb and Lipinski show that progressives can’t win. Lee Carter, in a strong Virginia Republican state legislative district, didn’t run in the middle-- he won as a democratic socialist! Randall Woodfin, in Birmingham, Alabama, ran as a progressive and won the mayor’s race!” Turner says. “I was in Flint, Michigan, last night with Senator Sanders, and the reality on the ground is very much reflective of the town hall he did. Running to the middle does nothing to help the people in Flint. Playing to the middle is not what excites people and gets them out to vote, and it is not what changes the status quo in real people’s lives.”

At the moment, however, fear and hatred of Trump seem to be motivation enough to elect Democrats in many midterm races. And Bernie Dems still haven’t broken through in many contests where they need to appeal across more diverse geographic and demographic terrain; Sanders himself is now trying to fix his glaring weakness with black voters. “The Bernie crowd went all in against Ralph Northam last year in the Virginia governor Democratic primary-- and lost,” says Congressman Hakeem Jeffries, a New York Democrat. “And Northam, the more centrist candidate, went on to victory in the general in November, so it’s obvious the Democrats chose the most appropriate candidate. The progressive agenda should absolutely be respected as important to the future of our nation. But it remains to be seen how potent a force the left will be in primarying Democrats. And I think we’re close to being able to say that the swing to the left has been overhyped and is not electorally effective.”
A note: the Bernie crowd did not go against Northam. Sure, he's a conservative POS but the other Democrat, Tom Perriello, wasn't much better (like Hakeen Jefferies himself) and many progressives decided to just sit the election out or vote without any enthusiasm. That's not the same as "all in." It's not going to be easy for Bernie to win the nomination. Luckily for him, though, 1-there aren't any good alternatives for the Establishment and 2- he is, after all, the most popular political leader in the country, something that drives the Democratic Establishment insane with their bag of shit candidates that no one cares about in any way shape or form, from Terry McAuliffe, John Delaney and Jason Kander to Kamala Harris, Seth Moulton and Howard Schultz.

Labels: ,


At 5:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is no denying that Republicans are evil, but -unlike "democrats"- they are overt about it. The "democrats" pretend to be open about themselves, then stab their opponents in the back.

This is why I believe "democrats" to be worse than Republicans.

At 5:37 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You just defined the wave as anti-red, not blue-positive.

Where is Ted Lieu in WA? Why is he allowing the DCCC to "put their thumb on the scale" for shit democraps? Isn't he the chair of the west for the DCCC?

Maybe Lieu is another pos in a progressive mask and he's fooled you? Could it be that being so was a prereq for being named?

More evidence that the party is total shit.

At 12:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

5:19, agreed.

It's easier to defend one's self from a trump than from a Clinton or even an obamanation. But they all want the same things -- neoliberal reforms that benefit the rich and corporations; war; austerity; immunity for white-collar criminals; colossally stupid voters; privatization of everything; but most of all billions in donations they can amuse themselves with. (trump and Clinton both pathologically chase women while, as far as we know, obamanation does not).

At 4:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Obamanation isn't man enough to chase women. Michelle has custody of his gonads.

At 6:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

4:13, oh I don't know. I admire Michelle. If she is at all enthusiastic in the bedroom, I can see why he wouldn't be looking around. But I agree that he does exhibit a lower testosterone content than the other 2. If it weren't for his dearth of principles, that would make him a better person.

Intellect combined with dearth of principles is obamanation. Those combined with being testosterone soaked is Clinton.

dearth of intellect and principles, plus testosterone plus Nazi hate is trump and all of his white male voters.

Our last president who was at least a decent human being was Carter in 1976. That's how long it's been since American voters had their heads out of their asses.


Post a Comment

<< Home