Delaware Dem's Latest Posts
E.J. Dionne Jr. at The Washington Post writes—What Democrats owe the country:
However attractive an old-fashioned let’s-pass-good-stuff strategy might seem, the alarming signals emanating from Trump Tower require more than politics as usual.
If Democrats do not issue very clear warnings and lay out very bright lines against the most odious and alarming aspects of Trumpism, they will be abdicating their central obligation as the party of opposition. This is not a time for ideological and factional positioning or for focusing on the 2018 elections.
Before they even get to infrastructure, Democrats and all other friends of freedom must make clear that if Trump abandons the basic norms of our democracy, all the roads in the world won’t pave over his transgressions.
Jeet Heer says outlandish campaign promises and lies helped Trump win. Should the truth-prone Democrats follow him down that rabbit hole?
It’s not news that Donald Trump is perhaps the biggest fabulist in American political history, someone who engages in a wide variety of untruths, ranging from tall tales and fibs to outright fabrications. Perhaps his slippery relationship with truth comes from being a real estate developer, a profession where fantastic hyperbole is accepted—if not required—in the negotiation room. Trump’s political promises can be viewed through a similar lens: If he has no real intent to make Mexico pay for the wall or ban all Muslim immigrants, these statements can be seen as a special type of deception: pie-in-the-sky salesmanship.
Trump says whatever it takes to get the deal done—to win. In this way, he’s merely an extreme version of your average Republican. And now the Democrats, who too often sprint to the moral high ground, are facing at least two years without any control in Washington. It’s time for them to start promising the moon too. […]
To fight Trump-style politics, Democrats will have to steal at least a page or two from Trump’s playbook by making more audacious promises, as Sanders did with his call for free college education for all and a $15 minimum wage—both of which Clinton balked at. While her plan might have been more fiscally responsible, Sanders better understood the power of raising expectations, especially during a populist wave and change year in American politics. To go the full Trump would be nihilistic, but Democrats need to stop worrying about the fine print and start forging their own unrealistic utopia.
Eric Levitz on the road ahead for Democrats:
Their story of what went wrong is simple: Trump, per Sanders, “tapped into the anger of a declining middle class that is sick and tired of establishment economics, establishment politics and the establishment media.” But instead of channeling that anger toward real, progressive solutions for the middle (and working) class’s legitimate problems, Trump directed it toward the most vulnerable people in our society, as right-wing populists always have.
Clinton failed to counter this appeal, because she refused to embrace populist, class politics. While she adopted an economically progressive platform, she didn’t center her campaign on an economically progressive message.
She lost the Midwest because she failed to energize younger voters and win a significant share of the white working class — precisely the demographics that responded most enthusiastically to Sanders’s message during the primary.
In an era of widespread distrust in America’s governing institutions — and widespread disdain for the financial industry — Democrats’ path to power cuts away from Wall Street and toward a populist grassroots movement. They don’t need to compromise on social liberalism. But they do need to reclaim their identity as the party of the working man and woman, and center their message on economic populism. […]
The upcoming DNC leadership election is expected to be cast as a struggle for control of the party’s future. For now, the party’s Sanders-Warren wing appears best positioned to win that civil war.
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Eugene Robsinon on the future of the Democratic Party:
The Democratic Party cannot just wait for the next Barack Obama to come along. The president is a unique political talent of the kind that appears only once in a great while, when the stars magically align. Instead, Democrats need to do what Republicans did, which is to build from the ground up and start winning state and local elections.
A Democratic rebound has to begin with the basics: getting people who agree with you to vote. Less than 60 percent of those eligible to cast ballots in last week’s election bothered to do so. Conservatives who say this is “a center-right nation” may be right in terms of who votes, but they’re wrong in terms of who could vote. Polls show that the country favors Democratic over Republican positions on most issues.
The Democratic Party should put its energy and money into connecting with potential voters at the grass-roots level. Trump made a bunch of pie-in-the-sky promises he can never keep. Democrats need a hopeful but realistic message recognizing that while most big cities prosper in today’s globalized economy, much of the rest of the country suffers.
Rockford Tower, on Tower Drive in the Highlands neighborhood in Wilmington. The tower was built in 1902 to serve the water needs of the city. At 115 feet high, and on top of the highest point in Wilmington, an observation deck above the storage tank provides views all across New Castle County.
Current Majority Leader Sen. David McBride (D-13), has been nominated by the Senate Democratic Caucus to replace defeated Senator Patricia Blevins as Senate President Pro Tempore when the Senate convenes for the 149th General Assembly on Tuesday, January 10, 2017. The current Majority Whip, Senator Margaret Rose Henry (D-2), will likewise move up and become the new Democratic Majority Leader. Replacing Henry as the Majority Whip will be Senator Nicole Poore (D-12).
Ryan Lizza: “Seven days may not be enough time to fully assess any new leader, especially in the case of Trump, whose first week was marked by seeming chaos in his efforts to put together an Administration. But what we’ve learned so far about the least-experienced President-elect in history is as troubling and ominous as his critics have feared.”
“The Greeks have a word for the emerging Trump Administration: kakistocracy. The American Heritage Dictionary defines it as a ‘government by the least qualified or most unprincipled citizens.’ Webster’s is simpler: ‘government by the worst people.’”
So a week later, and the Trump transition is in total chaos. Who could have predicted?
President-elect Donald Trump’s transition operation “plunged into disarray on Tuesday with the abrupt resignation of Mike Rogers, who had handled national security matters, the second shake-up in a week on a team that has not yet begun to execute the daunting task of taking over the government,” the New York Times reports. Two sources close to Mike Rogers, who was ousted from the Trump transition team, told NBC News that he had been the victim of what one called a “Stalinesque purge,” from the transition of people close to New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who left Friday. It was unclear which other aides close to Christie had also been forced out.
Meanwhile, “Gov. Mike Pence took the helm of the effort on Friday after Mr. Trump unceremoniously removed Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, who had been preparing with Obama administration officials for months to put the complex transition process into motion. Now the effort is frozen, senior White House officials say, because Mr. Pence has yet to sign legally required paperwork to allow his team to begin collaborating with President Obama’s aides on the handover.”
Perhaps because of that, according to TPM, Donald Trump’s transition team has not reached out to officials at the State Department or the Pentagon for briefings as the President-elect prepares to take office in January, according to officials from those agencies. State Department spokeswoman Elizabeth Trudeau said on Tuesday that the department has not heard from Trump’s transition team, according to Al-Monitor reporter Laura Rozen.
E.J. Dionne Jr. on Trumpian triumphalism:
To point out Clinton’s popular-vote advantage is not a form of liberal denial. It’s a way of beginning to build a barricade against right-wing triumphalism — and of reminding immigrants, Muslims, African Americans, Latinos and, yes, our daughters that most Americans stood with them on Election Day.
It is also not true that the emerging political coalition that elected President Obama died on Nov. 8. That alliance maintained its national advantage, as the popular vote shows, and came within a whisker in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan of delivering the election to Clinton despite an onslaught of partisan congressional investigations, Russian meddling and the last-minute political intervention of the FBI.
We dare not forget the power that was arrayed behind Trump because it is that power that must be resisted over the next four years.
Well, I won’t doubt Harris McDowell and Bruce Ennis again, that’s for sure. Both easily won reelection over what I thought were strong challenges by Republicans James Spadola and Carl Pace. It turns out the closest race among the three competitive races I highlighted before the election was the 8th SD, where Senator David Sokola held on against Republican upstart Meredith Chapman 51% to 47%. It turns out the surprise of the night was Republican Anthony Del Collo upsetting Senate President Pro Tem Patricia Blevins by 206 votes. Boy, getting that job of President Pro Tem seems like a curse recently. That reduces the Democratic majority in the Senate to razor-thin: 11-10.
Indeed, Blevins’ loss now makes the special election in the 10th Senate District do or die. Senator Bethany Hall Long, having been elected to be the next Lt. Governor, will likely resign the seat just before she takes office in mid-January. That would place the special election in either mid to late February or early March. The Democrats have a registration advantage in the 10th, with 15,600 Dems to 9,800 registered Republicans, but it is a competitive seat, with Republican John Marino getting 48.9% of the vote in 2014 amid the backlash to Hall-Long’s husband’s sign stealing scandal.
David Remnick: “The election of Donald Trump to the Presidency is nothing less than a tragedy for the American republic, a tragedy for the Constitution, and a triumph for the forces, at home and abroad, of nativism, authoritarianism, misogyny, and racism. Trump’s shocking victory, his ascension to the Presidency, is a sickening event in the history of the United States and liberal democracy. On January 20, 2017, we will bid farewell to the first African-American President—a man of integrity, dignity, and generous spirit—and witness the inauguration of a con who did little to spurn endorsement by forces of xenophobia and white supremacy. It is impossible to react to this moment with anything less than revulsion and profound anxiety.”
The reason why I was gone was that I had a business trip to New Orleans planned for immediately after the election. I thought I was going celebrating. But it turns out it was good to be away from the constant newstream of Twitter and Cable News and your normal routine during what was the most shocking election result in all history, and the most heartbreaking. The only way I can describe the feeling was it was like I just lost two friends (Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton) in the same car accident. So there was actual grieving. Tears would well in my eyes for no reason, well, yes, there was a reason, but you know what I mean. But I had to force the sadness and shock away so I could concentrate on the real world business meetings. So that helped. Being away helped. I’m still devastated. I’m in the anger/acceptance stage of grieving. But I am ready to fight back now.
First thing I want to do is apologize to Jason330. His pessimistic view of the election and the electorate was, in the end, proven right. I was wrong. I was relying on polls, data, demographics, and early voting results, but they were wrong. And I am sure I argued with a number of readers, commenters and even some contributors aside from Jason330, like El Somnambulo. I am sure I was arrogant in my analysis. My apologies extends to you all as well.
Second, we have to lay down a marker for all Democrats everywhere but especially here in Delaware: we demand full, complete, and hostile obstruction and opposition to every single thing the …. god… President Trump does. The Republican playbook of 2009-16 is now yours. Use it. There shall be no bipartisan agreements to deport 11 million people. There shall be no bipartisan agreement to repeal and replace Obamacare. There shall be no bipartisan agreement to end Medicare. There shall be no bipartisan agreement to cut taxes for the rich.
Senator Carper, Senator Coons, and Representative Rochester, if you vote yes on a single Republican bill just one time, you might as well join the Republican Party that very same day.
We just elected Hitler, and your first instinct should not be to cut deals with him. Your first instinct must be resistance. No matter if your life or livelihood are in danger.
Third, I have no interest in re-litigating the 2016 primary or debating whether Bernie Sanders or Joe Biden would have done better. I have my opinions on that, and I am sure others have theirs, but really, what good does that debate do us except turn us against each other? You know what we should do? We should take the Democratic Platform as it stands now, which was agreed to by both the Clinton and Sanders campaigns, and use it as our starting point when we discuss how to move forward and what policies to change. It was the most progressive platform in party history.