Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Tough Times Ahead for Democrats

Yesterday's Water Cooler, by Lambert Strether, was particularly good on the DNC election:
“During the 2016 DNC primary, Perez encouraged the Clinton campaign to paint Sanders as a ‘candidate of whites’ in a pathetic attempt to turn off minority voters. That should give people an idea of where the Democratic Party is headed” [American Greatness]. “As I used to tell my fellow Republicans who opposed the Tea Party movement, “you’ve gotta dance with the one who brung ya!” And if you don’t, you won’t go anywhere electorally. After the 2012 presidential election, with the exception of a handful of party elites, the GOP grasped this concept. … A similar battle has been raged between the grassroots segment of the Democratic base and the party’s elite. Except in this case, the elites have bested the base yet again. By denying the groundswell from the 13 million disaffected Leftists who both voted for Bernie Sanders and wanted Keith Ellison to lead the party, the Democrats have solidified their place as a permanent minority party. In all likelihood, the real threat to President Trump’s agenda over the next four years will come from congressional Republicans, not the Democratic Party ‘resistance.'”
"Resistance Recess" did its job to the extent that it generated media. But it is unclear to me if this outpouring of activism isn't what Republicans tag it as, "AstroTurf." Republicans should know because the Democrats are merely copying what they did after the 2008 Obama landslide.

There is this interesting conclusion to Matt Flegenheimer and Thomas Kaplan article, "With Voters Riled Up, Both Parties Aim to Channel the Fury," in yesterday's national edition of The New York Times:
Many attendees at meetings during the recess seemed to be taking their cues from a group called Indivisible, which was created by former congressional staff members after the election to “resist the Trump agenda.” With thousands of local offshoots reported, the effort has emerged as perhaps the most potent cog in the organized activist resistance to Mr. Trump.
“This level of participation was just not built into our lives,” Janene Smith, 35, of Charleston, S.C., said before an event in her home state featuring Representative Mark Sanford and Senator Tim Scott. “Now it is.”
Across the room, a peer, Martha Beck, recalled the last time she had sought such an active political role. “I haven’t done anything since the Nixon era,” said Ms. Beck, 65, a retired teacher.
And often, constituents seemed eager to dispel the suggestion from some Republican lawmakers that people were being paid to protest at their events.
At a forum held by Representative Tom Reed in western New York, Susan Meara, 63, and her husband, Tom, 65, brought a sign to erase any doubts. “I am not being paid to be here,” it read, “but you are, Mr. Reed.”
Maybe there will be a great bourgeois liberal political awakening, but I doubt it. "Resistance Recess" will be hard to repeat. Chuck Schumer thinks otherwise. The senate minority leader thinks people will stay focused and involved throughout the Trump presidency; but that will be hard to do when the party is split.

Look at the Standing Rock Sioux. Their tribal board was split, and they ended up losing their fight to stop DAPL with barely a whimper, 

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