Tag Archives: Democratic Party

Dems worry about intraparty conflict? Get over it!

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi reportedly is worried that factions within the Democratic Party are too busy fighting with each other while not fighting hard enough against, oh, Donald Trump and the Republicans.

Hey, get over it, Mme. Speaker and your fellow party honchos.

Your friends on the other side have had their share of intraparty squabbles, too. There have been spats between the so-called Establishment Republicans and the TEA Party wing of the GOP; the TEA Party has morphed more or less into something called the Freedom Caucus, which continues to raise Cain against the Establishment types.

The Republican Party is going through much of the same kind of tumult, tempest and turmoil that plagued the Democrats back in the 1960s. Perhaps some of today’s Democratic leaders recall when the Vietnam War split the party — and the nation — between the Hawks and the Doves.

Fights sometimes are worth having

I don’t believe there’s as much to “worry” about as some within today’s Democratic Party seem to suggest there is.

A little internal fighting is good for the organization. It keeps everyone sharp, on both sides. Republicans have sought to take that lesson away during their own ideological struggles.

These lessons know no partisan boundaries.

Has Beto waited too long?

Beto O’Rourke’s legion of followers might be witnessing a total eclipse of a political star.

The one-time West Texas congressman who came tantalizingly close to defeating Ted Cruz in the race for the U.S. Senate is now watching on the sidelines as three former congressional colleagues scarf up all the headlines while running for president.

Sens. Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris and Cory Booker have become the flavors of the moment. As Politico reports, those on the sidelines are waiting for one or more of them to mess up. Beto might be one of them waiting with bated breath.

I am not yet convinced that Beto O’Rourke is presidential material. He’s a young man. He waged an unconventional, no-consultant, no-polling campaign for the U.S. Senate seat in Texas. He damn near won against a Republican incumbent!

He has nowhere to go but . . . down? Not really.

However, politics is often like baseball, meaning that “timing is everything.” Given the pace of politics in this Internet/social media/ digital age it appears possible that Beto O’Rourke’s window might be closing. He’s not alone, of course. A crowd of other Democrats are being caught flat-footed by the excitement generated already as the 2020 campaign starts to ignite.

Kamala Harris’s announcement was a spectacular event. Elizabeth Warren is seeking to shed the baggage she piled on herself with that DNA test to prove her native American heritage. Cory Booker is seen by some as “too establishment” to suit the base of the Democratic Party.

Does that make Sen. Harris the early frontrunner? Oh, it’s possible, I suppose.

As for Beto O’Rourke, I am thinking he’d better decide quickly whether he’s in . . . or out.

Hey, there’s always 2024!

Unity, Mr. President? You’re going to talk ‘unity’?

Donald J. Trump has let the cat out of the bag.

The president’s long-planned State of the Union speech is going to stress several points, but he said he wants to stress “unity” in his pitch to a joint session of Congress and to the nation that will watch him on TV.

Well, now. What do you think about that? Here’s what I think.

I believe the president will have to demonstrate his quest for political unity by scrapping a petulant rhetorical device we hear Republicans use all the time.

The first time he uses the term “Democrat” as an adjective — as in “Democrat lawmakers” or “Democrat Party” — will be a clue that his unity pledge is just another empty platitude.

That bit of rhetorical chicanery grates on me. I hate hearing it because I know why Republicans do it. They bastardize the term “Democrat” that way because it has an edge to it. The term doesn’t roll off the tongue the way “Democratic” does.

The conversion of “Democrat” into a adjective began during the mid-1990s when then-Speaker Newt Gingrich decided to characterize Democrats as the “enemy of normal Americans.” I’ll hand it to Republican politicians ever since. They’ve done a good job of turning their “friends” on the other side of the aisle into political cartoon characters.

The latest top Republican, Trump, now is set to talk yet again about unity. He wants to unify the country. He intends to use the SOTU speech as his vehicle for doing that.

Good! I wish him well. I want him to unify the country. I want him to bridge the divide.

I also want him to stop pis**** off those of us who align with the Democratic Party simply by using the term “Democrat” in that insulting manner that has worked so well for the Republics.

No, Mr. POTUS, Pelosi isn’t ‘bad for the country’; you are!

Mr. President, I cannot let you get away with this nonsense you spouted on CBS News.

Your belief that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is “very bad for the country” is laughable on its face. Except that it ain’t funny.

What’s “funny,” and my laughter is of the derisive kind, is that you say these things with a straight face. You, sir, are the one who is “bad for the country.” I hate saying that about the president of the United States, but I feel as though I must.

Speaker Pelosi is performing just as she did when he held the post the first time. You weren’t around Washington back then. You were still slapping your name on high-rise buildings and “firing” people on “Celebrity Apprentice.”

Pelosi was controlling her Democratic Party congressional caucus. She was helping ensure that President Obama’s landmark Affordable Care Act legislation got passed by the House and eventually by the Senate. She was doing her job as a legislative leader.

She is displaying her strong hand once again in this silly battle over The Wall and whether we should pay for it. Your ridiculous campaign promise that Mexico would pay for it has been exposed for what it is: utter nonsense. Yet you make these idiotic pledges anyway.

You call Pelosi “rigid”? No, sir. She is standing behind her principles and is holding her caucus firm in its resistance to building The Wall. You contend you are ready to declare a “national emergency” where none exists on our southern border. You are prompting a legal challenge. You are intent on putting our military personnel to work as wall builders. Haven’t you heard your fellow Republicans urge you to resist this measure, that you are courting disaster?

That, Mr. President, represents a public policy that is “very bad for the country.”

‘Unity’ becomes cliche of the 2020 campaign season

Cory Booker launched his 2020 presidential campaign today. The New Jersey Democratic U.S. senator declared — to no one’s surprise — that he pledges to “unify” the country.

Let’s see. Who else has said that? Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Sen. Kamala Harris, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard and any number of other Democrats — declared or undeclared candidates — have said the same thing.

So, too, has the man they want to defeat, Republican Donald J. Trump, the current president of the United States.

Trump has failed at every level to unify the country. He speaks only to his base when he rails against illegal immigrants, when he speaks of banning travelers from Muslim countries, when he bans transgender Americans from serving in the military, when he repeals Barack Obama-era environmental regulations.

He cares not one damn bit about the rest of us.

So now we have Democrats declaring their intention to succeed Trump. They want to “unify” the country. I am likely to scream when I hear that platitude fly out of the mouth of the next Democrat who decides to run against Trump.

It is a cliché that has no meaning to me. To say you intend to do something doesn’t equate immediately to any tangible result.

What I want to hear from all these presidential candidates are specifics on how they intend to deliver on the noble promise. Yes, it might be a worn-out cliché, but it is a noble one.

However, enough with the empty pledges.

Bernie going for it again in 2020? Please, no!

Say this isn’t really happening.

Bernie Sanders, the Democrat in Name Only senator from Vermont, reportedly is hiring additional staff while he gears up for a possible/probable run for president in 2020. I will call him a DINO.

Good grief! Tell me it ain’t happening.

I am not feeling the Bern. I know he has his fans and a strong legion of supporters. I also know he came surprisingly close to capturing the Democratic nomination in 2016.

Here’s my problem with Bernie: He’s not a Democrat. He would be running as a Democrat, but he’s listed in the U.S. Senate roster as an independent who caucuses with the Democrats.

I have another problem with Bernie. His 2020 campaign is going sound like the one-note samba his 2016 campaign sounded. He will tell us that too few people have acquired too much of our wealth; he wants to redistribute the wealth; he wants to provide free college to every student in America (how he pays for it is a mystery to me); and he wants “Medicare for All” Americans.

We have seen during the Donald Trump administration that we also need a coherent, strong and reasonable foreign policy. I do not see Bernie Sanders offering such a thing were he to become elected president.

He’s been to the well already. He doesn’t need to return. I do not want him to run for president. I want a fresher face from which we will hear a fresher voice.

Big field jockeying to challenge an incumbent

In what we used to think of as “normal” political circumstances, the presence of an incumbent president running for re-election would scare off potential challengers.

Donald Trump, though, has torn up and tossed out political norms. He did so with that amazing 2016 presidential campaign. He’s doing so yet again by attracting a potentially huge field of possible foes who would challenge his effort to win a second term.

Trump was elected president in the first campaign for public office he ever sought. His entire adult life has been centered on garnering wealth, promoting himself and assorted other matters related to self-enrichment and self-aggrandizement.

He is in some trouble politically. Questions are swirling around him. A special counsel might be wrapping up an investigation into whether his campaign colluded with Russian operatives who attacked our electoral system.

There might be a whole lot to reveal once Robert Mueller finishes his probe. Thus, we have this potentially gigantic field of Democratic Party challengers. There even might be some Republicans willing to challenge Trump in the 2020 GOP primary.

What is politically “normal” these days? Judging from the size of the field that might be shaping up against Donald Trump, I would say, um, there is not a single thing normal about the upcoming presidential campaign.

Not going to ‘feel the Bern,’ Sen. Sanders

I am baffled as to why U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders even is in the conversation about whether he should run for the 2020 Democratic Party presidential nomination.

I want to make two quick points: He ran for the 2016 party nomination and lost it to Hillary Rodham Clinton. His platform this time around seems to mirror the mantra he recited in 2016 — which is that too few people control too much wealth. This self-proclaimed “democratic socialist” wants to redistribute the wealth to more of us. I guess I’m too much of a capitalist to buy into that notion.

My second point? Sanders isn’t even a Democrat. He ran for the U.S. Senate from Vermont as an independent. He doesn’t belong to a political party, although he does caucus with the Senate Democrats. He votes with them almost without fail. Still, he isn’t a Democrat.

So why is this guy talking about running again for the Democratic Party presidential nomination?

Moreover, why aren’t the media calling him out more vigorously on the phony association he has with a political party to which he doesn’t even belong?

Don’t run, Bernie. Leave the political stage to other politicians who have more to say than you do.

Beto v. Bernie: Let the battle begin

A fascinating struggle is emerging within the Democratic Party between an old warhorse and a rising young political stallion.

It’s the Beto-Bernie brouhaha. Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont — who’s actually an independent who caucuses with Senate Democrats — is trying to fend off the surge of support being shown for Beto O’Rourke, the West Texas congressman who came within a whisker of knocking off Sen. Ted Cruz in the 2018 midterm election.

Let me be candid: I am not feeling the “Bern.” Sen. Sanders fought hard for the 2016 Democratic nomination, but fell short. He preached a one-page sermon: too few people have too much wealth and he wants to take some of that wealth away from the rich folks; he calls it “income inequality.”

O’Rourke’s message is good bit more comprehensive. He speaks to an array of progressive issues: immigration reform, education reform, environmental protection, and yes, income inequality.

I’m not convinced either man should run for president in 2020, but if given a choice, I’m going to roll with Beto.

Sanders is trying to undercut Beto’s surge.

As NBC News reports: The main line of attack against O’Rourke is that he isn’t progressive enough — that he’s been too close to Republicans in Congress, too close to corporate donors and not willing enough to use his star power to help fellow Democrats — and it is being pushed almost exclusively by Sanders supporters online and in print.

That is precisely another point that frustrates me about Sanders. He is unwilling to reach across the aisle. O’Rourke, who has served three terms in the House from El Paso, has shown an occasional willingness to work with Republicans rather than fight them every step of the way. We need more, not less, of that kind of governance in Washington.

Nevertheless, the intraparty struggle is likely to be just one of many to occur among Democrats as they struggle for position to battle the Republican Party’s nominee in 2020.

I was going to assert that Donald Trump would be that person. However, given all that has happened in the past two weeks or so . . . I am not quite as certain that the president be the one to take the GOP fight forward.

It ain’t the ‘Democrat Party,’ young man

I now want to pick a few nits with one of the right-wing wackos who works for Donald John Trump.

Stephen Miller, a senior policy guru for the president, says the administration will do “whatever is necessary” to build a wall along our southern border.

Oh, but then he relies on that goofy perversion of the identity of the opposing political party.

“The Democrat Party has a simple choice,” Miller said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “They either can choose to fight for America’s working class or to promote illegal immigration.”

Democrat Party? That’s what he calls the Democratic Party.

Hey, I get that it’s a minor point, but then again it really is more of a major point than the Rs would care to acknowledge. The hard-liners’ insistence on using the perverted ID of the Democratic Party is intended to demonize a great political organization. One does not hear such a thing coming from Democrats who might be inclined to refer to members of the “Republic Party.” That, too, would disparage — if not denigrate — the other great major political organization.

As for Miller’s assertion that Democrats might want to “promote illegal immigration,” that is another branch broken off from the demagogue’s tree. No patriotic American wants to “promote” illegal immigration. We all want border security. Many of us just don’t want to build a wall to seal us off from our neighbors.

Those Republican demagogues, though, are intent on demonizing the opposing party (a) by perverting the party’s name and (b) by suggesting they want to “promote” the commission of crimes.

Get serious, young man.