Thursday, June 22, 2017

The Dems Went Down To Georgia


OK, so let’s assess the situation in Washington.

 

  1. Donald Trump is an idiot. Li’l Donnie continues to fumble petulantly about the White House, beset by various crises of his own making. Meanwhile, every policy initiative out of Trump’s White House runs counter to his campaign promises and the preferences of most Americans, even the ones who supported Trump in the election.
  2. Republicans in Congress continue to trample on the vestiges of Democratic government with secret meetings and exclusionary tactics in pursuit of their own agenda to hold on to power and appease the most powerful in the Republican fold. Almost everything the Republicans have done has been in service to their “ideology” and not in service to the American people.
  3. Donald Trump is an idiot. I know, I’ve already said that but come on! We can never say this too much: Donald Trump is an idiot.

 

On Tuesday, that was a special election to fill the open seat for the House Representative from Georgia’s 6th District, considered a reliable Republican stronghold. But the Democrats sensed blood in the water and went all in to support Jon Ossof, a 30 year old documentary filmmaker and  former Congressional aide. The Dems were counting on growing dissatisfaction with the Republican led Congress and that Donald Trump is an idiot. So the Democratic National Committee (DNC) began shoveling tons of money and resources into Ossof’s campaign. On the other side, the Republican National Committee (RNC) took notice and began shoveling even more tons of money and a buttload of even more resources into the campaign of Republican Karen Handel.


Both the DNC and the RNC viewed the fight for Georgia’s 6th district as a proxy war for a larger national political message. The DNC wanted to show that Trump (Remember: Donald Trump is an idiot.) is more hurt than help to Republican candidates and a referendum that Americans do not like what the Republican led Congress is doing.  The RNC needed to show that Trump is not a drag on the party and show there is more support for Republican leadership than Democrats.

 

So going into this elections, consider these three important points:  

  1. Donald Trump is an idiot.
  2. Republicans in Congress suck.
  3. And Donald Trump is an idiot.

And Karen Handel won the election. So much for the 6th District of Georgia being a referendum on Donald Trump and his GOP gang of enablers in Congress.

 

So what gives? It pays to remember the adage that “all politics is local”. Ossof was a bit too new, too much the outsider while Handel was a better known individual in the area. 


There is also the problem that the Democratic Party just doesn't "get it" when it comes to appealing America. They fronted a young intellectual artist in a Republican district and Republicans have had a lot of success railing against out of touch intellectuals and ultra liberal artists. In fact, Handel went old school in the finals days of the campaign, repeatedly linking Ossof to far left liberal policies. It was a message that may have made the difference in her victory. 


The only bright spot for the Democrats is they made the Republicans fight to win a consistently pro-Republican district. A lot of money was poured into a race that is usually a slam dunk for the GOP and managed only a 4 point margin of victory.


But for the Dems, a loss is still a loss. So in a world where the American government is headed up by Donald Trump (Disclaimer: Donald Trump is an idiot.), what do the Democrats have to do to win? There have been 4 special elections since Trump took office and the Dems are 0 and 4. Are Dems overestimating the degree of resistance to the Trump and GOP agenda? Or is the resistance truly a thing but the Dems just don't know how to tap into it? Are potential Democratic voters still not engaged in the process?


The Democrats are already being shut out of the legislative process by Republicans in the House and the Senate. But if they don't get their act together, the Democratic Party will drive itself to irrelevance. 


Oh, and Donald Trump is an idiot. (In case you forgot.) 

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