The 20-plus Democrats running for president have proven time and again that they will not act like serious adults while pursuing the most important job in the Western world. Silly panderings to the various stripes of the party’s identity-politics rainbow frequently are paired with ridiculous stunts that make it appear the candidates are desperately chasing reality television ratings rather than trying to earn the informed votes of American citizens.
Trail of Schlock
Look, there’s Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) blathering about her white privilege. And that’s Beto O’Rourke slipping into his weepy Phil Donahue confessional mode, sobbing that his antecedents once owned slaves. You want action? Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) is here to play human trafficker, escorting illegal aliens over our sovereign border. More cringe, you say? Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has already named a woman soccer player as his secretary of state.
Even the so-called top-shelf candidates have played their part in this nutty narrative. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) had her Native American DNA reveal, which seemed to come straight out of a Jerry Springer paternity test episode. And feisty geriatric Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) never tires of calling President Trump a racist, vowing that he would do so straight to his face. Watch out, Geraldo, another flying chair may be coming your way.
It’s become excruciatingly obvious that none of this is going over very well. Behind the curtains, Democrats know they have a pitiful collection of contenders on hand. It is almost impossible to see how anyone in this weird menagerie can defeat Trump next year, no matter which sideshow performer captures the Dem nod.
Half-measures seldom work in politics or most anything else in life. Democrats are locked into a situation of their own making that demands constant emoting on divisive topics to satisfy knee-jerk progressive manias. Since it is abundantly clear that they are not going to turn away from this path, it must be asked why Dems persist in this tepid pretense of the pursuit of serious governance. The party would be far better off abandoning the charade and going all-in on fuzzy feelings and shallow personality. In short, it’s time for Democrats to go full Oprah. Or Michelle Obama.
Either would offer beleaguered Dems sorely needed relief from the dull mediocrity suffocating their primary race today. Oprah Winfrey and Mrs. Obama are not qualified for the White House, of course, and would hardly make outstanding candidates, no matter what the establishment media may say. But they would break the party out of the bizarre and artificial performing clown-politician hybrid that repels undecided voters in droves.
Misreading the Times
Most jarring about the 2020 Dem candidates is how passé they are, how radioactive their sheer obsolescence. This is what happens when you’ve long stopped serving the people who elected you. The same vibe engulfed the establishment puppets that made up most of the 2016 Republican field, with the towering exception of Donald Trump. Guess who roared to victory?
Blinded by partisan hatred, Democrats have learned the wrong lessons from the Trump Tsunami of 2016. They see Trump as a celebrity creation who owes his political success to TV exposure and decades of gossip news write-ups. What they fail to grasp is that though his name recognition was indeed high due to a hefty media profile, once Trump ran he immediately homed in on vital issues that resonated with millions of Americans. From the beginning of his campaign, Trump took on the illegal immigration crisis. He talked of the unfair trade deals that allowed nations like China to prosper at our expense. And he vowed to put an end to 30-odd years of reckless U.S. military intervention abroad. This was the genuine substance and gravitas, which Democrats still refuse to acknowledge about the man, that elevated Trump’s candidacy.
If Democratic challengers today refuse similarly to focus on hard issues and opt instead for theatrics, then they should go all the way. Have Nominee Oprah cry two or three times a week as she “painfully addresses” the “struggles” of every spoke on the Dem identity politics wheel. Let her wander around at rallies randomly hugging people. Saturate the airwaves with inspiring campaign videos like “Three Dog Stories That Moved Us to Tears.”
None of it will help Dems beat Trump. But it will spare the party from having its governors, senators, and House members make complete fools of themselves by trying to out-schmaltz each other for the next 10-12 months. Democrats have shown they are committed to fluff. As such, they should go full cheese or go home.