Despite indications that the Democratic Party still has at least a reasonable chance of winning control of the House of Representatives in November, It finds itself approaching the midterm elections largely on the defensive. In the absence of a sound economic platform for America, Democrats were relying almost exclusively on a message of resistance to President Donald Trump and to his agenda. This was a massive strategic error and the party deals with attempting to stifle its own radical progressive leanings and convince voters that it is not a party of extremism.
Many Democratic politicians find themselves having to assure the voting public that “we are not who you think we are.” Having jumped onto the ‘Resistance’ bandwagon, they now realize this is a wagon that goes only in one direction and circling back to rational policy and debate is difficult, if not impossible. Of course, most Democrats in Congress – as well as the ones who aspire to seats in Congress – are every bit as extreme as their political opponents make them out to be. To borrow from one of the most famous quotes in football history; the Democrats are who we thought they were.
From the day Bill Clinton departed the White House for the last time, the party has moved steadily to the left and, today, the few remaining moderates face extinction as even the party’s leadership veers further toward the progressive wing in a desperate attempt to hold on to power.
Even in the face of this leftward shift, the most prominent Democrats and their friends in the media keep attempting to explain to the rest of us – and, perhaps, even a large segment of their own base – that they are not the extremists we have come to assume they are. At the same time, these half-hearted assurances draw nothing but scorn from the most extreme elements of the left who would rather they proudly proclaim themselves devotees of a collectivist, anti-capitalist movement more closely resembling the former Soviet Union that modern-day America.
How Far Left Will Democrats Go?
Ask most Republican politicians or conservative pundits to state the single best reason not to vote Democrat and they will likely tell you that the party has no positive agenda for the United States. They will point out that Democrats across the country and their leftist allies have no real message beyond the demonization of Trump and his supporters. This is not the greatest challenge facing the modern Democratic Party, however. The biggest reason for not trusting the opposition party is that no one quite knows how far left it stands currently and, more importantly, how much further left it is likely to go.
For most conservatives, the seeds of distrust were sown, perhaps, by former President Barack Obama. When Democrats prepared to foist Obamacare on the nation, conservatives said it would amount to a socialist-style takeover of the healthcare system. Attempting to assuage that fear, Obama himself promised, time and time again, that it simply was not the case.
The Affordable Care Act, Obama assured America, would mean more choice and, therefore, reduced costs. “If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor, period.” He told the American Medical Association in June 2009. “If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what.” This was a promise the former president made numerous times as he tried to convince America that Obamacare was not some sinister socialist plot to seize control of the healthcare industry. He was lying, of course, and millions of Americans lost their health insurance policies because of non-compliance with Obamacare regulations.
Lesson learned; when a Democrat insists he or she has no intention of doing that crazy thing people fear, he or she will almost certainly do it, once in power.
The Principle of Limitless Reform
The left has an obsession with gun control and the same rule applies. Democrats and their progressive masters constantly use phrases like “common sense gun reform.” When pressed, most will insist that they do not wish to ban firearms, but none will explain where the threshold of “common sense” actually lies. No Democratic politician or gun control activist has ever defined the point at which they would consider guns sufficiently controlled.
When these anti-Second Amendment activists demand x, y, and z, the test of their honesty is quite simple: One only has to ask if – granted x, y, and z gun regulations – they will be content to cease their campaign for more gun restrictions. No commitment from them will be forthcoming because, in truth, the only measure that will completely satisfy them is a universal ban on the private ownership of firearms.
Immigration is another example of the left’s thinly-veiled extremism. When running for election or re-election, most Democrats will claim that they simply want to “reform” the immigration system and that open borders and unregulated immigration are not their agenda. Yet, many are calling for the abolition of Immigration and Customs Enforcement; none express support for the deportation of anyone alien – even if the said alien is a murderer or rapist or has a long history of criminal activity. Ask any leftist how many people should be allowed to enter the United States before they decide the country has admitted enough and one will be answered with silence or an attempt to change the subject.
Meanwhile, Democratic National Committee Co-Chair, Tom Perez, was spotted at a May Day parade wearing a T-shirt that bore the words “I don’t believe in borders.” Sure enough, every time a Democrat protests the accusations of extremism, someone in their party – or someone closely associated with it – will let the mask slip and expose their true agenda.
It is a principle of limitless reform. Leftists will never allow themselves to be pinned down on how much a policy has to change in order to satisfy them. This constant evasion allows them to always leave the door open to ever more radical changes in the future.
Government intervention in the economy, gun control, and immigration are but three of a host of issues on which the left refuses to define the limit of their intentions. Free speech is certainly on this list of issues. Leftists love to tell Americans what they cannot say but will never provide assurances about what they can say or whether the rules regarding free speech might change again at some future point.
The Wolf In Sheep’s Clothing
For all the faults of the Republican Party, there is little doubt about where it can be placed on the political spectrum. It has a centrist core, a neocon faction, and a conservatarian wing. There is no uncertainty regarding the respective agendas of these three groups. The Democratic Party, however, is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It insists that it occupies the ideological mainstream while casually admitting that it has ‘social democrat’ tendencies. The real story, however, is that those tendencies go well beyond the ‘democrat’ part of social democrat. Denied real legislative power for many years now, the Democrats will drop the mask altogether the next time they find themselves in control.