Both national political parties have internal ideological
divisions, which is normal. In the recent past, national
Democrats have subordinated most of their differences
to present a mostly united front against Republicans,
their opposition in Washington, DC. For them, however,
their disastrous 2016 presidential election changed all
Clearly, the national Democratic Party then took sides
in the presidential nomination contest, and in the end,
bulldozed Hillary Clinton’s victory at their 2016
convention. The losing faction, led by Senator Bernie
Sanders, has neither forgotten nor forgiven this, and
are determined to remake the party in their own left
Signs of implacable divisions are now appearing across
the nation, but the liberal fellow-traveling mainstream
media is attempting to ignore this as much as they can.
Instead, they are preoccupied with the story, a fair one,
that many Democratic voters are energized by their
opposition to Donald Trump --- and are expected to turn
out in heavy numbers in the national mid-terms. Such a
turnout is conjecture at this point, but a reasonable one.
On the other hand, this media seizes every tiny (and not
so tiny) controversy in the Republican Party as evidence
of an upcoming conservative demise in 2018 and 2020.
The spectacle of Roy Moore’s senate candidacy in
Alabama was supposed to reinforce this notion, but many
conservative Alabama voters rebuked this outcome by
refusing to vote for Moore. Extremist and fringe
candidates who attempt to get on the GOP ballot in state
and national 2018 elections receive “page one” attention
by this media --- even though most Republicans reject this
opportunism --- while controversies involving Democrats
are often ignored entirely or downplayed.
Recently, one of the Democrats most significant state voter
ID and GOTV organizations, Wellstone Action in Minnesota,
has gone through a controversial reorganization in which the
late Senator Paul Wellstone’s children and some of his
long-time associates were kicked off the group’s board. I saw
only one local story about this and none nationally --- although
this group has been central not only to Democrats’ recent
successes in Minnesota, but through its formidable training
programs, to successful first-time liberal candidates across
the county. One of Mr. Wellstone’s sons was quoted as
describing the board move as ‘betrayal.” Paul Wellstone was
an authentic and respected liberal hero not only in his own
state, but nationally. One can only imagine the media
attention to a controversy involving an equivalent
conservative political figure!
In fact, in very “blue” California, where Democrats are
expecting to make gains in congressional seats, most media
are ignoring the internal squabbles among Democratic
factions and candidates, including one district, previously
expected to be a Democratic pick-up, where so many liberals
are running that the ballot in November might only have two
Republicans! When long-time Democratic Senator Diane
Feinstein was recently denied re-endorsement at her own
party’s convention, the story was too sensational to ignore,
but for the most part the media turns its attention to GOP
conflicts and anomalies.
Nonetheless, as I pointed out earlier, Republicans, too, have
their divisions and disputes. In Arizona, two fringe candidates
are running against a mainstream Republican to replace
retiring Senator Jeff Flake. Republican office holders, and
Democratic ones, too, are involved in alleged controversies
in many locales.
Some savvy liberal political strategists and figures are
warning their own party leaders and activists not to ignore
the consequences of the recent GOP-passed tax reform
legislation. Historically, the voters of the party out of power
have the advantage in the new administration’s first
mid-term elections, and liberal antipathy to Donald Trump
would seem to reinforce that. Democrats have won some
recent local special elections, and could win an upcoming
special congressional election.
But the long-time self-discipline of the Democrats has
apparently begun to come apart as they position themselves
for the “spoils” of projected victories in November,
including an “almost tasteable” take back of the U.S. house.
But it might be too soon for Nancy Pelosi to buy new curtains
for her old office.
There is some very curious disruption now taking place in
Copyright (c) 2018 by Barry Casselman. All right reserved.