Most of the media conversation over the weekend centered around the Julian Assange situation, Trump’s attack on Ilhan Omar, and the possibility that Trump might send detained immigrants to sanctuary cities. But much of the social media discussion featured infighting by Democrats around whether or not they should defend Ilhan Omar, and whether or not Bernie Sanders was using Trumpian tactics on the campaign trail.
EJ Dionne published a thoughtful piece last night on which party was the more divided (Democrats) and what it means for the 2020 election. Here’s an excerpt:
Democrats are more diverse than Republicans in almost every imaginable way: racially, ethnically, religiously and ideologically. And the Democrats’ diversity is increasing because of the flood of new supporters fleeing President Trump’s GOP. Many of these newcomers are not registered as Democrats, meaning they won’t vote in most of the 2020 primaries and caucuses. But their ballots helped Democrats win control of the House. As for the Republicans, they are, overwhelmingly, a party of whites and Christians. They tilt male, especially in their leadership: Among women in the House, 89 are Democrats; only 13 are Republicans. The GOP is the party of older people; the Democrats are the party of the young, partly because of the racial and ethnic heterogeneity of the rising generations. In the 2018 House races, according to the exit polling, Republicans won 50 percent among those 45 and older but only 36 percent of those under 45 — and just 32 percent from the under-30s.
Link to full article:
I observed a Twitter conversation yesterday between two Democrats. The first, a Bernie supporter, wrote that he would never vote for a “corporate Democrat” in the general election, while the second was criticizing the position of the first as ridiculous.
Aside from the nebulous meaning of “corporate Democrat,” there is no “corporate Democrat” remotely as corrupt, dishonest, or malignant as Trump. Any of the Democrats would be a world of difference from Trump. If we can’t agree on that, we’re screwed. We can debate all we want about which contender will best represent our aspirations and which will have the best chance of beating Trump. But if we don’t come together after the primary, we’re cutting off our nose to spite our face.
None of the Democratic contenders perfectly reflect my views on every issue. Any vote I have ever cast was a compromise. So it makes no sense to quarrel with the eventual nominee beyond trying to push them towards policies that we want. It makes no sense to let the perfect outweigh the good. To withhold a vote, or vote for an independent or write-in, is a vote from Trump. This isn’t a crazy opinion. It’s a mathematical and logical fact. If we want to defeat the worst president (by far) in modern history, we have to come together after the primary. It will be especially difficult because Russia is already trying to pit Bernie supporters against everyone else, hoping to drive a wedge that will leave a bitter feeling and keep some people from the polls if Bernie isn’t nominated, or keep other people from the polls if he is.
I don’t like Bernie Sanders. And I won’t vote for him in the primary. But if he’s the eventual nominee, I’ll vote for him with the same determination I would for any other nominee. Trump is an epic, historic disgrace, an utter disaster, a wrecking ball destroying years of hard work by liberals and progressives, a petty tyrant who would become a dictator if our system let him, and the GOP seems willing to let him as long as the rich get more tax cuts and the fanatics get another Supreme Court pick. That’s the bottom line. Whether we have single payer or Medicare-for-all pales in comparison. Whether or not we raise the top marginal tax rate pales in comparison. Policy debates are important, but they won’t matter if Trump is still in the White House in 2021.