Are We Really on the Brink of Electing a Socialist President?




 

Has the socialist moment finally arrived in the United States? Increasingly, the Democratic party seems to think so. Capitalism has had a nice run for the past couple hundred years, but now it is time to let the technocrats take control of . . . pretty much everything - from health care to education to energy to banking.

This kind of view has long had a space in the Democratic party - recall Huey Long's slogan, "Every man a king" - but it seems to be going mainstream. The wacky ideas of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are not limited to the lefty fringe of the House backbench but instead are being endorsed by major presidential candidates. And why not? Winning the Democratic nomination is going to require somebody to forge a coalition between minority voters and upscale white progressives, and the latter can't get enough of AOC's statist utopia.

But does this make for good politics? National Journal's Josh Kraushaar - one of my favorite political analysts - is dubious. In a typically sober analysis, he argues:

Far be it from me to doubt somebody with as solid a track record as Kraushaar's. And I certainly hope he is correct. But as Allahpundit likes to say, "Dude, I'm worried."

My anxiety is bottomed on the simple fact that Donald Trump's job-approval rating is in the toilet right now, where it has been since virtually the day he was inaugurated. The RealClearPolitics average has him at just 42 percent and has never once tracked him above 50 percent. And this is despite the fact that we have peace and prosperity today.

I am worried that voters are willing to elect a would-be socialist over a president they have never actually liked. More important: I am worried that they won't even recognize that this is what they are doing. That is how little confidence I have in the discernment of American voters - they won't connect the dots and realize that the Democrats are calling for a government takeover of pretty much everything. I am worried that the people have ceded to the ideological fringes of both parties the power to select the two-party nominees, and then choose between them based on their view of the incumbent administration - whether that means electing a celebrity television star like Trump or a socialist like Bernie.

I think back to the 1932 Democratic nomination, when Franklin Roosevelt squared off against Al Smith. FDR represented a notable break from past practice, while Smith would have governed more in the mold of Grover Cleveland. But I do not think either would really have mattered for the outcome in 1932 - either of them could have won. Perhaps the only thing that might have gotten in Smith's way was his Catholicism. But ideology did not matter.

Ditto 2008. Barack Obama was virtually a blank slate, but what little we knew about him suggested he was going to mark a dramatic shift to the left. He ran against John McCain, who had carved out for himself a more moderate role. Did Obama's liberalism matter? Not really.

Or how about 1980? Ronald Reagan was a break from recent Republican nominees, while George H. W. Bush was not. In the end, ideology did not make that much of a difference.

There are contrary examples, to be sure. It is quite likely that both Barry Goldwater in 1964 and George McGovern in 1972 won fewer votes than they otherwise would have because they were so far outside the mainstream.

And to be clear, I'm not explicitly disagreeing with Kraushaar. I'm just worried that Trump's unpopularity could ultimately bring a socialist into the White House.

This president needs to get his act together and start behaving like a president is supposed to. Of course, he probably will not do that, which means he is going to limp into 2020 with anemic approval ratings. And then we might finally discover whether America is actually on the brink of a socialist moment, one spurred on by an ideological fringe and accepted by a disengaged, ill-informed public.

Conservatives need to brace themselves and begin preparing to work hard to retain the Republican majority in the Senate - for that might be the only thing that ultimately stops the socialist tide.

COMMENTS

More Related News

The Latest: Trump claims he was
The Latest: Trump claims he was 'not happy' with chant

President Donald Trump says he "was not happy" when his supporters at a rally Wednesday night in North Carolina chanted "send her back" in reference to Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar. Trump said this weekend that Omar and other progressive Democratic lawmakers of color should leave the country and "go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came" over their criticism of his administration.

President Trump says US Navy ship destroys Iranian drone in Strait of Hormuz
President Trump says US Navy ship destroys Iranian drone in Strait of Hormuz
  • World
  • 2019-07-18 20:52:00Z

"The Boxer took defense action against the drone which had closed into a very close distance, approximately a thousand yards, ignoring multiple calls to stand down and was threatening the safety of the ship and the ship's crew," Trump said at the White House. "This is the latest of many provocative and hostile actions by Iran against vessels operating in international waters," he continued.

Samantha Bee Shocked Kellyanne Conway Somehow Even
Samantha Bee Shocked Kellyanne Conway Somehow Even 'More Racist' Than Trump

TBSSamantha Bee didn't have time to cover all of President Trump's recent "racisms," instead choosing to zero in on his demand that four freshmen Congresswomen of color go back to the countries "from which they came." "Sadly, the only thing that should surprise anyone is that he wrote 'from which they came' to avoid ending a sentence with a preposition," the Full Frontal host joked. "Way to go, Shakespeare, now return your head to the orifice from which it came." "Of course, it wasn't long before spokes-golem Kellyanne Conway leapt to his defense by somehow sounding more racist than her boss," Bee continued before playing the clip of the White House counselor literally responding to a...

'Unfit to be president': House to consider articles of impeachment against Trump

The House voted to kill a measure seeking to impeach President Donald Trump - the first vote on such a measure since Democrats took the majority and since the release of former special counsel Robert Mueller's report.

House Vote to Repeal Obamacare Tax Shows Health Care Tension
House Vote to Repeal Obamacare Tax Shows Health Care Tension

The House voted overwhelmingly to repeal a tax Wednesday intended to fund the Affordable Care Act, preserving tax breaks for employer-sponsored insurance plans favored by large corporations. In a reversal of the usual partisan roles, Democrats rather than Republicans led the charge to kill a key part of Obamacare. The bill to repeal the levy commonly known as the "Cadillac tax" passed 419-6 with bipartisan support.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

Top News: Latin America

facebook
Hit "Like"
Don't miss any important news
Thanks, you don't need to show me this anymore.