An avowed Never-Trumper (NT), the Bulwark’s Sarah Longwell has written a piece entitled “The Breakup” which begins by telling us that their romance with Democrats may be coming to an end. After all, it was built upon a shaky foundation – that being “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”
They’ve had disagreements before she admits, as they did over the Kavanaugh confirmation process, but they’d always been able to patch things up. This time it’s for real and “it’s playing out in front of everyone on social media.”
She cites a “condescending” op-ed from the Washington Post’s Eugene Robinson:
Never-Trump Republicans and independents may be shocked to hear this, but the Democratic Party is likely to nominate a Democrat for president. That means they’re not going to nominate someone who thinks exactly like a Never-Trump Republican.
Break out the smelling salts. I think several refugees from the GOP, pontificating on Twitter and the nation’s leading op-ed pages, just fainted dead away.
Maybe, it’s just a “failure to communicate,” she says. “What Never Trumpers have been arguing, generally, isn’t that the Democrats should nominate someone who will make them (the Never Trumpers) happy, but that they should nominate someone who a majority of Americans in Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Arizona, North Carolina, and Florida will be happy to vote for.”
Does such a candidate exist? What she is searching for is a moderate Democrat. Didn’t Eugene Robinson just tell her that’s not going to happen. None of the 2020 presidential candidates fit that description – not by a longshot.
Next, I suppose Longwell is telling us she’s willing to make some concessions: “Because if Never-Trump type Republicans want a candidate whose policies broadly align with their own preferences, they have one. His name is Donald J. Trump.”
What she is saying is that we’re happy with his results and if he weren’t so coarse or so common, we could vote for him. But we hate him so much because we are so moral that we can’t vote for him. She continues:
I would generally not prefer socialized medicine or intrusive government regulation. I would prefer a conservative-leaning Supreme Court. BUT, the larger costs and risks of Trump’s presidency vastly outweigh the real positive goods he has delivered to Republicans and conservatives.
There aren’t enough tax cuts and judges in the world to justify a president who stands on the stage with Vladimir Putin and sides against America’s intelligence community; who ignores, if not invites, foreign interference in our elections and normalizes unprecedented levels of corruption and incompetence; who abdicates moral leadership both at home and abroad; who lies and obstructs justice and then lies about obstructing justice.
As a result, we Never Trumpers, like Democrats, believe it would be better for the country if Trump were to lose the next election.
First, I find it hard to imagine that anyone would fault President Trump for siding against America’s intelligence community after the farce they have foisted upon the country. The intelligence community is responsible for the bogus Trump/Russia collusion story which has cast a shadow on Trump’s presidency for over two years. They are the problem.
As for corruption, please. The only corruption we’re seeing is from the non-elected, Obama-era government officials who could not abide a Trump presidency and tried everything in their power to bring him down.
Trump’s “abdication of moral leadership both at home and abroad?” Trump was not my first choice for the Republican nomination in 2016, nor even my second choice. But, I have been so pleased with his long list of accomplishments so far, his willingness to fight for America on trade and immigration issues and for his love of country that, in my eyes, he is right up there with Reagan.
I would ask Ms. Longwell to tell us how Trump has abdicated moral leadership at home and abroad. Specifically, is there a basis for this insult or is she simply parroting the left’s talking point.
“Donald Trump is unpopular compared to most first-term presidents.” Not especially. I looked up Obama’s poll numbers at the same point in his first term. According to Gallup’s Daily Tracking poll “from July 20-Oct. 19, 2011, Obama’s approval rating ranged narrowly between 38% and 43% for all but a few days of the quarter.”
“What we Never Trumpers can’t quite get our heads around strategically,” is why Democrats insist on nominating a candidate who supports such extreme positions including “eliminating private health insurance, late-term abortions, the Green New Deal, open borders, and free health care for illegal immigrants.”
She wonders why Democrats can’t just tone it down a little (to suit the NTers). Do they really have to “push those policies out to the edges?” If Democrats would only compromise on the degree of their extremity, maybe they don’t have to break up. Longwell writes:
First, you don’t need 10 million more voters in California, New York, and Massachusetts. No one is going to eliminate the Electoral College between now and November 2020. In order to beat Trump, Democrats need average voters in Midwestern swing states to either vote for their nominee, or be willing to stay home.
Second, Democrats just picked up those swing voters in 2018! They know they can do it! All they had to do was run a slate of reasonably moderate candidates who campaigned on protecting coverage for pre-existing conditions and providing a constitutional check on Trump. These same Trump-skeptical independents and previously Republican-leaning voters in midwestern states who ran into the arms of the Democrats in the midterms are likely to pick the next president, too…
If you’re a Democrat, do you view the possibility of electing a more progressive president as worth the risk of reelecting Trump?
After pleading with Democrats to shift to the right in order to win the presidency, she laments that NTers are “politically homeless today, roaming around Reagan 35X like a pack of hobos. All because we weren’t willing to trade a political agenda we more-or-less agreed with for a morally, intellectually, and temperamentally unfit president.”
Again, she just just can’t bring herself to put agenda before principles because of her moral compass. And once more I ask, why do you consider him unfit? She never answers that question. None of them ever do.
Yet, she’s willing to support a candidate who supports late term abortion, open borders, and free health care for illegal immigrants because her hatred for Trump is so great?
She appeals once again to the Democrats to shift – just a little – to the right because:
Ultimately Never Trumpers and Democrats want the same thing. And like staying together for the kids, we should stay together for the country. We can fight over marginal tax rates later, after America has restored its basic political norms and no one has to wonder about what the commander-in-chief will do should he lose his reelection.”
Still unable separate her obsessive hatred for the President from the conservative views she has believed throughout her life, she falls back into the arms of the Democrats. They’ll change. It will be different this time.