The media, which is now almost exclusively devoted to politics, no matter what its ostensible subject, is now offering helpful advice for the large field of Democrat candidates for 2020 (you know, just like they did with the GOP in 2016). Message: Orange Man Bad, so play nice:
We’re now well under a year away from the Iowa Caucuses, and an unusually–perhaps uniquely–large Democratic field is forming to compete for the opportunity to face Donald J. Trump in 2020. It is highly appropriate that before the festivities intensify, multiple voice are being raised to remember the wolf at the door before engaging in any intramural fisticuffs.
At the American Prospect, veteran labor political operative Steve Rosenthal offers four “rules” for 2020 Democrats in order to avoid a “circular firing squad” that helps Trump win the general election.
* Don’t try to stifle new ideas, new opinions, or new plans.
* Democrats need a robust debate on the issues instead of misleading or attack ads aimed at tearing each other down.
* Every Democratic candidate should sign a pledge that they will give their wholehearted support to whoever eventually wins the party’s.
Rosenthal’s fourth guideline he calls the “Two-For-One Rule:”
Last month, a friend of mine suggested that all the Democratic presidential candidates (and their supporters—that includes super PACs) refrain from being overly negative about the other Democratic candidates in the field. He said any time he feels tempted to say or write something bad about one of the candidates, he would precede it with two positive things.
Everything this guy knows he obviously learned in kindergarten. But if anybody thinks Hillary Clinton (you know she’s running) is going to play nice, then you just haven’t been paying attention to Democrat political history for the past 30 years or so. Ah, but who’s says there’s nothing to enjoy about the 2020 election should the Democrats lose?
The stakes of a general election win could not be much higher. Horrible as having Trump as the 45th president has been, a second term would be potentially catastrophic for progressives. The impact on the Supreme Court alone could be seismic. The battle against climate change could be lost for good. The odds of a stupid war or a global economic meltdown would go way up. And a second loss to Trump would be so discouraging to progressive voters that the Democratic Party’s very future might be endangered. Some activists and operatives think it’s critical the ideological direction of the Democratic Party be decisively turned in one direction or another in 2020. Important as a “struggle for the soul of the party” may be, it cannot possibly be as important as denying Trump’s reelection.
Gee, that’s too damn bad. So, Dems, listen to the man:
Soon we will be into the heat of the nomination race, and making up rules for civility on the fly won’t be practicable. It would be smart for Democrats right now to make sure that on November 4, 2020, they aren’t looking down the barrel of an eight-year Trump presidency and wondering how their party blew it again.
The next election is not going to be a cakewalk for anybody, but if Trump can get the Wall built, press his diplomatic initiatives in China and Korea, get a handle on illegal immigration, keep winning in the Supreme Court, and maintain Pompeo as secretary of state as the Mueller farce draws to a close, he’s going to be tough to beat. No matter how nice the Democrats are to each other.