Required Reading

Finally spotted on 3/19/2015 (AP photo)

Finally spotted on 3/19/2015
(AP photo)

Peggy Noonan explains what makes Democrats nervous these days:

Without Hillary the party will probably lurch left. And if it lurches left it’ll probably lose the general election. Democrats will break up into left-progressives, way-left-progressives, populists of different stripe, older moderates and centrists. The left is no longer passionate about Mr. Obama because he is not left-wing enough. Hillary Clinton holds the party together with her Hillaryness—her popularity with the base, her connection to the Clinton years, her sex. The idea of the first female president in a party increasingly preoccupied with identity and gender politics is a powerful ideological glue.

Hillary, to the general public, comes across as centrist. In part this is because she is associated with her husband’s ultimate moderation, and in part because she has grown more moderate over the years, at least in the sense of playing ball with various entrenched powers. She is certainly hawkish. Her popularity and persona will keep her party seeming centrist, even if she inches to the left to appease sizeable parts of the base, and to show her heart is still with them.

But I think an untold story of 2016 is that the Democratic establishment is desperate when Mrs. Clinton is in trouble because without her they see a fracturing of their party.


The fracturing has to happen regardless of what Clinton does in the next six-to-ten years. The Great Gravy Train of 2007-2011 has run out, and that plus Obama worship are what have held the party’s factions together. Clinton can paper over the differences with a winning campaign or two, but without control of Congress, I don’t see how the Democrats avoid a civil war.

One seems to have started over Emailgate, but it remains to be seen how much legs that scandal has.

Still, Hillary belongs in jail, not in the White House.


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