Wednesday, July 27, 2016

If Party Unity Matters Then Democrats Have Hit a Grand Slam

As Kwik Warren observed on Twitter last night:

"Repeat: At the end of the day, when Democrats R on their game they make Republicans look small, petty, archaic, hateful, insecure & ignorant."

My thoughts exactly. It's amazing just to step back and compare the two party conventions for a minute.

Morning Joe talked about the stark difference this morning. The GOP event just seemed small. And there was very little energy.

Of course. Most of those there hadn't wanted Trump. It's like France after Vichy.

The last four GOP candidates for President didn't attend and neither did the last two Republican Presidents.

If the convention is about showcasing not just the two candidates but the two parties, then the Dems win a blowout of epic proportions.

As a party we saw very little from the GOP at all.

I know some will point out the Berners. But those are a fraction. About 200 of them skulked off after Bernie did the right thing and HRC was declared the official nominee.

"It took Bernie Sanders quite a while to internalize the fact that he hadn’t actually beaten Clinton despite receiving 3.7 million fewer votes – but he’s been a more or less exemplary partner to Clinton as she tried to tame the Never Hillary crowd. The nascent Sanders-Clinton alliance is neither intuitive (she questioned whether or not he was even a real Democrat during the primaries) nor especially warm, but it’s proving durable enough for their mutual purposes."

"Clinton’s aides were intent to give Sanders something Donald Trump was never willing to offer Ted Cruz – dignity and respect in defeat, a graceful exit, an evening to bask in his accomplishments. It worked. Cruz was defiant and divisive, Sanders was domesticated and uncharacteristically sentimental. “We have no complaints about Bernie or his people,” one Clinton campaign official in the arena Tuesday told me."

"During the roll call vote, the fiery insurgent sat like a progressive prince enthroned as state delegation members lauded his accomplishments and tallied his 1,894 delegates, eyes moistening as he shared whispered observations with wife Jane. Coupled with the Sanders’ campaign to shape the party’s platform in his image, the Clinton camp’s charm offensive softened his stony support for Clinton into something more convincing. And, after a day’s worth of not especially rancorous negotiation, Sanders agreed to enter his rival’s name into nomination, as Clinton herself had done eight years earlier for Barack Obama."

"Sanders, worried that booing or back-turning by his supporters would hurt the cause, feverishly attempted to defuse and divert anger over his loss. Whatever he did worked: The 200 die-hard delegates who refused to jump on the bandwagon staged a protest walkout, leaving the arena more visibly and audibly united than it’s been yet."

Read more:
Ted Cruz's snub was the dominant image from the GOP convention. 

Meanwhile, you have this huge roster of popular Dem leaders and speakers. Elizabeth Warren, Michelle Obama. Let me just say FLOTUS did something special in the way she put her hand to her heart when she spoke about Hillary. 

Bill Clinton last night. Also Howard Dean, Eric Holder. The list goes on and on. Tonight VP Biden, new VP nominee Tim Kaine, and President Obama. 

Then we've had these great non politicians like Anastasia Somoza and the Mothers of the Movement last night. 

Again, if party unity matters, it's not a mismatch like the 1985 Bears in the Super Bowl. 

"Sure, Bill Clinton’s endorsing his wife — but it’s a reminder of how little of the establishment backs Trump"

"The last time Bill Clinton didn't speak at a Democratic convention, the Democrats nominated Walter Mondale and got clobbered in November. If Bernie Sanders had pulled off an upset this year, it's possible Clinton would have been reticent about speaking -- until he acquiesced on the third night, after watching two solid nights of other people at the microphone."

"Point being, this is what presidents do. They are or were leaders of their parties; they step up for the party. It's part of the reason that Barack Obama will speak on Hillary Clinton's behalf on Wednesday. There's more to it than that, of course. Obama wants to protect his legacy, and so on. But it also offers an important testimonial: I have done this exceptionally hard job, and I vouch for this person's ability to handle it. Other candidates can offer an endorsement, but it's not the same. Walter Mondale endorsedClinton last year, and he was a vice president, but no one who reflects on it would think that his assessment of who would make a good president is as strong as Obama's or, say, Jimmy Carter's."

"Clinton's speech came a few hours after a video testimonial from former president Jimmy Carter was shown. It helped draw into focus the distinction between the two candidates running this November: Only one is endorsed by any past president, and only one is endorsed by all of the past candidates for that office from their party."

"That's remarkable. Mitt Romney, a traditional Republican candidate, had the Republican establishment line up behind him. Romney got the Bush endorsements, because why wouldn't he? But Donald Trump didn't."

"The challenge for the Trump campaign is to explain why. Why haven't Romney and the Bushes endorsed him? Trump would probably argue that the Bushes take his aggressive campaign against Jeb Bush personally which is ... fair. Which then raises another question: Who is his Bill Clinton or his Jimmy Carter, the person that can vouch for his ability to handle the job?"

The answer is there's no one remotely like that.
If party unity matters, then it's a grand slam. 
However, the counternarrative is: cynicism. Are Americans so cynical that Donald Trump could be their choice?
That is the subject of our next post. Cynicism is the great enemy that Hillary and Obama are fighting this election. 

1 comment:

  1. You'll be glad to know that Erickson has returned to the subject of Trump's tax returns: