The Democrats have become a cult of anti-personality.
The ‘anti’ phenomenon is not unique. Past Democrat generations had built their identity around hating Goldwater, Nixon, and Reagan. But the internet monetized the cult of anti-personality in a big way.
And Democrats are paying the price.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Dem House leadership have tried everything possible to stop the talk of impeachment. But nothing that she and her deputies can do has made a dent in the madness.
In a sign of pure desperation, Pelosi has begun insisting that impeachment is a Trump conspiracy.
“Trump is goading us to impeach him,” she actually claimed.
The Dem House leader is hoping to dissuade her faction from its self-destructive orgy of Trump hatred by tapping into that hatred to convince them that impeaching Trump is exactly what he wants.
And it won’t work.
Impeaching Trump is the obsession of a narrow slice of the Dem base. But it’s the one that provides much of the money and the manpower. The Democrats wouldn’t have won in 2018 without the Trump-haters, but they won’t be able to win in 2020 with them. Their fanaticism proved crucial in midterm elections where Democrats traditionally suffered from low voter turnout. But in a presidential election, voter turnout will be high. And the Democrats will need to win over independent voters.
A majority of Americans opposes impeachment. But impeachment fever turned otherwise obscure Dem politicians like Rep. Maxine Waters, Red. Ted Lieu and Rep. Adam Schiff into resistance celebrities.
They won’t stop trying to destroy Trump even if it destroys them
While Pelosi worries about losing moderate districts, the loudest impeachment activists can’t lose.
Most of the House impeachment noise has been coming from Congressional Black Caucus, California and New York House members who are safely ensconced in districts that Republicans can’t win. The more noise they make, the more they can fundraise, build their brand and get invited on MSNBC.
They don’t risk losing their seats through a challenge from the right, but from the left.
Joe Crowley’s defeat at the hands of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez was a warning. Alienating Democrats or infuriating Republicans poses no risk to Democrats in safe districts. They’re worried about another prog coming out of the woodwork and impeachment is their shield against a challenger.
While Pelosi wants to hold on to her speakership by getting and keeping House Dems in swing states, the impeachment caucus is only out for the interests of its members. Before internet fundraising, political grandstanding wasn’t nearly as profitable. But Trump and the internet have changed all that.
Rep. Adam Schiff’s fundraising take went from below a million in 2016 to $6.25 million in 2018. Rep. Eric Swalwell’s finances ballooned from $1.9 million in 2016 to over $3 million in 2018. Swalwell became so confident that he even decided to run for president. Rep. Sheila Lee Jackson had her best fundraising totals since the Bush era. Rep. Maxine Waters went from raising $729,000 in 2012 to $1.59 million.