There has been an inordinate amount of soul searching, gnashing of teeth, self-reflection, introspection, finger-pointing and general angst among Democrats after losing so badly to fake Republican Donald J. Trump in 2016.
Trump’s national approval rating now is down to 32 percent, and in the Buckeye State, where he beat Hillary Clinton last year by not quite nine points, his net approval rate is just 14 percent. Other reliable polling shows the same cratering. FiveThirtyEight has him at 37.5 percent. Real Clear Politics has him at 38.6 percent. Pollster has him at 39.6 percent, and Gallup is at 36 percent.
What to do next year weighs heavily on Democrats running in 2018. So much so that some Democrats want a new messenger to deliver a new message that can convince Trump-base voters that they saddled up with the wrong cowboy last year, and should reconsider transferring control in Washington to Democrats, so they can reach the “forgotten man” or the largely rural crowd who “feels left behind.”
New Leaders And New Messages
One of the more vocal Democrats has been Ohio U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan of Niles, who regularly calls for new messengers and new messages that can unify the party’s economic message. Ryan, whose name pops up with regularity these days as someone who might seek a higher office in 2020 even though he turned down running for governor back home in Ohio, thinks leadership in Washington is so important that he mounted a campaign against House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco).
Pelosi, for the record, was speaker of the House in 2010 and led the charge on pushing The Patient Protection and Affordable Car Act through to victory. Pelosi won the leadership contest, but Ryan got a lot of good traction out of his uphill campaign.
Still, Ryan hasn’t lessened his calls for a new message even though he has yet to fill out that message in any detail. Now that he’s become as much of a sought-after speaker on this issue as Ohio’s Republican Gov. John Kasich has become on bashing Trump, defending expanded Medicaid and making a case to be the national chaplain, Ryan and other Democrats are being told what that new message should be by someone who happens to write hefty campaign contribution checks.
Big Bucks To Buck Trump
Maybe that new idea Ryan is searching for is out there already? Courtesy of one of the biggest Democrat donors over the past two years, The New York Times reported Wednesday that billionaire California investor Tom Steyer issued a demand to his party in a letter that if Democrats take control of Congress next year, they should pledge to remove Trump from office.
Steyer, who was the single biggest liberal donor in the last two federal elections and who spent more than $91 million supporting Democrats in the 2016 elections, the NYT reported, said the big Democratic donor thinks Trump is a “clear and present danger to the republic.”
By penning his letter, Steyer is “demanding that lawmakers and candidates on the left support removing President Trump from office, putting pressure on Democrats to make Mr. Trump’s ouster a defining issue in the 2018 midterm elections,” The Times reported.
Among the items Steyer wants Democrats elected next year to act on are Trump’s “relationship with Vladimir Putin and Russia,” allegations that Mr. Trump has used the presidency to “promote his own business interests,” and his “seeming determination to go to war.”
“This is not just an issue of Twitter screeds but what it means for a person who has control over our nuclear arsenal,” Mr. Steyer said, adding in a plea to lawmakers: “I hope you will make your position clear so that Democratic voters who are under constant attack by this administration, know their elected representatives have the patriotism and political courage to stand up and take action.”
With cowardly Ohio Republicans like U.S. Sen. Rob Portman so afraid to break ranks with Trump on virtually anything for fear of angering him or his base voters in Ohio, that they’re letting the criminal get away with the crime, or with equally pathetic political side-show acts like the one John Kasich performs like a trained bear at a circus, where he plays his cards of outrage but still “root for the pilot” (Trump), there is zero chance Republicans will even consider, let alone act on impeaching Trump.
And for history buffs, recall that Congressman Kasich vote to impeach President Bill Clinton on all counts brought against him. Is there really any equivalence between Clinton’s indiscretions with a White House intern and Trump’s daily violations of the constitution? Why is Kasich so silent when it comes to the gross actions by Trump that he’s a victim of his own clouded morality, which for a boy who once wanted to become a Catholic priest, is quite remarkable.
Meanwhile, one Texas U.S. House Member, Al Green, has introduced an impeachment resolution, as more opinion polls find growing support for impeachment among Democratic voters.
Steyer’s call to arms to run next year on impeaching the president if elected will clearly be disruptive to a party that got out played and out maneuvered by Trump and company last year, and that desperately seeks an agenda and tone that media won’t be interpret as being too late and a dollar short.
Whatever those new messages are, and how they will differ with traditional messages Democrats have championed before, impeaching the president sounds like something Democrats should be able to do without sacrificing their principles as Republicans have done with the world looking on in disbelief about what America will tolerate.