This Saturday, there is an election. While most of us who actually work with Democratic candidates every election year know, this election is a yawner because it’s the election for DNC Chair. See, here’s something everyone who actually understands political reality already knows, although it seems to be a secret to many “political junkies,” especially the professional left and unicorn progressives. Here it is:
The Chair of the DNC doesn’t do much except raise and distribute money.
Yes, that’s right. Campaigns are run individually. They are not coordinated by the DNC. The DNC Chair is charged with raising shit-tons of money and making sure it goes where it can do the most good. That is it. So, it’s quite surprising when the pro left and the unicorn brigade, virtually none of whom ever work inside the Democratic Party – hell, most of them brag about being “independent” and won’t even register as a Democrat, which means they won’t vote for anything the national Party does at the local level, actually “warn of repercussions” if “the Democrats” don’t elect Keith Ellison as DNC Chair. (Source) Check out this ridiculous “threat:”
“If Perez wins, we’re not gonna come out with pitchforks and say, ‘No, no, no,’” said Murshed Zaheed, political director of Credo Action, an online progressive heavyweight that has experienced record growth since Trump’s inauguration. “But people are going to roll their eyes and just keeping doing what they do. It’s going to keep the DNC what it is: an irrelevant, old, stale entity that hasn’t been re-serviced since the Howard Dean days.”
(Zaheed noted that he spoke to HuffPost in his personal capacity, since Credo isn’t endorsing in the race.)
First of all, what’s with the bullying language? No wonder these idiots helped get us a Trump presidency. If they think bullying and threats are the best way to wrangle support, they are mistaken, as usual. However, there is another question that’s more important:
Why are these fuckwits acting as if they have a choice every election day? There are two viable parties out there, which means there are two choices in virtually every election, and one of them will be from a party that is so far right that Saint Ronald of Reagan would be a Democrat these days. The only way a threat like that above would work is if we had a myriad of choices. We don’t.
Once again, the DNC IS irrelevant for most things. They raise and distribute money, which is more critical than ever right now; how they distribute money is crucial in some races. However, the calculus they use won’t make most unicorn lovers and pro lefties happy. They won’t provide money to primaries in the first place and no amount of bitching about a lack of support for a far left primary opponent to Manchin in West Virginia won’t change that. And what’s with the call-back to Howard Dean? What the hell is that about? The vaunted “50-state strategy” that many unicorn progressives wax nostalgic about is IMPOSSIBLE right now because of a little thing called “Citizens United.” Perhaps you’ve heard of it? CU makes it impossible to direct resources to every single district. It forces Democrats to prioritize, according to the likelihood or the possibility of winning. No matter how much you wish it, in a deep red district that is 60% Republican, funneling money to a far left candidate is not “showing support” for anything but the wasting of money. And let me assure you, Keith Ellison is a hella smart man; he’s not going to waste his limited resources to back a far left candidate in a red district unless they’re polling close to 50%. Period. No matter how much you lionize him.
Here’s the funny part. (Funny stupid, not funny ha-ha) We can’t get rid of Citizens United as long as Republicans control the government. That means helping Democrats win. If the 447 people who vote for DNC Chair do NOT choose Keith Ellison and instead choose Tom Perez, who is a perfectly decent guy and perfectly capable of raising and distributing money for Democrats, these idiots are basically threatening…
What are they threatening? There is nothing to threaten. If you call yourself progressive or liberal and you can’t see the value in pushing Democrats no matter what, at least for the time being, then you really are an idiot. If you think you can stand outside the Democratic Party and demand that it do your bidding on everything and be effective, I’ll just say, look around! How’s that working for you?
If you’re such a genius that you think you can afford to scream at a political party and demand that it do your bidding, I have to ask; where’s your evidence that it works? You can idolize Bernie all you want, but he LOST. Not only that, but you people (who only represent about 10% of Sanders supporters) did so much damage that we now have Lord Donny of Orange in the White House.
Yes, Democrats need the votes from ALL liberals if they are to win consistently at every level, but here’s the important thing you professional lefties and unicorn progressives need to understand you don’t actually have any leverage. In order to have leverage, you have to become part of the Democratic base. I know many of you believe you are that, but you’re not. In order to be in a party’s base, you have to establish yourself as a reliable vote. You’re not. First, you have register as a member of the Democratic Party, not be “Independent.” You also have to vote for Democrats religiously for a while, even if you sometimes have to hold your nose to do so. And, most importantly, you have to support ALL Democrats without question, at least for a while. Then, when you have pushed Democrats to 70-75 seats in the Senate and 300 seats in the House, and you have gotten supermajorities in at least 30-35 states, then you can pick off a few of the worst ones. A FEW. Wiping out half the Blue Dog Caucus at a time when Democrats had a bare majority in the House was asinine and you sure as shit can’t do it now, with Republicans in charge of everything and Democrats in the minority. When you talk about “primarying” Joe Manchin or Heidi Heitkamp in 2018, you only show your ignorance, not any sort of political intelligence.
If you want to have leverage in the Democratic Party, you need to earn it. Right now, my unicorn-loving friends, you have exactly ZERO leverage with anyone. You can’t threaten to withhold your vote and your support if the Democrats rarely get it in the first place. If you want to know why Democrats often tack to the right, look in the mirror. They can’t rely on white, relatively well-off liberals with way too much time on their hands, so they go where the votes actually ARE.
When these pro lefties and unicorn lovers threaten Democrats, obsess over insignificant nonsense and act as if they have more than zero political capital, what is the end game? They fantasize about third parties and whine about the limitations of the “two-party system,” but they have done absolutely nothing to actually create a viable third party. There are actually 134 registered political parties in this country, but only two are viable. As I’ve explained, it is basic math; in a democratic system, there can really be no more than two viable choices. A new party is possible, but it has to be created from scratch. It’s necessary to work up from municipal and state elections to national elections; you can’t start with running a chameleon-like Jill Stein for president and work “down.”
The point is, there is not now, nor will there ever be, a smorgasbord of candidates in any election. There are Republicans and Democrats and, given the radicalization of the GOP in recent years, why do so many professional lefties and unicorn progressives believe there is any viable choice other than the Democratic Party? We know for a fact that Republicans will never do anything progressive, while Democrats always at least entertain progressive proposals.
Given the single viable choice for liberals and their unwillingness to seriously create a third choice, what is the point of all of these pro left threats, exactly? And if threatening Democrats is the best way to get them to do what you want, where is the evidence of success? We have Donald Trump in the White House, surrounded by people I wouldn’t invite to a picnic. We have Republicans in charge of Congress. We have Republican governors running 34 out of 50 states. We have Republicans controlling both halves of 32 out of 49 bicameral state legislatures. For the last 23 election cycles, turnout has been pathetic, which is the key reason Republicans win. They don’t win because they’re enormously popular, they win because turnout is low. And turnout is low because Republicans consider pissing people off to be a primary electoral strategy. They WANT to make it so people don’t want to show up and vote.
Stop helping them.