Friday, August 31, 2018


I'm pleased that this appeared on Chris Hayes's show last night:
What will happen if Republicans retain the House in November?

From trying to repeal the ACA, to weakening the Russia investigation, Republicans would be emboldened by keeping control of Congress.

Hayes and his guests, Sabrina Siddiqi of The Guardian and Jim Manley, the former chief spokesperson for Senator Harry Reid, touched on a number of risks if Republicans keep unified control of the federal government -- that the Trump-Russia investigation will likely be shut down, that the Affordable Care Act will probably be repealed, that there could be new tax cuts for the rich accompanied by cuts to Social Security and other benefit programs, and so on. All this needs to be said -- and repeated -- as we approached November, because we need every vote we can get, including the votes of those who might they're too cool to bother -- hey, what difference does it really make? Aren't all politicians alike?

I think there'll be far fewer voters of that kind this year -- most left-leaning people realize what's at stake. The real risk is in years like 2016, when a lot of people have forgotten the nature of Republican rule and are simultaneously let down by Democrats who aren't passionately progressive (or who don't have much chance of getting truly progressive legislation past Republicans). In years like 2016, voters forget how jaw-droppingly extreme Republicans are. They forget how eager Republicans are to destroy the social safety net (and to lower taxes for the rich so that it will seem that the safety net can never be restored once it's slash). They forget how extreme Republicans are on abortion, the environment, climate change, the minimum wage, corporate money in politics, and a hundred other issues.

Instead, as Election Day approaches, the too-cool crowd picks a handful of issues on which there seems to be little or no difference between Democrats and Republicans and declares that nothing whatsoever about Republicans can possibly justify a vote for (sold-out!) Democrats because of those issues. Any other issues one might raise in response just don't matter.

But they do matter. We're finding that out now and we found that out after the 2000 election. Republicans are dangerous -- and the left-leaning media needs to count the ways, in every election cycle.

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