Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Clinton must not retreat on platform promises

Last I looked, these things were true. Hillary Clinton promised to keep faith with the Dem platform that was very much shaped by Berniecrats. Donald Trump was being Trump-like, brag, bluster, and bullshit, and paying a price for it. The Republican leaders are running around in the barnyard clucking and crapping. Clinton is doing just fine in the polls.

So given all that why would Clinton renege on her promises and drift back to the center? Read on. This is from Charlie Pierce reprinted at readersupportednews.org.

The polls have gone so utterly sour on the Republican presidential nominee over the past week that many Very Serious People inside the Beltway have developed an even more devastating night-terror than El Caudillo de Mar-A-Lago with a nuclear arsenal at his beck and call—namely, that Hillary Rodham Clinton will get elected and then try to govern according to the progressive platform that was hashed out with so much sturm und drang with the Democratic primary process. ...

There already is a strong undertow pulling HRC toward "reaching out" to the GOP, toward governing from "the middle," and toward not accelerating the now-rapid descent of the Republican Party into the final madness of the prion disease it has welcomed so warmly into itself ever since the late 1970s. Ryan Lizza of The New Yorker even posited that, as a gesture of good faith, HRC should allow the Republicans to pick a Supreme Court justice ...

Good grief, Charlie Pierce. What the hell is Lizza thinking?

Professor Krugman has knocked down most of the arguments in favor of this rainbows-and-unicorns idea. First of all, it's insane politics. It will divide the Democratic Party just as the Republicans are engaging in what is bound to be an entertaining interlude of public fratricide.

Second, it would be an act of astonishing bad faith that would set in concrete all of the most unflattering opinions held about HRC by the people who trust her the least.

Third, it assumes Democratic control of the Congress, which remains a long shot. As long as the Republicans still hold the House of Representatives, where all the bills involving federal spending are born, and assuming that the Democrats aren't gifted with a supermajority in the Senate, it's logical to expect that the GOP won't be any more willing to cooperate with a President Clinton II in governing the country than they were with either President Clinton I or Barack Obama.

And, finally, and this is something Professor Krugman touches on only briefly, there is a more important reason for a President HRC to press her advantages on all fronts to put in place the policies she committed herself to run on: For the good of the nation, the Republican Party as it is presently constituted has to die.

[Snip. Herein lies some history of the GOP.]

It long has been the duty of the Democratic Party to the nation to beat the crazy out of the Republican Party until it no longer behaves like a lunatic asylum. The opportunity to do this, to act unilaterally in returning sanity to the Republic, never has been as wide and gleaming as it is right now. To argue that responsible government requires that you treat sensibly a party that has gone as mad as the Republicans have is to argue for government by delirium.

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