Donald Trump was elected by We The People to shake up the DC status quo, and by God that is exactly what he has done.
Trump campaigned on a “drain the swamp” ethos, heartily chuckling each and every time someone attempt to corner him on his cutthroat business ethics during the 2016 campaign. Trump knew better. He understood that it takes a man like him to tear The Beltway to shreds, and he used this reality to his advantage.
While in office, The Donald has been unstoppable in this regard, eschewing the traditions of past public servants for a more direct, internet-era approach.
His tactics have worked so well, in fact, that many prominent Democrats are concerned that the slate of 2020 candidates put forth by their party won’t be able to hack it in a head-to-head with the Commander in Chief.
Some Democrats fear the crowded field is doing the eventual nominee a disservice by tiptoeing around their possible vulnerabilities while the GOP loads torpedoes into the tubes. It’s a dynamic reminiscent of the 2016 Democratic primary, when Democrats — including primary candidate Bernie Sanders — downplayed the controversy surrounding Hillary Clinton’s emails, only to confront a vicious general election onslaught on those very questions from Trump.
“Trump has more money than God, no embarrassment gene, no shame and no guardrail,” said Sue Dvorsky, former Iowa Democratic Party chairwoman, who has endorsed Kamala Harris in the race. “I worry when so many of our activists say: ‘I like all of them.’ It is not our job to like everybody, it is our job to pick one. I worry as this goes on that we are not having a vigorous enough debate.”
On issues such as Liz Warren’s Native American heritage, Bernie Sanders’ recent heart attack, and Joe Biden’s ongoing Ukraine scandal, the Democrats simply don’t have the gall to launch a counter attack.
“If you bring up some of the character issues, what it does to the left is just antagonize them because most of them are already in love with their candidates,” said Dan Sena, former Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee executive director. “The moderates don’t want it because it’s too symbolic of what they’re already seeing in Washington and at that point, they stop listening.”
Republicans, meanwhile, are licking their chops about the prospect of a 2016 redux. “They’re making the same mistake that Hillary Clinton made,” said Sam Nunberg, a former Trump aide. “They think, ‘Oh, Trump is so beatable, it doesn’t matter.’”
To add fuel to the “2016 redux” fire, there seems to be a growing possibility that Hillary Clinton could make a late entry into the race, acting as a potential spoiler for the Democrats’ hopes for moving beyond the legacy of their corruption.
Become an insider!
Sign up for our free email newsletter, and we'll make sure to keep you in the loop.