In a rare, but much needed moment of self-reflection, one of their own schools liberals on the resounding impact of Republican election wins in 2016.
On Monday, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Democrats will not soon escape the depths to which the party has fallen in the aftermath of the 2016 election. He seems to realize that the 2018 mid-term election will not be good for Democrats.
Straight Talk with Rahm
Speaking at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, President Obama’s former White House chief of staff described the Democrat Party’s current status:
“Democrats are at the lowest level since 1928 in the House of Representatives and the lowest level since 1925 in the state houses,” said Emanuel, former President Barack Obama’s first White House chief of staff,” The Washington Times reported.”
“It took us a long time to get this low. It ain’t gonna happen in 2018,” he said. “Take a chill pill, man. You gotta be in this for the long haul. And if you think it’s going to be a quick turnaround like that, it’s not.”
Emanuel offered some advice to Democrats who he said need to be pragmatic rather than self-righteously idealistic if they want to regain power. Emanuel noted that a political party out of power accomplishes nothing.
“Winning’s everything. If you don’t win, you can’t make the public policy. I say that because it is hard for people in our party to accept that principle…Our party likes to be right, even if they lose. It’s about winning, because if you win you then have the power to go do what has to get done. If you lose, you can write the book about what happened.”
Case in point, Hillary Clinton.
That loser wrote a book called Hard Choices. It sold so badly, the publisher fell under scrutiny over the deal. The book now is a boat anchor, a paperweight on the desk of a few faithful, or kindling to start fires.
You Have to Crawl Before You Can Walk
Rebuking leftist in-fighting, Emanuel said that Democrats tend to worry more about fellow party members’ political purity than the need to win. Then he reminded Dems that the Trump administration is seeking to undercut founding Democratic Party principles.
Thus he chided Democrats to stop squabbling.
“This guy and these people are about to do something on the tax code, the regulatory environment, and things that are more threatening than what a fellow Democrat may slightly disagree with you on. Stop it. We’re not strong enough to do that.”
Instead, the Chicago Tribune reports, Emanuel recommended, like the shrewd politician he is, that Democrats exploit Republican divisions.
“Wherever there’s a disagreement among Republicans, I’m for one of those disagreements. I’m all for it. The president’s with Russia? I’m with John McCain and Lindsey Graham, I’m for NATO! Why? (It’s a) wedge. Wedges have to be schisms, schisms have to be divides.”
Nice try. That’s Democratic Playbook 101. And if Trump proved anything, it’s that Democrats can rename that playbook Hard Choices and use it for kindling as well.