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Name: Kurt Cagle
Gender: Male
Hometown: Cascadia
Member since: Sat Dec 3, 2016, 01:02 AM
Number of posts: 1,191

About Me

Contributing Writer, Forbes Magazine

Journal Archives

Silver Lining of Youngkin's Victory

I don't normally post articles from the The Hill, but this one got me thinking:


Politicians, especially seasoned ones, have to be attuned to their constituencies. One of the biggest problems that the Republican party has had is that TFG held the bludgeon of withholding his followers' support from those who might oppose him, even indirectly. For the last five years, that has meant that the GOP has been held hostage by its extremist fringe, in a decidedly anti-democratic fashion.

I don't necessarily think that Virginia is representative of a sudden rightward lurch. I've not been a big fan of McAullife's for a couple of decades now, and overall I think Virginians came to feel the same way. However, Youngkin managed to thread the needle with Trump - not alienating his followers, but not attaching himself to TFG's coattails either, and in a way this may prove to be a good thing long term. It means that TFG's influence is waning significantly, and it may be a sign that the GOP may actually be (slowly) moving away from the toxic extremism that has plagued it since the Tea Party emerged in 2010.

We, as Democrats, need the Republicans to become more moderate, more pragmatic. Polarization on both sides is killing this country, but Democrats, while not as heavily polarized as Republicans have become, are becoming more divisive as well. There is little room for compromise and as such it makes getting meaningful legislation passed nearly impossible. I think that as Trump's power wanes, so too will the extremism - TFG's attention gave the extremists far more power than they should have ever achieved.

I'm not saying I think Youngkin's win by itself is a good thing - it definitely hurt - but if it's a sign that the GOP is erasing the blight of TFG on the party, it's at least a silver lining.

Posted by Metaphorical | Thu Nov 4, 2021, 11:21 AM (9 replies)

This has to be making the Trump-Loving GOP sweat a bit

[link:https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/563331-pro-impeachment-republicans-outpace-gop-rivals-in-second-quarter?userid=20106|Pro-impeachment Republicans outpace GOP rivals in second-quarter fundraising

Republicans who voted earlier this year to impeach former President Trump are outpacing their primary challengers in the money race.

Now the 10 House Republicans who broke party lines in the chamberís January impeachment vote are heading into the second half of 2021 flush with cash, financial reports filed on Thursday with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) show.

Rep. Liz Cheney (Wyo.), who was ousted from her post as the No. 3 House Republican in May, raked in the most cash of the group in the second quarter of the year, raising nearly $1.9 million and closing out June with more than $2.8 million in the bank.

I think more than a few Republican politicians were embracing Trump and the Maga out of fear of being primaried, but if this is any indication, January 6 may have been the last straw for a lot of more traditional Republican voters.

If the Wingnuts in your state managed to vote to secede, what would you do?

I've been thinking about this for a while.

Given the latest clearly blatant attempts at voter suppression in many red states, I expect that these will be challenged successfully in the courts - by all indications they would not stand up to any reasonable judicial scrutiny.

If that turns out to be the case, I present what I see as a hypothetical with all too much chance of happening - the state legislatures vote to secede, and the governor signs that into law.

What then? I'd prefer to not see any state actually secede - most states are basically purple to some degree or another - but I think that the GQP basically believes that they and only they have any actual political authority in this country.

Given that, what happens next?

Is this the end of the imperial presidency?

One of the things I've watched over the last few decades has been the increasing power that the executive branch wields compared to Congress or the Courts. We've seen the logical conclusion of this: had Trump succeeded yesterday, he would have been, in effect a King with unlimited powers. Republicans have pushed for this shift in power because that hierarchy would have ensconced them in permanent power as well.

Moving forward I think the Democrats are going to have to do some serious thinking about how to limit the power of the President, now and in the future. Trump basically exploited every potential loophole in his attempt to regain control, and in the process has laid out a roadmap showing precisely where the weak points are. This is going to be an interesting balancing act, because Biden is likely going to need to step outside of the system periodically to help repair it, and this is going to have to be managed carefully.

When new Senate formally sits

Begin removal hearings.

Get this fucker out of office NOW!

How Long Will Mitch McConnell stay in the Senate as Minority Leader?

I'm giving it four months. The knives will be out after this, and once deposed from even a minority leadership position McConnell will retire to his turtle pond.

Distrustful Republican Voters Spawning New Election Integrity Movement


Personally, I am happy to see this. I think there are systemic problems with the touchscreen voting machines, and the more that the rank and filel Republican gets exposed to the same issues that Democrats have been pointing out for years, the ones that are genuinely interest in electoral reform may come to understand why we have these concerns. There are a lot of ignorant people out there - not stupid, just dealing with a great deal of misinformation with no way of filtering it out, and any kind of education can only help to reduce that ignorance.

McConnell is in a far weaker position than most people realize

There is at least a 25% chance that the Democrats will take control of the Senate in 2021, if boh Orsoff and Warnock win, and as much as the GOP is spending in Trump's frivolous lawsuits, this is going to keep spending to support the GOP Georgian candidates down considerably. However, there is a 50% chance that at least one of the two candidates will be elected. At that point, the new Senate is 49/51 Dem/GOP. Worse-case scenario, the Dems are down two.

A lot of people are worried that McConnell will be obstructionist, but the reality in the second scenario is that he can't. He cannot afford a single defection in the ranks. He can't give Collins or Murkowski a "vote in conscience" without losing votes, and the chances that he can retain the fillibuster are now slim. He's also going to have to worry about someone in the GOP ranks choosing to caucus with the Democrats if crossed too many times.

What this means is that for the first time in a while, the GOP is going to have to do something they collectively hate - they are going to have to compromise in the Senate. Also keep in mind that Romney is waiting in the wings. He may end up going for the Presidency in 2024, but he may also decide that he may want to be Senate Majority Leader instead. I don't like Romney, but I think he is far more likely to build a moderate caucus in the process to undermine McConnell, and I think of the two, he is the more principled.

So, while not ideal for the Democrats, I don't think the situation is near as bad as some have portrayed it.

Has anyone noticed odd behavior with the Internet?

I'm seeing major domains suddenly throwing up DNS security errors - are we in the midst of a hack attack?

Why Hillary Clinton WON'T be on the Cabinet (nor should she be)

Most organizations that have been around for any length of time begin to develop a small pool of Elders, and this is as true in politics as anywhere else. Ben Franklin was an elder statesman, as an example - he was essentially an at large ambassador, a member of the government without actually formally being a part of the government.

Hillary Clinton is an Elder, as are the Obamas, Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter, one or two others. Such elders play a very important role - because of the gravitas of their station, they are well respected and have the actual authority to speak for the United States without having the formal authority or official sanction. They are often used in diplomatic roles where the US doesn't want to be seen as being committed but nonetheless has a vested interest.

It's one reason why any talk like that will go nowhere, especially with someone as seasoned as Biden (who essentially came out of retirement to run for president and was also an Elder). I don't think Biden ran because of ego. He ran because he realized it was necessary. I suspect that after he retired in 2016, he assumed that he was done with his political life, and would have been just as happy not doing it. That's what separates good people from bad ones. They do what they do because they see it as needing to be done. That was Trump's biggest failure - he looked upon the presidency as a means to enrich himself, to gain more power for himself.
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