BY MADISON GESIOTTO – TheHill
Liberals are starting to turn on one another across the campaign trail as it becomes increasingly clear that President Trump is now cruising toward reelection this fall. Four years ago, most liberals treated the prospect of his presidency as simply a punchline instead of a serious possibility. When they were proven spectacularly wrong in 2016, the same people tried to protect their egos with a conspiracy theory about “collusion” with Russia.
The 2020 election cycle started off with liberals wallowing in the same dismissive and unfounded certainty of their own triumph. Trump had no chance at reelection, they assumed, if he even made it to Election Day without being removed from office. Now following his acquittal and the realization that Democrats have to face the man who humiliated them, wishful thinking among liberals is quickly changing into outright panic.
Rising approval ratings, widespread agreement among Americans that they are better off under Trump, and the utter absence of the recession that his detractors have been predicting for years are breaking through the bubble of confidence that the liberal commentators had created for themselves and their fawning audiences. The race for the Democratic nomination is devolving into a blame game as the party scrambles to identify which of the candidates will not be a sure loser in November.
The collapse of Joe Biden has made Bernie Sanders the new front runner, which has many liberals sweating bullets. The Democratic establishment is scrambling to find someone other than Sanders, as moderates such as Jonathan Chait sound the alarm. But leave it to James Carville, the spin doctor for Bill Clinton, to take the gloves off. “Good God! We have got to do something here,” Carville exclaimed, heavily implying that a Sanders nomination would be “the end of days” for the party and end in defeat.
But Sanders supporters are equally convinced that Trump will win unless Democrats nominate their radical candidate. After the disastrous failure to declare a winner in the Iowa caucuses, Sanders supporter and University of Iowa professor Jeffrey Cox observed, “After a botched impeachment process that leaves Trump even more electable, we come to the deeply humiliating failure of the state Democratic Party.” He added that unless the establishment is stopped, the party will lose yet another election.
Then liberals also have the Michael Bloomberg escape route, which would involve handing the nomination, most likely in a brokered convention, to a former Republican billionaire who is spending hundreds of millions of his own dollars in an effort to buy the election. But sadly for the Democrats, nominating an elitist billionaire would alienate large swaths of their voter base, arguably setting the party up for an even more disastrous defeat.
The absence of any viable candidate has led to the final emerging coping strategy on the left of complaining, as progessive media outlet Vox did recently, that the Constitution is fundamentally unfair, in part because it might mean that Trump can then win reelection. The internal squabbling coming out of the Democratic primaries suggests that the left now fears losing to Trump a second time more than they have at any point during his presidency. The worst part for them is that their fears are entirely justified.
Madison Gesiotto is an attorney who serves with the advisory board of the Donald Trump campaign. You can follow her on Twitter @MadisonGesiotto.