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Jerry Shenk


Democrats' Worst Day Ever

by Jerry Shenk
 

In the last four months, the Democrats' worst day wasn't General Election Day, 2016 or even Inauguration Day, 2017. Their worst day was February 28, 2017 when Donald Trump gave his first speech to a joint session of Congress and appeared presidential. Democrats' ill-mannered behavior there confirmed their misery.

Based on its content and delivery, love or hate him, following that speech, any fair listener was left with little choice but to accept that Donald Trump is the legitimate President of the United States.

President Trump sprang a trap on congressional Democrats, one of their hard-left's making. Beginning on November 9, the Democrats' alt-left base demanded total political warfare, impeachment even before Trump's inauguration, no cooperation with "Hitler," ad nauseum, but, in Trump's measured congressional address, normal Americans saw and heard a reasonable president calling for racial and religious tolerance, national security, American jobs, the destruction of ISIS and national unity -- in other words, sensible goals supported by any reasonable American.

Congressional Democrats were clearly uncomfortable, at times bewildered, disoriented -- in shock. In side glances and hushed exchanges, Democrats uncertainly pondered, should we sit, stand, applaud? Mostly, they sat, bearing pained expressions, stunned at President Trump's unanticipated, extraordinary performance.

The emotional high point of President Trump's address was his recognition of Carryn Owens, widow of recently-slain Navy SEAL William Ryan Owens. It was a memorable, powerful moment, bigger than anyone in the room, including an American president. Unmoved, Democratic Representatives Debbie Wasserman Schultz, a former DNC chairwoman, and Keith Ellison, an unsuccessful candidate for the same post, remained seated, refusing to applaud. Their indifference revealed their smallness and the emptiness of their petty partisanship.

Trump's themes weren't new, but his address was skillfully crafted to present them all in easily-understandable terms. The speech's primary theme was "America First." In it, Trump said that, as president, he doesn't represent the world; he represents the American people. It was slightly disconcerting, but unsurprising to watch morose Democrats sit silent and motionless in nonresponse to something so obvious.

Congressional Democrats publicly shamed themselves by their stone-faced, reactionless reception of non-controversial segments of Trump's speech that normal people found inspirational.

National Democrats now face a conundrum: They can alienate their unhinged ber-liberal base by cooperating with the broadly-popular elements of Trump's agenda, or resist and drive away centrists who may have once voted Democrat, but who saw commonsense approaches and potential solutions to problems that concern them.

Democrats face a political "Sophie's Choice." Metaphorically, at least, somebody or something must die. Among those will likely be at least a few of the ten Democratic senators who, in 2018, must run in states won by Donald Trump and, possibly, a handful of House Democrats, perhaps even in Democrat-friendly districts.

Donald Trump's widely-viewed February 28 speech to Congress and the American people was a game changer. A case study in sullen irrelevance, the congressional Democrats who immediately scurried out of the House chamber following President Trump's speech know it.

http://www.pottsmerc.com/opinion/20170303/jerry-shenk-democrats-worst-day-ever


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