In 2008 and 2012, the establishment favorites, John McCain and Mitt Romney, each won the Republican party’s nomination. They were both economically and socially conservative (which I am not), but I would, in a heartbeat, take either of them as our next president over Donald Trump or Ted Cruz. Now, in 2016, it seems almost…
The fact is that if enough people say that Hillary Clinton is the presumptive Democratic nominee, they’ll eventually be right. And while as a Republican I disagree with Bernie Sanders on almost everything, we can agree that the first step towards stopping an “inevitable” Hillary campaign is to find somebody who will actually run.
The point of politics is to win, and while the far left and the far right in Congress can obstruct legislation, they are too weak to actually pass it. For all their historical squabbling, the Democrats understand that fact. But if history has taught us anything, as the presidential election gets closer, Republicans understand that too.
The Democratic front-runner is a candidate that, although recognizably liberal, is still moderate enough to enrage the Democratic far left. And it’s times like this that people start complaining about how Hillary’s inevitability hurts the ideological vitality of the Democratic Party. But is that necessarily the case? Why is Hillary Clinton the presumed nominee in March?
Forest ecosystems, like American politics, are at their essence, interacting compromises. Whether it is the fact that many forest systems have two tree species that dominate (as we have two political parties), or the vines that grow up those trees, using the massive wooded weight to support themselves (as more radical politicians select a party to advance their interests), it is all political. And when a large tree falls (a key individual, or a party faction), new species jump at the opportunity to fill the void; in politics and forests alike, experts coin this “succession.”
The Republicans hammered the Democrats on Election Day. There aren’t too many other ways to slice it. Sure, the Senate electoral map favored the Republicans: President Obama’s election in 2008 was a massive wave that swept Democrats to power in many traditionally red states, something that the Democrats couldn’t really hope to replicate. But the Republicans took control of the Senate and increased their majority in the House. What’s next?
While it’s all good and fun to be the ideological purists on the fringe, the goal of any national movement is to garner popular support and enact lasting change. What many forget is that the Tea Party is a revival of conservative ideology, not an actual party. The establishment can only gloat so much when they are being stiff-armed into adopting their opponents’ positions.
the 2016 election is not riding on something as simple as the general approval rating of the president. What matters most is the misinformation that forms this public opinion. The challenge to the Democratic Party in the ad wars does not come from the fact of opposition, but rather from the amount of money being spent. The founder of the Center for Public Integrity, a nonpartisan watchdog group, is concerned about the “pattern of law-breaking, political manipulation and obfuscation” that is on a “whole different level” than anyone else. The Kochs “are the Standard Oil of our times,” he said. While the Democratic Party may not have the means to match the money being spent on the opposition campaigns, they must be able to spend enough to combat growing misconceptions in order to make 2016 a successful year for their candidates.