Remember when elections were fun? Each candidate put on their game face and brought their best to the table in attempt to outwit one another on the campaign trail. Candidates promised voters the world — touting how they intend to help families, jobs, education and national security to name a few.
Those days are gone. The old dogs of the Democrat party, in particular, have become visibly cynical. President Biden sternly gazed over onlookers at a recent speech, warning that a vote for a Republican might as well be a vote for an election-denying political extremist. Donald Trump may out of office, yet the post-traumatic stress disorder rages on. Americans may have more pressing concerns — like how to afford their skyrocketing food, energy and housing costs — yet the MAGA-inspired fearmongering continues at MSNBC, CNN and in the pages of The New York Times and The Washington Post. The social media echo chamber does its part to amplify our dire “reality” — which sets the stage for still more self-fulfilling political prophecies of the same.
America is in a funk. For the political establishment, the culprit is not inflation, crime, yet another COVID-19 variant, diesel shortages that threaten to plunge the Northeast into a deadly winter— or even the prospect of “nuclear Armageddon” in Ukraine. The real problem? Democrats refuse to share power with Republicans.
While it is not unusual for Americans to be subjected to hefty-dose of negativity in an election year, what has changed in recent years is that social-media saturated Americans endure election-year mudslinging 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It is enough to make anyone cynical, with a majority of Americans convinced, according to a recent poll, that Democracy is in trouble. What is more, when politicians and pundits take to social/media year-around to peddle an endless stream of alarmism, it leaves very little room to raise the ante in the run-up to an election without straying into the weeds of the absurd and downright hysterical.
If nothing more, the Midterm 2022 elections will answer the $64,000 question: Will voters take the bait?
Judging by the furrowed brows and weary looks on the faces of those who have carried the Democratic party the longest, the jig may soon be up. Take, for example, former First Lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, wide-eyed and sounding a familiar alarm: Republicans, she warned, “literally have a plan to steal the 2024 election”.
Even the formerly unflappable President Obama is not immune. The Barrack Obama many of us remember in the mid 2000s carried himself with optimism, flashed a million-dollar smile and transfixed voters with his knack for oration. The Obama of 2022 hit the campaign trail on behalf of Democrats with doom and gloom on the mind. The positive attitude that carried the former president over the electoral finish line not once but twice — financial crisis notwithstanding — has been replaced with a wagging finger. Like his former vice president and secretary of state, campaigning on behalf of 2022 Midterm election candidates has been less about “bringing out the vote” as opposed to an attempt to scare up the vote.
For Democrats, fear is apparently the only tool left in the toolbox.
If the transformation of “The Big Tent” to The Big Party Poopers has left you, too, shaking your head, you are not alone.
What the heck happened?Continue reading “Democrats’ Big Tent is Stretched to the Breaking Point”