• January 31, 2023

Opinion: The Progressive Democratic Steamroller

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi presides over the House when she votes in the House Chamber on March 10 on the $ 1.9 trillion Covid-19 aid package.


Photo:

Caroline Brehman / Zuma Press

The Democrats on Wednesday passed their $ 1.9 trillion in spending and welfare that would have been unimaginable even in the Obama years, and the big news is how easy they made it. The party has been united behind the most left-wing agenda for decades, while Republicans are divided and in intellectual disarray. This is just the beginning of the progressive steamroller, and it’s worth understanding why.

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One lesson from the Covid non-fight is that there are no democratic moderates in Congress. The party base has moved so much to the left that even Swing State members are more liberal than many liberals in the Clinton years. Democrats did not lose a single vote in the Senate and only one in the House. The fear of primary challenges from the left that sparked domestic war horses in 2018 and 2020 has focused the reigning minds.

A second lesson is that President Biden is not a moderating political force. Democrats in the House and Senate set the agenda, and Mr Biden is there. He is the ideal political front man for this agenda with his talk of “unity” and anti-Trump personality, but he does not shape legislation. He signs up with the Chief of Staff Ron Klain tells him he needs support.

At least for now, there isn’t much opposition either. With a few exceptions, the media is marching in lockstep for whatever the Democrats want. The content of the Covid invoice was hardly dealt with outside of these pages. Opposition to HR1, the federal adoption of state electoral law, is literally being reported as a revival of racism by Jim Crow.

Business has also been co-opted, as is often the case at the beginning of a democratic presidency. The industry is trying to protect its specific iron rice husks, but a price is paid to keeping it on the larger progressive agenda. Small businesses oppose the $ 15 minimum wage, but larger businesses don’t mind charging smaller competitors with higher costs. Big Oil doesn’t mind selling independent frackers based on climate rules.

Despite their sizeable minorities, Republicans are a divided mess. They stayed united in the Covid vote, but had no unified strategy or message. They focus on the culture war around Dr. Seuss, while the Democrats push laws with enormous economic consequences.

The House passed the most radical union-friendly labor bill this week since the Wagner Act of 1935, but you wouldn’t know from the muted GOP protests. The bill would remove the right to work in 27 states, but the GOP has no media message to inform voters in those states.

This is in part a legacy of the Trump years and, in particular, the post-election collapse. The party is still busy

Donald Trumpwho deals with vengeance on Republicans who do not bow to the Mar-a-Lago throne. Members fight against each other rather than Democrats.

The party also lost some of its intellectual anchoring during the Trump years, particularly on spending and economics. Right-wing populism against companies has strengthened left-wing populism, and too few GOP members can make an economic argument. Predicting an immigration frontier crisis was the prevailing message from Republicans on Capitol Hill or on cable television. That’s all.

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All of this gives Democrats growing confidence that they can translate their agenda into legislation despite historically narrow majorities. You will pass huge tax increases in a party line vote. They’re also still hoping to pull out enough GOP senators to raise the minimum wage to $ 11 or $ 12 an hour and $ 2 trillion in green energy and public works spending. Don’t be surprised if they are successful.

Republicans who rely on Democrat Joe Manchin to maintain the Senate filibuster may also be disappointed. He is from Trumpy West Virginia, but is also a partisan democrat. He said he wouldn’t vote for the $ 1.9 trillion bill unless it was bipartisan but would end up going anyway.

With bills passing by the house piling up at the Senate door, the pressure to break the filibuster will be tremendous. The media will make Mr. Manchin the moral equivalent of GOP leader Mitch McConnell.

Dick Durbin, the Senate’s second-rate Democrat, said this week that the Democrats plan to have two or three bills out of the House soon to speak. “We need some ground experience first,” he told the Capitol Hill press. “I think this is progress. Try the legislation first. Second, try making changes to the filibuster. Then see what happens. “They will use the threat of breaking the filibuster as a lever to win concessions for GOP politics, even if they don’t formally rewrite the Senate rules.

Politics is never static, and perhaps that dynamic fades when Democrats lose the false cover of “Covid Relief” on their agenda. But it is no exaggeration to say that the country has faced the most confident left-wing majority since 1965. That’s not what

Joe Biden

I promise, but that’s what we get.

Wunderland: Today we are on the way to normality, not because of politicians and media representatives. Our thanks go to the medical staff who treated patients and discovered treatments during ongoing operations. And private vaccine developers. Images: Reuters / AFP via Getty Composite: Mark Kelly

Copyright © 2020 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All rights reserved. 87990cbe856818d5eddac44c7b1cdeb8

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