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Posts published in “Day: December 31, 2018”

The “base”


Here a “base.” There a “base.” Everywhere a “base, base.” (With apologies to Old McDonald.)

Our national media, it seems, can’t do a Trump story about anything he says or does without referring to his “base.” Whatever the action, whatever the latest lie, there’s constant referral to his “base.”

A political base is not news. Roosevelt had one. Truman had one. Lincoln had one. Even George Washington had one. All presidents have a base. It’s not something we need to be reminded of over and over and over again.

Aside from being a meaningless appendage to any news item, it should be remembered Trump’s “base” is a statistical minority of voters. Poll after poll shows that “base” at 35-40 percent. Recent sampling has those numbers slowly dropping. In other words, a minority becoming a more distinct minority. Given that Trump is slowly alienating one segment of the population after another - as predicted - the continual talk about his “base” is going to be even more irrelevant.

Which begs the question: “Why continue to put a focus on something that is both meaningless and unnecessary?”

It can’t automatically be assumed those leaving his “base” of support are becoming Democrats. In fact, the fear is they could be turned-off, non-voters in the 2020 elections. Which would be a loss to all of us.

Democrats would be well-advised to identify those regretting their previous votes for Trump and make an extra effort to gain their support. Not by some pie-in-the sky nonsense currently being espoused by the “new left.” Go back to the “lunch bucket” approach Democrats seem to have forgotten in recent elections. Jobs, health care, education, etc. And not just “talk-the-talk” but seriously “walk-the-walk.”

Though the aforementioned polling shows weaker support for Trump, no other recent sampling I’ve seen indicates more backing for Democrats. It’s likely there won’t be more significant support if the Party doesn’t get back to those basics.

Trump’s been demanding a “wall.” Well, he’s about to get one. The name is Nancy Pelosi. She’s a tougher wall for Trump than any wall an engineer could design for our Southern border. Pelosi is far more qualified for her job than he is for his. She’s been to many a congressional “rodeo” and has more than her share of “belt buckles.”

But, she also has a problem in the new House majority - that “new left.” Before being sworn-in next month, some are “demanding” changes. Skip the seniority system. Create new committees for this and that. Seat some of the new faces up front in the House. Before locating the member bathrooms, some want their “needs” recognized “NOW!”

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY-14) has become a media darling even before her term begins. She’s also shown how little she knows - and how little she understands - about being a member of Congress. She’s being made a “celebrity” instead of someone elected to do a well-defined constitutional job.

House members are elected for two-years. Fixed. Celebrity comes and goes. Mostly goes. Once someone new comes along who catches the public attention - and the media spotlight - today’s “celebrity” is yesterday’s news. Forgotten. Ocasio-Cortez is flirting with that at the moment. She needs to read her job description and post it prominently on her office wall. Then follow it!

It can be safely assumed, since her “green committee” idea died aborning, that she and Pelosi have had “the talk.” The new representative’s “base” is in New York City. Pelosi’s “base” is sitting on the new majority side in the House. That’s a “BASE!”

Democrats have a base now with the American voter. From all appearances, a lot of non-Democrats agreed to be members of that base in November. For now. Those folks are watching to see if what badly needs to be done actually gets done. If it does, we’ll likely see a “sweep” in 2020. If not, the majority will again be a minority. Pelosi knows that. In spades.

As for Trump’s “base,” safe betting is it will continue to shrink. Probably not much more. But, some. Whether he finishes his term in office or in prison, that “base” is becoming more irrelevant. Both for him. And, I hope, the national media!