Imagine two kids on the playground in an argument. It doesn’t matter what they’re arguing about; the point is that someone has to win. That’s the whole point of arguing. Most arguments don’t have a clear winner, so it can go on indefinitely. After exhausting all reasoning, one kid will say something like, “Yeh, but my Dad’s stronger than your Dad.”
You know the next line, “No he’s not, my Dad’s stronger!”
“Well, my Dad’s faster than yours.”
“No, my Dad’s the fastest!”
There’s no reasonable end to this dispute because whatever position is taken by one disputant, the other will take the opposite.
This childhood arguing style has been adopted by Democrats and puts them in danger of making them irrelevant and out of touch with the majority of people. You can see this pattern with almost every issue. In fact, I might even suggest that President Trump is aware of what is happening and using it to cause Democrats to paint themselves into a corner. It pains me to say it, but he might be outsmarting his opponents.
Let me explain how it works as we take a look at the major issues.
The issue that began Trump’s political career was immigration. He fired the initial shot as he descended an escalator into a pack of reporters to announce his candidacy. The conversation quickly morphed into building a border wall and deporting all illegal immigrants living in the country. After more than two years of pushing and shoving, back and forth claiming that one side is better than the other, it was announced this weekend that people in the country illegally will be rounded up and shipped out.
In response, the Democrats had to support what they have chosen as their strategy, they quickly moved to the opposite extreme. Speaker Pelosi labeled this action as immoral because it is designed to “terrorize children and tear families apart.” She went on to explain to illegals how to use their rights to avoid being deported.
I’ve followed immigrant deportations for a long time. When I was a pastor in the Texas panhandle, many of the farmers in our community hired illegal immigrants to work the fields. Occasionally, they were picked up and shipped off to Mexico. After we moved to Fort Worth, my oldest son worked as a foreman for a landscape company. He came home one day and told me that a couple of green pickups pulled up to where his men were working and snatched up his entire crew.
These kinds of deportations have been happening for decades. In fact, during Obama’s presidency, five million were sent packing back across the Rio Grande. I don’t remember Democrats up and arms about it then. In fact, the number during the Clinton presidency was even higher. Most of us don’t have a problem with forcing people to immigrate legally, and we’re ok with taking those who break the rules and sending them to the back of the line. That seems like a reasonable position to me.
Yet, it seems that according to Democrat leaders, I’m supposed to be all up in arms and do everything I can to encourage those who have broken the law to continue breaking the law. Is it any wonder that your Republican friends accuse you of wanting “open borders?”
Here’s the problem. Trump and his ilk pulled off some stupid policies regarding immigration, and many of them should be opposed. But he seems to realize that his extreme positions will cause Democrats to gather at the polar opposite. When it comes time to vote, people will think, “I don’t want open borders,” or “what’s wrong with deporting illegals?” Even though they might not like Trump, they’re equally afraid of the Democrats.
Apply this same reasoning to other policies. Take, for example, abortion. Trump latched on to the issue early. I don’t believe for a minute that it’s a personal issue for him. Given his lifestyle over the years, it would not be surprising to hear that he’s funded a few abortions for women. But he realized it can be a winning issue, so he dove in headfirst.
Appoint judges who might overturn Roe v. Wade. Get several states to adopt laws that will force the issue. By the way, these are deliberately extreme laws, forbidding abortion of any kind for any reason. All of this might or might not lead to overturning Roe v. Wade, but even if it doesn’t, it serves the purpose of pushing Democrats to an extreme position that makes people uncomfortable.
Listen to what all the Democrat Presidential candidates say when asked about abortion. They speak only about a woman’s rights, which they interpret as women being free to choose without any restrictions. Now, Democrats have come to accept the notion that any abortion at any time for any reason should be allowed. Although I’m sure there are some folks out there who don’t give a flip about an unborn fetus, I don’t personally know anyone like that. Most of us have no problem with some restrictions. Most of us can accept a policy that allows a woman time to make a decision but think there should be something to keep her from waking up in a bad mood one day when she’s seven months pregnant and decide to call it quits.
I don’t mean to be flippant, but a majority of Americans on both sides of the issue can live with regulated abortions. But if you’re a Democrat running for President, if you say something like that, suddenly you’re off the ballot. Its another example of allowing Trump to frame the argument—he takes an extreme position, and like a kid on an elementary school playground, we take the polar opposite.
This process can be seen with nearly every issue. Democrats have gravitated to the extremes. College debt is a problem, so let’s just pay off everyone’s debt and then make college free for everybody. Millions of people can’t afford healthcare, so let’s give every person free healthcare. There are ways to help people without going to extreme measures. To be honest, I’m not too excited about my tax dollars paying off the student debt of a doctor making $300,000 a year or paying for a kid to go to college when his parents live in a million-dollar house and spend weekends on their yacht.
Although Obama was criticized for a variety of reasons, most of his actual policy decisions were acceptable to people. There was a big hoopla about healthcare until they tried to repeal Obamacare, and then people realized they liked it after all. But Democrats are not interested or reclaiming that ground. I’m not a Joe Biden fan (he’s older than me, so he’s too old), but he has been forced to apologize for past positions that Democrats supported. He’s not allowed to run on his record because it’s not extreme enough.
I’m aware that primary campaigns are typically more extreme, but the Democrats are pushing it to new levels. If a candidate is unwilling to endorse an extreme position, cast him/her aside because they are many who will. If you eliminate all the moderates (there, I used the word you have all been waiting for), when it comes to the general election there will not be anyone who can take votes away from Trump.
The President currently has a base of 35% who support whatever he does. That means 65% who are up for grabs. Rather than going after those votes, Democrats are striving to please the 35% who are going to support them regardless of the opponent. This is the same mistake they made with Hillary last time. They were convinced she deserved to be President and totally ignored the fact that many voters were not going to vote for her under any circumstances. By the way, I took this same position back in 2016 before the election. I contended the Democrats could have chosen 100 others who would have beaten Trump. They are going down that same road.
Perhaps what I’m trying to say is that the path to defeating Trump in 2020 is not to out-extreme him on positions. The key is to stake out positions the majority of voters can support. Because of Trump’s gruesome personality and ham-handed political style, people are looking for somewhere else to cast their vote. When they go into the voting booth, and they are given a choice between no abortions and free abortions for any reason, or the choice between kicking illegal immigrants out of the country and open borders, they will likely choose Trump. After all, the economy does look good.
I’m still convinced numerous people can defeat Trump. However, the way things are going with the Democrats, he/she doesn’t have a chance of making it through the primaries. If they continue to play the game of “my Dad is better than your Dad” with Trump, he will win. He plays that game better than anyone.