In the fall of 2020, President Trump will seek re-election. Between now and then, the Democrats take on the heavy task of finding the right candidate to defeat him. If Trump wins, the Democrats will face their worst nightmare in having to work against their most oppositionary president in recent history.
In the hypothetical situation of Trump’s victory, this would mark a monumental step for the Republican Party which was previously in shambles. Some even discussed the end of the party if they did not win the 2016 election. For a party some people thought was on its last legs, having a two-term president would be pivotal. To avoid this, the Democrat must do as follows:
Campaign: Yeah, I get it. This one is obvious. But I’m serious. The Republicans came in and at one point had control of the White House, Senate, House and judiciary. Now, the Democrats control the House. With Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) as the speaker, their tactics are simple: oppose as much legislation from the right as they can and use their newfound power to influence their constituency. If the Democrats can keep Trump from building the wall, it can hurt his campaign immensely and therefore is an honest and possibly effective political tactic. This is why many of them oppose his wall — not necessarily for moral reasons, but for the election’s sake. This is not a bad plan for the Democrats, even the ones who voted for the border fence in ‘06.
Go back to the classic candidates: Pelosi, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) all hold important seats as Democrats. More imperative than this, from the left’s perspective, their words hold power. Like the Republicans, there is a division in the Democratic party. A division between policymakers like these who actually have experience in the aisle and the more socially focused Democrats like Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders. The Democratic Party has some economic integrity, but they throw a lot of it away with the more radical leftists like these. I throw Sanders in there because he is a huge perpetuator of democratic socialism, which Omar and Ocasio-Cortez take to so vehemently. Historical icons of the Democratic Party (Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy, Clinton) would look at the idea of democratic socialism and be deeply saddened, partly because it’s so different from our constitutional principles.
Get a plan together if elected: We get it, Democrats hate Trump. If Trump cured cancer, ended our debt and destroyed all overseas terrorism in one blow, they’d say he’s out of line for that and should be impeached. However, deposing Trump should not be their sole campaign message (Trump’s was the wall and Obama’s was bringing home the troops and cleaning up bureaucracies). Obviously as the election transpires, Democrats like Pelosi will develop a more in-depth campaign message. But if you listen to the rhetoric of the left’s candidates right now, it’s all about persisting and taking the White House, but they don’t talk much about post-election economy, the trade war or foreign policy. But what happens if they actually do win? If the Democrats want to take the White House, they need a foolproof agenda afterwards and a more fiscally conscious one at that. This idea of being a socially motivated party will not hold up well in office. If they have a good enough agenda with a large enough constituency, they can achieve their goal of dethroning Trump and actually have a plan for the following four or possibly eight years.
Seize power: The Judiciary is red and has the potential to go even more red. If Ruth Bader Ginsburg isn’t healthy enough to continue, Trump will nominate a conservative in her place. This isn’t corruption; this is party politics. Obama did it with his attempted nomination of Garland, a left leaning juge. That wasn’t corrupt either, it was strategic. Democrats can’t be afraid to fight tooth and nail to gain seats. They also need to sway Republicans to vote in their direction. How do they do this? Not through social issues. The vast majority of Republicans want to hear about health care, the market, Syria or infrastructure, because those things are more relevant on a global scale than social dilemmas.
In November of 2020, we will see how this all plays out. I hope, for the Democrats’ sake, that they nominate somebody with a straight head on their shoulders. I hope for the Republicans’ sake, that they can throw all the petty conflict away, unify and get behind Trump. Also, for those of you who don’t know, popular vote holds less weight than the Electoral College. The popular vote will be essential but in this election, the Democrats will rely on flipping delegates. It’s a pretty easy concept, and the quicker you grasp it, the quicker you can watch this thing transpire with a substantial understanding of what is going on.