The left-leaning news media was in full Orwellian doublespeak mode last Wednesday morning, declaring the failure of Democrat Jon Ossoff to avoid a runoff against Republican Karen Handel for Georgia’s sixth congressional district a “tea party” victory for liberals, an “earthquake” and a “wake-up” call for the GOP — which had evidently been teetering on the brink of collapse following the Democrats’ impressive congressional seat loss in Kansas just a few days earlier.
Watching the Stephanie Ruhles and Mika Brzezinskis of the cable news world try to spin these two losses as harbingers of an anti-conservative wave sweeping the country was priceless.
Even Fareed Zakaria, an unflinching liberal and Obama apologist, has warned that “Trump Derangement Syndrome” — an irrational opposition to any and all of his presidential actions, regardless of their merits — is proliferating in progressive circles, happening, he implies, to the detriment of the good name of Democrats and the good chances they might otherwise have in the 2018 mid-term elections.
Will liberals get the message?
If Hillary Clinton’s recent public assessment of the reasons why she lost is any indication, probably not. Coming out of her five-month interview hibernation, Clinton appeared at the annual Women in the World Summit in early April and insisted to moderator Nicholas Kristof that her failure to win the presidency was purely and simply the result of forces beyond her control: the Russian government’s meddling in the election, the US government’s meddling in the election, WikiLeaks’ meddling in the election and, of course, the misogyny that is still rampant in America.
As for a confession of personal responsibility for her loss? You don’t have to be a Catholic cleric to know that Clinton’s begrudging admission that “there WERE things I could have done better” does not constitute a confession, or even a rational assessment of 2016 election results.
There is one new and quite rational assessment, however: an expose by Jonathan Allen and Arnie Parnes entitled “Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign.”
For the first time, we see a private Hillary quickly pivoting from her gracious concession speech on November 9th to blaming everyone from the FBI to the KGB to the KKK — and even President Obama himself — for her defeat.
We also see campaign chairman Jon Podesta and manager Robby Mook, who, compared to the shoestringers in the Trump operation, had all the money, organization, and political skill in the world at their disposal, not to mention an army of advocates in the liberal news media.
What they also had, however, was the herculean hubris to take for granted voters in key rust belt states, despite the protestations of party elders. In the decisive days of the campaign they abandoned those traditionally Democratic strongholds and poured excessive amounts of time and energy — and millions of dollars — into a fool’s errand to expand the blue map in states like North Carolina and Arizona.
Of course, to hear Podesta, Mook or Clinton as they make the rounds this Spring, their loss was — and always will be — about Putin, Comey, Assange and their Misogynist-in-Chief, President Trump. Period.
That’s because Democrats have now turned denial into dogma. They cannot get over the fact that they’ve been politically outsmarted for much of the past six years — on a congressional, presidential, and even state legislative level — by a party that they have always held in intellectual contempt.
Now, with the Democrats’ loss of all three branches of government complete, their powerlessness is fomenting a rage that is bringing Clintonites, Bernieites, Hollywood elites and news media leftists together in an all-out attempt to destroy the Trump presidency.
MSNBC host Rachel Maddow’s “tax revelation” stunt, which backfired spectacularly, is a perfect example.
She got hold of a copy of President Trump’s 2005 tax return and spent all day hyping the “exclusive story” to be revealed on her show that evening. Unfortunately for her, the return showed that the president not only paid $38 million in taxes that year, but also paid a higher percentage of federal tax than Barack Obama, Bernie Sanders, and even Maddow’s parent company, Comcast.
Still, this did nothing to deter tens of thousands of Trump haters from gathering in cities across America on April 15 to demand to see Trump’s other tax returns, hoping against hope that those might be different.
It’s clear that the left is becoming insanely vigilant and virulent. They’re not only taking to the streets, they’re beginning to take the lead in cable news viewership, which MSNBC or CNN could soon dominate for the first time, thanks to the departure of Fox News’ two stars, Megyn Kelly and Bill O’Reilly.
And that’s okay.
While Democrats are straightjacketed by “Trump Derangement Syndrome” — pretending that presidential successes like Neil Gorsuch’s ascension to the Supreme Court and regulation rollbacks aren’t really happening — Republicans will be free to do what they were elected and appointed to do: debate in their caucuses, refine and pass legislation, overturn Obama-era executive orders, and judge countercultural statutes unconstitutional.
It’s “Trump Rearrangement Syndrome,” and Democrats have no one to blame but themselves.
Timothy Philen is the author of Harper & Row/Lippincott’s “You CAN Run Away From It!” a satirical indictment of pop psychology.