Democrats didn’t care much about national security until Donald Trump got elected. This was reflected in their debates, where Bernie and Hillary argued about climate change. Goldman Sachs, and the size and scope of the welfare state.
But when Donald Trump got elected, and it revealed major cracks in the party’s apparatus, they had a choice: they could humble themselves and explore a less extreme socioeconomic platform, or they could invent a conspiracy theory to explain it all.
They chose conspiracy theory. Donald Trump was elected BECAUSE RUSSIA HACKED THE ELECTION. They started talking like cold warriors. The vast majority of normal Americans began worrying about their safety.
This was always an absurd theory, and as intelligence experts and investigators have come to tell us think, there is no connection between Trump and Russia. Now, perhaps panicked that they look absolutely insane, are doing their best to lower voter expectations. As the Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald reports:
FROM MSNBC POLITICS shows to town hall meetings across the country, the overarching issue for the Democratic Party’s base since Trump’s victory has been Russia, often suffocating attention for other issues. This fixation has persisted even though it has no chance to sink the Trump presidency unless it is proven that high levels of the Trump campaign actively colluded with the Kremlin to manipulate the outcome of the U.S. election — a claim for which absolutely no evidence has thus far been presented.
The principal problem for Democrats is that so many media figures and online charlatans are personally benefiting from feeding the base increasingly unhinged, fact-free conspiracies — just as right-wing media polemicists did after both Bill Clinton and Obama were elected — that there are now millions of partisan soldiers absolutely convinced of a Trump/Russia conspiracy for which, at least as of now, there is no evidence. And they are all waiting for the day, which they regard as inevitable and imminent, when this theory will be proven and Trump will be removed.
…Perhaps most revealing of all are the Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee — charged with investigating these matters — who recently told BuzzFeed how petrified they are of what the Democratic base will do if they do not find evidence of collusion, as they now suspect will likely be the case. “There’s a tangible frustration over what one official called ‘wildly inflated’ expectations surrounding the panel’s fledgling investigation,” BuzzFeed’s Ali Watkins wrote.
Moreover, “several committee sources grudgingly say, it feels as though the investigation will be seen as a sham if the Senate doesn’t find a silver bullet connecting Trump and Russian intelligence operatives.” One member told Watkins: “I don’t think the conclusions are going to meet people’s expectations.”
The rest of Greenwald’s report is worth a read. It makes one thing clear. Democrats have known that this is bogus from jump street, and have hopped on it because it helps them raise money and undermine the president. A mainstream American political party is engaging in the sort of conspiracy theory mongering that could undermine the whole country. Now that the rest of the country realizes that it’s been a sham all along, they’re panicking, and attempting to lower expectations and make America forget how far they were willing to go in the pursuit of partisan goals. Disgraceful.
Remember that come election time.