Browsing through Wikipedia’s list of prospective candidates for the 2020 US Presidential Election is quite interesting. I think that anyone expecting the 2020 season to be similar to or a rerun of last year’s epic battle are mistaken. The Democratic Party has shown in the time since Trump’s ascendancy that they are completely unable (so-far at least) to absorb the lessons they should have learned. They did precisely what they accused Trump of wanting to do. The whole recount debacle, influencing the electoral college members and protesting violently in the streets show us the physical manifestation of their inability to psychologically process the rapturous event of November 8. Their leadership is in turmoil and without their continued squeezing of the Russia-bag until the last (imaginary) drop pours forth shows us their lack of solid alternative paths to resist Trump.
They do however have limited cause for alarm. Strong factors are blowing the wind in their direction. The old-guard Republican establishment are dragging their feet and are not playing ball with the news direction Trump wants to take America. If they continue “sucking” they will make the swing voters pick the Democratic Party by process of elimination in the 2018 midterms. Without Republican backing in Congress Trump will face an even steeper uphill battle than he does now. If the Democrats gain a majority in Congress, they will undoubtedly seek a rapid impeachment. Prior to Trump’s inauguration I thought that the Democrats would do everything they could to avoid Mike “Shock-the-gays” Pence, but I have since changed my mind based on what I have seen.
The Democrats would much prefer to have classical Republican Pence as their opponent than unpredictable maverick Donald “Tweetstorm” Trump. Their classic playbook for politicking would come back into relevancy, and they would beat their chests endlessly with the increased morale of having ousted Trump. I remain unconvinced that the Paul Ryan wing of the GOP aren’t in perfect alignment with the Democrats in this plan. Conservatives have been (rightly) accused of preferring to lose with “dignity” i.e. their heads held high, than to have “compromised” victories, such as the win with Trump. What does this mean for 2020?
You might think from the title of this post that I’m about to propose handing out free pot to Democratic constituencies, such as minorities, as a measure to lower their turnout for the next election. You would be half right and half wrong. Opposing marijuana is a losing proposition, that train has left the station. The prospect of swing-states having legalization on the ballot in November 2020 is sure to draw Democrats to the ballot boxes. This is detrimental to the prospects of a second Trump term in office. We saw from last year’s election that many people stayed home, uninspired and reluctant to support Hillary. Popular ballot measures and down-ballot races could tilt this balance in the Democrats favor. The popular vote from 2016 shows us that demographic trends are moving towards the Democrats and away from classic Republican constituencies.
If Trump should decide to “overrule” AG Sessions on this issue it would certainly bolster his chances for re-election. Taking this tool out of the Democrats’ toolbox is simply smart politics.