Thursday, February 15, 2024

They Keep Losing

Charlie Pierce:

On Tuesday, on his second try, Speaker of the House Mike Johnson got his impeachment resolution against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas passed by one whole vote on its way to a sudden, bloody death in the Senate. Later that evening, Johnson’s majority got slimmed down even further—and we’re heading into Xeno’s Paradox territory here—as Democrat Tom Suozzi flipped the House seat that was once garnished by George Santos, International Man Of Mendacity. That is a rich, full day.

Of course, Rep. Warren Davidson did tell CNN’s Manu Raju that, if Johnson has the audacity to bring the Senate’s foreign-aid bill to the floor of the House, someone will move to vacate the chair. So, there’s that.

For all the talk over the last two weeks about how weak and feeble the top of the ticket is, the Democratic candidates keep winning elections all over the country and, where they’re not winning, they’re gnawing big chunks out of what once were solidly Republican outposts. On Tuesday, In legislative races in Oklahoma, one of our favorite states, Democratic candidates won two special election, and a third candidate shaved what once was an R+26 district down to five points. In the suburbs north of Philadelphia, the Democratic candidate won a special legislative election in a district that the president won by 10 points in 2020. The Democrat won the race Tuesday night by 68 percent to 32.

But Joe Biden is old, you see.

The issues that are starting to bite down hard are Democratic issues. In Suozzi’s race, for example, the Republican candidate, Mazi Pilip, went strongly after Suozzi on the issue of immigration and the border, almost to the exclusion of everything else. Suozzi easily deflected the attacks by supporting the now-deceased bipartisan border bill, and by linking Pilip to El Caudillo del Mar-a-Lago as an extremist on the issue. Suozzi drained the invective from that issue and pivoted to economic policies. It appears that, while the immigration issue remains an important one, its political salience as a wedge issue may be limited in its usefulness primarily to Republican primary voters. What seems even clearer is that Trumpism is a bigger general-election millstone than it is reckoned to be. But Joe Biden is old, you see.

The Republicans keep harping on the same issues — anti-woke, anti-immigration, anti-women, anti-Taylor Swift — and they keep losing because they can’t do anything else.  Trump and his fascist authoritarian losing strategy has them by the balls — assuming they still have them, eh, Lindsey? — and they keep losing.

“Joe Biden is old” is the 2024 version of “but her e-mails.”  With any smarts, the Democrats won’t fall for that shit.