House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is doing the unthinkable: She's denying President Donald Trump the forum to verbally deliver the State of the Union address. The far left is cheering. For them, the move confirms that they selected the right speaker by once again entrusting Pelosi.
The base is ecstatic about Pelosi's big move. Coupled with her refusal to even meet with the president regarding the government funding impasse, the decision cements the speaker's commitment to surround herself with like minds committed to destroying President Trump.
But this myopic focus has diminished the Democrats’ appeal and limited their ability to grow beyond their rabid base. Speaker Pelosi's union of resistance fighters and activists has put Democrats on a trajectory of failure that will alienate Americans who just want government to solve problems.
The new majority party has elected to marshal all resources to destroy President Trump. Their strategy is to refuse to engage him on public policy (i.e. do their jobs). Instead, they are pouring all of their energy into investigating every aspect of his life. Rather than provide solutions, they obsess about how much money people from Liechtenstein might be spending at Trump hotels.
Democrats use their bully pulpit not to sell good ideas, but to complain and whine about the president day in and day out. For voters who just want peace and a strong economy, it is exhausting, unproductive and ultimately unattractive.
This approach is costing Democrats the chance to present cogent policy arguments and win public policy debates. British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher liked to say, first you win the argument, then you win the vote. Speaker Pelosi is doing the opposite.
Speaker Pelosi's union of resistance fighters and activists has put Democrats on a trajectory of failure that will alienate Americans who just want government to solve problems.
Speaker Pelosi has lurched left, embraced socialism, and is using the tactics of the resistance movement to confront President Trump. This approach feels good to the base, but it does nothing to expand her party's appeal beyond a small group of fanatical activists. Most Americans are appalled by these tactics and uninterested in embracing the persistent pessimism offered by Pelosi’s union of radicals.
Of course, almost everything done in Washington, D.C. now is tied to the 2020 presidential election. The Pelosi Democrats are betting that opposing everything Trump, even policies they previously supported, will lead to election victories.
Thus far, President Trump's ability to accomplish his agenda has exceeded expectations. The courts have been populated with exceptional jurists, tax reforms have boosted the economy, tough trade negotiations are beginning to yield better deals, and foreign affairs have dramatically improved. Consider President Trump's progress with North Korea, his willingness to tackle longstanding problems with China, and his thwarting Iran’s nuclear ambitions. His progress far outpaces anything his predecessors even attempted to do.
President Trump will continue to notch policy victories. The Pelosi Democrats who do nothing more than stand in his way will be known only for their ability to obstruct progress. Using this approach, Democrats will be unable to pass any legislation, solve any problems, or demonstrate any degree of governing competence. Their whining about all things Trump is exhausting and unappealing, and their innumerable fruitless investigations of the president will be exposed as overreach.
So what does Speaker Pelosi’s union achieve? Nothing measurable. Soon she will be overshadowed by an eventual nominee to represent the Democrats at the top of the 2020 ticket. But until then, Pelosi has squandered the opportunity to show America that her party has real solutions to improve the country. If they did, they would fight on the merits of those ideas. What are those ideas? Evidently they don’t exist.