THE PUBLIC EYE:What is the 2020 Democratic Message?

Bob Burnett
Friday May 22, 2020 - 11:49:00 AM

On Friday, May 15, House Democrats passed "The Heroes Act." It's a $3 trillion pandemic-relief bill, providing assistance to state and local governments, hazard pay for frontline health care workers, election protection, and many other benefits. Dems concocted a list so long that political pundits asked: "What's the message that Democrats are trying to send?"

"The Heroes Act" is a symptom of a larger problem: in the face of Donald Trump ranting "Covid-19 is nothing to be afraid of; it's safe to come out now," Democrats don't have a coordinated response.

1. Bad Donald: Many observers have suggested that Democrats adopt a variation of "Trump is a lunatic who is ruining our country" as the Party's mantra. This approach is tempting because Donald keeps doing all the wrong things, in prime time. Nonetheless, I recommend that Democrats do not make "Donald bad, Joe good" their primary message.

While such an approach might stir up the deep-blue base, it's unlikely to attract thoughtful voters who want to understand what the Democratic Party stands for. And this message won't sway Republicans who already know Donald is "bad" and don't care -- in fact, seem to love him more the badder he gets. -more-

ECLECTIC RANT:On Reopening the Economy

Ralph E. Stone
Thursday May 21, 2020 - 05:10:00 PM

Trump was alerted about COVID-19 in January and February but did not acknowledge its seriousness until March. He refused to take charge of the war against the virus, deferring instead to the states, and then continually undermined their efforts. Now he is quitting while he’s behind by encouraging the abandonment of state shelter-in-place orders. -more-


Jack Bragen
Friday May 22, 2020 - 12:13:00 PM

If you can withstand having a full-blown psychotic episode, it isn't a giant intellectual stretch to deal with a society instituting massive changes to battle a deadly pathogen. This is not to claim superiority of any kind, nor do I minimize non-afflicted people's bravery or their fortitude. -more-

SMITHEREENS: Reflections on Bits & Pieces

Gar Smith
Saturday May 23, 2020 - 02:39:00 PM

This week, another great issue of Mother Jones hit the newsstands (Hmmm…. Do we still have newsstands?) with a cover showing a tilted statue of Sen. Lindsey Graham in the process of being toppled. -more-