Politics & Policy

Trump’s Superpower

President Donald Trump reacts as he welcomes South Korea’s President Moon Jae-In in the Oval Office, May 22, 2018. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)
He can make Democrats defend anything.

President Trump has a magic power.

No, it isn’t the ability to engage in four-dimensional chess, or even to mystically connect with the “common man.” It’s simply this: He can make Democrats defend anything.

Democrats have increasingly defined themselves by opposing anything Trump does. Trump, unlike his predecessor, has promulgated a mainstream conservative agenda: He’s cut taxes and regulations and spent more on defense. Most Americans aren’t averse to that agenda, particularly considering the booming economy and a relatively quiet foreign sphere. But Democrats painted Trump during the campaign as an emissary of Cthulhu, and now they’re struggling to justify that depiction.

If they were smart, they’d stick to Trump’s obvious heresies, of course: his Twitter foolishness, his inane rants. But they can’t muster up that kind of discipline. Instead, they simply oppose anything Trump does, which leads them to the rather uncomfortable conclusion that the worst people on earth are preferable to even temporary alliance with Trump himself.

In the last week alone, Democrats have embraced the terrorist group Hamas and the vicious criminal gang MS-13. There’s a meme making the rounds on social media that conservatives will do [FILL IN THE BLANK] to “own the libs”: sign off on corruption, engage in the most vile insults, etc. But the Democrats will similarly do anything to “own Trump.”

Thus, even after Hamas admitted on Al Jazeera that they were attempting to use civilian marches as a shield for paramilitary action, the media and Democrats insisted that Israel was targeting innocents; even after a senior Hamas official stated that 50 of the dead in the Gaza riots were “martyrs of Hamas,” and even after Islamic Jihad identified another three dead as members of its terrorist cadre, the media continued to promulgate the myth of indiscriminate Israeli killing and American provocation. Senator Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) stated, “Over 50 killed in Gaza today and 2,000 today wounded, on top of the 41 killed and more than 9,000 wounded over the past weeks. This is a staggering toll. Hamas violence does not justify Israel firing on unarmed protesters.” Democrats, meanwhile, continued to blame President Trump’s decision to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem for the violence, even though Hamas had been engaging in slow-rolling riots for weeks on end, and brutal terrorism for decades.

In the last week alone, Democrats have embraced the terrorist group Hamas and the vicious criminal gang MS-13.

Then there was MS-13. President Trump stated in a meeting with sheriffs from around the country that members of MS-13 were “animals.” Members of the media immediately claimed that Trump had called all illegal immigrants “animals,” which he manifestly had not. Boxed into a corner, Democrats and media members then began signaling that members of MS-13, the gang with the slogan “rape, kill, control,” deserved more respect. E. J. Dionne of the Washington Post stated, “It’s never right to call other human beings ‘animals’ . . . dehumanizing others always leads us down a dangerous path.” Dehumanizing people who tear the still-beating hearts from their victims’ bodies, who remove heads, who bury people alive? Yes, apparently, Trump was wrong to do that. Said House minority leader Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.), “There’s a spark of divinity in every person on earth and that we all have to recognize that.” Except for unborn children, of course. Those things don’t have a spark of divinity. They’re polyps.

Trump’s incredible capacity to turn Democrats into defenders of all things evil has paid dividends: Democrats are slipping on the generic congressional ballot as they embrace everyone from the mullahs to the intersectional radicals of the Women’s March leadership. And the more you oppose Trump, the more support you gain on the left — which means that moderate Democrats who would be most likely to win in November are losing primaries to progressive extremists.

A few months back, I asked a top member of the Trump administration how Trump planned on winning the additional 12–15 million votes he’d need to secure reelection. After all, Trump’s approval ratings have been mired below the mid 40s for his entire tenure. The official had no answer.

It turns out that the answer is the same as it was in 2016: Count on Democrats to blow it. So far, in their quest to oppose Trump at every turn, they’re falling for his magic trick, and finding themselves in league with the worst of the worst. Even Trump’s most tepid supporters will pick him every time over a group of people who find him to be worse than Hamas.

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