Over the weekend, I saw a clip of a Saturday Night Live skit. And I thought, “This is very good news for the Republicans, and very bad news for the Democrats.” Before I continue, I have to walk down Memory Lane …
Throughout the ’90s, we conservatives were aghast at what Billy J. — William Jefferson Clinton — could get away with. We were especially aghast that the public seemed indifferent to his lying, his lawbreaking, and his personal grossness. “Where’s the outrage?” we said.
In fact, that’s what Bob Dole said in the 1996 presidential campaign. (He was the Republican nominee.) And that was well before the Lewinsky scandal, mind you. Later, William J. Bennett would write a book titled “The Death of Outrage: Bill Clinton and the Assault on American Ideals.”
We social conservatives, in particular, were aghast at the public’s sweetness on, or at least patience with, Clinton. Even after he was impeached, he was popular. In all likelihood, he would have been elected to a third term. The Twenty-second Amendment was our friend in 2000.
Al Gore wasn’t half as likable or talented as Clinton, and he still won the popular vote.
Okay, back to the Saturday Night Live skit: It imagined a game show called “What Even Matters Anymore?” The gist of it is that nothing President Trump says or does matters. The public is inured. Could he shoot someone on Fifth Avenue? Sure, and pay off Stormy Daniels at the same time. We simply yawn.
It seems to me that Democratic outrage — Democratic exasperation, Democratic torment — bodes well for Republicans. I acutely remember the frustration we felt.
Can you sing a few of those verses with me?