An Emerging Democrat Debacle
As Clinton stumbles and Sanders rises, the DNC must be panicking.
The Iowa Caucuses turned out pretty much as predicted. On the Republican side, Ted Cruz beat Donald Trump and Marco Rubio. On the Democrat side, Hillary Clinton nosed out Bernie Sanders by a razor thin margin plagued by counting “glitches,” and reporting problems from a number of precincts. Nonetheless, a funny thing might be happening along the way to the 2016 election.
The current mainstream media “wisdom” opines that the real intramural fighting is occurring solely in the precincts of the GOP, where party insiders and big donors remain horrified by the ascendance of outsiders Trump and Cruz. Trump is a genuine outsider because he’s never held political office, while Cruz is deemed an outsider because most of his Senate colleagues despise his penchant for challenging their insufferable go-along-to-get-along arrangement with Democrats. An arrangement the mainstream media trumpet as the wonders of “bipartisanship.”
Columnist Mark Steyn rightfully eviscerates that bipartisanship, deftly explaining what millions of exasperated Americans get from such a deal:
“One party is supposed to be the party of big government, the other the party of small government. When the Big Government Party is in power, the government gets bigger, and, when the Small Government Party is in power, the government gets bigger. One party is supposed to be the party of social liberalism, the other the party of social conservatism. When the Socially Liberal Party is in power, the country gets more liberal, and, when the Socially Conservative Party is in power, the country gets more liberal. One party is supposed to be the party of foreign-policy doves, the other the party of foreign-policy hawks. When the doves are in power, America loses wars, and, when the hawks are in power, America loses wars.”
Steyn forgot to mention the national debt, which doubled during “compassionate conservative” George W. Bush’s tenure, and just hit a staggering $19 trillion — meaning it will nearly double again by the time “tax-and-spend liberal” Barack Obama leaves office.
Thus it comes as no surprise the GOP base that despises all of the above (and so much more) is hardly in the mood to be lectured by the Establishment wing of their party or the mainstream media regarding their “misguided” preference for kicking the status quo mongers in their ruling-class behinds.
Yet despite all the GOP sturm and drang, the real action just might be occurring on the other side of the ideological divide.
Indictment or not, Hillary Clinton is in real trouble. In November it was revealed that Clinton signed a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) in 2009, agreeing to protect classified information — and acknowledging her failure to do so could result in criminal prosecution. On Jan. 14, 2016, an unclassified letter sent from Intelligence Community Inspector General I. Charles McCullough III to senior lawmakers indicated Clinton’s personal server contained “several dozen” additional classified emails, including beyond Top Secret intelligence known as “special access programs” (SAP). Then came the revelation that emails contained on the government’s wholly self-contained classified systems known as the Secret Internet Protocol Router Network (SIPRNet) and the Joint Worldwide Intelligence Communications System (JWICS) somehow “jumped” from those systems to Clinton’s home server. Shortly thereafter, Americans learned Clinton’s emails contained the names of CIA officers serving overseas, and foreigners on the CIA payroll, a reality characterized as a “death sentence” by a senior intelligence-community official.
In a nation where Rule of Law is paramount, such blinding incompetence and/or outright criminal behavior would earn Clinton an indictment. Under an Obama administration that may have as much to hide as the former secretary of state — a former secretary who would more than likely know where the administration’s proverbial bodies are buried — an indictment seems far from certain.
“Special Access Programs (SAP) is a game changer,” stated The Hill’s Anthony DeChristopher, prior to the two additional revelations. “It is now undeniably clear that the results of the FBI investigation will be the end of one of two things: Hillary’s bid for the White House or the legitimacy of the FBI — at least when it comes to prosecuting cases on the mishandling of classified material.”
Not exactly. FBI Director James Comey, referred to by Obama as “a rarity in Washington” because his integrity is sacrosanct, may indeed be more than willing to indict Hillary. But Howard J. Krongard, who served as the State Department’s inspector general from 2005 to 2008 explains the more likely outcome, noting that any criminal referral to the Justice Department from the FBI “will have to go through four loyal Democrat women.” They are Assistant Attorney General Leslie Caldwell, who heads the department’s criminal division; Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates; Attorney General Loretta Lynch; and Obama’s top adviser Valerie Jarrett. Even if the referral is accepted Krongard believes the case will be plea-bargained down to misdemeanors punishable by fines.
It’s even worse than that. What Krongard fails to mention is that all of these women and the FBI director serve at the whim of Obama, who can fire either any or all of them, just like Richard Nixon fired Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox and accepted the resignations of Attorney General Elliot L. Richardson and Deputy Attorney General William D. Ruckelshaus when Watergate was shifting into high gear.
An indictment would be Clinton’s worst-case scenario. But as Monday night’s results indicate, much of the Democrat base has already soured on Clinton, and a plea-bargain, or another “Saturday Night Massacre,” as the Nixon purge was called, could just as easily engender a fatal level of disgust among party loyalists.
Which leaves the establishment Democrats in a potential hell of their own. They may abide self-avowed socialist Bernie Sanders for his entertainment value, as well as the appearance that they are running a legitimate winnowing process among their own presidential candidates. But the thought of him being the Democrat standard-bearer for 2016 undoubtedly has visions of the 1972 George McGovern debacle dancing in their heads. As for Martin O'Malley, he dropped out of the race Tuesday morning, following his predictably dismal showing.
Which brings us to “Uncle” Joe Biden (or Elizabeth Warren) and the suddenly genuine possibility that the very same force-feeding despised by the GOP base will be undertaken by Democrat insiders and their rich-donor allies. A force-feeding legions of Millennials and others who have hitched their economically illiterate wagons to Sanders will more than likely find just as disillusioning and infuriating as any GOP baser has ever endured.
And what did the GOP base disenchanted with establishment candidate Mitt Romney do in the 2012 election? They stayed home. Democrats can ill-afford Millennials doing the same thing, especially if another “X Factor” arises, as in former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg running as a third-party candidate. A run by a Nanny State, gun- and soda-control devotee like Bloomberg isn’t likely to ignite much enthusiasm outside a 20-mile radius surrounding mid-town Manhattan. But if there is some vote siphoning by the former Republican turned Democrat turned Independent whose “respect” for the law was demonstrated when he defied not one, but two term-limit votes by New Yorkers to serve a third term, it won’t be from the GOP candidate.
Thus it seems almost certain the real fireworks in this race will be exploding among legions of Democrats alienated by their leadership. Oh to be a fly on the wall at the headquarters of the Democrat National Committee in the upcoming months.