The question was one I asked way back when I was just a commenter at Buffoon Juice and not a famous and influential blogger. It was probably about 2007 because Nancy Pelosi was Speaker of the Whorehouse. I asked “Why doesn’t Nancy Pelosi pass bills on popular progressive legislation and force the GOP to block or veto them?” Then the Democrats could use that against the GOP in 2008.
Here’s Victor Davis Hanson in today’s American Greatness:
Consider it another way: Why is it that the House is controlled by Democrats, yet its leadership is not pushing through any of the policy proposals voiced so openly on the Democratic primary stage?
Why aren’t progressive representatives introducing bills to pay reparations to African Americans, to legalize infanticide in some cases of late-term abortion, to offer free medical care to illegal aliens, to confiscate AR-15s, to extend Medicare for all, to impose a wealth tax and raise top rates to between 70 and 90 percent, to abolish student debt and ensure free college for all, or to grant blanket amnesty to those currently living in the country illegally?
Simple answer: none of those issues poll anywhere near 50 percent approval. And no Democratic candidate would expect to beat Trump as the emissary of such an agenda.
VDH is partially wrong. The reason they aren’t introducing those bills is that they don’t really want any of that stuff. In 2007 I was too naive to see the answer right in front of my nose. I still believed that the Democrats were the good guys and that they cared about those issues.
The Democrat elites do no care about anything but themselves. Neither do the GOP elites. Their loyalties are ranked like this:
2. Their families.
3. Their crime family (Clinton, Bush, Obama, etc.)
4. The Elite Mafia aka “The Global Oligarchy.”
They feel no real loyalty to America. They don’t even like Americans. Do you think that Hillary Clinton really gives a rat’s ass about women? Do you think Elijah Cummings really gives a fuck about black people or Baltimore? There are more than a few Congresscritters who would prefer to remain in Washington DC full time and never even visit their districts. (Having to go home to campaign for reelection is bad enough, but holding regular townhalls and being expected to sit there and listen to constituents’ mundane gripes and act like you care is just beyond the pale.)
If you solve problems you won’t have anything to campaign on next time. Or, even worse, if your solution didn’t work you will get blamed. But gridlock is great. Nothing gets done, and both sides blame the other. And you get to keep running on the same issues over and over and over.
Like abortion. Roe v. Wade was handed down from SCOTUS in 1973. The law hasn’t changed much since then, but it’s been a big issue in every election since 1974. It is a litmus test for both parties and dominates every discussion of feminism. There is a whole industry devoted to defending legal abortion, and another one devoted to opposing it. If the issue went away, all those people would be thrown out of work. If all the Pro-Life groups folded their tents and went home, NARAL would have no reason to exist. Republicans have talked about getting rid of abortion for nearly 50 years, but always seem to come up just a little short. Then they vote to fund Planned Parenthood.
When SCOTUS ruled on Obergefell v. Hodges and legalized gay marriage in all 57 states is caused havoc among LGBT advocacy groups. People stopped donating money to those groups thinking that the battle was over. Democrats had to scramble for some new cause to keep the gays and lesbians in their coalition. The GOP/religious right didn’t even put up much of a fuss, robbing Democrats of the fear factor. Tranny rights is like a movie sequel where all the big stars were replaced with nobodies.
Back in 2007 two of the favorites of the Progs were Russ Feingold and Dennis Kucinich. One was a Senator, the other a member of the House. Both were from the Midwest. What I recall most about those guys was their ability to give stirring speeches in losing causes. But when push came to shove and every vote counted, they folded. On the other side was John McCain. He talked like a conservative but voted like a Democrat when it really mattered.
While the elites kept us distracted with neverending battles on abortion and gun control, the gulf between us and them continued to grow. While they bash some guy living in a trailer park for his white privilege, the elites live in gated communities where almost all the “People of Color” are employees, not homeowners.
Then Trump happened, and now the elites are really pissed.