After Biden’s speech yesterday in Philadelphia, it has been much too easy today to talk about the Philadelphia speech as his “basket-of-deplorables” moment. Calling half of the voters in the USA a threat to the very core of democracy outdid Hillary by a fair piece.
Or, it is too easy to talk about the outrageous optics of being photographed in front of a blood-red wall, military guards and ominous shadows that evoked images from 1930’s Germany and another despot of that time giving other angry speeches. When first seeing the image move on the wire yesterday, I thought it had been photoshopped. I had to check the copyright and go to Getty Images and see the original and confirm that it was indeed a straight news photo. Unbelievable.
Even the Biden White House doesn’t get things THIS WRONG with the ineptitude we’ve come to expect. The train doesn't go this far off the track unless it is driven there on purpose. This was not an accident. No, this was very deliberate. Despicable, but planned.
Political theater: Democrat Kabuki – a classic mid-term misdirection that attempts to change the conversation.
The political calculus must have seemed pretty easy in the Biden inner circle: don’t want to talk about the bad economy, soaring inflation, energy prices, the crisis at the border, failing schools, mutilating children and a bunch of bad public policies? Then, create a political tempest so over the top, so partisan, so outrageous, so dangerous, that the political bad act itself controls the narrative.
Create a train wreck so bad, we can’t look away.
But, after a moment of thought, their plan was obvious. I’m fairly certain, that their plan was to use this theme until the election to fire up their waning support in their base. Scare the base into turning out. Yell “threat to democracy” loud enough and often enough, as another German fellow noted, the “Big Lie” can drown out other things that you don’t want to talk about.
Or, at least that was their plan. Inside the Beltway Bubble, this passes as good ideas these days.
The risk of these types of tactics is always the size of the blowback. How well can this play out beyond the base and for how long?
I don’t think they reckoned on our collective reaction; we Republicans, we Conservatives, we ULTRA MAGA! These aren’t “dirty words” and we can’t let them be made into someone else’s false narrative. Instead, we must own them and our values proudly.
During the height of Bill Clinton’s presidential scandals, Bob Dole famously asked “Where’s the outrage?”
Well, Bob, this just might be it.
It is an old political saw in politics that says people often vote against things easier than for things. Now, we not only know what we want to vote for, but we also darn sure know who we NEED to vote against. The people vile enough to employ these tactics simply must be voted out of office. Biden won’t possibly run in 2024 BUT we can vote out his fellow travelers in 67 days.
Outrage can be a great unifying force. In reality, whose base did Biden pull together yesterday, his or ours? After the excesses of an out-of-control FBI, I thought we Republicans were pretty fired up. Then, yesterday happened.
We Republicans must get very vocal about defining ourselves and our beliefs at every opportunity, because all of this recent rhetoric is just the beginning. For the next 67 days, Biden and his Democrats are going to do everything they can to try and define us into this twisted, malicious narrative. Expect to hear, "Fascist!, White supremacist!" Expect it but don’t get used to it and NEVER accept it. Instead of being appalled, we must channel our outrage into clearly defining ourselves and our values. We also can’t let the Democrats suck all of the air out of the dialog; we have to hit Biden and the Democrats chapter and verse with all of their failures of policy and governance.
About the DCRP Blog: The DCRP Blog is produced and edited in a collaborative effort by Susan Fountain, Executive Director of the Dallas County Republican Party (DCRP) and Bill Anderton, Dallas County Republican Precinct Chair of Precinct 2023. It is published on Fridays and Tuesdays. Some postings are co-authored by the two working together, some are authored individually by each and some are authored by guest authors.