Don’t Get Cocky, Kids

Politico has a post up about how Doug Jones’ win in Alabama has raised the Democrats’ hopes for the 2018 elections.

Strong turnout and low approval for Donald Trump have Democrats eyeing states where they haven’t been competitive in years.

But was the Alabama election really about Donald Trump? Of course, Trump Derangement Syndrome probably helped increase Democrat turnout, but Roy Moore has his own baggage. First, and this hasn’t been talked about so much in the national coverage, Moore had held state-wide office as a judge on the Alabama Supreme Court. His crackpot behavior as a judge is probably best described as lawless and provided reason enough for some voters to choose not to support him, suppressing Republican turnout.

And then there’s the whole pervalanche issue. Moore is an outlier among Republican. The last time I checked, the Dems will be defending more seats with a scarlet P next year. In some cases, Al Franken for instance, the seat may have been taken over by a woman who can more easily defend it. But allegations of sexual harassment are more commonly directed at Democrats. It’s mostly their problem. BTW, when Moore was chasing teenagers, he was a Democrat.

Finally, the Democrats are weakened by the populist rejection of the Deep State. “I’m from the Government, and I’m here to help” feels like “… and I’m here to run your life for you” to too many voters. To the extent that those voters perceive the Democrats as the party of the Deep State, they’re likely to vote from someone else, someone who promises real restructuring of the system rather than tinkering around the edges to make it “better.”

2018 will be here in 18 days. Fasten your seat belts.

13 thoughts on “Don’t Get Cocky, Kids

  1. A friend was gloating over how a Dem had won in Alabama and I asked her, during the next election what happens when it the Dem candidate that is accused of sexual misconduct that occurred 40 years ago? Will you then call for that candidate to lose or will you support that candidate? Her answer was that she would support them. When I asked why she said, Because we need Democrats in positions of power to stop the alt right.

    I really weep for the future of this country. And I would bank on it getting much, much worse when the Millennial starting coming into office.

      • In Venezuela the electorate pretty much rode socialism right into the ground. Only when the people were starving did the more capitalistic opposition win elections.

        When bellies are full again, the socialists will probably win again.

  2. My 18-22-year-old students seem to believe that 1) Free Speech is our most important right, and 2) Socialism is kind of a good idea. Then I ask for a list of Socialist countries.
    When I ask them why no Socialist countries have an enforceable Free Speech right they are bamfoozled.

  3. I utterly reject your notion of Roy Moore’s tenure at the Alabama Supreme Court as “lawless.”

    The US Supreme Court has a Ten Commandments monument. The Alabama Supreme Court had one. A federal judge order exactly one of the two to be removed. Another ordered homosexual marriage.

    The “argument” against Roy Moore seems to be that he disregarded the “authority” of a federal court. That, I submit, is a fundamentally Unamerican attitude.

    There is “power” and there is “authority.” A Judge’s power comes from his ability to order marshals with guns to compel you to obey his edict, and, shot you with impunity if you resist sufficiently. His “authority” comes from the consent and assent of the governed. The exercise of judicial power in a manner that lacks any authority is properly characterized as tyranny. The judicial edicts Roy Moore rejected were along with Roe vs. Wade classic examples of judicial tyranny.

    In the mid-seventeen-seventies there was a debate in places like Philadelphia about whether, or not, the “lawful” orders of the duly constituted authority, King George, were to be obeyed. I thought over two-hundred years ago we as a nation determined that political power derived from the just exercise of power with the consent of the governed as opposed from the barrel of a gun as Mao suggested. Roy Moore responded in exactly the manner Thomas Jefferson suggested that he respond. His critics responded in a manner King George would have had expected.

    • “John Marshall made his decision; now let him enforce it.” – popularly attributed to Andrew Jackson about the Supreme Court.

      I support more Presidents taking this approach and I believe it should be a check on a wayward judiciary. I can’t agree with the idea judges should ignore precedents or stare decisis, or we would have thousands of interpretations of the law. Each district judge would have their own the law, each panel of an appellate court would have a different interpretation, and a so called Supreme Court would have a supreme interpretation of the law in name only.

      Do you support all those 9th circuit judges who have embraced Roy Moore law and held up Trump’s travel bans? Didn’t Mr. Hoge in the past have a judge ignore legal and controlling precedent in the past like Roy Moore only to have the ruling overturned on appeal? Do you believe it was the correct decision of the judge in that case to ignore obvious free speech precedent?

      I don’t know about Mr. Hoge, he can speak for himself, but I would rather have legal precedent and stare decisis than hope the consent of the governed in liberal Maryland would rally around me in support.

      • ” I can’t agree with the idea judges should ignore precedents or stare decisis, or we would have thousands of interpretations of the law. Each district judge would have their own the law,”

        And, we hung Judges at Nuremburg precisely because they did studiously enforce the laws, and, precedents, of the duly constituted authorities of their day.

        And, we could construct the dual argument that if one rejects the authority of King George then why can’t other people reject the authority of the government the rebels propose? Why couldn’t state break from confederation? And, counties from state? And, city from county? And, individual from city?

        Your argument boils down to, tyranny is preferable to taking the first step down the slippery slope. It is not a specious argument, but, it isn’t the decision that was taken at Independence Hall. This is America. It is our heritage that we preferred revolution to tyranny. Thomas Jefferson answered the dual argument by stating simply that a little revolution now and then was good thing. He didn’t fear the slippery slope as much as he feared the new state becoming tyrannical.

        As to your quote above I would note that is much a feature as it is a bug. Each and every day the law screws people typically because the precedent is that the law can be used to screw people in certain instances. Once justice is defined by the facts and circumstances in each case, as opposed to applications of other cases that often don’t correlate 100%, the standard advice of lawyers to clients will cease to be, “This is what you can do, and, this is what you cannot do!,” to something more like, “Keep your hands as clean as possible!” Is that such a bad thing?

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