Whatever juice the Democrats were able to wring out of the Trump/Russia conspiracy theory and the false promises of the Robert Mueller investigation last year, it’s clear that the turnip has been bled dry. Politico spoke to several candidates and strategic operatives from both the Republican and Democratic Parties this week, and they found that the general wisdom inside Washington right now is that the American people are ready to move on from the idea that Trump colluded with the Kremlin.
“In our state, we’re losing 70 to 80 dairy farms a month,” Sen. Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin told Politico. “I can tell you in rural Wisconsin that’s what people are asking me about rather than something that is, well, just, it’s immediate to them.”
Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas struck a similar note, saying that he’d encountered very few voters who wanted to press him on the status of the Russia investigation.
“Washington reporters live in a different world from the American people,” said Cruz. “That’s been true for two years where the media is obsessed with the latest and constant slams on the president. People of Texas are interested in jobs.”
Even Robby Mook, a veteran of the Hillary Clinton 2016 campaign, told Politico that Russia was a dead issue as far as the midterms were concerned.
“It’s not the best thing for Democrats to be talking about right now,” he said. “We just need to let Mueller do his job. Politicizing it even more isn’t going to help that.”
The problem for Democrats is multi-faceted. For one thing, they’ve done nothing BUT talk about the Russia investigation, Mueller, Trump, and the looming possibility of impeachment for much of this presidency. They’ve shifted gears in recent months, but is that because they got a whiff of how this story is landing among voters or because they know at long last that none of this is ever going to amount to anything? For another thing, the Democrats’ focus must be on pulling stray voters back to the fold – the ones who went for Obama in 2012 and Trump in 2016. Telling these voters that they went and did something as stupid as put a Russian mole in the White House isn’t exactly going to bring them back to the party.
But the biggest problem is that the American people are a lot smarter than the Democrats ever give them credit for. They aren’t going to throw the country to a bunch of spoiled sports who think the last election was “stolen” from them because the Russians leaked a handful of internal emails. That story couldn’t convince the dog; the only people who believe it are journalists, Rachel Maddow, and Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Of course, if the Democrats aren’t going to talk about Russia, then they have to talk about their own extremist, anti-jobs, anti-American agenda. Tough call…