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The Pied Pipers of the Left

With Trump’s inauguration still weeks away, Robert Kuttner of the American Prospect is calling for progressives to begin building a public case for impeachment by “keep[ing] a running dossier [on Trump’s illegal actions] and forward[ing] updates at least weekly to the House Judiciary Committee.” Salon’s Heather “Digby” Parton is echoing Kuttner. It’s a terrible idea.

There is no chance it will succeed. The only way to remove a president is first for a majority of the House of Representatives to vote for impeachment and next for two thirds of the Senate to vote for conviction. Given the extant evidence, neither the Republican House nor the Republican Senate will accede to the wishes of those seeking Trump’s removal.

Taxing Economic Injustice

Shortly after the Presidential election, I urged progressives to focus efforts on improving circumstances for poor, working, and middle-class people in targeted localities and states. At the national level, President-elect Trump and the solidly Republican Congress will not be responsive to our concerns and do not share our values. We will have to fight rearguard actions in Washington to try to preserve what remains of the positive legacies of FDR and LBJ. Opportunities to build on them at the national level are likely to be few and far between.

THE WAY FORWARD FOR PROGRESSIVES IN TRUMP’S WAKE

Apocryphal Chinese curse - May you live in interesting times.

Voltaire - We must tend to our garden.

As the omnipresent sounds and sights of progressives rending cloth and gnashing teeth over the past fortnight powerfully demonstrates, an ignorant, anti-democratic, immigrant-bashing, climate change denying demagogue won the Presidential election two weeks ago. With both houses of Congress in Republican hands, an open seat on the Supreme Court, and 33 states governed by Republicans, Trump's power seems nearly unfettered. How should we respond? One is reminded of the old baseball manager riddle: Question: What's your strategy when you're down 13 runs in the top of the 4th? Answer: Pray for rain.

Bernie would be doing better

Today, Donald Trump would probably beat Hillary Clinton in a head-to-head matchup 538's Nate Silver predicts. Ah but the election won't be held today you reply. Correctomundo.  When the election is actually conducted sayeth Silver, Clinton should squeeze out a 10-point win in the electoral college.

A Plea to my Fellow Progressives

There are a number of excellent reasons progressives should vote for Hillary Clinton for President while the arguments in favor of Jill Stein or sitting out the election do not hold water.

1. If Clinton loses, the progressive cause will be set back for decades perhaps for the forseeable future.

George W. Bush's win in 2000 did grievous harm to our nation. W lied us into a costly destructive war in 2003, slashed taxes on the wealthy thereby ballooning the national debt, and failed to stop the financial crisis. If popular sentiment had prevailed and Ralph Nader had stayed out of the race, it is probable that America would right now be enjoying broad-based prosperity, peace, and would be leading the world towards a sustainable energy future.

The Pence Pick Helps Trump

For the record, I don't think Donald Trump will be the next President. Although a CBS/NYT poll published Thursday shows a tight race and oracle Nate “Tarnished” Silver now gives Trump a 1 in 3 shot at winning, I would argue the racist deadbeat's chances are more like 1 in 4 or less. For one thing, a slew of NBC/WSJ polls released Friday show Clinton with commanding leads in Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia. Of even more consequence is the “hot mess,” in the words of the New Republic's Jeet Heer, that is the Trump campaign. Finally, Silver lost his air of infallibility by his insistence last year that Trump would not be the Republican candidate.

The Five Stages of Bernie Grief

1) Denial - there's no way this can be happening. Bernie really won New York if you don't count Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, the Bronx and Long Island.  Just look at the returns from Jamestown and Elmira.

2) Anger - it's all Debbie Wasserman Schultz's fault.

3) Bargaining - if we just win the District of Columbia on June 14, the super delegates will abandon Hillary en masse.

4) Depression - man this sucks let's move to Canada.

Rift between Environmentalists and Unions Highlights Clinton's Weaknesses

Unions representing construction and manufacturing workers may not line up behind Hillary Clinton and down ballot Democrats in the general election.  Clinton's opposition to the Keystone XL pipeline and an announced partnership between three unions representing government employees and environmentalist Tom Steyer have incensed some labor leaders and their rank and file.  White-collar unions and the green billionaire have created the "For Our Future" super Pac in hopes of raising $50 million to help defeat Trump and Republican candidates in November.

Making the right moves - Clinton takes steps to the White House

Hillary Clinton is the odds-on favorite to succeed Barack Obama as President. Despite historically high unfavorable ratings and being the ultimate insider in the year of the outsider, the prize remains hers for the taking. The electorate dislikes Donald Trump even more and the vagaries of the electoral college in recent years bespeak a pro-Democratic bias.

But the road to the White House will not be smooth for Clinton. Trump the Insult Reality Show Politician ran roughshod over the Republican field and is now training all his fire on "Crooked Hillary." Meanwhile, she has yet to dispatch the still-dangerous, albeit mortally wounded, Bernie Sanders.

Potentially Fatal Mistakes and the Necessary Correctives

A year ago political insiders expected Hillary Clinton to waltz to the Democratic nomination.  Last July, Five Thirty Eight's Nate Silver opined Clinton might well win every primary except the first two.  Things didn't turn out quite that way.

Clinton had to weather a surprisingly strong primary challenge from a self-described democratic socialist.  Weather it she did thanks to overwhelming support from both "strong" and "weak" Democrats.  Anxious moments came courtesy of "independent Democrats," among whom Bernie Sanders has a 10 point edge, and independents who prefer Sanders by a 5 to 1 margin.  Young voters, those least likely to register with either major party, have mostly abandoned Clinton.  The under-30 cohort favors Sanders by more than 3 to 1.

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