This time could be different, it seems to me to be entirely possible that this time the shutdown sh–storm could end up on the front porch of the Democrats.
How will America react to a Democratic Party that is willing to throw important functions such as the military and CHIP funding under the bus in the interest of DACA and protecting individuals who are, technically, in the country illegally. This time the blame game could be much closer to 50/50 that in the past and 50/50 is a loss for Democrats.
The Republicans will not weaponize the shut down as did President Obama who just happened to have pre-printed signage available to close open air memorials, and the temporary fencing seemed to arrive very quickly as Obama was willing to punish average Americans and Honor Flight Veterans for Republican miscalculation. He was going to punish us and it was purely political and mean-spirited.
The generic ballot which not so long ago saw Democrats with a large lead is no longer the case; the latest is only a six point advantage. No doubt the rather aggressive response from Corporate America to the new tax law and a variety of sources coming in around an average benefit to individuals of $2,000 has something to do with it. Every single Democrat voted against that bill. Main Stream Media polling prior to passage showed a 64% negative reaction to the bill according to The Hill. Other outlets had disapproval between 55% and 60%. The current generic ballot does not appear to me to be the stuff of a “Blue Wave.”
Mick Mulvaney shot down the ever vacuous Jim Acosta of CNN who, as usual, maintained the approved talking points by asking Mulvaney why the Republicans, who controlled both houses and the White House, could not get this done and how he could call it the “Schumer Shutdown.” Mulvaney responded; “come on Jim you know the answer to that as well as anyone.” Referring to the 60 vote requirement in the Senate to which Acosta replied; “I know.” Mulvaney went on to remind Acosta that 51 Republican votes are not enough to control the agenda and that Democrats are needed to pass the funding and it is therefore up to Democrats.
The Democrats have “resisted” at every turn. The results include a conservative majority on the Supreme Court, a disembowelment of the most onerous of regulations, and a tax bill that is having a dramatic impact on individuals and the economy writ large. If I were a Democrat I don’t think I’d be overwhelmingly confident about my prospects.
Finally we have an administration that, unlike previous administrations, is willing to fight back at every turn. It appears that no longer will Democrats be capable of managing the narrative. The president has 5.5 million Twitter followers, 4.5 million Facebook fans as well as a presence on YouTube, Vine, Instagram and Periscope; those numbers were two years ago. Of course the Democrats want him to stop tweeting.
There is jeopardy for Democrats. They could be the ones whipsawed by a shutdown. Americans might come to focus on the fact that their daily lives are not much affected by the D.C. shut down crisis and reorient themselves to the idea that where government is concerned less is more. The “Schumer Shutdown” could also highlight vacuous nature of Democratic resistance for the sake of resistance and taint Schumer’s party leadership role; if only!