We are going to hear non-stop about the wall and immigration until the 2020 election. President Trump believes this is what his core backers want, and it's a symbol for him and them. It does not matter that it’s outdated, ineffective, unpopular, divisive and medieval. It's a symbol of an inward-turning, anti-immigrant, anti-foreigner administration. Also the President wants to be able to declare “victory” and not be perceived as a loser. It’s become an albatross around the neck of his administration because its distracting attention from all other Administration initiatives, and the President is losing popularity through his own efforts. The President desperately wants a deal on his terms that will give him a signal accomplishment before facing the electorate. He dealt blows to economic growth through the shutdown; hopefully he’s learned his lesson, and if not, let’s hope a growing number of Republican legislators will prevent a repeat.
What should the Democrats do? Give him enough rope to keep publicly hanging himself? Or begin to put forward their own plans for a confident, outward-facing, kind but strong, nation -- successful at home and engaged abroad? While it's a self-inflicted wound for Trump, the wall is a terrible distraction from the Democratic agenda for the nation. It keeps the Democratic agendas for a better and more affordable health system, a far fairer tax system, cleaner and less costly energy, a stronger economy, better schools and a safer environment out of the spotlight.
Speaker Pelosi needs to create the space and open the opportunity for the new and engaged Democratic representatives to develop and promote their agendas. The next election will not be won simply by resistance to Trump, but rather by a better set of ideas and a clear vision for a more confident and unified nation.
Prepared by: Lucien Wulsin