by Brent Budowsky
The single most important fact in American political life is the degree that so many Americans believe, with a deep sentiment of dread and foreboding, that the Trump presidency has become a national nightmare that profoundly impacts American civic life in dangerous and disturbing ways.
When President Trump recently spent more than two hours giving a bizarre and sometimes incoherent speech that was a rambling litany of angry insults and a tirade describing himself as a horribly aggrieved victim, he appeared to be a man in the middle of a nightmare.
Would an innocent man declare total political war against special counsel Robert Mueller, who his former White House counsel Ty Cobb wisely says is a national hero running an honest investigation?
The president’s nightmare is spending the next two years trapped in a spider’s web of federal, state and congressional investigations with potentially catastrophic consequences, while he cannot spend a penny of appropriated money or enact a dime of tax cuts without permission from a powerful Democratic Speaker and resurgent Democratic House.
Huge masses of Democratic and independent voters are enduring the nightmare — which they will act to end with a spectacular turnout in November 2020 — of a president at war against their hopes and dreams for their lives and our country.
Many of America’s finest and most principled conservatives are enduring the nightmare of a conservatism they have long championed with honor being shredded and corrupted by a president who is a conservative in name only, and his allies who demonize national heroes from Mueller to John McCain and attack the FBI for investigating the Russian dictator subverting our democracy and seeking to impose on America the president of his choice.
What would Ronald Reagan think of Trump’s extravagant praise of North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un? Or of the president’s shameful performance at Helsinki, where he held secret meetings with Russian President Valdimir Putin without one of his senior advisers in attendance. He then told the world that he believes Putin, the former boss of the KGB who attacks America, more than U.S. intelligence services that defend America from his attack.
Senate Republicans endure a nightmare of being pressured to defend a president that many of them privately view with horror. They are afraid that if they speak the truth about what they believe they will be threatened with defeat in a primary, while if they publicly support the president they privately dread they could be defeated in a general election — forcing them to choose between their conscience, their country and their career.
Shame on any Senate Republican who accepts the ultimate humiliation and votes to uphold a declaration of emergency they know is a fraud and an attack against the constitutional duties of the legislative branch. A declaration for a wall they will not fund, based on a lie they know is untrue.
The politics of these Trump nightmares is simple for Democrats running for the presidency and Congress in 2020. A solid majority of voters fervently want the Trump presidency to end. There is a powerful national yearning for a post-Trump era that brings a revival of American unity, goodwill and community.
The answer to the big lie is the big truth. The answer to the nightmare is to rekindle the dream.
Here is how Democrats frame the election and win big in 2020, most similar to the message from Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), whom I will support if he seeks the presidency.
Trump pits race against race and American against American, while he plays the politics of socialism for the rich where government becomes a tool of corrupted crony capitalism, rigged to benefit the wealthiest and doing little for anyone else.
Democrats would lift and unite the nation behind higher wages and a better life for black workers, white workers, Hispanic workers, Asian workers, male workers, female workers, straight workers, gay workers, young workers, senior workers and jobless workers with the great American Dream of shared patriotism and shared prosperity.