Will Progressives Abandon Hillary for The Donald? Probably Not.

At a recent dinner someone mentioned that a secret service agent was bringing a book out in June that would reveal yet more dirt on the Clinton White House. The book description on Amazon says that the author hopes people who are thinking of voting for Hillary will read the book and change their minds.

Now, I am not saying this could not happen. I think there are lots of people who might not be able to hold their noses long enough to vote for Hillary. However, that is saying something far different from the idea that a liberal or progressive Democrat is going to suddenly turn to a candidate that represents the exact opposite of what their registered party proposes in its platform.

Although this is oversimplifying things I think voters can be split into four basic groups. From left to right they are: Progressives, Liberals, Conservatives, and Libertarians. Today the Democrats represent a coalition of the first two groups and the latter groups make up the Republican coalition. Again, this is a simplification.

These are not the only groups making up these coalitions but these are the most vocal and organized groups within each party, and for the last forty years there has been a lot movement within each party for dominance by each group.

By the end of the 1960s the Progressives had gained such prominence in the Democrat Party that they were able to completely upend the election of 1972 when they got George McGovern on the ballot. The Republicans began the same process with Barry Goldwater in 1964 then decided they wanted to win in 1968 and nominated middle-of-the-road-candidate Nixon. In 1980 the conservatives finally had their way, dominating the national scene for over a decade until the “New Democrats,” led by Bill Clinton, rejiggered the lines through his now infamous “triangulation.”

When the conservatives came back on the national scene in 2000 they had no idea that George W. Bush was less of a fiscal conservative than he was a foreign policy neo-con. This led to a momentary pause in Republican dominance in 2007 and then the rise of Barack Obama in 2008, the latter billed as more progressive than the Clintons. Of course, this turned out not to be totally true. Barack Obama accomplished very little either foreign policy wise or domestically–at least that is what the supporters of Bernie Sanders would say.

Yes, these same Sanders supporters will admit that Obama might have done more without the entrenched resistance of a Republican House and Senate but they will also argue that he could have been more aggressive, which is why Bernie has become so popular among the Progressive wing of the Democrat Party. It is the same reason that Donald Trump has been able to play so effectively to the base of the Republican Party, since the bases of both parties tend to think that taking a hard line is more important than actually winning. You need to simply stand your ground, they say, like the brave 300 at Thermopylae, even if it means death. Future generations will win the war for conservative values when they are reminded of the great political sacrifices others have made. Right?

I see very little evidence that people who might read the above mentioned book about how horrible the Clintons were in the White House will change their minds and vote for Trump. Why? Because most of the people who will read the book already hate Hillary and Bill and just want to confirm their views with what they will accept as facts–however dubious.

The people who oppose Hillary: hard core Progressives and those who make up the base of the Republican coalition, will not dramatically change their minds because of a book. Most of these people are already convinced that she should not be president.

Those who already strongly support Hillary have heard the old dirt and tend to believe that much of it is either exaggerated or manufactured.

Those who grudgingly support her as the lesser of two evils are also not ignorant of her alleged misdeeds and will still vote for her.

Unless this book claims to have video of Hillary blowing Vince Foster’s brains out, I can’t see any revelation that would change any minds.

We can be sure of one thing though, those who hate Hillary already will buy the book in order to confirm their already existing opinions…and those of us with conservative friends will have to endure excerpts from said book, excerpts that will prove categorically that the Clintons lack character!

Really? And here I thought all politicians lacked character.


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