The DNC Declares War on Immigration Enforcement
I am on the Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) pressrelease distribution list. Yesterday,I noted a release that blamed efforts to enforce immigration laws for inconveniencesto citizens and legitimate border-crossers, while making no mention of theborder chaos that necessitates stronger enforcement.
Today, I got another one. This one was not from the DNC, butrather the “DNC War Room.” The content of the release is far less importantthan the self-described site of origin: TheDNC War Room. Admittedly, termslike “war” and “war rooms” have become trivialized. Athletes talk about “goingto war” with the other team. Professional sports teams don’t just set up roomswhere coaches, scouts, and executives decide on which players to draft; theyhave “war rooms.”
Political parties are in the business of trying to winelections, and that entails high stakes efforts to convince voters that theother guys’ policies are bad and ours are better. But the difference betweenpolitics and war is that politics is supposed to be a contest of ideas. Theother party is not the enemy against whom war is waged; it is the oppositionwhich, at the end of the day and regardless of the outcome, is still part ofus.
In functional democracies (like ours used to be), one partyhas sought to prevail over the other by persuading voters that they can do abetter job. In war, the aim is to destroy the enemy, by almost any meansnecessary. The objective is not to persuade, but rather to impose an outcome.In healthy democracies the defeated party accepts the verdict of the voters,regroups and gets ready to battle it out in the next election. They do notreconstitute themselves as “the resistance,” and work to undermine the legitimacyof the party in power.
Tellingly, the DNC is not at war with the oligarchs who arelargely responsible for the human misery that is driving people to leave CentralAmerica at a rate of 100,000 a month. They are not at war with despots andgenocidal regimes around the world. They are not at war with foreign powersthat are stealing the intellectual property which is the bedrock of our 21stcentury economy. Rather, they are at war with the president for trying tocontrol chaotic immigration, while they block commonsense legislation thatmight stem the flow.
Nor should the Republicans feel too smug about all this.There is little reason to doubt that had Hillary Clinton won the election, thatthe RNC would not be huddled in a bunker somewhere on Capitol Hill waging theirown righteous war of resistance.