The Era of Zero-Sum Politics

Its roots are in the presidency of Barack Obama, a man who famously refused to negotiate with Republicans, unless, of course, they gave him everything he wanted — Mr. Obama would have considered that a fair negotiation. When he did not get his way, he vilified Republicans in Congress and used executive orders to marginalize them; even as he weaponized powerful organs of the federal government to punish his political enemies.

Toward the end of Mr. Obama’s second term, he and the rest of the established political order fully expected Hillary Clinton to take up the reins as our next president. They envisioned a bright future for themselves, a future of unbridled immigration via open borders; of a newly amalgamated citizenry, ill-informed and heavily dependent on government, with little appreciation for the duties and privileges of citizenship; of an ever-expanding, all-powerful, politically weaponized administrative state; of entrenched liberal dominance as far as the eye could see.

Their sense of entitlement, of imminence, led some establishment politicians and bureaucrats to a deeply corrupt place, doing inappropriate and perhaps illegal things, certain they would get away with it. They could, for instance, conduct a sham investigation of Hillary Clinton’s classified email imbroglio, or falsely obtain a FISA warrant to spy on candidate Trump and his campaign; because candidate Clinton benefited from their malfeasance, and a President Clinton would never hold them accountable.

In the Autumn of 2016, with Mrs. Clinton on the verge of victory, the established political order were that close to having it all. But Trump didn’t lose to Clinton, as written in their script. And now, they see it all slipping away. They are bitter. And angry. And vulnerable.

If Democrats can re-take Congress, if they can destroy and humiliate Donald Trump, if they can intimidate congressional Republicans into submission as once was customary … they may still have a chance. This is why Democrats, with their allies in the Liberal Media Complex and the Deep State, are now so partisan and vicious. Their struggle is existential. They will win … or suffer a slow death … on this field of political battle.

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