by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Obama had hit on something in his move to the hard left. After he left office, unapologetic leftists were less coy (the old smear of “socialist” was now a term of endearment) and began to extinguish what little was left of Bill Clinton’s old, occasionally moderate Democratic party.
The reelection of Obama had convinced progressives that he had discovered electoral magic: record voter registration, turnout, and block voting of “minorities” that could overcome the old Perot, Reagan Democrat, silent majority, and tea-party dinosaurs in the critical swing states. This chemistry, they thought, would be inherently transferrable even to multimillionaire white establishmentarians like Hillary Clinton or Joe Biden (but only if they were reeducated and thus made the necessary confessionals about their own white privilege and shared disdain for “deplorables” and “the dregs of society”).
Suddenly, everything seemed possible as woke activists, à la French Revolution, accelerated the possible into the already passé.
In just a few years, mere acceptance (rather than endorsement) of gay marriage was veritable homophobia. Assimilation and integration were seen as tantamount to cultural appropriation and imperialism. Conservation and market-based encouragement of alternative energy were the appeasement of “climate deniers” and showed a cowardly reluctance to go the full green mile and eventually ban the internal combustion engine. The Kavanaugh hearing, the Covington-kids fiasco, and the Jussie Smollett farce made clear that the Left was no longer liberal but hard-left and fact-free.