Van Jones and MoveOn warn the left: Three dumb ideas progressives have about Trump

Via Mediaite, it’s not 100 percent correct but it’s much closer to the mark than you’d expect given the source. A few quibbles, though. For starters, one reason that Trump won’t “self-destruct” is that Hillary is terrible. She’ll keep him in the game through sheer ineptness if he says something to damage himself. I understand why a Democrat like Jones wouldn’t want to make that point in a video designed to energize other Democrats, but let’s be real. Meanwhile, my pal Karl’s right that demographics, while not foolproof for Hillary, are better for her than Jones suggests here. The figure he cites about Hillary winning just 71 percent of the black vote against Trump comes from just one poll which had Trump winning nine percent. Let’s wait a bit for the Clinton/Sanders rift to heal and for Barack Obama to hit the trail for her before pronouncing her a failure in reaching black turnout targets. And let’s also wait before declaring that the Rust Belt is in play. Jones is right that Trump’s protectionist approach should give him some traction there, but don’t forget that his favorable rating is underwater nationally right now even among white men, his supposed base. He needs to see movement there before states like Michigan become serious toss-ups. If you’re a liberal looking to fret over demographics, focus on how well Trump could conceivably do among men while Hillary cleans up among women. Is it possible that he’ll win the former group by a wider margin than she’ll win the latter? If so, Democrats have a problem.

The big error, however, is in the second point, that only a strong movement that “fights” can stop a strongman like Trump. This is a MoveOn promo so the requisite flattery must be paid to grassroots left-wing activism, but whether “fighting” Trump helps or hurts the left depends entirely on how they choose to fight. Does Jones mean filling MoveOn’s coffers with donations for attack ads? Or does he mean mass demonstrations in which Trump’s rallies are shut down, as happened in Chicago? There’s nothing more you could do to boost a would-be strongman than to give him an easy foil by sending angry leftists, especially if they’re minorities, into the streets. There’s gonna be riots if you don’t elect a law-and-order candidate who knows how to deal with people like this, Trump will say — and yes, that will be fantastically ironic, and no, the irony won’t deter undecideds from rallying to him. Better think carefully before indulging your anti-Trump id.

Speaking of people warning their fellow partisans about how to behave, here’s Sarah Palin before this morning’s big Trump/Ryan summit:

Trump has a pow-wow with unsupportive GOPe House leader Paul Ryan today. Anticipate Ryan, after following crucifiers of our conservative frontrunner and all of his early supporters, to now position himself as the leader of those politico wussies to the cool kids’ table. Typical politics. Makes me ill. DJT can’t capitulate.

The holier-than-thou GOPe that sees elections as merely a money-making business has stomped all over We the People for the last time. They got us into the mess we’re in with their failed, capitulating agenda that’s gone along with Obama’s fundamental transformation of America that includes devastating debt increase, deadly open borders, failed foreign nation building, exporting jobs, dividing the country, and quashing American exceptionalism… while laughing all the way to their personal bank accounts.

Today, Trump can not cede any victorious ground to the losers who got us into the mess we’re in. And he won’t. He’ll own the meeting like a boss. Can’t wait to hear Ryan’s take on it afterwards; anticipate it’ll be as accurate as his infamous claims of balancing a budget… or running his Olympic-qualifying marathon.

I’m going to pass on the easy shot here about certain people turning elections into a money-making enterprise and ask a more pressing question: Do Trump fans want the party to unite or not? For anti-Trumpers, the past eight days on social media have been a contradictory din of “you’re losers and we don’t need you anymore, get out of the party” and “you RINOs had better get onboard with this new party or else you’ll be blamed when Trump loses.” Which is it? Should Trump have taken the Palin line here and basically called Ryan a sellout who can either get with the program or get lost? Or should he have taken the approach he actually did take, which was to try to make nice with Ryan and find a “mutual understanding” or whatever? There are benefits to both approaches, but it’d be nice to settle on one. What’ll it be?

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