Worse, from the party’s perspective, Booker described himself as an “independent Democrat.” Oops.
We may like independents in theory, but surrogates don’t get to be independent. You gotta pick one or the other. This has been the immediate lesson for Cory Booker. But the broader lesson for the public is that there’s no space in our body politic for an independent mind, even though more Americans describe themselves as independent than either Democrat or Republican.
Thinking outside the box may solve problems in the real world. But in the political realm, creative noodling will get you cast into the outer darkness. No matter which way you lean, The Machinery requires cogs, not cognizance.