Finally, I’d add to this list what I call “magical cable news thinking.” My anecdotal sense is that countless liberals are drawn to the never-ending, numbing procession of TV panel after TV panel, all focused on the Mueller investigations and what they might yield. (Stormy Daniels has now become the second obsessive subject.) Whenever I click on CNN during prime time, it feels like Groundhog Day. Each hour seems to promise that any minute now, federal marshals will parade down Pennsylvania Avenue with warrants and cuffs. And for many Democrats, the promise of a House takeover in 2019 is that impeachment hearings will begin roughly 30 minutes after Paul Ryan hands the gavel over to Nancy Pelosi (or her successor).
Maybe one or both of these events will transpire, although it’s hard to divine much from the reported communication from Mueller to Trump’s lawyers that the president is a “subject” but not a “target” of the special counsel’s investigations. But if Democrats should have learned anything from 2016, it is that the low regard in which most Americans hold Donald Trump does not necessarily translate into votes for Democrats.
What matters—and what is overshadowed by the cable news coverage and in too many Democratic messages—is what the Trump administration is actually doing.