Yes, Donald Trump is unpopular compared to most first-term presidents. Do you know what else is unpopular? Eliminating private health insurance, late-term abortions, the Green New Deal, open borders, and free health care for illegal immigrants. (This isn’t my opinion. Go look at the polling.)
And this is what we Never Trumpers can’t quite get our heads around strategically: A majority of Americans support access to abortion in the first 20 weeks of pregnancy, action to address climate change, permanent status for DACA recipients, a pathway to citizenship for people who came to the U.S. illegally, modest reforms on guns, and universal access to healthcare (though support for that last line-item drops to 13 percent if it means eliminating private health insurance).
Isn’t that a progressive enough agenda? Because that entire list is there for the taking, if Democrats want it. But start pushing those policies out to the edges, and suddenly what you have is deeply unpopular. From where we sit, outside the party process, it seems pretty obvious that Democrats can beat Trump and have a chance to enact a progressive agenda that is broadly popular. Or they can champion one that isn’t, and lose.