- - Wednesday, November 9, 2016

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

The Democrats and their media partners, who were so sure they had all the answers only days ago, are desperately trying now to figure out what went wrong. How could anyone so smart, so educated, so pure of heart be so wrong?

James Comey, the director of the FBI who so spectacularly mishandled the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s incriminating emails, is the first explanation.

But more discerning Democrats are trying out the usual technical explanations for an election that went terribly, horribly, dreadfully, frightfully, hideously, and of course deplorably wrong. But most of the Democrats still don’t get it. It’s all about somebody else at fault.

“People have talked about a miracle,” Van Jones, who was President Obama’s onetime “green jobs” czar, tells CNN News. “I’m hearing about a nightmare. It’s hard to be a parent for all of us. You tell your kids not to be a bully, you tell your kids not to be a bigot. You tell your kids to ‘do your homework’ and be prepared. Then you have this outcome and you have people putting their children to bed tonight and they are afraid for breakfast.”

Most Democrats are not really afraid that Donald Trump or Mike Pence will actually climb through a bedroom window before breakfast to snatch slumbering children from their beds (although you never know), and some discerning Democrats, choking back their fright and disappointment, are willing to wait for the dust to settle.

They concede that the guilty party has lessons to learn. Paul Begala, an adviser to Priorities USA, a super PAC that supported Hillary, says “there’s an earthquake going on, [not a vibrating] washing machine.” Jim Manley, who was once an adviser to Sen. Harry Reid of Nevada, the leader of the Democratic minority in the Senate, is thinking beyond James Comey and his on-again, off-again and back on-again investigation of Hillary’s emails. “To suggest that the actions of [Mr.] Comey, deplorable as they are, led to this [debacle], is ridiculous.

“We’re going to need to do our own autopsy report, but in part it has to do with our unwillingness or inability to understand the concerns of white, middle-class voters. For months, conventional wisdom has been that this is a Republican problem, but now Democrats have to take a look at it as well.”

The “it’ is the wide anger and grave unhappiness of that white middle class that found their champion with the tough language of Donald Trump. He speaks with the bark still on rough words, and so, too, Bernard Sanders, who gave voice to the concerns that Hillary Clinton tried to coat with the usual campaign sugar. The lesson that many of the party professionals don’t want to see is that the 2016 campaign changed everything, and changed it utterly. The politicians who don’t get it, egged on by former presidents of both parties, don’t understand that they could die without mercy under the steamroller next time.

The economy (as usual), terrorism and health-care costs emerged as the top three concerns of Tuesday’s voters, and voters across the width and breadth of the land served notice that they will no longer tolerate the usual bromides, cliches and stereotypes of the politicians of the reigning class, of whom Hillary and her campaign were Exhibit No. 1. If the Donald fails to deliver he can expect similar retribution.

The rubes and hicks in the hinterland, as the metropolitan media regard them, understand what was at stake, as the swells and popinjays of the pundit class do not. “The freedom-loving Americans pushed back against the elites and the globalists,” Andrew Dye, 48, of small-town Michigan, tells Reuters. “They might win in the long run, but we’re not dead yet. I think this big country is getting a little too far left … and some people finally woke up and said ‘enough!’ “


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