Liberal Professor: Trump Causing Democrats to Abandon Principles
Most of those reading this article will probably see the headline and think, “WHAT principles?” But you have to take this from a liberal point of view, which is how it was written. Longtime supporters of the Democratic Party – those who remember (faintly) when the “liberals” actually stood for something resembling classical liberalism – are finding it more and more difficult to recognize the modern day party.
Among them is George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley, who wrote a fascinating piece this week about how President Donald Trump is “completely transforming the Democrats.” It’s an interesting look at how the Democrats, in their zeal to oppose Trump on every single issue under the sun, have turned their backs on some of the most fundamental ideologies governing their worldview.
In an op-ed for The Hill, Turley notes that the things that have outraged Democrats in recent weeks show “how far that transformation has gone.”
“The remaking of the Democratic Party was evident last week with the reaction to the decision to withdraw troops from Syria,” he writes. “There was a time when a sizable number of Democrats opposed undeclared wars and unending military campaigns. Now, they are appalled that Trump would not continue a war in one of the myriad countries with American troops engaged in combat operations.”
Democrats, he said, had also embarrassed themselves in terms of FISA act abuses, which the FBI had almost certainly engaged in during the 2016 election. Formerly “the party that fought against the misuse of secret classification laws,” he wrote, the Democrats did everything they could to denigrate and dismiss Republicans attempting to practice proper oversight of important – yet potentially dangerous – intelligence agencies.
“Democrats denounced the very thought that Republicans would question the judgment of the FBI that any such disclosures would be tantamount to jeopardizing national security,” Turley wrote.
“In supporting the investigation of Trump, Democrats have embraced expanding definitions of crimes like obstruction, conspiracy, and the like,” he added. “Historically, Democrats have resisted such efforts to stretch the criminal code to criminalize broader and broader areas of conduct. During the Trump administration, Democrats sound like legal hawks in demanding criminal charges for conduct long treated as civil matters, such as campaign finance violations and foreign agent registration violations.”
Turley’s description of the way Democrats used to be sounds almost foreign to modern ears, which shows you how far off the rails they’ve fallen in the age of Trump. Then again, it’s a lot easier to stand on principle when you’ve got your guy in the White House and you’re utterly confident in your ability to win again when the next election rolls around. Once the Democrats realized that the future of the U.S. was not “in the bag,” after all, they freaked out.
And they’re still freaking out to this day.