MSNBC anchor Chris Hayes tweeted in July what, at surface level, seems an obvious point: ‘If I were the DNC, I would be spending a lot of money learning basically everything I could about 2012 Obama voters who didn’t vote in 2016.’
Considering how much Hayes and others on the mainstream left have invested into debunking the current administration, there’s no surprise that, when the rubber meets the road, the Democrats let their collective hatred of Trump cloud their political judgement.
Look no further than their treatment of Tulsi Gabbard.
While only 10 candidates made the cut for the Thursday’s third Democratic debate, Gabbard, who is currently polling nationally above the debate cutoff — and qualified participants Julián Castro and Amy Klobuchar — remains left out in the cold by the DNC. Against the State: An ... Best Price: $6.50 Buy New $9.94 (as of 03:05 EDT - Details)
Why? On the surface, it’s not entirely clear. Gabbard was the most-searched candidate after both the first and the second debates; and has drawn support from popular figures ranging from podcaster Joe Rogan to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey. Once upon a time, Gabbard was a rising star in the Democratic party and a darling of the progressive movement. A glowing Vogue profile in 2013 labeled her ‘an embodiment of the Obama era, with its shattering of political stereotypes and explosion of cultural diversity.’
Yet even as the left has become increasingly progressive, the ‘anti-Trump’ bien-pensants still dictate the party’s dealings. Gabbard, for all of her credentials, has never been about party loyalty.
‘No one from the D-triple-C came and recruited me to run for Congress,’ she told the New Yorker in 2017. ‘So my situation may be different from others, who have relied heavily on party support from the beginning.’
As a candidate, Gabbard’s unique willingness to pick principle over partisanship makes her stand out. ‘We have too many politicians who put their finger up to the Twitter wind and see which way it’s blowing, and then respond or change their position or whatever the case may be, rather than actually leading,’ she told Bill Maher in June. ‘Honestly, people have a hard time figuring me out, because I don’t play those games, I don’t fit in those boxes that they set up.’
But in not ‘playing the games’, she’s also an easy target.