Speak MY Piece: Coronavirus Politics

President-elect Donald J. Trump and U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi smile for a photo during the 58th Presidential Inauguration in Washington, D.C., Jan. 20, 2017. (DoD photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Marianique Santos)

I think about the presidential election in a certain way, steered by media coverage of COVID-19 and the man in charge. It’s politics as usual, with a twist. Despite an unprecedented, global pandemic and a near depression, the political backrooms are filled with smoke and schemes

With the Russia story gone, Democrats are zeroing in on the COVID pandemic as the path to the White House. As the pandemic has dominated the lives of most of us, you may not have noticed that the Democrats are poised to nominate a candidate on a radical left platform.

None other than former President Barack Obama said they have the most left-wing candidate in his party’s history. Have traditional Democrats noticed? Take a look at the newest group of legislators in the Congress led by the biggest mouth, the self-described democratic socialist, the darling of the media, Anastasia Ocasio-Cortez (AOC), of New York.

AOC is the influencer, the champion of Bernie Sanders (for president) and the new face of the Democratic Party. The likely nominee, Joe Biden changed his tune: She’s for Biden.

I wonder if the working class, union Democrats who mined coal, made steel, built bridges and bought houses in Levittown/ Fairless Hills are going to stand by the new Joe Biden, or a party they no longer recognize?

Considering post-convention November, it looks like President Obama is correct. We will see the Democratic party platform, the banner under which they run, leaning left in wild Pisa-fashion. I have to wonder what effect this will have on middle-working class Democrats and their elected and future leaders.

Now we come to the Republicans, who no longer are viewed as the party of the rich. That profile was changed by, of all people, billionaire Donald Trump. The Republican base of 2020 is not the party of Wall Street or the powerful giants of industry. In the last election, the Republicans took up the mantle of the Middle Class and attracted working-class Democrat voters.

But as old party lines continue to blur some Republicans are concerned about their own electability in a political climate fueled by a pandemic and the perceived, unpopular leader in the White House. Some have abandoned politics and campaigning during this crisis to focus on COVID and their communities in an effort to appear that politics is on hold – when it really is not.

Democrats are no fools. Hillary Clinton, espousing universal health care and women’s reproductive rights, recently said this is the time to get that favorite issue across the finish line, adding, with a smile, “This is a terrible crisis to waste.”

Faced with a floundering economy and a vociferous left-leaning Democratic party, we’re surprised to see equivocation among  GOP politicians, a submerging of party-line politics in favor of some sort of  personal get-me-elected theme.

On the other hand, Democrats remain inclined to follow the leader. The foundation for the presidential election battle was laid when Democratic leadership succumbed to the wily tactics of the New Left and the Old Socialists within.

But as the Democrats move left, the Republicans move left-of-center. Party lines shimmer, the politics of personality rises and it’s hard to tell the goose from the gander.