The Democratic Party is at their lowest level of influence in nearly 100 years.
Republicans control both houses of Congress, the Presidency, and the vast majority of Governorship and state legislatures.
So, the Democrats are scheming to come back and they are going to start by picking this one fight.
Democrats are going to make Donald Trump’s cabinet nominees a staging ground for their comeback bid.
Because of Harry Reid’s rule changes in 2014, there is little Democrats can do to stop Trump’s cabinet picks from being confirmed since they require a simple majority vote.
But, expect Democrats to use the hearings to make speeches in order to try and score political points.
“Senate Democrats want to force Trump’s picks to lay down markers on specific policies that can be used to build a case against the incumbent as his administration unfolds and the next election approaches, insiders said. More immediately, they want to begin to make the case to Trump voters that what they voted for is a far cry from what they’ll be getting with the next president.
Democrats believe they have a target-rich environment. Trump’s selections to run the Transportation Department and Small Business Administration, Elaine Chao and Linda McMahon, will probably move quickly. But the other selections, they say, have serious vulnerabilities to exploit — whether it’s Rex Tillerson’s ties to big oil and Russia, Steven Mnuchin’s Wall Street career, Betsy DeVos’ antipathy toward public schools or Tom Price’s past support for overhauling Medicare.
“You’ve got a woman whose mission in life for the Department of Education is to privatize the public education system. You’ve got this secretary of HHS designee whose mission has been to raise the eligibility age for Medicare,” said Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), who will help oversee Ben Carson’s confirmation as housing secretary on the Banking Committee. “You need a scorecard to keep up with the attack on American values.”
But the strategy is also likely to backfire.
For example, Democrats want to make a show of confirming Senator Jeff Sessions as Attorney General.
Politico reports the left believes a vote to confirm Sessions would hurt Republicans in states with large Hispanic populations:
“Democrats privately concede that Sessions is likely to win confirmation. But they want to make the vote as painful as possible for Republicans in states with large Hispanic populations, such as Dean Heller (Nev.) and Jeff Flake (Ariz.). Sessions has one of the most conservative records in the Senate on immigration.
“That vote will be brutal,” said a senior Democratic aide.”
But Trump carried Arizona and ran close in Nevada.
He also carried just under one-third of Hispanic voters nationwide, which put him ahead of the 27 percent Mitt Romney won in 2012.
Trump’s strong stand on immigration did not offend Hispanic voters in the ways the left expected.
Plotting a comeback based on opposing Jeff Session’s strong record on securing the border comes off as a replay of the failed strategy of 2016.
Similarly, Democrats believe they can tarnish Republicans with ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson’s supposed close ties to Russian leader Vladimir Putin.
But Trump campaigned on reorienting America’s relationship with Russia to try and form an alliance to fight ISIS in Syria.
Trump was elected with the American people having full knowledge of his proposed strategy in regards to Russia.
In picking confirmation fights, the Democrats look to be plowing full-speed ahead with the same failed strategy that led to their crushing defeat in November.