(JNS) Demonization, the effort to portray a political rival as an inhuman monster, has long been a means to mobilize public support. The ancient Romans did it. The Soviets didn’t know there was another option.
While negative campaigning is a tried and true method for winning elections in the free world, actual demonization was a fairly rare phenomenon, particularly in the United States, until after the turn of the century. But in recent decades, and with unprecedented intensity and venom since 2016, the Democrats have aped the Soviets and adopted demonization as their main political tool for winning elections. The primary object of their hatred is former President Donald Trump.
Last Sunday, Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi showed how it is done in an interview with CNN. The interview focused on the Democrat Party’s concern that the conservative majority in the Supreme Court will overturn Roe v. Wade, ending the federal mandate for abortions and letting states decide for themselves whether to place limitations on the procedure. Concerns among Democrats and the party’s progressive base rose exponentially earlier this month when, in a shocking break with the past, a source at the Supreme Court leaked a draft judgment on the issue authored by conservative Justice Samuel Alito to Politico.
On Sunday, CNN‘s Dana Bash asked Pelosi if the fact that conservatives are now the majority on the Supreme Court means that the Democrats dropped the ball on abortion rights. Pelosi rejected Bash’s assertion and instead blamed Trump.
Brimming with rage, Pelosi seethed, “Who would have ever suspected that a creature like Donald Trump would become president of the United States, waving a list of judges that he would appoint, therefore getting the support of the far right, and appointing those anti-just freedom justices to the court?”
In that one sentence, Pelosi managed to demonize Trump, demonize Trump voters and delegitimize three sitting justices of the Supreme Court. It bears noting that as Pelosi made these remarks, Democrat activists were staging threatening demonstrations outside the homes of conservative justices.
Pelosi’s statement wasn’t an isolated event. It was part of an overall partisan strategy ahead of the congressional elections in November. President Joe Biden gave voice to it in a speech last Friday, where he spoke of “Ultra MAGA Republicans.” Just to make clear what he was talking about, he called Trump “King MAGA.” MAGA, or Make America Great Again, was of course Trump’s election slogan in 2016. Since then, MAGA has become shorthand for Trump supporters.
The obvious purpose of Biden’s coinage of “Ultra MAGA” was to link all Republicans to Trump and to make the 2022 elections a referendum on Trump, the demonic “creature,” even though Trump isn’t on the ballot and the Democrats control the White House and both houses of Congress.
The administration is so excited by the new term they invented that Biden’s spokeswoman bragged that “Ultra MAGA” was the product of six months of market research.
On Wednesday, Politico reported that the progressive fundraising giant Moveon.org is launching a $30 million “Us vs. MAGA” ad campaign ahead of November. Moveon.org executive director Rahna Epting told the progressive online publication that the purpose of the campaign is to tie Republicans to Trump, who all right-thinking people hate because he threatens the very existence of America.
The idea of using demonization as a political tool was most powerfully introduced to radical U.S. politics by political guru Saul Alinsky. Alinsky’s 1971 book, “Rules for Radicals,” became the political bible for revolutionary leftists in the Democrat Party. In it, Alinsky warned his disciples that in light of the unpopularity of their America-hating agenda, the way to win was by distracting the public from that agenda and instead to focus their target audience on their political opponents, whom they would defeat by presenting as the devil.
One of Alinsky’s star pupils was a young co-ed at Wellesley College named Hillary Rodham, better known by her married name, Hillary Clinton. Alinsky’s methods were adopted and taught in the 1990s by a community organizer in Chicago named Barack Obama.
As the United States moves into elections mode, the last thing the Democrats want to talk about is policy. The only issue they may want to run on is abortion, and it’s unclear how popular the issue will be in swing states and districts. The more the U.S. public feels the impacts of the Democrats’ economic, energy and social policies, the lower the party’s polling numbers drop. Every day another shocking story appears about the fruits of the Democrats’ revolutionary agenda.
This week, for instance, the school board in Kiel, Wisconsin, a small town of some 3,000 people, decided to charge three middle school boys with sexual harassment.
They didn’t refer to a girl in their class as “they” or “them” after she said she decided she was no longer willing to be referred to as “her” or “she,” because she no longer considers herself a female.
According to Critical Race Theory expert Christopher Rufo, depending on the questions asked, between 60-80% of Americans oppose revolutionary sexual policies. The more stories appear like the one from Kiel, Wisconsin, or even more distressing ones about children given sex hormones by school officials without their parents’ knowledge or consent, the more voters abandon the Democrat Party in fear.
The Democrats’ response to the public’s rejection of their agenda isn’t to move toward the public by ending their support for sex-change operations for minors. They remain stridently committed to their agenda.
The Democrats’ response to the public’s rejection of their policies is to castigate the Republicans as the evil acolytes of Trump who share his demonic characteristics—first and foremost, “racism.”
Last weekend, an 18-year-old racist anti-Semite murdered 10 people in a grocery store in Buffalo, New York. Biden, Democrat politicians from coast to coast, the progressive media, and Hollywood stars all rushed to blame Trump, Fox News and the entire Republican Party for the slaughter. Never mind that the same day, a Chinese man motivated by hatred of Taiwanese entered a church attended by Taiwanese immigrants in California and opened fire, killing one and wounding four others. Last December, a black racist mowed down six people, and wounded 77 more, (all white) at a Christmas parade in Waukesha, Wisconsin. Republicans didn’t blame Biden and the Democrats.
Tuesday, Democrat advertising executive Donny Deutsch explained the Democrats’ post-Buffalo massacre efforts on MSNBC. In Deutsch’s words, the Democrats’ mission post-Buffalo is to “Brand every Republican” as a proponent of “racist, violent replacement theory.”
“Take a branding iron, put it on them so any mainstream Republican has to wear that badge,” he said.
Notably, the Democrats’ Ultra-MAGA campaign hasn’t raised any concern among Republicans. Indeed, immediately after Biden launched it, the Republican National Committee began printing “Ultra MAGA” T-shirts to give away to party donors.
Some 95% of Republicans voted for Trump in 2016 and in 2020. Despite this near-unanimous support, the Democrats’ demonization of the former president did have an impact at the margins of the party and among independent voters. Members of these groups were convinced that Trump and the Republicans are a demonic force that threatens the soul of America.
It wasn’t the likes of Deutsch who convinced them. That job was carried out by a smattering of former Republicans who share the Democrats’ visceral hatred of Trump. In the 2018 congressional elections, and to an even greater degree in the 2020 presidential race, members of this tiny minority of Republicans appeared nearly around the clock on progressive media organs to castigate Trump and his voters as dangerous, racist and evil. While their overall impact was indiscernible, in all-important swing states where Biden’s margins of victory were miniscule, they appear to have made a difference.
Today the same group of former Republicans is working full throttle at the side of the Democrats to prevent their former party from winning the midterm elections and taking control of Congress.
Sitting at Deutsch’s side on the MSNBC panel Tuesday was political activist and former Republican Miles Taylor. While serving as a mid-level official in the Department of Homeland Security during the Trump administration, Taylor anonymously published an op-ed in The New York Times and a book where he claimed that many officials inside the administration believed that Trump was a danger to the United States. These officials, he said, were working together to subvert Trump’s policies and save America from its duly elected president. Now Taylor is running a well-funded Super-PAC, where “former Republicans” run campaign ads against Republicans.
Taylor explained that the goal is to shame Republicans into leaving the party.
“I tried and failed to save the party in my own little way,” he said.
“We tried to prevent Trump from rising in 2016. Some of us tried from within to contain his reckless impulses. We thought we [would] beat him in 2020, but we didn’t. Trumpism is alive and it’s well and it’s fueling this, so that what conservatives need to do is convince other conservatives to quit the Republican Party,” he said.
It’s hard to know what these former Republican conservatives tell themselves when they see empty shelves in supermarkets, $4 per gallon gas, cratering stock markets and boys being persecuted for being boys in schools across America. It’s hard to know what they tell themselves when they see children indoctrinated to reject their biological sex and hate their parents and their country.
But what is clear enough is that through their efforts to demonize their fellow conservatives, former party and former president, these Trump-hating former Republicans enable the progressive revolution. Under the mask of anti-Trump paranoia, this revolution rejects the foundations of the United States and seeks to transform the country from the land of the free and the home of the brave into the land of the unfree, and home of the bullied, cowed and socially engineered.
Caroline Glick is an award-winning columnist and author of “The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East.”
This article first appeared in Israel Hayom.