Will ‘Democracy Die in Darkness’ After November?

Victor Davis Hanson
American Greatness

The Republicans were always going to win big in November, regardless of what biased pundits professed.

There was likely never a sudden “blue resurgence” or “red collapse” of late summer.

Those fantasies were mostly Democratic Party talking points. They were readily regurgitated by the fusion media and biased pollsters. The ruse was transparently designed to dampen conservative turnout and fundraising, while fueling interparty squabbling over supposedly “unelectable MAGA candidates.”

As it turns out, all the late infusions of millions of dollars of Silicon Valley dark “cabal” money will be to no avail.

All the last-minute Joe Biden giveaways like student-loan forgiveness, marijuana pardons, and COVID relief checks will be too little, too late.

All the Trump-derangement syndrome psychodramatic distractions from the January 6 committee to the Mar-a-Lago raid will be too transparently desperate.

And all the shrill 11th-hour warnings of a new variant of racism from the multimillionaire Obamas on the stump will be just that—shrill.

Yes, the Democrats will soon chant democracy is dying because they are terrified it is thriving as never before. And that grass-roots resurgence is mostly because Republicans are no longer so easily stereotyped as the out-of-touch party of aristocratic Mitt Romneys and condescending Bill Kristols.

Instead, supposedly “racist” conservatives are now empowered by minority voters worried more about shared class concerns than skin color. They are concluding that if there are American racists, they are most likely the rich bicoastal elites, never subject to the consequences of their selfish agendas, and their own self-appointed, self-interested, and ossified diversity industry.

So as the election nears, to save reputations, pollsters will now become just a bit more honest. Thus, they will be off on the final tally by only 2-3 percentage points rather than midsummer’s 5-8. That way, they save their eroding reputations by claiming post facto that at least their final polls “were within the margin of error.”

In the last few days, pundits will cease talk of an unappreciated “real” Democratic late surge. Instead they will turn on the electorate for its “stupidity.”

We will read all sorts of “What’s the Matter with Kansas?”-like screeds against those who voted  “against their interests,” with ample fillips of “whitelash,” “voter suppression,” and Stacey Abramsesque denialism—even as Republicans win record numbers of minority voters.

(Remember, minorities who vote conservative are excommunicated from the Left and no longer considered genuine minorities, as adjudicated by wealthy white professionals).

History Was Always Obvious

We always knew that any president in his first midterm historically loses about 28 seats in the House and four Senate seats. Voters realize the prior promises of a presidential candidate are not the same as the actual policies of a president. It is one thing for a loud candidate to point out that an incumbent president is responsible for all that goes bad. But it is quite another two years later to be that “bad” president who bears out that truism.

Hubris also plays a role for cocky majorities—whether Democrats printing $4 trillion to spread around even as the economy faced a dearth of supply and near-record labor nonparticipation, or Republicans in 2017 ending the state and local tax exemption that enraged independent swing voters in purple states.

When the generic party ballot favors the out party in a president’s first term and his polls hover at or below 40 percent, then a normal 20-30 seat loss can become a 40-60 seat tsunami.

Moreover, in 2022, the Republicans start dead even in the Senate. They are only eight down in the House. So, their natural pickup will be force multiplied by the fact they will surge way ahead rather than coming from way back to achieve a modest majority.

Joe Biden is not just an obnoxious, off-putting, snarly, and enfeebled president. He is also captive of the most radically destructive, left-wing agenda in the White House since 1933. On energy, inflation, the border, debt, crime, racial relations, and foreign policy, the Left’s project has proven an utter disaster that has hollowed out the middle class and embarrassed the nation in under two years.

Leftists Will Be Leftists

Yet, there will not even be a futile, last-minute progressive attempt at correction.

Leftist ideologues never backtrack from their long-march agendas. Instead, as religious nihilists they would rather be purist in their destructive policies that alienate the voters—rather than win them over as apostates by moderating their views.

However, do not even expect the Left to brag on their “successes.” For example:

  • “We gave you a wonderful, welcoming open border and 3 million new Americans!”
  • “We worked to get gas up to $5 a gallon in a way Barack Obama only dreamed!”
  • “We finally have fewer felons in jail and prisons than ever before!”
  • “We ended the war in Afghanistan and on our terms!”
  • “We really spread the wealth with an 8 percent plus annual inflation rate!”

Instead, they will fall silent on the very policies they enacted on their age-old principle that the opiated masses never know what is good for them.

Given these realities, expect the Republicans to end up with a near historical majority in the House and firm control of the Senate.

What then should we expect after the midterms?

Again, we will be told that democracy is now in its final stages. Voter “suppression” was rampant, even as turnout hit near record levels.

When those leftist talking points don’t convince voters, pundits will lament the stupidity of the American people, the malevolent MAGA surge, the racist nature of the country—any excuse other than the new Democratic Party is the domain of the hyper-rich, the bicoastal white professional elites, the subsidized poor, and affluent and privileged minorities. And it is increasingly despised by the white working class, by nearly half of the Hispanic population, by more and more independents, and by a growing minority of African American males.

Why? Because on issues that count, the Left insults middle-class critics as it destroys them, pushing green, inflationary, open-borders, racially obsessed, and elitist agendas without voter support.

In pathetic attempts to distract the electorate to support policies contrary to their interests, it grows hysterical in demanding late-term abortion, mainstreaming transgenderism in all its drag manifestations, and racialist indoctrination, insulting all who demur as bigots and racists.

Democrats Fear Republicans Might Do What They Would Do

But there are other reasons the Left will become livid and terrified when they lose the Congress.

They fear not what Republican majorities may actually do, but what they would do if they were Republicans and suddenly gained the Congress after being smeared by the party in power.

That is, the Democrats fear that the Republicans might remember what the Left did while in legislative control and would see that as the new model for an incoming majority.

Consequently, will a Republican Senate simply refuse to confirm Biden’s ultra-left appointments and judges, on the theory they will inevitably do the damage of a Merrick Garland or Alejandro Mayorkas or prove sanctimonious nincompoops like a Pete Buttigieg or Xavier Becerra?

Will the Republicans subpoena an array of left-wing activists and Democratic functionaries? Will jail sentences await any who retry the Eric Holder gambit of congressional defiance?

Will they adopt the January 6 committee protocols?

That is, will Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) announce he is following the precedents of Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and therefore reluctantly must:

  • Automatically deny “extremists,” such as members of “the squad,” from any congressional committee appointments;
  • Sometimes veto any Democrat minority leader’s recommendations for House committee assignments;
  • Run simultaneous congressional investigations of 1) politicized leadership at the wayward FBI and Department of Justice; 2) the labyrinth of conflicts of interest within our federal health bureaucracy, starting with National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony Fauci; 3) the tax liabilities, false statements, and sources of income of the Biden family; 4) “insurrections,” starting with the role of social media, Antifa, and Black Lives Matter during the 120 days in 2020 of uninterrupted rioting, looting, and arson.

Undertake a real probe of the entire January 6 riot and its aftermath, using newly inherited operating procedures to subpoena high-ranking bureaucrats, left-wing pundits, Democratic National Committee operatives and elected officials to discover: 1) why the breakdown in Capitol Hill police security; 2) why the suppression of information about the officer killing of Ashli Babbitt, and the death from natural causes of Officer Brian Sicknick; 3) why all videos, emails, and communications concerning the riot have not been released; 4) what was the role, if any, of FBI informants; 5) why were dozens of the accused held without bail, without charges filed, and subject to nonstop jail harassment?

Would Democrats—if they were Republicans in January 2023—vote to end the filibuster?

Will Joe Biden, who all summer long blasted the filibuster as a racist relic, flip in 2023 and claim it is the bastion of the republic when the Democrats are in the senate minority?

Will Democrats object if the Republican House becomes impeachment-hungry, following the 2019-2021 precedent?

Is the rule now established that an unpopular president should face first-term impeachment when he loses the House?

Or is the new legacy automatic impeachment when a president clearly warps the national interest to further his own political viability—such as ruining relations with Saudi Arabia while draining the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in a last-ditch effort to avoid a midterm wipeout?

Or is impeachment warranted when a president does not faithfully execute the laws, such as destroying the entire corpus of federal immigration law to enhance a future political constituency?

Does impeachment now extend to former presidents as private citizens? Should Joe Biden expect an impeachment writ while retired to his Delaware retreat?

Will impeachment include cabinet officials such as Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas for his open border, or Attorney General Merrick Garland for unleashing the FBI against political enemies? Will the petty become institutionalized, such as Kevin McCarthy scowling and tearing up one of Biden’s rambling and incoherent State of the Union addresses in front of cameras on national television?

Will the Congress call in Ivy-League mental health professionals to tele-diagnose Joe Biden as they clamor for 25th-Amendment investigations and demand a presidential Montreal Cognitive Assessment?

Will Biden be subpoenaed to testify before a House congressional committee investigating the Biden quid pro quos and his own former brag about getting a Ukrainian prosecutor fired who apparently got too rambunctious in investigating Burisma?

A Final Question

It should be a fascinating post-midterm fall and winter.

But one question remains: will the Left now blame Biden as the perfect scapegoat for its midterm implosion—even after using him as the reputable empty vessel to carry through an otherwise disreputable agenda?

If so, expect plenty of leaks, but arising from the Justice Department, the FBI, and the Democratic National Committee—and spread by the left-wing network news and mainstream media.

The subtext will be “Good ol’ Joe from Scranton dutifully played the useful idiot, but now is to be properly scapegoated and sent packing, given what lost the election was not our extremist agenda but the doddering fool who was identified with it.”

As hard as it will be to believe, after all the excuses are exhausted (voter suppression, racism, MAGA extremism, right-wing news, etc.) the Left will blame their erstwhile savior Biden for sullying their message. That way they can conclude they lost only because of the inept messenger and so can escalate their revolutionary but otherwise toxic agendas.


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12 thoughts on “Will ‘Democracy Die in Darkness’ After November?”

  1. “As hard as it will be to believe, after all the excuses are exhausted (voter suppression, racism, MAGA extremism, right-wing news, etc.) the Left will blame their erstwhile savior Biden for sullying their message.”


    The “why” of this can be largely understood by reading Anthony Pratkanis’s insightful paper: “How to Sell a Pseudoscience.” In this paper, he lists the 9 simple steps it takes to sell flip-flam.

    Step 1: Create a phantom goal.

    The first thing we need to do is to create a “phantom”: an unavailable goal that looks real and possible; it looks as if it might be obtained with just the right effort, just the right belief, or just the right amount of money, but in reality it can’t be obtained. Most pseudo-sciences are based on belief in a distant or phantom goal. Some examples of pseudo-science phantoms: meeting a space alien, contacting a dead relative at a séance, receiving the wisdom of the universe from a channelled dolphin, and improving one’s bowling game or overcoming the trauma of rape with a subliminal tape. [ . . . ]

    Step 2: Set a Rationalization Trap

    The rationalization trap is based on the premise: Get the person committed to the cause as soon as possible. Once a commitment is made, the nature of thought changes. The committed heart is not so much interested in a careful evaluation of the merits of a course of action but in proving that he or she is right. [ . . . ]


    1. You’re not the Brian O’Connor that lives in Merrill, are you? It’s a long shot, but I thought I would ask.
      Tom O’Brien of F.J.

    1. ‘It will always be far more easy for the State governments to encroach upon the national authorities, than for the national government to encroach upon the State authorities.’ The Federalist No. 17 December 5, 1787.
      An old testimony indeed.

  2. Victor,

    I hope if the Republicans take congress that they focus on solutions to the poor economy, energy costs, the border, and crime.

    I think they should have proper investigations into the abuses by the FBI and DOJ, the whitewash of the Biden family graft, and the destruction of the Southern border.

    However, if the Republicans get too involved in these issues and it comes at the expense of solving the bread & butter issues I highlighted earlier then I fear they will lose those crossover voters that will have put them in power. Already, I’m hearing chatter about shutting down the government. This may be the only leverage they have, but given the history of Republicans being automatically blamed it may not be an effective tactic, and could even backfire.

    How do you think the Republicans should lead in January assuming that all goes well November 8th?

    1. Actually by focusing on the suggested issues you listed the Republican party shall serve those center left citizens quite well indeed as they to are terrified by such a radical departure from sensible governance.
      The greatest gain in obtaining both bodies of congress shall be the investigatory powers and accountability that is due.

  3. Victor has set forth a plausible post mid-term prophesy. Plausible because it is consistent with the left’s ongoing self righteous delusions and unconscionable thirst to tear down everything that Americans have spent much of their illustrious history building. Yours truly, Neighbour from North of the 49th!

  4. gibbs.1@osu.edu

    Yes, I guess we’ll need some counter-nasty; am also hoping for the rise of (pardon the conflation) de Sanity.

  5. I suspect we’ll be back to cities in flames after the Republicans regain both houses. There are few things that are more likely to run amok when they don’t have it their way than this pathetic, godawful Left.

  6. The left has nothing but lies and projection. If, campaigning, they told the truth about their intentions, they would never win one race. And they project their evil behavior onto their opponents. Without lies and projections, the left would be as silent as those pauses Fetterman had while he read the questions before his answers finally emerged.

    I wish our side was as diligent in doing to them what they deserve. We are always busy trying to be nice. Nice doesn’t get us anywhere.. I wish we could get new leadership, especially voting McConnell out. What a waste for our side. We have so many good people to choose from. Wouldn’t it be delicious if Senator John Kennedy could be made Senate Majority leader? What fun he would be.

  7. Dear VDH, it looks as though the only “true” election result in these midterms, will be in Florida. All the others will be complicated by massive voter fraud. Until voter ID and paper ballots are the voting standards, there cannot be free and fair elections in the USA ?


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