People are dopes.
The Democrats' congressional campaign arm pulled in $2.1 million in online donations over the weekend -- the best four-day haul of the current election cycle -- largely propelled by fundraising pitches tied to speculation that House Republicans could pursue the impeachment of President Obama.
I don't have a beef with the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Those operatives are just doing their jobs, raising millions. No, it’s the saps who fall for the “Impeachment!” scare and pony up a contribution who are at fault.
Equally, or even more, at fault are Republican rank-and-file donors easily parted with their hard-earned cash by those who imply that, yes, this time impeachment really, really, really is going to happen.
I do think there is such a thing as ethics among fundraisers, and the DCCC pitch falls well within the lines. After all, while President Barack Obama won't be impeached and convicted of anything, as long as Republican Whip Steve Scalise, the third-ranking Republican in the House, plays footsy with the impeachment crowd it doesn’t seem unethical for Democratic fundraisers to exploit the possibility.
Republican politicians who talk of impeachment, or who won’t shut off the discussion, are irresponsible. But the Republican fundraisers who raise money off the chatter? Nope. They do battle with the issues their political leadership creates.
Ultimately, it’s not the fundraisers who are at fault, it's the gullible partisans who open their wallets every time someone on their side say “Boo!”
Hey, folks: I’m all for giving money to candidates and parties. But every time you respond to ridiculous scare pitches, you make politics a little bit worse. And, yeah, I can just hear you complaining about how politics and politicians are so awful and all the rest of it. Forget that: It's you. You're the problem. Cut it out.
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Jonathan Bernstein at firstname.lastname@example.org
To contact the editor on this story:
Francis Wilkinson at email@example.com