Moderate Dem Leader Takes A 'This Is Fine' Stance On A Second Trump Presidency

One of the leaders of a group of moderate and conservative House Democrats added to President Joe Biden’s political woes on Tuesday, saying in an op-ed that he wasn’t buying the idea a second Donald Trump term would be a “unique threat” to American democracy.

“I reject the premise. Unlike Biden and many others, I refuse to participate in a campaign to scare voters with the idea that Trump will end our democratic system,” wrote Rep. Jared Golden (D-Maine).

Golden is a co-chair of a vanishing but key group of House Democrats called the Blue Dog Coalition, which has often been a thorn in the side of party leaders by pushing for more centrist policy proposals, even as the Democrats’ liberal wing has been ascendant in recent years.

The 10-member group’s roster also reads like a who’s who of vulnerable Democratic House members. In addition to Golden, the other two group co-chairs, Reps. Mary Peltola (Alaska) and Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (Wash.) are on the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s “Frontline” list of vulnerable members.

Golden’s op-ed for the Bangor Daily News adds to pressure for Biden to withdraw from the White House race over concerns about his age and mental acuity.

Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-Texas) has also called for Biden to step back, but his seat is considered safely Democratic. (Also, Doggett called Trump a “criminal” and expressed fears that he could become president again.)

As a member in a swing district, Golden is not only saying he’d be “OK” with a Trump victory, but is giving space to other vulnerable Democrats to publicly express concerns about Biden that they may have kept confidential in order to show loyalty.

In the op-ed, Golden said he was not surprised by Biden’s sometimes halting debate performance and its implications.

“It also didn’t rattle me as it has others, because the outcome of this election has been clear to me for months: While I don’t plan to vote for him, Donald Trump is going to win. And I’m OK with that,” he wrote.

Golden said the election was about the economy, not democracy, and argued that it was more important for Democrats to hold a chamber of Congress than the White House. In doing so, he dismissed widespread worry among Democrats that the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection was just a warmup for more antidemocratic actions Trump could take if he returned to the White House.

“Jan. 6, 2021, was a dark day. But Americans stood strong,” Golden wrote.

“Hundreds of police officers protected the democratic process against thousands who tried to use violence to upend it. Judges and state election officials upheld our election laws. Members of Congress, including leaders from both parties, certified the election results.”

Golden said a Trump victory would mean that whoever was elected from Maine would have to be able to bargain with him.

“Maine’s representatives will need to work with him when it benefits Mainers, hold him accountable when it does not and work independently across the aisle no matter what,” he wrote.