Theresa’s Dismay

The demise of British Prime Minister Theresa May has been put off. At least until next week.

Last weekend, the Sunday Times assured readers that the Maybot had finally rusted into obsolescence, heading for a Chinese junkyard presumably, to be pecked at by enterprising children and sold for parts.

But she clings on. Meeting with Conservative Party’s bloodbathers, the 1922 Committee, usually portends a brutal political death. May escaped Wednesday’s meeting unblemished. The “22” even banged the tables—the British answer to the American whoop-and-holler.

The Conservative Party owes its immutable success to its shapeshifting ability to suck up changing electoral winds, and ruthlessly dispatch failing leaders. Indeed, they severed Margaret Thatcher, revered with oedipal obsession among many Tories, without a flutter.

May was once regarded as Thatcher’s second coming. Then she called a general election and frittered away a 20-point lead to hapless Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn with a disastrous campaign promise to implement a “dementia tax.” It wasn’t too popular. Her party’s slim majority dissolved into a minority government pervious to all enemies—including her own lawmakers.

But what enmeshes May, also emboldens her. She survives weekly prognostications of doom because 17.4 million people in this country voted in 2016 to leave the European Union. There’s less than six months until we officially leave. Now is not the time to reenact the ending of “Reservoir Dogs.”

In typical British fashion, the Brexit first-domino-in-the-populist-revolt has simmered into arcane talk of what to do with the Irish border, what color our new passports should be, and whether we will still mess around with daylight saving time.

Things here could not contrast deeper than those across the Atlantic. America has taken something British and made it bigger, louder, and (maddeningly) better. As usual.

Brexit was supposed to be our revolution. We were meant to break away from the European Union and once again find that which made us Great. Instead, we have May’s Chequers deal—Brexit in Name Only. And even that is diluting by the minute.

It all began so well. Theresa May and Donald Trump ripped to power on the fumes of those whom social commentators call the “left behind.” Both spoke to millions long apathetic about the stale consensus of Davos-approved spreadsheet sermonizing. Both were ripe to revive furred old party veins with blue-collar blood.

But that is where the similarities between the two end.

Despite well-mannered rumblings from the likes of Jacob Rees-Mogg, May has enjoyed relative party support, save for a handful of Tory Remainers who oppose leaving the European Union in any form.

The media also offers a sympathetic ear. Notwithstanding May’s numerous own goals, media criticism remains constructive and patrician—at worst.

We can’t say either thing with regards to President Trump. Around 90 percent of his media coverage is negative, despite the president’s swelling list of achievements. Trump presides over full employment, American paychecks are finally fattening, black unemployment rests at its lowest-ever rate, and he’s rejigged trade agreements into better deals for American workers. Let’s not forget the appointments of Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.

Even better news is the proof that Americans are leaving jobs confident that they can find something better—a notion unknown under President Obama, who, of course, claims all this good work is actually thanks to him.

Yes, Trump is often boorish, petulant, and possessed of Serrano-thin skin, but most Americans continue to pinch their noses in support of an undeniably strong record. Indeed, Trump’s approval rating recently hit its highest since March 2017.

That is why progressives detest the president with a fervor purer than the usual broth reserved for a Republican commander-in-chief. Unlike May, and much like Thatcher, Trump refuses to play ball with the stifling deployments of political correctness. He is winning. And, most terrifying of all for the Left, the bellicose bruiser loves to brawl.

Some progressives danced in the streets when Thatcher died. Sadly, many will do the same for Trump.

But such theatrics will, for now, be limited to the usual inflamed impotence—the door-banging, the wailings, the competitive signaling of virtue. As the midterms approach, the soothing Democratic blue wave looks to have ebbed into a trickle as the blue inkblot smudges the pages of reality.

Not to enumerate fowl, but early numbers suggest a much closer battle than we have been foie gras-ed. Democratic operatives have all but conceded the Senate shuttered.

Why? The Kavanaugh hearing sparked a blowback within the red half of America aghast at the gleeful (and thankfully temporary suspension) of due process. And the political gift of thousands of Central Americans caravaning toward the southern U.S. border has served President Trump’s law and order campaign the most optically lavishing of gifts. If anything gets Republicans to the voting booths, it is immigration—75 percent recently said illegal immigration is a “very big problem.” Not to mention the booming economy.

Worse yet, Democrats have no obvious candidate to break out in the event of an emergency in which they do not control any branch of government after November 6.

So, perhaps the spuriously “artful” and often violent fantasies of removing President Trump will remain just those until at least 2020. Theresa May, however, will be gone long before then.

Photo Credit: Henry Nicholls – WPA Pool/Getty Images

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