So far, September has not been kind to Donald Trump.
Since Aug. 28, his job approval — according to the RealClearPolitics average — has fallen from 43.8 percent to 40.7 percent. Three points may not seem like a lot, but Trump had held fairly steady at between 43 and 44 percent for the past four months. The last time he was as low as he is now was in March of this year, when he had only 40.1 percent approval.
The results of this fall are apparent in the public's votes on the generic Congressional ballot. Democrats now sport an 8.2 edge — up from 4.4 in mid-August.
With economic news continuing to be good, two factors appear to account for the shift:
First, the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearings have brought abortion center stage, rallying women to back Democrats.
Second, former President Barack Obama hit the campaign trail, likely rallying African-Americans to get involved in opposing Trump. The message of these September blues is clear: Trump must not rely on good economic news to carry him to victory in 2018. He has to make the case that the radical "progressives" who have taken over the Democratic Party are beyond the pale and would lead the country into peril.
The individual elements of the "progressive" agenda are superficially appealing but would have sharply negative consequences for the nation.
"Medicare-for-all" sounds good, but think of the impact on the already fragile Medicare system of adding hundreds of millions of new beneficiaries who already pay taxes into the system. Now, their taxes subsidize the care of their parents, but under the new system, spending would soar and easily overtake revenues.
A $15 minimum wage also sounds like a good idea. But its results in Seattle, where the proposal was adopted, suggest it lowers income for minimum wage recipients because it encourages businesses to cut their hourly workers and reduce their hours.
Guaranteed income would be nice, but the impact on our budget and our economy of "welfare-for-all" would be a catastrophe.
The Republicans need to step up and make a case against the left of the Democratic Party. It is only by making such comparisons that we can overcome the individual constituency issues dragging down Trump's and the Party's poll numbers.