Overnight is an eternity in politics. That should not deter Democrats from tasting the current reality sandwich: as of now, Trump is a likely winner in 2020. Why?

There are too many Democratic candidates and they know it.  What could impel, say, East Bay California Congressman Eric Swalwell, to seek the presidency? Nothing but ambition and “what the hell” egomania despite the fact that he brings nothing new to the issues.

He’s a cute 38-year-old from Sac City, Iowa who beat 40-year-veteran Congressman Pete Stark for the Democratic nomination in 2012. He’s a former Alameda County deputy district attorney. He’s been on cable news quite a bit.  And that’s about it.

And there are many like him in the pack of nonentities who “think” they can be President even though they know that they will never make it. Why go through the list of nobodies? You know who they are by the fact that you don’t.

The theory of emergence from the bottom of the pack, citing poll numbers for Clinton and Carter who were not running against a platoon of candidates, is a dumb pipe dream designed to separate people from their money. To be sure, the dilution of the finite number of Democratic financial supporters to fuel this fairy tale causes real trouble for those who can lead and win. It’s outrageous.

Mueller is over. Folks, this didn’t happen from the standpoint of presidential politics.

I share the revulsion of many Americans, members of both political parties, provoked by the Mueller report’s details of Trump’s thuggish behavior, much of it a regurgitation (apt here) of details previously widely reported in the press and on cable tv. The “obstruction” part of the report has almost no redactions. A mere .2% of that section is redacted as Rule 6(e) grand jury material because voluntary witnesses told Mueller’s staff the same things these witnesses previously told the media.

Trump’s continuation in office should have nothing to do with whether he committed federal felonies–the task that Mueller undertook–because abuse of power and not crime should engage the concern of both citizens and the Congress.

So much ink (and air time) has been expended by sachems and bloviators on the “specific intent” required to support federal obstruction of justice (can be inferred circumstantially with the same evidentiary impact as direct evidence); whether no “underlying crime” precludes obstruction charges because it shows “no intent” (it does not); and whether a conspiracy to join Russia in its malign actions to affect the 2016 election can exist in the absence of Trump  campaign/Russian substantive cooperation (it can).

Criminal law theorizing and navel-gazing is irrelevant even though it is the basis of the entire Mueller report. A President should not be able to remain in office merely because a prosecutor’s crystal ball depicts a losing case before a jury in the District of Columbia (almost a sure winner, actually).

The Mueller report is not the key to Democratic victory in 2020 because it was playing one game (the search for crime) when the election is playing another (character, issues, and leadership).

House investigations and possible impeachment will not elect a Democrat. While I endorse investigations on moral grounds (post Mueller, a member of congress “can’t not” investigate, to quote EK), I have little hope of their efficacy in terms of presidential politics.

The White House can play games with subpoenas issued by House committees, resulting court cases and futile House contempt citations into 2020 and the public won’t care. Democratic gains in 2018 were the result of the upper hand on vital issues and not on throwing mud at Trump no matter how justified.

The economy and Trump’s popularity are key. Our economy is doing well with only minimal contribution from Trump. But it’s doing well and Trump is taking credit.

Trump’s popularity is lower today than it needs to be on election day 2020  if Trump is to win.

If the economy tanks in 2020 and if Trump’s popularity remains at the current low numbers, Trump probably loses if he’s running against a credible Democrat who has no “foot-in-mouth” malady. Two very big ifs.

A lower economy, an unfavorable circumstance, and continued low approval for Trump give Democrats hope for 2020.

But it’s just hope.