CHIENG: Democrats might know
how to rally their base, but when they reach out
to Middle America, -they say things like…
-(majestic music playing) For working families
to get a share of that prosperity
that they’re creating, -we need some serious
enforcement -(music fizzles) of competition laws. You’re boring. Single-payer, single-payer…
(laughs): single-payer. It’s like you don’t even care
about what you’re saying. Can you hear me now?! -It’s not working.
-It’s not working? No, it’s not. And it’s no surprise,
last election, people in swing states went for
a guy who said things like… Who’s gonna pay for the wall?! ALL:
Mexico! I’d like to punch him
in the face, I’ll tell ya. Trump honed his trademark
oratorical style– where else–
in professional wrestling. And if Democrats
were gonna fight back, they needed someone
who could go head-to-head with a WWE Hall of Famer
like Trump. And in the heart
of coal country, we found him. Shut your ignorant mouths, ’cause the Progressive Liberal
has something to say! Finally, a Democrat
who doesn’t make me want to change the channel. Dan Richards has been making
headlines wrestling as the Progressive Liberal and riling up
small-town audiences all over Trump country. Hillary! I should have done this
a long time ago! (shouting) How hard is it to pretend
to have these liberal values? Oh, I’m not pretending. But even if the crowd
hates him, the Progressive Liberal could
teach swing state Democrats some classic
wrestling techniques for getting voters’ attention. You want to stick to broad,
brushstroke talking points. Right. So, Middle America would
rather learn about politics through a mostly naked man -than by reading a book?
-Yeah. But Dan assured me that,
besides wearing shirts, politicians and wrestlers
had one key difference. People in politics will say
anything to get elected, whereas a good wrestler– they’re only gonna say things
that they truly believe in. So what you’re saying is that
the level of political discourse -in wrestling is actually higher
than in politics? -Oh, yeah. CHIENG:
But with Congress immobilized by partisan politics, what advise did a progressive
liberal have for Democrats? Let’s say you’re Chuck Schumer, and Mitch McConnell puts you
in a headlock. What do you do? Um, I would reverse it
into a top wrist lock, and then I would stomp on his
elbow, breaking his wrist. -And then the issue would be
resolved? -Without a doubt. CHIENG: The progressive liberal
had some great ideas for updating
Democrats’ messaging, but could he take on
the heavyweight champion of The White House? Unfortunately,
he was busy golfing, so we cast someone else to approximate Trump’s
rhetorical style. (indistinct shouting) Shut up! Yeah! MAN (over P.A.): Introducing
The Commander-in-Briefs! Is it just me,
or is it getting cold in here? -(indistinct shouting)
-‘Cause there’s… Because there’s a snowflake
in the ring! -I am not a snowflake!
-Snowflake! -I am not
a snowflake! -Snowflake! -(audience members chanting)
-RICHARDS: Quit pandering! I’m not pandering.
I’m one of them. My pandering was working! Time to take this
to the next level. Do you know what this man wants?
Let me guess what you want to do with the guns in this country. Just let me guess. -You want to take them away!
-(indistinct shouting) I don’t want to take away guns. I’m just for
really strict background checks. CHIENG: Okay, that wasn’t
too hard to understand, and the audience was into it. Okay, fine. Whatever about guns.
Let me guess what you want
to do about marijuana! -(cheering)
-RICHARDS: I think what people want to do behind closed
doors should be their business. -MAN: Yeah.
-Like hell you do. That is my position
as the progressive liberal! -(cheers and applause)
-CHIENG: Looks like broad-brush
talking points work, especially that
marijuana one, Democrats. So maybe let wrestlers craft
slogans for your next campaign, like “Lock Guns Up,” or “Make America Greatest,” or just “420 4 2020.” But let’s face it.
What really turns on swing-state crowds isn’t words.
It’s action. I don’t care about your
positions ’cause you suck! Middle America wants a strong
hero who won’t back down from a fight, so Democrats, if you want to beat
a wrestler president, keep it simple
and go on the offensive. Fakes news! Ow! Fake news! Ouch! Fake…
(groaning) Welcome to the future
of American politics.