One issue I have noticed in Washington among both politicians and the media is that so many seem to be trapped in a DC time bubble.
For politicians, whatever the politics surrounding an issue were when they were first elected often remain that way in their minds. Similarly with big media figures in political reporting, they seem to believe if they worked on a big story it will remain relevant forever to the American public.
The recent spate of political stories about what Monica Lewinsky means for 2016 is a great example.
By 2016 the scandal will be 18 years old. Even when they hear that number many people, including professionals in Washington, still only think about it in terms of what they were personally doing 18 years ago — but what people should think about is what the next electorate was doing 18 years ago. When the Lewinsky scandal happened many of the 2016 voters were literally still soiling their diapers.
If we very conservatively assume a person doesn’t start listening to the news until they are 12, that would mean by 2016 basically no one under the age of 30 will have any real direct memory of the media and political circus that happened in 1998. This group should make about 1/6th of the 2016 vote.
While the controversy is distant memory for all voters, some will only know it as history.
Photo of Monica Lewinsky from her government ID photo by Office of the Secretary of Defense