Monday, July 27, 2015

Why Do Democrats Lose In Backward, Reactionary Parts Of The Country? Maybe They Should Try Something New-- Like Running As Real Democrats


Friday, Politico warned: "Governor’s races in South and Midwest could be lost if party brand becomes too liberal." The culprit: a leftward shift in the Democratic Party. "Centrist Democrats were wiped out in the 2014 elections and in their absence emerged a resurgent liberal movement, embodied most recently by the surprisingly competitive presidential campaign of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders." 

By "centrist Democrats," Politico always means right-wing Democrats who vote with the Republicans, DINOs or Republican-lite Dems like Kyrsten Sinema (Blue Dog-AZ), Patrick Murphy (New Dem-FL), Gwen Graham (Blue Dog-FL), Brad Ashford (Blue Dog-NE), Sean Patrick Maloney (New Dem-NY), Jim Costa (Blue Dog-CA) and other feckless congressionals who vote more frequently against the progressive agenda than for it and back Boehner's initiatives far more than anything proposed by Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders. "The party lost every competitive gubernatorial and Senate race in the South last year," they report, but never wonder what might have happened if the losers had actually behaved like Democrats instead of like DINOs.

Ultimate Beltway bullshit that gets repeated endlessly: "Democrats in red states are worried that the party’s shift toward an even more polarizing, populist tone could turn off the swing voters they need to mount a comeback in 2015 and 2016, when a handful of GOP-tilted states with Democratic governors are on the ballot."

For example, in Delaware in 2012, President Obama beat Romney 242,547 (59%) to 165,476 (40%), Democrat Jack Markell was elected governor with 69%, Democrat Tom Carper was elected to the Senate with 66%, and Democrat John Carney was elected to the House with 64%. But that doesn't stop these 3 DINOs from warning against populist trends in the Democratic Party.
Though his state is fairly reliable for Democrats, Delaware Gov. Jack Markell told Politico he worries that overemphasizing liberal themes to turn out the Democratic base will backfire.

“There are still more self-described conservatives than there are self-described liberals,” he said. “I think relying on a strategy where all you’re trying to do is turn out your base of liberal Democrats is not a very compelling electoral strategy. I think what we need to do is we need to have a message that is compelling to Democrats, to independents, and even to some Republicans.”

Georgia Democrat Jason Carter, the grandson of former president Jimmy Carter and the narrow loser of his state’s 2014 governor’s race, said the party would do well to preserve its inclusive image.

“Democrats in the South are the only truly ‘big tent’ party left,” he said, adding that he expects that mentality to pay off in the near future. “The only real litmus test we have is that you have to want to be in the fight with all different kinds of people-- and not exclude folks because of one or two issues.”

Though Sanders has largely come to represent the restive left, supplanting liberal beacon Elizabeth Warren, the fear among moderate Democrats is not that he’ll win their party’s nomination-- they’re still confident Hillary Clinton will be the party’s nominee-- only that his supporters will tug the party so far away from the middle that there’s no place for Southern moderates or Midwestern centrists.

The shift comes amid furious turnover for moderate Democrats at the gubernatorial level. Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear is term-limited and the race to succeed him takes place in three months. Missouri’s Jay Nixon and West Virginia’s Earl Ray Tomblin are also term-limited and will see successors elected in 2016. Montana Gov. Steve Bullock is up for reelection next year.

These Democrats, who congregated here for the summer meeting of the National Governors Association, treaded cautiously around the issue, emphasizing repeatedly that energy within any faction of the party is a positive force that will aid Democrats across the ideological spectrum.

Tomblin predicted West Virginia Democrats would continue to run as “moderate to conservative” candidates and won’t suffer from the pull of national politics. Beshear, whose preferred successor Jack Conway has bragged on the campaign trail about suing Obama over EPA regulations, underscored the importance of retaining the Democrats’ big-tent mentality.

“We include viewpoints all across the political spectrum and that includes everything from the most liberal viewpoints to the most conservative viewpoints,” he said. Beshear argued that Democrats’ focus on common goals-- job creation, improved education and access to health care-- would keep the party united. “Those issues bring us all together and I think will serve as sort of the anchor of the party throughout future years.”

...Democrats are mindful of how easily Republicans managed to tag local and statewide candidates as pawns of national leaders deeply unpopular in Republican-leaning states.

“Nancy Pelosi in South Carolina does not play well,” said Sheheen. “We need to have moderate figureheads in the party who can speak to people and relate to people in the south. If the message is a less mainstream message, if it is a more extreme message, then that would be a problem.”

One Democratic operative who works with gubernatorial candidates argued that the Democratic Party must avoid a slide into factionalism that mirrors the rise of the tea party on the right.

“The Democratic Party cannot become what the Republican Party is today – a fractured party with the tea party crazies on one side and the libertarian loonies on the other,” the operative said. “We have to be able to embrace all.”
Why doesn't Nancy Pelosi play well in these red states? Is it because of her ideas or is it because conservative Democrats run ads like these? (Bright was one of the reactionary Southern Blue Dogs who lost his reelection bid.)

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At 6:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As ever with the Post family of communication devices, the expressed concern is Democrats winning, while in fact the concern is who controls the Democratic Party. Without the DINO's, they might start acting like Roosevelt Democrats again. Heaven forfend.

At 7:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe the organization you referred to is more accurately called Politihoe

At 12:09 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Politico can come with tons of articles on the danger of the Democratic party moving to the left (just a little bit). But, there is no need for politico to write any articles on the danger of GOP moving even further to the extreme right.


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