Jim Newell has an omnibus piece on how the Democratic Party is going to be adapting its messaging and the DNC to respond to the groundswell of demonstrations and activism that have been sweeping the country:
It is much easier to harness energy than it is to be tasked with mustering energy where there is none. The DNC isn’t going to come up with “the message” any more than House Democrats are, or any more than Chuck Schumer is. The message is going to be determined on the ground and filter up to its politicians, and some of the best messaging in years is coming out from these packed town halls. The video of Jessi Bohon’s Christian defense of universal health coverage at a Tennessee town hall for Republican Rep. Diane Black has exploded. The clip of a Republican official in Florida being instantly jeered to silence after saying “death panel” was the most effective rejection of that lie since Sarah Palin first invented it eight years ago. Official Democrats don’t need to come up the message. They just need to get out of the message’s way.
I finally got a chance to listen to three of the candidates for DNC Chair on Josh Marshall’s podcast. As Newell points out in his piece, the characterization of this as a horserace between the “Bernie faction” (Keith Ellison) and the “Establishment faction” (Tom Perez) is silly. Both have a similar plan for Democrats: running races up and down the ballot, channeling the energy of recent protests, and re-building state and local party organizations. Either would be a good DNC leader. My only concern about Ellison was that DNC chair in 2017 is a full-time job. Since he’s committed to resigning his seat if he’s elected, that’s a non-issue.
Team Perez all the way!!!!
Agreed. We are blessed with a slate of good candidates to choose from. It’s sucks for the people who won’t get the job, but there are plenty of opportunities for leadership in these interesting times.
I think all three are good guys and I’d be happy with any of them. I lean towards Buttifieg because of the whole ending the primary wars thing. I’d be more impressed with Sanders’ endorsement of Ellison if he had promised to turnover his donor lists to him (has he?) but Ellison is a good guy with lots of energy in any case.
@Princess: The one place where I thought Ellison stood out was the fact that he and his team transformed his district from the lowest turnout CD in Minnesota to the highest turnout CD in Minnesota since he was elected. That is a powerful message.
Ellison has turnout and voter registration experience, Perez has organizational management experience. Both were phenomenal at those tasks, and the DNC could use both strengths. I really don’t have a strong preference either way except that I’d love Perez to run for MD governor despite Hogan’s current popularity.
Keith is my Congressman. The guy who used to hold the seat was as bland a bit of white bread as you can find even by Minnesota standards. It is a solid Dem seat so Marty had a great voting record and no particular need to run hard. Ellison changed that running part for a lot of reasons. I really don’t want to lose him as my Representative but he has drive and energy so if we do lose him at least it is to a greater good. I personally consider Bernies endorsement a negative since he is not now nor has he ever been a Democrat interested in advancing the Party’s agenda. I am willing to ignore it however.
Yup. Maryland should NOT have a republican governor. It’s an embarrassment.
100% this. The overall message might not be more than ‘stop lying to us’ or ‘start helping us’ but whatever it is the Dems need to embrace it.
As I mentioned in another post a while back, the post-election meeting of my local Democratic Party organization was packed to the rafters, and the resistance groups that have sprung up organically in response to the Trumpster fire were well-represented. Party officials wisely used the opportunity to allow group leaders to speak to the assembled crowd and connect with one another so we can support each others’ efforts, bringing more pressure to bear.
The local party is playing the role of facilitators rather than getting ahead of the movement, which I think is really smart. Like most Democratic organizations, our local group has vestigial Bernie and Hillary factions, and that has roiled officialdom in some ways since the election. But I think the way they’ve been playing it lately with the rank and file is wise: basically, they’re making training available and telling folks to go get their candidates elected to express their views. That’s the ultimate test, isn’t it?
Leaning towards Perez for DNC chair, but all I’ve heard from have good ideas, and I’ll be ready to support whoever wins. Screw re-litigating the primaries; there’s too much work to do.
Snarki, child of Loki
That’ll make the GOPers sweat. But you get the crowd chanting JUSTICE! JUSTICE! and the GOPers will flee in terror.
Hell, if they can even get names on the ballot for the usually-unopposed seats, it can be a win for FL, although it will take decades to undo the damage Voldemort and his merry band of gun fondling, holy roller, misogynist RWNJs have done.
There’s nothing “Establishment” about Tom Perez, and while I like Ellison and won’t be disappointed if he prevails, I would prefer to see Perez in there if for no other reason than to reel in this habit on the left of constantly coming up with new short-term litmus tests and essential virtue signals.
Supposed link to video of christian defense of universal health care goes to an interesting slate article about a Republican woman representative who introduces legislation whose title exaggerates what it will do for women, and contrasts it with Democratic women representatives better legislation. I liked the article but I’d kind of like seeing the promised video too, as it sounds interesting.
I’ve got my ticket and my room arranged in DC for the Scientists March on Earth Day. There are three local marches that will be worthy but if we’re not on the Mall the rest won’t matter based add much. Let’s do this!
@gvg: Yah. Can you correct the first link please, mistermix?
ETA sorry, it’s not the first link, it’s the second one.
ETA#2 @mistermix–also realized it’s in the quoted passage, so you may not have the correct link anyway.
I’m hoping they do follow because there’s a penchant in the Democratic Party for saying “why are we focusing on THIS, but not that?” and it’s always framed as an accusation that anyone who is working on anything is not working on the other thing because they “don’t care”.
Here locally this “resistance” seems to me to be mostly led by women. This is purely anecdotal. I don’t claim to be spotting some “megatrend” or anything. That’s always been true in local Democratic politics- women do the majority of the scut work- but this feels a little different to me- like they’re out front. I’m hosting a local event at my house on March 4th and I plan to shut up and let them tell me what they are interested in. They will, but they might not if someone jumps in there and starts telling them what to care about.
Also, I know I say this all the time but I say it all the time because it’s true. There was nothing stopping liberals from running anyone in less high profile races in these states. The DNC doesn’t matter that much. No one consults them, no one asks permission. In fact, one could argue they are irrelevant to local organizing or something like a House race in a red district or state legislature and the FACT that they are irrelevant is poof that they are out of touch.
It’s simply not true that The Left in the Dem Party “need” a certain DNC chair. No, they don’t. They NEVER have.
This started with Dean, who was WILDLY over-rated IMO. Howard Dean didn’t make or break anything in 2006. Deaniacs promoted this idea that he was a genuis, led mostly by Daily Kos. Howard Dean is not even all that liberal.
People talk a lot about the top of the ballot helping the down-ballot. Reps in safe seats pushing up turnout could just as easily make the opposite true,
It worries me because I still see the cluelessness. DeVos garnered all that opposition because public schools are everywhere and every public school has kids with disabilities. Every one. 100% coverage and relevance. To wonder why that hit home and something else didn’t is to not understand something crucial and basic about why people DO this. Stop analyzing. Take the gift. Don’t insist you shoulda got something else, and this gift sucks and you want to exchange it.
@Kay: That’s the implicit message our county-level Democratic organization has for people who feel “disenfranchised” by the Democratic Party: Here’s training for everyone, now go win a school board or council seat.
@Betty Cracker: @Kay: Isn’t it true in a lot of places, maybe most places, that the Democratic Party locally is desperate for candidates? I don’t get the sense that they’re working super hard to keep out the riffraff, more that there’s very little riffraff willing to try to get in.
That’s definitely the case in red areas where Republicans too often run unopposed, and I don’t blame people for not wanting to spend lots of time and money tilting at windmills. But yeah, if you’re running around lecturing Democrats about being corporate sellouts and insisting that people who voted for Trump and swept in a GOP majority would have voted for a democratic socialist were they given that option, go ahead and run for school board or county commissioner on a democratic socialist platform in Knotted Snake, Florida! I guaran-damn-tee you if a democratic socialist won in a red county, the Democratic Party would sit up and take notice!
running for office in a 55% R area is horrible. It’s not at all “privileged”. It’s like working 50 hours a week to win the lottery. We had a candidate for the US House in 2006 who burned thru her entire retirement savings. She lost by 4 and that was “historically close”. This idea that the “Democratic Party” keeps people out is not true in these places. We have to beg people to run. we had a left-labor candidate in 2010 . I begged him. No one “stopped” me or even paid any attention at all. It doesn’t work like that. There’s no checking in with headquarters EXCEPT for high profile contested races. If they’re talking about President of the United States or a Senate race in Massachusetts or something maybe the DNC intervenes. The whole complaint about the DNC is they DON’T intervene in R areas. They’re irrelevant.
I’m confused about the whole Bernie Sanders approach. Okay, rust belt populist. So why isn’t this led by a rust belt populist? A Senator from Ohio or Michigan? Why aren’t they joining Sanders?
O. Felix Culpa
Because he’s full of sh*t?
ETA: As a former rust-belt dweller, I see little evidence that the lefty left is engaged in concrete measures that would actually make a difference in those areas.
@Kay: I tend to think that a huge chunk of the Sanders crowd has fantasies about a labor awakening that lashes back against “neoliberalism” and free trade and all the rest. But virtually all of the most passionate Sandernistas I know are middle-aged academics and college-aged hipsters–to wit, not working-class at all. Now, that’s probably more to do with the kinds of circles I travel in than anything else, but I still suspect the popularity of Sanders among white working-class Democrats had more to do with antipathy towards Hillary Clinton the person than with some deep identification with social-democratic goals and views.
@O. Felix Culpa: I haven’t lived in that region but I think one counterpoint would be opposition to trade deals. But AFAICT lefty opposition to trade deals has to do with corporate-friendly provisions and whatnot, while white working-class opposition to trade deals mostly has to do with there being more Mexicans around than there used to be. They’re not really speaking the same language.
O. Felix Culpa
@FlipYrWhig: Real question: was Wilmer actually popular among WWC Democrats? My anecdata suggests that his support came from the middle-aged academics, comfortably retired aging [white] hippies with dreams of the glory days of the sixties, and white not-working-class college kids. They’re all real constituents, of course, but not from the vaunted WWC. And one unifying factor: White. Make that two unifying factors: predominantly Male.
I think there will be something to replace labor unions and it will look a lot like a… labor union because it’s an old and basic idea and no one has ever come up with anything else. It’s lasted this long because it’s pretty simple- a non-government organization for lower level workers so they increase leverage. No amount of “innovation” changes that basic idea. There is no other option ever offered.
O. Felix Culpa
I think you’re correct about that. My perception is that the WWC wants to return to their ascendancy – in economic, patriarchal, and racial spheres – of yesteryear. I would be happy to support policies that provide them and everyone a fair shot at economic success; the rest of their agenda, not so much. I wonder if and when they’ll figure out that 45 ain’t gonna do a thing to help them.
Rust belt liberal politics gets complicated and so does labor politics. The entire rust belt Dem group in the Senate signed a letter opposing climate change legislation because of heating costs and the fact that manufacturing and agricultural use a lot of energy. Labor has huge divisions. Construction trades will work with Trump if he ever “builds” anything, which he won’t, but this isn’t “easy”. Rust belt diverges from liberals all the time.
Bernie Sanders just glides over all this, because he doesn’t have to get elected in these places.
@O. Felix Culpa:
Well, they didn’t figure it out after two years of Trump posturing, displaying embarrassing lack of knowledge on anything related to policy, and promising the same BS that didn’t help them under Bush (in fact it did quite the opposite).
If they don’t know it by now; they will never, ever, ever know it (No they won’t)
O. Felix Culpa
@Kay: Excellent observation. Collective action and collective bargaining are the only vehicles lower level workers have to protect themselves and advance their interests. In other words, unions.
@Kay: Do you think organizations like Fight for $15 might be the thing that replaces traditional trade unions as a core Democratic constituency?
O. Felix Culpa
Sigh. I keep hoping that folks would learn to connect the dots, but neither my unicorn nor the Great Pumpkin have arrived. Yet.
@O. Felix Culpa: Point taken. I feel like the demographics of the Sanders vote in the upper Midwest suggested strength among white working-class _Democrats_, but I don’t have any data on that, just hazy recollection. IIRC the analytical leap that a lot of people then proceeded to make was that he must have strength among white working-class people across the partisan spectrum too. I don’t think we should count on that. And in the more general sense I think you’re totally right that the image of Bernie Sanders, class champion, has a very thin foundation (an image cultivated by Sanders himself, because he sees himself that way) — I think he’s always been the SDS candidate, but that the media got lulled by his rally crowds into thinking he had greater penetration than that.
@Kay: But, it we go to a deep enough level, there’s not a lot to distinguish a labor union from a PTA: an organization of people with a common cause working together. Nevertheless, looking at the variety of ways the world has come up with to organize political parities and coalitions in the variety of ways they’ve cobbled together what are lumped as “democracies”, I’d posit there’s nevertheless room for changes in unions when faced with different contexts, while maintaining the basement definition of NGO uniting lower-level workers. I’m also like Betty, rather intrigued by possible worker-consumer-group alliances. (not as a replacement for core demographic right away, but rather as an additional facet in the playing field for the basic traditional union cause).
Well, fight for fifteen was “15 and a union”. The “and a union” got lost. I know it’s considered wildly successful though.
Democrats needed labor unions as much as labor unions needed Democrats. It was a way for them to stay close to working class people, to hear from them. They have been hurt by not hearing from working people. IMO they lost touch. It’s great to talk about “opportunity” but something like 40% of minimum wage workers are NOT high school students. They are wage earners for families. You have to reach them where they are, and this is where they are. I think it was perceived as snobbiness- like Democrats don’t respect the work that they are doing.
If you’re going to announce skills training DON’T use Bloomberg and Dimon. Stop doing that. It’s snobby and clueless. Find someone who HAS trained as a machinist or whatever. Stop using CEO’s to scold working people. No more of that.
It’s a good sign that the major DNC chair candidates are picking up on both the party building and listening to the voices of resistance. I’ve said before that I think either Perez or Ellison likely would be fine, and this reinforces that opinion.
@Betty Cracker: The only issue there is that particular organization, per its own title, is focused on a single concrete goal that, if achieved, arguable leaves them without a raison d’etre. Also, pay is important, but it doesn’t cover a lot of aspects of working life where working people might not have the resources they need or even be exploited. Proper unions are important to fight for the whole needs of their membership.
Getting people to see the importance of unions, considering America’s relative affluence, seems like it will also be a tough fight, though. The most common attitude I hear about unions is that they are hotbeds of corruption and, to a lesser extent, turn workers against their employers As if a few bad acts negate the need for workers to band together.
I just think there’s a need and needs tend to get filled. The need becomes more acute with less and less regulation. Conservatives are essentially creating the conditions that made labor unions necessary. There will be a Triangle Shirtwaist. People will get hurt and they will look to a private org for protection because they won’t have state action.
There’s just two options- regulation by the state or some private replacement for that. When the state fails to regulate that creates a need.
@Kay: That makes sense. It might also be the case that staying in touch with working people will require different tactics in various parts of the country, as some places don’t have much of a union tradition and will have to build up from scratch. But yeah, scolding from CEOs is a dumb idea in any industry / place.
Of course I missed Kay’s post with the “and a union” part. It’s sad that part got lost, but in the clickbait age you gotta keep things pithy.
@Kropadope: Great point about the corruption angle; that perception seems to be really strong among working folks I know who are vaguely anti-union even though they sure could use one. Maybe never put a guy named “Hoffa” in charge of a union, ever again? I don’t know jackshit about Hoffa Jr. and was only a Teamster on a seasonal job once 25 or so years ago, but the name itself has unshakable connotations of mobbed-up corruption, it seems…
One of the things that young people tell me is they don’t need a union because there are wage and hours regulations. But if no one on the state end enforces them they’re useless . I’m a private lawyer. i’m not pursuing their wage and hour claim I don’t get paid for that. they have to find someone to enforce their claim. Good luck! :)
If their employer is making them clock out and wait until it’s busy to get paid their employer is stealing from them
they need someone to bring their claim that’s more time they aren’t being paid for. They could put 20 hours in to get wage and hours enforced to get back 10 hours. “Regulation” doesn’t mean anything if they can’t access damages.
@FlipYrWhig: Most ardent BS supporters I have encountered have been aging hippies (>60 years old)
ETA: These folks are not working class at all but middle to upper middle class.
students too, though, male and female
There is corruption but there’s corruption in everything. It’s weird to focus exclusively on union corruption.
I actually think labor union LEADERS lost touch. They’re all 1. older 2. lawyers. When I was in a union younger people resented all the focus on health care plans. They want wage increases. They don’t want elaborate health care plans as a replacement for wage increases. They don’t use that the same way older people do. They don’t want free eyeglasses. They want more take-home.
@zhena gogolia: Most had reluctantly migrated to HRC at the end of the campaign but the BS or bust
women, I knew were both in their mid 60s. It was impossible to cut through their dense fog of stupid. I gave up.
@Kay: Those people that fixate only on stereotypical labels and branding will find other things to call their NGOs organized through common labor-participation, just as they justify “their” adulterous behavior as different and “their” abortions as the justifiable ones. I also don’t really doubt there will be a swing-back. I’m probably just more willing to be fluid / wait and see about the form (and tactics) of the NGOs bringing the pressure going forward. At this point, in this context, especially with automation, etc, the leverage of a purely labor-based association (especially when only nationally based) might not be as great as it once was. Consumers, for the moment, might have a bigger stick to swing. The varying response of large corporations to Reign Trump also shows some interesting fissioning that might indicate a changing context that will provide opportunities for NGOs, however formed, to exploit. (ETA: for causes traditionally pushed by “labor”).
Speaking as a young person, I very much want and need both.
Though I understand that “just because you’re young doesn’t mean you don’t need health insurance” is often hard to drive through to people my age; I have at least one former co-worker who neglected the need for health insurance and is now dead.
@Kay: When I was a younger person working a union job, I wanted to get on the healthcare plan. I couldn’t, though, because despite the fact that I was working full-time, even overtime, every week without fail for years; I didn’t have a “full-time position” with guaranteed full-time hours. I also didn’t appreciate how good the pay actually was until I had left the job and couldn’t get the same pay rate for a decade. All I saw at the time was that I couldn’t afford healthcare or my own place to live. I didn’t know how much worse I could have had it.
Well, problems that specifically hurt the liberal agenda take an outsize role in the conventional wisdom.
@O. Felix Culpa: @FlipYrWhig:
Lots more Mexicans than there used to be + lots fewer secure, comfortably middle-class jobs than there used to be – is a much easier sell with much less explanation or effort required of voters than explaining how corporate-friendly corruption of government is what is selling them out way beyond just trade deals. Hippies and brown people wear convenient uniforms that make them seem “other”, corporate types OTOH have an easier time selling themselves as members (or at least auxilliary members) of the tribe of working people.
Some of them will figure out that Trump won’t do anything actually meaningful to help them, even if a substantial majority of them won’t because they are too strongly captured by tribal identification with RWNJ politics. KEY POINT: We don’t need to win over a majority of these folks, in fact only somewhere between 10-20% of them to cause a seismic shift in the electorate back in our favor, especially in states that we lost the presidential and senate races by low-to-mid single digits.
Davis X. Machina
@schrodingers_cat: Mirror image to the hard Trump core — more prosperous, and older, than the norm. Probably for the same reason — can better ride out the tide of heightening contradictions…
Those senators had ben already signed up as super delegates before Bernie announced his candidacy.
Before the rust belt arrives, the community under the shadow of the plant was Democrat. No one would even mention they admired the Republicans. It all had to do with obtaining favors for housing, government positions and work from the one man who never held an office in the party yet was definitely a Democrat. During this election, I was stunned by the number of Republicans in or originally from this city. I can only conclude they blame the Democrats locally and nationwide for the rust belt.
@Davis X. Machina:
I’d believe that the average BS supporter is more prosperous than the norm. I’m not sure I believe the “older” part – it was my impression that Sanders played better with the young, and that, even among nonwhites, there was a generational split with the young ones responding much better to him.
Davis X. Machina
@Kay: This is a pernicious myth, but it’s ubiquitous – I see it all the time.
It’s hard to get candidates. It’s necessary to get self-financing candidates, especially in long-shot House seats. The alternative is often no candidate at all.
Something, DCCC something, DNC, Lujan, something. Suddenly there’s the wrong — i.e. not-left-enough — candidate, or no candidate.
Davis X. Machina
@Chris: It was certainly my experience @ town and county Democratic party functions. This was outside of Portland — the Sanders people skewed old. Closer to town, where’s there’s a pronounced youth tilt generally, partly because of the colleges, might have been different. Same people who turned out Kucinich, caucus after caucus.
I have a very hard time believing the causality on that, though: “blaming the Democrats for the Rust Belt.” The Rust Belt has been rusting for 40 years and the original Michigan “Reagan Democrats” were in 1980. Republicans have been happily striking trade deals, warring against unions, and rewarding outsourcing for decades; if Democrats have too, it makes the partisan association with those stances at worst a wash. Hence I can only think that what they blame Democrats for is caring “too much” about black people, new immigrants, LGBT people, and women’s issues.
This is more than “health insurance’ though. This is a direct trade. They can’t get a wage increase so they take the increase in more insurance coverage which makes older people and retirees happy – this is a trade they can use- but is less worthwhile for younger people. If you look at insurance as part of a wage package then it’s a shift in compensation from wages to insurance. Younger people need money, not more insurance. It isn’t balanced in a way that benefits them. Wage plus insurance plus retirement = total compensation. That can’t be skewed toward insurance or it’s skewed toward older people.
Employer provided health insurance isn’t free. It’s part of a wage package. They can earn X in wages and Y in insurance. If Y is too big a percentage then it’s not a good deal for them They’re trading a promise to pay for PAY.
Yup, though I’d just like to add that the Republicans blatantly poisoned a city in Michigan and still managed to carry the state.
Not that they’d ever say that out loud. They may not even consciously think it. Just an occasional gentle nudge from the lizard brain.
The Jessi Bohon video seems to have disappeared. If anyone has a link that works, would they put it in comments here? Thanks.
You saw this among union members during the ACA debate. They traded wage increases for comprehensive health insurance over 20 years. They paid for it already. When the Obama Administration said it would be taxed they (rightfully) objected.
Geg6 who posts here made this argument and she’s exactly right
It’s a wage cut because insurance is part of compensation. No one understands that like union members. They fight for these packages. Every detail.
@Chris: He did attract younger supporters but many of the younger women who I knew were BS supporters in the primaries, supported HRC in the general, while the older women decide to leave the Presidential line blank or vote for JS.
@mistermix: Ellison’s turnout claims are misleading at best.
Iowa Old Lady
Iowa is getting ready to gut collective bargaining for public employee unions, with the exception of police and fire fighters. Others will be able to bargain only on wages, not working conditions, and even more alarming, union dues will no longer be deducted from pay checks. Unions will have to collect them some other way.
The state instituted collective bargaining before we moved here in trade for the public unions giving up the right to strike. We’re apparently imitating Wisconsin.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
This 24 year old white woman from MI did, and I’m sure was very confused when/if she saw the backlash online calling her a racist. (Don’t know why I can’t cut and paste the text, because I am still pretty much computer illiterate) “Clinton would go out of her way to appeal to minorities, immigrants, but she didn’t really for everyday Americans“.
My go-to phrase is that there has not been a single human endeavor without corruption.
I cannot answer for the entire locations of the rust belt. I can only tell what I saw in this community. There was no evidence then of caring for Blacks, women issues, immigrants, etc. The city was divided as to where Blacks could live, go to school, work in the plant, etc. Most of my Black classmates quit school rather than have to go over the bridge for senior high school. There were 7 churches in this smaller ward that were designated by Italian, Polish, Black, etc. The residential streets and the government housing were also designated by color and ethnicity.
Now the main population of the ward is Yemini. The city decided to fly the flags of every nation that made up the population of the city on the bridge.
The Yeminis tried twice to buy an abandoned building for a mosque. Someone’s kid got in trouble at the high school. It was the fault of an Arab kid. Some things will never change. (sigh)
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: Well, maybe I overstated it by saying “never” and implying that I meant “all Trump supporters.” However, I still expect most of them know that racial minorities, women, and queerfolk are not part-time Americans (or whatever the opposite of “everyday Americans” would be).
Mike in DC
Yeah, when you press a party-switching WWC voter (or WMC) on what they don’t like about the Democratic party, “identity politics ” is often in the top 3. It goes to a certain zero sum mentality, that supporting the rights and interests of non-white citizens, women and LGBTQ citizens is “taking sides” against the rights and interests of white citizens, men and cis/het citizens. I’m not sure that this is a circle that can be properly squared. I suspect the best you can do is get back some voters with a more targeted economic appeal and pump up turnout among base voters and non/infrequent voters.
@HRA: Do you think that the arrival of newer immigrants from less familiar places is creating new kinds of backlash in the Midwest? There was that late Trump campaign stop where he ripped into Somalis in Minnesota. We’ve heard for a long time about Arabs and Muslims in and around Dearborn. I’m nowhere near there, but my hunch would be that Trump’s overperformance in the Rust Belt is only coincidentally about states with post-industrial economic distress–because that’s been true for two generations–but rather much more about a far more recent influx of new kinds of brown folks.
@Mike in DC: I think plenty of WWC voters understand they share a common cause with working people of all stripes. And it’s not even as though the Democrats don’t go out of their way to highlight how their agenda helps working people, it’s just that the message doesn’t seem to be breaking through somehow. You would think the mainstream media only WANTED to cover salacious news stories and deliberately ignores policy speeches. Like they’d rather cover Donald Trump’s empty podium for an hour straight rather than show what Hillary has to say about pay equity.
@Mike in DC: I don’t think the “targeted economic appeal” is going to work. I think they’ll be happy to reap the benefits of economic relief while continuing to abhor the way Democrats, to their minds, care about all kinds of people _but_ people like them. My pet theory is that the Republican Party should just go ahead and become a white nationalist populist party that agitates for their material interests. I’m not going to vote for anyone like that, mind you, but I can imagine a socially tolerant multiculti Democratic Party achieving acceptable policy by making common cause with nationalist Republicans. The racket the Republicans are running is _posing_ as champions of hardworking white people _and then doing nothing for them_. IMHO asking hardworking white people to become Democrats is going to be a bridge too far, but asking hardworking white people to vote for Republicans who do things other than cut the capital gains tax, slash regulations, and something something babies, _that_ seems like a thing that could happen. IOW the people who Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton both think of as the good side of the Trump vote — they should be driving the Republican train. They don’t. Tycoons and conspiracists do.
@FlipYrWhig: I watched a small rural dying Illinois town flip out over Amish people moving into the area — and my father had to repeatedly go to bat for our Amish tenants being hassled by the local township road commission. Can’t imagine what the town would have worked itself up to over any sporting more melanin.
Not to mention the secondary challenges– namely that unless the candidate is loaded its hard to convince good experienced staffers to jump onto an R +10 race- not because they don’t believe in the party or duck challenges but because its hard to get people to jump on an 80-100 a week job with no time off unless you think you can win.
People don’t get it but its a hard way to make a living- the money is good at the top end but also has a month or two of unemployment every year, the bottom end salaries across the board are literally a violation of recently adopted labor laws regarding overtime.
I was the treasurer for the Left-Labor candidate- I volunteered. A GOP nutjob on the Bd of Elections made me document each and every campaign finance report over and over. She would complain and that means I have to defend- look up the statute again, send her a paper letter why she’s wrong, again, contact the state lawyers at the secretary of state and ask THEM to send her a letter. I complied with all campaign finance reporting. It doesn’t matter. If someone complains about anything you have to respond.
I will never do it again. It has a chilling effect.
Also, Democrats could pay lower level people better. Or at all. it’s embarrassing to pay top people 600k and pay those at the bottom the equivalent of 5 dollars an hour. pay people. This should be a “principle”.
@Mike in DC:
That and it’s an unpleasant reminder that their cherished dreams of a fair and awesome nation where everyone gets where they are on nothing but merit is just crap, which they find uncomfortable because they’d rather worship the image of that society that try to make sure society actually lives up to it.
The Democratic party kicks ass for the working class – poetry by Loretta Sanchez
@scav: There are excellent reasons not to want the Amish around. They refuse to follow public health regulations (how would you like to live downwind of an Amish family with an overflowing outhouse?). They are notorious puppy millers. They’re a deadly road hazard because many of them refuse to put hazard reflectors on their buggies. They have a custom called “rumspringa” where teenage boys sow their wild oats for a few years before returning to the fold; this equates to vandalism against the “English” (non-Amish).
Considering their association with puppy mills, I never thought I’d see anyone on Balloon Juice defending the Amish! I myself have always thought we should move feather-Indians off the rez and integrate them into society, and move the Amish onto the rez.
@Kay: An abuse of power at the Board of Elections level that I’ve never thought about.
Arg! The phone, the phone! The Democratic party kicks ass for the working class. There. Sheesh. Think I will lurk for a while.
What I know about Ohio and Michigan is based on my younger days of vacationing there with my relatives. I was more familiar with Dearborn. I was born and lived in Windsor, Ont. until my teens. I stayed at my Uncle and Aunt’s house in Dearborn at least once a month on weekends. Dearborn was where my Dad and Uncle had Muslim boyhood friends who I knew growing up. There were Muslims in Dearborn from the early 1900s. It was natural for the newer arrivals to pick Dearborn as their new home. The earlier Muslims did not have any problems as far as I can remember. I do not know about today. I do know I would like to go there this summer.
I am presently more familiar with the Muslims here now. I know they are mostly Democrats. I cannot imagine any of them being Republicans now. They showed up at our airport during that dismal weekend. One of them took a video where the place exploded with welcoming them at “The Muslims are here.”
Although even with our support for them, there are too many hate filled anti Muslims here.
The only people worried about “relitigating the primaries” are the same people who were completely WRONG about Clinton being the best option to lead the party. The obsession about “moving on” is more about not wanting to take a long hard look in the mirror and admit how badly you screwed up. Nancy Pelosi is still House Minority Leader. Tells you everything you need to know about how little Beltway Dems get how much the ground has moved underneath them.
So I’m not going to take advice from folks who had their asses completely handed to them on a platter by a guy who is by all accounts, a completely undisciplined buffoon who ran a 21st century George Wallace campaign.
@Kay: Our local democratic party tried to recruit my stepson to work for them because they were so impressed with him as an intern. But what they offered was minimum wage with no benefits. He needed to pay rent and have health insurance. He is still a passionate Democrat but it will be years before he does much work for them, because his day job is demanding.