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Author Topic: Sooooo. What lessons did Democrats learn from 2016 that they can apply in 2020?  (Read 1723 times)
Fuzzy Bear
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« Reply #25 on: January 07, 2017, 02:29:36 pm »
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I don't see where they've learned anything.  

They SHOULD have learned that since there are more conservatives than liberals in America, they need to be a "big tent" party.  That means tolerating centrists, giving them real roles in the party, and recognizing that, at times, a moderate compromise is better than no advancement at all.

Your idea of "centrist" is much different than mine.

Hillary Clinton is far left on social issues, leftish on economic issues.  

Jim Webb is a centrist.


With all due respect what the f*** are you talking about, we nominated the most centrist ticket we could of had.

A ticket of McCaskill and Manchin would have been the most centrist ticket possible.

Perhaps it's true that Clinton-Kaine is as centrist as it gets for today's Democratic Party.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2017, 10:54:36 pm by Fuzzy Bear »Logged

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« Reply #26 on: January 07, 2017, 02:44:08 pm »
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Don't nominate a long-serving establishment politician
Nominate a candidate with charisma
Focus on the economic message and actually appeal to non college-educated whites (that better describes Trump's demographic than WWC)
Nominate someone without a lot of baggage
Never try expand the map, just focus on getting to 270, and make sure your 'firewall' is a firewall
Get the base excited for your candidate
Either full-heartedly defend free trade and offer an alternative economic narrative, or better yet, abandon free trade and have an economic message that appeals to working people
Focus on the issues and show how Trump is bad there, not on how Trump or the Republican candidate is bad personally
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« Reply #27 on: January 07, 2017, 02:48:53 pm »
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-Turnout is about more than the major cities.

-Listen to the electorate. Say what you will about Bernie, but there's a reason his support went from the single digits to 42%.

-Energizing the base is critical. If progressives don't turn out for you, winning an extra 0.5% of suburban Republicans isn't going to save you.

-Pick an exciting candidate. Excitement isn't an indicator of how effective a candidate will be as president, but it's critical to getting elected president.

-Give people a reason to vote for you, other than just "the other guy is terrible."

46% of the Pledged Delegates not 42%. There are no votes county since caucus votes aren't counted.

@ Topic - The Dem party has to be purged of Centrists!
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« Reply #28 on: January 07, 2017, 02:49:07 pm »
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I don't see where they've learned anything. 

They SHOULD have learned that since there are more conservatives than liberals in America, they need to be a "big tent" party.  That means tolerating centrists, giving them real roles in the party, and recognizing that, at times, a moderate compromise is better than no advancement at all. 



Do you have ANY statistical proof that there are more conservatives than liberals, after the GOP lost the popular vote six times in the last seven elections?

Yes.  Yes I do.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/180452/liberals-record-trail-conservatives.aspx

Conservatives outnumber liberals 38%-24%.  

It is not news that Democrats need the votes of "moderates" and even a few "conservatives" to win elections. Michael Barone once pointed out that a big reason the GOP took over the Congress in 1994 was that for years, the overwhelming majority of Americans voted for Congressional candidates either (A) Republicans, or (B) Democrats who insisted that they were moderates or conservatives, yet every year, some piece of liberal legislation would pass by a narrow margin.  Barone pointed out that the advent of the Clinton Administration brought much of this out into the open.  There, it was revealed how many moderate and conservative Democrats would vote against liberal legislation on the floor, yet support it with key votes during the committee process.  What happened is that, over time, "conservative" and "moderate" Democrats lost some credibility; they were viewed as "liberals" when they were needed.

The Democrats won the popular vote by over 50% only twice (2008 and 2012), and they were aided greatly by circumstance.  Bill Clinton won with 43% and 49%, and the Perot vote was not a "liberal" vote at all.  The Democrats have proven more popular in the Presidential vote because the GOP had, indeed, become locked into a strident niche of conservatism that was off-putting to many voters in the center.  There was an uptick of liberal self-identification; it became less attractive to be a "conservative" after 2006, and conservatives haven't really recovered from that yet.  Politicians now describe themselves as "liberals" and "progressives"; they were afraid to until 2006.  

I would hold that the solid lead the GOP has in (A) the House of Representatives, (B) Governorships, (C) State Legislative seats, a lead that has been pretty constant since 2010, is proof that while there is not a conservative "majority", there are more conservatives than liberals.
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« Reply #29 on: January 07, 2017, 03:02:32 pm »
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Obstruction works, so run the f*&( over anyone you can until the opposition cries uncle.

Manufacture and blow out of proportion any sort of dirt you find and put it all over the airwaves until it becomes truth.

Any position that needs filling should be used as leverage.

And don't prepare for the debates, just campaign, campaign, campaign, campaign like there's no tomorrow...then you'll expand the map quite easily. People know whom they don't want by this point anyway.

Find someone with charisma, that way anything said will be believed, and therefore no damage at the debates will occur.

Make character assassination an implication with the issues on the forefront.
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L.D. Smith
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« Reply #30 on: January 07, 2017, 03:09:44 pm »
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I don't see where they've learned anything.  

They SHOULD have learned that since there are more conservatives than liberals in America, they need to be a "big tent" party.  That means tolerating centrists, giving them real roles in the party, and recognizing that, at times, a moderate compromise is better than no advancement at all.  



Do you have ANY statistical proof that there are more conservatives than liberals, after the GOP lost the popular vote six times in the last seven elections?

Yes.  Yes I do.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/180452/liberals-record-trail-conservatives.aspx

Conservatives outnumber liberals 38%-24%.  

It is not news that Democrats need the votes of "moderates" and even a few "conservatives" to win elections. Michael Barone once pointed out that a big reason the GOP took over the Congress in 1994 was that for years, the overwhelming majority of Americans voted for Congressional candidates either (A) Republicans, or (B) Democrats who insisted that they were moderates or conservatives, yet every year, some piece of liberal legislation would pass by a narrow margin.  Barone pointed out that the advent of the Clinton Administration brought much of this out into the open.  There, it was revealed how many moderate and conservative Democrats would vote against liberal legislation on the floor, yet support it with key votes during the committee process.  What happened is that, over time, "conservative" and "moderate" Democrats lost some credibility; they were viewed as "liberals" when they were needed.

The Democrats won the popular vote by over 50% only twice (2008 and 2012), and they were aided greatly by circumstance.  Bill Clinton won with 43% and 49%, and the Perot vote was not a "liberal" vote at all.  The Democrats have proven more popular in the Presidential vote because the GOP had, indeed, become locked into a strident niche of conservatism that was off-putting to many voters in the center.  There was an uptick of liberal self-identification; it became less attractive to be a "conservative" after 2006, and conservatives haven't really recovered from that yet.  Politicians now describe themselves as "liberals" and "progressives"; they were afraid to until 2006.  

I would hold that the solid lead the GOP has in (A) the House of Representatives, (B) Governorships, (C) State Legislative seats, a lead that has been pretty constant since 2010, is proof that while there is not a conservative "majority", there are more conservatives than liberals.


This leads well into another point.

Don't run away from the left, embrace it and nominate someone who can manage to return "small-government" into a snarl word as it used to be.

That changes the discourse entirely, just like Reagan did in 1980.

There's already an anti-Carter to take advantage as is. Paul Ryan is likely to turn into the anti-Tip  O'Neill

EDIT: It's likely conservatism will be dwindle in attractiveness soon, just as liberalism was king until the 60's...but it still stayed up until Reaganomics assassinated it.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2017, 03:18:41 pm by L.D. Smith »Logged

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« Reply #31 on: January 07, 2017, 03:18:49 pm »
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-Not to nominate a criminal

Grabbing the crotch of a woman without her consent is at the least "criminal sexual conduct", and if some black street thug did that to a pretty white girl who disliked such an unwanted act he might do a long prison term for that.

I'm not discussing the undue harshness of the legal system toward black people. White people should not get away with that, either.
  
Quote
-Not to insult millions of Americans

"They're rapists! They're murderers! They're bringing crime and drugs...". Mocking someone with a neurological disorder? I now know that I have have Asperger's syndrome, and I am even more offended.

Many American citizens marry illegal aliens... citizenship status would be the least of my concerns with a wife.

Quote
-Not to nominate someone with baggage and a high unfavorability rating

Sure, Americans across the political spectrum are excited at the prospect of Donald Trump as President. His favorability ratings are underwater except in the "Midwest" where he made a pitch to promise jobs.

(I know how that will work-- jobs with much lower pay that allow the Master Class far higher profits and executive compensation.

Quote
-Not to pick a nominee who will suppress the Progressive wing of the party

Does the Reactionary Party have a progressive wing? I expect Donald Trump and the Republican Houses of Congress to repress progressive tendencies wherever they exist so that America can 'enjoy' the sort of inequality typical of a plantation society or fascist regime.

I expect to hate life in Trump's America. even such a potential joy as my favorite sports team winning a championship, getting to look at a scenic wonder in America, or participating in a graduation or wedding will be compromised. I expect terms of employment to be far harsher.
  
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L.D. Smith
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« Reply #32 on: January 07, 2017, 03:31:26 pm »
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-Not to nominate a criminal

Grabbing the crotch of a woman without her consent is at the least "criminal sexual conduct", and if some black street thug did that to a pretty white girl who disliked such an unwanted act he might do a long prison term for that.

I'm not discussing the undue harshness of the legal system toward black people. White people should not get away with that, either.
  
Quote
-Not to insult millions of Americans

"They're rapists! They're murderers! They're bringing crime and drugs...". Mocking someone with a neurological disorder? I now know that I have have Asperger's syndrome, and I am even more offended.

Many American citizens marry illegal aliens... citizenship status would be the least of my concerns with a wife.

Quote
-Not to nominate someone with baggage and a high unfavorability rating

Sure, Americans across the political spectrum are excited at the prospect of Donald Trump as President. His favorability ratings are underwater except in the "Midwest" where he made a pitch to promise jobs.

(I know how that will work-- jobs with much lower pay that allow the Master Class far higher profits and executive compensation.

Quote
-Not to pick a nominee who will suppress the Progressive wing of the party

Does the Reactionary Party have a progressive wing? I expect Donald Trump and the Republican Houses of Congress to repress progressive tendencies wherever they exist so that America can 'enjoy' the sort of inequality typical of a plantation society or fascist regime.

I expect to hate life in Trump's America. even such a potential joy as my favorite sports team winning a championship, getting to look at a scenic wonder in America, or participating in a graduation or wedding will be compromised. I expect terms of employment to be far harsher.
  

In the case of Trump, it's the conservative wing he has to answer to, and yeah he didn't suppress them to nearly the same extent Hillary did to the progressives.

Hillary may have tacked quite a bit of ways left for the primaries, but she didn't really follow up after taking the nomination.

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« Reply #33 on: January 07, 2017, 03:50:51 pm »
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-Not to nominate a criminal

Grabbing the crotch of a woman without her consent is at the least "criminal sexual conduct", and if some black street thug did that to a pretty white girl who disliked such an unwanted act he might do a long prison term for that.

I'm not discussing the undue harshness of the legal system toward black people. White people should not get away with that, either.
  
Quote
-Not to insult millions of Americans

"They're rapists! They're murderers! They're bringing crime and drugs...". Mocking someone with a neurological disorder? I now know that I have have Asperger's syndrome, and I am even more offended.

Many American citizens marry illegal aliens... citizenship status would be the least of my concerns with a wife.

Quote
-Not to nominate someone with baggage and a high unfavorability rating

Sure, Americans across the political spectrum are excited at the prospect of Donald Trump as President. His favorability ratings are underwater except in the "Midwest" where he made a pitch to promise jobs.

(I know how that will work-- jobs with much lower pay that allow the Master Class far higher profits and executive compensation.

Quote
-Not to pick a nominee who will suppress the Progressive wing of the party

Does the Reactionary Party have a progressive wing? I expect Donald Trump and the Republican Houses of Congress to repress progressive tendencies wherever they exist so that America can 'enjoy' the sort of inequality typical of a plantation society or fascist regime.

I expect to hate life in Trump's America. even such a potential joy as my favorite sports team winning a championship, getting to look at a scenic wonder in America, or participating in a graduation or wedding will be compromised. I expect terms of employment to be far harsher.
  

In the case of Trump, it's the conservative wing he has to answer to, and yeah he didn't suppress them to nearly the same extent Hillary did to the progressives.

Hillary may have tacked quite a bit of ways left for the primaries, but she didn't really follow up after taking the nomination.



So I am getting the feeling that the main reason was that "Hillary wasn't liberal enough".
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« Reply #34 on: January 07, 2017, 07:15:26 pm »
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-Not to nominate a criminal

Grabbing the crotch of a woman without her consent is at the least "criminal sexual conduct", and if some black street thug did that to a pretty white girl who disliked such an unwanted act he might do a long prison term for that.

I'm not discussing the undue harshness of the legal system toward black people. White people should not get away with that, either.
  
Quote
-Not to insult millions of Americans

"They're rapists! They're murderers! They're bringing crime and drugs...". Mocking someone with a neurological disorder? I now know that I have have Asperger's syndrome, and I am even more offended.

Many American citizens marry illegal aliens... citizenship status would be the least of my concerns with a wife.

Quote
-Not to nominate someone with baggage and a high unfavorability rating

Sure, Americans across the political spectrum are excited at the prospect of Donald Trump as President. His favorability ratings are underwater except in the "Midwest" where he made a pitch to promise jobs.

(I know how that will work-- jobs with much lower pay that allow the Master Class far higher profits and executive compensation.

Quote
-Not to pick a nominee who will suppress the Progressive wing of the party

Does the Reactionary Party have a progressive wing? I expect Donald Trump and the Republican Houses of Congress to repress progressive tendencies wherever they exist so that America can 'enjoy' the sort of inequality typical of a plantation society or fascist regime.

I expect to hate life in Trump's America. even such a potential joy as my favorite sports team winning a championship, getting to look at a scenic wonder in America, or participating in a graduation or wedding will be compromised. I expect terms of employment to be far harsher.
  

In the case of Trump, it's the conservative wing he has to answer to, and yeah he didn't suppress them to nearly the same extent Hillary did to the progressives.

Hillary may have tacked quite a bit of ways left for the primaries, but she didn't really follow up after taking the nomination.



So I am getting the feeling that the main reason was that "Hillary wasn't liberal enough".

It could reduce to "be more careful about any involvement with computers"... like keep Boomers away from them beyond word-processing functions.

We Boomers used to be up-to-date with electronic gadgets, but we might as well be horse-and-buggy users now.

We need to be working on partisan messages against generic Republicans.

"Cruel, Corrupt. Reckless. Republican".
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« Reply #35 on: January 07, 2017, 10:02:14 pm »
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The valid points were the ones about not appealing to progressives and insulting Bernie supporters. 

The idea that Democrats should completely change course and cater to WWT voters in the midwest because of one election is ridiculous though.  As has been pointed out in multiple threads, Democrats dominated in diverse counties.  The country is getting more diverse.  You cannot please everyone.  Focusing on WWT, which is a shrinking segment of the population is the wrong strategy.

WWC and minorities are NOT necessarily opposed.


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« Reply #36 on: January 08, 2017, 05:09:46 pm »
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Nothing. The Democratic Party will collapse into obscurity as Trump leads a new golden age.
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« Reply #37 on: January 08, 2017, 06:59:35 pm »
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The valid points were the ones about not appealing to progressives and insulting Bernie supporters. 

The idea that Democrats should completely change course and cater to WWT voters in the midwest because of one election is ridiculous though.  As has been pointed out in multiple threads, Democrats dominated in diverse counties.  The country is getting more diverse.  You cannot please everyone.  Focusing on WWT, which is a shrinking segment of the population is the wrong strategy.

WWC and minorities are NOT necessarily opposed.




They are on many cultural issues such as keeping the confederate flag, gun control, abortion, building a wall, immigration reform, affirmative action.  That's what people are voting on nowadays... not who has a better plan for Syria. 

Yeah, I'm sure Iowa and Michigan care Very Deeply about the kkkonfederate flag.

Seriously, if these issues were that important to people than wouldn't the Democrats have carried zero Midwestern states since 1988 (and therefore never have won an election since Raygun)? And these voters aren't nearly as socially conservative on these issues as you think (nor are white suburbanites especially liberal on these issues).
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« Reply #38 on: January 08, 2017, 08:05:57 pm »
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The valid points were the ones about not appealing to progressives and insulting Bernie supporters. 

The idea that Democrats should completely change course and cater to WWT voters in the midwest because of one election is ridiculous though.  As has been pointed out in multiple threads, Democrats dominated in diverse counties.  The country is getting more diverse.  You cannot please everyone.  Focusing on WWT, which is a shrinking segment of the population is the wrong strategy.

WWC and minorities are NOT necessarily opposed.




They are on many cultural issues such as keeping the confederate flag, gun control, abortion, building a wall, immigration reform, affirmative action.  That's what people are voting on nowadays... not who has a better plan for Syria. 

And yet minimum wage still increased in 2014 in midst of all that, there's still discontent on the cronyism of healthcare.

Also, plenty of minorities are not enthused about gun control or abortion.

Why the fixation on foreign policy, which for the most part is agreed to be (and always has been): MURDER THE S&*T OUT OF ANYONE OPPOSED TO US, JUST MAKE SURE WE DON'T HAVE TO DIE TO MAKE IT HAPPEN.
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« Reply #39 on: January 08, 2017, 10:49:04 pm »
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I think one of the biggest mistakes was the assumption that rich, college-educated Republicans have inherently better moral values than working-class Republicans.

This
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« Reply #40 on: January 08, 2017, 11:31:49 pm »
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Nominating a "Centerist" is actually dumb because:

1) The progressive base won't be excited: you absolutely NEED these people to go door-to-door and phonebank hours for you for free.
2) Swing voters actually don't like it because they view it as weak and wishy-washy
3) Centerists tend to emphasize the wrong issues, which puts off both progressives/leftists and moderates
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« Reply #41 on: January 09, 2017, 02:29:14 pm »
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Nominating a "Centerist" is actually dumb because:

1) The progressive base won't be excited: you absolutely NEED these people to go door-to-door and phonebank hours for you for free.
2) Swing voters actually don't like it because they view it as weak and wishy-washy or that the candidate doesn't have confidence in their policies and why are they spending billions of dollars on bandaids on gushing wounds?
3) Centerists tend to emphasize the wrong issues, which puts off both progressives/leftists and moderates

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« Reply #42 on: January 09, 2017, 02:38:42 pm »
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-Turnout is about more than the major cities.

-Listen to the electorate. Say what you will about Bernie, but there's a reason his support went from the single digits to 42%.

-Energizing the base is critical. If progressives don't turn out for you, winning an extra 0.5% of suburban Republicans isn't going to save you.

-Pick an exciting candidate. Excitement isn't an indicator of how effective a candidate will be as president, but it's critical to getting elected president.

-Give people a reason to vote for you, other than just "the other guy is terrible."

46% of the Pledged Delegates not 42%. There are no votes county since caucus votes aren't counted.

@ Topic - The Dem party has to be purged of Centrists!
On top of the caucus issue (there was no huge caucus effect, but they probably did give Bernie a low-mid single digit advantage), there is also the matter of 12 million independents nationally being unable to vote. Not all of them would have voted, and not all of them would have voted for Bernie, but he won them at a 75-25 clip (performed well with both left-leaning and "true" moderate independents), so they would have closed the gap a bit.

(and in some states, like my home state of NY in particular, independents had to switch party registration to Dem in October of 2015; as this Stanford Stats Ph.D notes, those and the AP call cost Bernie a bit).

Note: Not trying to relitigate the primaries, and I think Clinton still would have had a majority of the popular vote. Just noting those factors made the gap bigger than it probably would have been.
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« Reply #43 on: January 09, 2017, 04:01:39 pm »
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46% of the Pledged Delegates not 42%. There are no votes county since caucus votes aren't counted.

@ Topic - The Dem party has to be purged of Centrists!

You realize liberals are a minority in this country, right? There are more conservatives, and more moderates/centrists than both. An all-liberal party is a losing party, and a party that only caters to liberals but still hopes to keep moderate/centrist voters is an insult - "Vote for us while we completely ignore your concerns (unless they align with ours) because we are superior!"

Even as a liberal, this is one thing I hate about some of my fellow liberals - they act like they are a majority, but they are not even close. Wake up and realize that most of the country doesn't think like you, and you have to reach out to them in substantive ways and not a "my way or the highway" approach. That's the Congressional GOP approach.

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« Reply #44 on: January 09, 2017, 06:16:58 pm »
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46% of the Pledged Delegates not 42%. There are no votes county since caucus votes aren't counted.

@ Topic - The Dem party has to be purged of Centrists!

You realize liberals are a minority in this country, right? There are more conservatives, and more moderates/centrists than both. An all-liberal party is a losing party, and a party that only caters to liberals but still hopes to keep moderate/centrist voters is an insult - "Vote for us while we completely ignore your concerns (unless they align with ours) because we are superior!"

Even as a liberal, this is one thing I hate about some of my fellow liberals - they act like they are a majority, but they are not even close. Wake up and realize that most of the country doesn't think like you, and you have to reach out to them in substantive ways and not a "my way or the highway" approach. That's the Congressional GOP approach.

Yeah, but "liberal" is still considered a dirty word in this country.  At the end of the day, labels don't really matter.  I fully believe Bernie Sanders would have beaten Trump if he had been the nominee, because the American electorate is full of people who say they abhor terms like "socialist" but would vote for one anyway, either because they don't know he calls himself one or they don't care, because as a politician he represents what most people want and support.  He had qualities that Hillary did not, irrespective of how they both describe themselves or are perceived by the public.
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« Reply #45 on: January 12, 2017, 05:06:08 am »
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Nothing. The Democratic Party will collapse into obscurity as Trump leads a new dark age.

Fixed.
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« Reply #46 on: January 12, 2017, 07:06:25 pm »
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Nothing. The Democratic Party will collapse into obscurity as Trump leads a new dark age.

Fixed.

I don't know about the fix there. I mean, I've been making gold related puns all day and its not getting old. :-p

But on to the actual topic...

To a certain degree the primary problem of the Clinton campaign was taking things for granted. They took the nomination for granted until Sanders showed up and starting winning states. They took Trump for granted as well of course, figuring people would reject him from the get go. (They forgot Rule 1 of being a Republican, its ok to be a terrible human being if you have an R by your name.) They took the rust belt portion of their firewall for granted, letting three must win states slip through their fingers. They took for granted the media doing their damn job. They took their campaign security for granted. They took for granted that the stupid e-mail stuff wouldn't be a problem come fall. They took for granted their media communication strategy, thinking simple and rare explanations for the unflattering stuff would be enough to smooth it over, not understanding they need to hit back multiple times against allegations. And they took for granted their internet communication strategy, letting the rise of fake news and its pushers dominate discourse in many online forums.

So in short, don't assume you'll just sort of win. A lot of the headache in all of this could have been easily avoided and appropriate steps taken to find a better course. To become immune to Trumps tantrums, the media's spastics, and even Comey's sudden intervention into the campaign.

And another thing, its not necessarily about who we nominate I've noticed. Its about the field of potential nominees. There are a number of parallels between 2016 and 2000 besides the EV/popular vote split. The most glaring is the tiny field of candidates. Clinton and Gore both only had one serious contender facing off against them. And given Gore's overwhelming support and Clinton's demographic advantages, despite themselves, they were able to pretty much walk to the nomination. They didn't have to really work for it. Yes the primaries were contentious. But most the strain of it was on the Sanders side as they fought the uphill battle against overwhelming odds. The Clinton campaign was challenged, but not to the point of needing to really improve to the level needed to win the general election. The Democratic party -needs- a competitive primary where no one starts off with overwhelming support. Preferably where the early front runner doesn't make it. Kerry started ahead in 2004, lost ground to Dean, came back and rolled most the rest of the season... and lost in the general. 2008 Obama was highly considered, but Clinton started off ahead and lost the primary, with Obama taking the nomination and the general. Heck, go back to 92 and that come back kid guy who didn't win anything till Georgia, his first win in 11 contests. And he became president despite that challenge, or perhaps because of it.

And before anyone demands a comparison to Trumps improbable rise in the primaries, remember that the parties and their coalitions are very different in terms of motivations and voting habits. Making a proper comparison here doesn't make sense and thus is no excuse to ignore this advice.

So yeah, gotta keep our candidates on their toes and can't take anything for granted. We live in insane world now after all. Anything can, and probably will happen.
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I'll come up with one later.
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« Reply #47 on: January 12, 2017, 08:31:23 pm »
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Barone pointed out that the advent of the Clinton Administration brought much of this out into the open.

The issues that led to the 1994 blowout didn't just materialize out of nowhere or with the Clinton administration. They were building up for years. Democrats maintained a lot of power in states that were very clearly, particularly with hindsight, moving away from them and had been for a long time. It was only a matter of time before presidential voting habits found their way further down the ballot.

In fact, I might argue that the Republican Revolution began spilling blood in '92, when Democrats lost 9 House seats despite comfortably winning the presidency and began losing their grip in numerous states (AK, WI, MI, OH, etc) with mostly not-insignificant legislative losses that were later followed by more severe losses in '94.

I'm sure there are lots of nuances to the GOP's surge to power, but Barone's explanation doesn't really fit, imo. At least not as a "primary" explanation. Maybe a marginal one.


I would hold that the solid lead the GOP has in (A) the House of Representatives, (B) Governorships, (C) State Legislative seats, a lead that has been pretty constant since 2010, is proof that while there is not a conservative "majority", there are more conservatives than liberals.

If we're going by quantity, then it might be better to measure by (or at least consider) which party wins the popular vote for, say, House/legislative elections state-by-state. It's no secret that for natural and unnatural reasons, in numerous states, the GOP has been winning more seats than their vote share would reasonably predict, sometimes quite a bit more. As for gubernatorial/other elections - 8 years of an incumbent Democratic president who was pretty unpopular during each midterm, one being during a slow recession recovery, it's not surprising that Democrats got bled out and it's hardly, at least in my eyes, a convincing measure of popular GOP support. To me it looks more like they got really, really lucky, in addition to having some structural advantages (better hold on older/white voters, etc). If the GOP is so popular and desired, then they shouldn't have trouble holding onto much of their power in 2018.

I don't know when, even if, there was a time when liberals outnumbered conservatives in Gallup's (or anyone's) polling, but I think the better question here is which party has more supporters overall, and that has long been the Democratic Party. The presidential PV streak shines a light on that if you ask me, but then again, it doesn't mean as much as one might think when you consider that many of them are 1) concentrated in areas where they help us less, and 2) we have a lot of low-propensity voters
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« Reply #48 on: January 13, 2017, 11:17:27 pm »
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We have to find a candidate who appeals to both the white working class (as long as they still have the numbers to decide elections) as well as the 'emerging Democratic majority' that Ruy Texeira and John Judis talk about in their book.  Preferably someone reasonably young (Generation X for now), attractive, charismatic, inspiring, and hip.  None of the names mentioned so far seem to fit. 
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« Reply #49 on: January 14, 2017, 09:40:32 am »
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Barone pointed out that the advent of the Clinton Administration brought much of this out into the open.

The issues that led to the 1994 blowout didn't just materialize out of nowhere or with the Clinton administration. They were building up for years. Democrats maintained a lot of power in states that were very clearly, particularly with hindsight, moving away from them and had been for a long time. It was only a matter of time before presidential voting habits found their way further down the ballot.

In fact, I might argue that the Republican Revolution began spilling blood in '92, when Democrats lost 9 House seats despite comfortably winning the presidency and began losing their grip in numerous states (AK, WI, MI, OH, etc) with mostly not-insignificant legislative losses that were later followed by more severe losses in '94.

I'm sure there are lots of nuances to the GOP's surge to power, but Barone's explanation doesn't really fit, imo. At least not as a "primary" explanation. Maybe a marginal one.


I would hold that the solid lead the GOP has in (A) the House of Representatives, (B) Governorships, (C) State Legislative seats, a lead that has been pretty constant since 2010, is proof that while there is not a conservative "majority", there are more conservatives than liberals.

If we're going by quantity, then it might be better to measure by (or at least consider) which party wins the popular vote for, say, House/legislative elections state-by-state. It's no secret that for natural and unnatural reasons, in numerous states, the GOP has been winning more seats than their vote share would reasonably predict, sometimes quite a bit more. As for gubernatorial/other elections - 8 years of an incumbent Democratic president who was pretty unpopular during each midterm, one being during a slow recession recovery, it's not surprising that Democrats got bled out and it's hardly, at least in my eyes, a convincing measure of popular GOP support. To me it looks more like they got really, really lucky, in addition to having some structural advantages (better hold on older/white voters, etc). If the GOP is so popular and desired, then they shouldn't have trouble holding onto much of their power in 2018.

I don't know when, even if, there was a time when liberals outnumbered conservatives in Gallup's (or anyone's) polling, but I think the better question here is which party has more supporters overall, and that has long been the Democratic Party. The presidential PV streak shines a light on that if you ask me, but then again, it doesn't mean as much as one might think when you consider that many of them are 1) concentrated in areas where they help us less, and 2) we have a lot of low-propensity voters

Some of the 9 House seats lost in 1992 were due to reapportionment in the South.  Due to Court decisions, FL, NC, GA, LA, SC, VA, TX, and AL created Congressional districts that were 65% black in order to elect black Democrats from the South to Congress.  This, alone, accounted for a gain of 2 GOP seats in GA and 1 in AL.  It also ensured that a number of moderate-to-conservative Southern Democrats would have tougher re-election fights, and would not be replaced by Democrats.  (Many of these Democrats retired in 1994.)

1992 was also a year where a number of Democrats were implicated in the House Bank and House Post Office scandals.  A number of House members with large numbers of overdrafts were dumped in 1992, guys who were considered fairly safe up until then. 

There was also a war going on against "The Permanent Congress".  "Term Limits" first began to be a theme in 1992.  Books such as "Conservative Votes: Liberal Victories" had already been written.  But it took the advent of a liberal Democratic President in Bill Clinton to bring out in the open how Democrats who claimed not to be liberals provided the votes for critical liberal legislation.

As an aside:  I used to think that more ideological parties would be more coherent.  I thought the Democrats should trade Stennis and Eastland for Javits and Case.  We have that now, and I think it's awful.  The ideological nature of today's parties is the root of the obstructionism we suffer under.  Up until now, the GOP was primarily at fault for this, but Democrats are now showing me that they can narrow that gap.
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"The family cannot be constituted like the liberal state, nor can it be governed entirely by that state's principles. Yet the family serves as the seedbed for the virtues required by a liberal state. The family is responsible for teaching lessons of independence, self-restraint, responsibility, and right conduct, which are essential to a free, democratic society. If the family fails in these tasks, then the entire experiment in democratic self-rule is jeopardized."-Barbara Dafoe Whitehead
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