Democratic debate: Can an increasingly leftist party win elections?



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If you were shooting a Rip Van Winkle last fall and waking up today, you would be stunned by the new Democratic Party and its sudden embrace of ultra-liberal ideas.

All of a sudden, it seems, a large part of the party defends radical proposals with cool slogans, gigantic price tags and little chance of becoming law.

I get the impression that this is a major miscalculation, not because I took a position on this or that policy, but because it puts things in place so that Donald Trump and the GOP can describe them as the party of socialism.

And this progressive branding, which is becoming, makes life difficult for the more moderate Democrats who led the charge in the 40-seat van in the House.

Both parties face this dilemma early in the primary process. What excites the base (left or right) can become an albatross during the general, when the candidates generally pivot towards the center.

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But the complicated factor for the Democrats is that their social media stars, led by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, also attract all sorts of attention, although they have little power in Washington.

And do not get me wrong, we are talking about too much left-wing policies for Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.

Here's what a Washington Post article on the "recalcitrant list" adopted by the Democrats of 2020: "Shoot down the wall of the border, pay reparations for slavery, upgrade every building in America. the wealthy people's belongings and wrap the Supreme Court with four new liberal judges. "

Kamala Harris, seeking to consolidate her African-American base, has spoken out in favor of the reparation of slavery. Elizabeth Warren did the same and said that Native Americans should also be included. Most of them signed the Green New Deal. And with a few exceptions, like Amy Klobuchar, they love medicare for all, and Harris said it should replace all private health insurance plans.

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It does not take much to imagine 30-second commercials.

According to the New York Times, Democratic legislators in conservative districts answer questions from voters about whether or not they support "socialism" and "anti-Semitism" that they see coming out of bedroom.

And in a geographic article on whether Dems should focus on the Midwest or Sun Belt, the Times says "there is a growing school of thought that Democrats should not spend so much time," It is the money and psychic energy to adapt their message to a highly white image of the country's rural and blue-collar areas when their coalition is increasingly made up of racial minorities and suburbanites. " on more liberal areas.

They may be taking a leaf from Trump's playbook, using overflowing rhetoric and great promise as an alternative to Clintonian incrementalism. But there is a price to pay for it.

I imagine that there is an argument that the party's best bet would be to galvanize a wave of liberal voters in states such as Arizona and Georgia. But the Democrats lost to Donald Trump in Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania and, given the quirks of the Electoral College, I doubt that they could win the White House without recovering at least two of those states. Why abandon their claim as a blue-collar party?

While AOC is only 29 years old, it arouses such media attention, positive and negative, that it has become a decisive factor in this national debate.

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As Jim Geraghty writes in the National Review, "there is ample evidence that the representative of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is covered by both mainstream media and conservative media … But she embodies what it's all about." Part of the left line wants to see and what a strong section of the line right likes to denounce and probably fear. "

The Conservatives do not need to fight with her for every little problem. AOC recently announced that to pay a good salary to its staff, no employee will earn less than $ 52,000 and no more than $ 80,000 – which means that she will likely hire fewer workers and give up the types of leader very well paid staff.

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On "Fox & Friends", Pete Hegseth called this phenomenon "socialism and communism". This allowed AOC to replicate that "the GOP is so disconnected from the basic idea that people should be paid enough to live, and that Fox thinks I'm paying a living wage in my office," he says. is "communism". "

Such clashes will soon be forgotten, but barring a course correction, the debate over the image of Democrats as an increasingly left-wing party will echo for a long time.

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