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Mon Feb 16, 2015, 04:00 PM

 

The Democrats in Opposition: They can become the party of working Americans and win. Or...

... they can appease Wall Street and lose.

Where should the Democrats go now? Losing both houses of Congress frees them to function as an opposition party, not just to the Republicans, but to a political economy that serves fewer and fewer Americans.

Whether they will seize that opportunity remains an open question. To many within the party establishment, the Democrats face a choice between moving to the center to win over white electors who have either stopped voting or strayed into the Republicans’ ranks, or moving left to re-energize the Rising American Electorate, the young and minority voters who powered Barack Obama into the White House.

The idea that a progressive populist agenda—one that explicitly champions the interests of the 99 percent against those of the one—could command support in both these constituencies is still alien to many Democratic leaders.. Judging by the Beltway discourse, the question that vexes Democrats most is whether the defection of whites or the absence of minorities played the decisive role in the party’s midterm debacle.

The mere existence of this debate reveals the disquieting blindness of some party leaders to both the economic changes that have blighted Americans’ lives in recent decades and to the political opportunities that await the party that reshapes that economy to create more broadly shared prosperity...Yet while many of these races featured flawed Democratic candidates, they also shared a common handicap: the failure of the Democrats to tell voters how they planned to re-create broadly shared prosperity. This was part and parcel of an even more serious failure (one the Democrats shared with virtually every governing party in the advanced industrial democracies): their inability, only partly due to Republican obstructionism, to arrest the declining economic fortunes of all but the wealthiest 10 percent...

http://prospect.org/article/democrats-opposition

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Reply The Democrats in Opposition: They can become the party of working Americans and win. Or... (Original post)
ND-Dem Feb 2015 OP
winter is coming Feb 2015 #1
Fumesucker Feb 2015 #2
ND-Dem Feb 2015 #3
L0oniX Feb 2015 #20
1StrongBlackMan Feb 2015 #4
ND-Dem Feb 2015 #5
1StrongBlackMan Feb 2015 #6
ND-Dem Feb 2015 #8
1StrongBlackMan Feb 2015 #16
DemocratSinceBirth Feb 2015 #21
1StrongBlackMan Feb 2015 #22
brooklynite Feb 2015 #24
RiverLover Feb 2015 #9
Fumesucker Feb 2015 #10
ND-Dem Feb 2015 #14
Fumesucker Feb 2015 #15
1StrongBlackMan Feb 2015 #19
1StrongBlackMan Feb 2015 #17
RiverLover Feb 2015 #7
ND-Dem Feb 2015 #11
hfojvt Feb 2015 #13
leftstreet Feb 2015 #12
L0oniX Feb 2015 #18
Scuba Feb 2015 #23
ND-Dem Feb 2015 #25
Populist_Prole Feb 2015 #26

Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 04:05 PM

1. Republicans have started saying, "income inequality."

Granted, their "solutions" suck ass, but even the GOP has figured out that income inequality is going to be a big issue in 2016. If the Dems are Sanders/Warren bold on this issue (and no, I didn't mean that as a political ticket; it's an adjective), we could flatten the GOP. Any weasel-worded "I support new tax incentives for businesses" (i.e., thinly disguised trickle down) will be met with apathy. It's time to swing for the fences.

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Response to winter is coming (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 04:09 PM

2. Heh.. The Repubs are even starting to make noises about ending the drug war

God help the Democrats if they allow income inequality and ending the drug war to be taken away from them because the electorate won't.

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Response to winter is coming (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 04:17 PM

3. yes.

 

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Response to winter is coming (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 09:58 PM

20. Wait till we hear it from Hillary when she figures out which way the wind is blowing.

 

When she wins the POTUS then watch all that wind blowing become bullshit.

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Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 04:56 PM

4. Small problem with your construct ...

 

They can become the party of working Americans and win. Or ... they can appease Wall Street and lose.

Where should the Democrats go now? Losing both houses of Congress frees them to function as an opposition party, not just to the Republicans, but to a political economy that serves fewer and fewer Americans.

Whether they will seize that opportunity remains an open question. To many within the party establishment, the Democrats face a choice between moving to the center to win over white electors who have either stopped voting or strayed into the Republicans’ ranks, or moving left to re-energize the Rising American Electorate, the young and minority voters who powered Barack Obama into the White House.


The "Rising American Electorate, the young and (particularly) minority voters who powered Barack Obama into the White House" largely don't rate "appeasement of wall street" (whatever that means... "re-create broadly shared prosperity"?) ... "arrest the declining economic fortunes of all but the wealthiest 10 percent(?) ... both from the article, ... "income equity"?), as from the DU responses above), as a priority, unless one uses a really broad description of "appeasing wall street."

YOUNG VOTERS
Size: There are 44 million 18-29 year old citizens in the U.S., (10) one-fifth of the electorate. today’s 18-29 year olds are part of the Millennial Generation, the biggest generation since the Baby Boomers.

Issues: According to Rock the Vote polling, young voters’ top issues are jobs and the economy, followed by Iraq, education and the cost of college, and health care. (11)

Voting: In 2004, young voter turnout jumped by nine percentage points – or 4.3 million votes – over 2000 levels. Again in 2006, turnout was up – this time by 1.9 million over 2002 levels. (12) And in the 2008 primaries, 18-29 year olds’ turnout doubled and tripled in nearly ever contest. (13)

Party ID: 47% Democrat, 28% Republican, and 16% Independent. (14)

YOUNG AFRICAN-AMERICANS
Size: there are 6.3 million African-American citizens between the ages of 18 and 29. (U.S. census)

Issues: According to Rock the Vote polling, this group’s top issues are jobs and the economy, Iraq, education and the cost of college, and health care and prescription drugs.

Voting: In 2004, under-25 African-Americans increased their turnout by 11 points and voted at rates as high as the overall age group for the first time in decades. turnout went up again in 2006. (RTV-CIRCLE)

Party ID: 73% Democrat, 6% Republican, and 15% Independent. (RTV poll)

YOUNG LATINOS
Size: There are 5.6 million Latino citizens between 18 and 29 in the U.S. Young Latinos are the largest and fastest-growing racial or ethnic subset of young adults; 50,000 turn 18 each month. (U.S. census)

Issues: According to Rock the Vote polling, young Latinos’ top issues are immigration, jobs and the economy, the environment and global warming, and Iraq.

Voting: In 2004, turnout among 18-29 year old Latinos jumped six percentage points. In other words, 1.1 million more Latinos under 30 voted than had in 2000. (RTV-CIRCLE)

Party ID: 51% Democrat, 21% Republican, and 19% as Independent. (RTV poll)

YOUNG WOMEN
Size: there are 22 million women between the ages of 18 and 29 eligible to vote in the U.S. (U.S. census)

Issues: According to Rock the Vote polling, this group’s top issues are jobs and the economy, followed by health care, education and the cost of college, and Iraq.

Voting: Young women vote at higher rates than their male peers. In fact, in 2004 young women led the overall young voter turnout increase, jumping 10 percentage points over 2000 levels. (RTV-Circle)

Party ID: 55% Democrat, 26% Republican, and 19% Independent. When marital status is considered, the gap in identification decreases. Forty-eight percent of young married women identify as Democrats, 40% as Republicans, and 5% as Independents. (RTV poll)

YOUNG MEN
Size: There are 22 million men between the ages of 18 and 29 eligible to vote in the U.S. (U.S. census)

Issues: According to Rock the Vote polling, young men’s top issues are jobs and the economy, followed by Iraq, health care, gas prices, and immigration.

Voting: Young men’s voter turnout lags behind young women’s, but men have also increased their turnout in the past two elections. In 2004, participation among men under 30 jumped by almost 8 points over 2000 levels; in 2006, their turnout grew by 3 points over 2002 levels. (RTV-CIRCLE)

Party ID: 38% Democrat, 30% Republican, and 22% Independent. (RTV poll)

http://www.completecampaigns.com/article.asp?articleid=116

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Reply #4)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 06:49 PM

5. it's the american prospect's construct, not mine. and what i get from your blurb is that *everyone*

 

is interested in jobs and the economy, which is pretty much in line with what the American prospect said.

you can fool people for some time by talking up "women's issues," "Hispanic issues", and the like, but bread and butter issues trump all, and join all.

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Response to ND-Dem (Reply #5)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 07:01 PM

6. Did you miss from my "blurb" ...

 

that virtually no one prioritizes "income inequity" or "the appeasement of wall street", as a pressing issue?

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Reply #6)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 07:27 PM

8. I doubt anyone in the 99% would prioritize the appeasement of Wall Street (though I doubt

 

Rock the Vote asks such questions).

And I doubt RTV asks questions about income inequality. But I think worry over jobs, the economy, education and the cost of college, and health care/prescription drugs are very much related to issues of inequality. And I think some proportion of the respondents would see it that way too, were they given such questions.

and 'blurb' wasn't meant as a slur btw. "Excerpt" would have served the same purpose.

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Response to ND-Dem (Reply #8)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 09:47 PM

16. That's my point ...

 

the 99% don't list "appeasement of Wall Street" of one of their concerns regarding the Democratic Party.

But I think worry over jobs, the economy, education and the cost of college, and health care/prescription drugs are very much related to issues of inequality.


That would be a very liberal interpretation of the issues, as none of these issues, individually or collectively, would make a dent in the inequity issue.

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Reply #16)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 10:13 PM

21. Most of the posters on this board rarely interact with a Latino person...

Most of the posters on this board, of course there are exceptions, rarely interact with a Latino person, an African American person, or a working class person. The notion that most folks see the world, especially folks whose raison d'etre is to make ends meet, sees the world through a rigid ideological prism is only a mistake such people could make.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #21)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 10:46 PM

22. So true, with one caveat ...

 

almost everyone here is "working class" and deals/interacts, almost exclusively, with "working class" folks.

Anyone that earns the lion's share of their income through W-2 and/or (most classes of 1099) earnings, is working class ... whether they earn $2,000 or $2,000,000/year (while the $2,000,000 earner is much more comfortable, he/she is still working class, as if they don't work, they don't get paid).

I realize that this may be a pedantic point (an educational and occupational hazard/quirk of mine); but, like with some many things, in order to address the (income inequity) problem, we must start with accurate definitions.

(And notice I said income INEQUITY, rather than inEQUALITY ... the former denotes fairness; whereas, the latter denotes sameness.)

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Reply #16)

Tue Feb 17, 2015, 09:40 AM

24. The problem with catchphrases like "the 99%" is that they're not realistic...

Plenty of "the 99%" are still happy to vote Republican.

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Reply #6)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 07:29 PM

9. fyi, "Why Republicans Are Suddenly Talking About Economic Inequality"

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Reply #6)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 07:34 PM

10. On the other hand "The rich are getting richer and you are getting poorer" resonates nicely

Practically everyone I say that to, and I'm surrounded by conservatives, nods their head.

People know their own economic circumstances and which way they are headed.

What people differ on the most is the reasons for their economic straits, too many want to blame the housing crash for instance on individuals who bought houses they couldn't afford rather than the professionals selling the homes and writing the loans approving purchases and loans they shouldn't have. These people want the layman buyer to be more responsible and knowledgeable than the professional who did the financial details. It's really quite uncanny the way they can blame the least wealthy, powerful and informed person in every single case, serious mental gymnastics.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #10)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 08:05 PM

14. it's kind of weird; in my experience, two kinds of people do it. one kind is basically uninformed;

 

they heard it on the news or something, and so believe it without thinking too deeply.

another kind tends to be better off than average; these types don't want to believe the people they look up to and aspire to be sold them down the river; they need the myth of "good" rich people and 'bad' or 'lazy' poor people so the world makes sense to them. (At least, that's how my relatives are).

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Response to ND-Dem (Reply #14)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 09:14 PM

15. That sounds right to me, I see the same thing

Somewhat better off than the local average but sliding down and they go conservative as all get out and start hollering Fox News bullshit.

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Response to ND-Dem (Reply #14)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 09:57 PM

19. I agree and both groups repeat the narrative ...

 

to divorce themselves from having to think that they are in the same situation as those they scapegoat ... because they are smarter and harder working and will join the ranks of the uber-rich ... just as soon as they win the lottery (which they faithfully play, while laughing at those other folks for paying the "mathematically challenged tax", build the next Microsoft (in the garage/basement that they don't have),or are just discovered for the genius that they are.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #10)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 09:50 PM

17. I agree. n/t

 

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Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 07:24 PM

7. Really great article. Tough to hear, but I hope that Dem leaders hear it...for our country's sake.

From the OP article (thanks ND-Dem!)~

...Championing the 99 percent at the expense of the 1 percent, by contrast, is not a battle that Democrats have been waging—at least not since Franklin Roosevelt’s time.

The economic arrangements put in place by the New Deal created a broadly shared prosperity that enabled Democrats to focus on extending civil and economic rights to those left out of the New Deal’s social contract. That was their mission, their default mode, throughout the second half of the 20th century, and into the 21st. It assumed no need to rework the fundamentals of American capitalism. The system worked reasonably well, at least for most Americans. The Democrats’ task was to help the minority of Americans whom the system failed.

...The Beltway wisdom is that those who favor such an assault constitute a discrete liberal minority of the larger public. The Beltway wisdom is wrong. The exit poll of November’s midterm voters—36 percent of whom identified as Republicans, while just 35 percent said they were Democrats—included a question as to whether the U.S. economic system generally favors the wealthy or is fair to most Americans. Fully 63 percent said it generally favored the wealthy, while just 32 percent said it was fair. Even 46 percent of Republicans said it favored the rich....


And from a Daily Kos poster, a good point is made that this aligning with Wall Street (neoliberals) has demonstrably hurt Democratic party numbers in Congress~
__________
"If we're going to be a reality-based community, let's look at how many Dems there were in Congress in 1977 and how many fewer there were by 1981. Let's look at how many Dems there were in Congress in 1993 and how many fewer there were in 1995 (and through the rest of WJC's presidency). Let's look at how many Dems there were Congress in 2009, how the House was lost in 2 years, and how the Senate was decisively lost 4 years later.

From 1933-80, Dems pretty well owned Congress. GOP never controlled either house for consecutive Congresses. Dems held 61 Senate seats and 292 House seats in 1977, they lost a net of 15 Senate seats and 49 House seats in next 2 cycles. Since then, GOP has held both houses for 18 of 36 years.

I see no reason for this established historic trend to change if Dems elect a 4th neoliberal president.
"
__________



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Response to RiverLover (Reply #7)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 07:46 PM

11. +100. I think the congressional numbers are pretty telling.

 

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Response to RiverLover (Reply #7)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 08:03 PM

13. I still think that is a nonsense framework

and a mistake.

What, for example, does this mean? "...Championing the 99 percent at the expense of the 1 percent"

Give me an example of that.

Because I can give you two really awful examples of that.

and I predict that politicians will follow these examples, essentially in this frame

Policy A - politician claims "this favors the 99%"

and it clearly, REALLY does favor the 99%.

The trouble is, the 99% includes the top 19% and the bottom 80% and most of the benefits goto the top 19% of the legendary 99%. It's one for all, and almost all for the top.

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Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 08:00 PM

12. DURec

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Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 09:54 PM

18. K & R

 

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Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Tue Feb 17, 2015, 09:31 AM

23. Interesting that some DU members don't want the Democratic Party to champion income equality.

 

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Response to Scuba (Reply #23)

Tue Feb 17, 2015, 12:33 PM

25. yes, it is. If the democrats don't stand for that, I don't see what they stand for.

 

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Response to Scuba (Reply #23)

Tue Feb 17, 2015, 01:26 PM

26. They ARE coming out of the woodwork lately, aren't they?

Quite vociferous about it too. Definitely a push-back of our own anti-corporatist push-back.

It's my observation they aren't pro-corporate as such, but are either well-off and indifferent to the working class or they don't want economic issues to distract the party from social issues.

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