by William Skink
When you lose a competition you were trying to win, one course of action is to figure out why you lost in order to adjust for the next go around. The Democrat machinery has apparently put the cogs into motion to generate an internal report, as reported by McClatchy DC (h/t jhwygirl):
Democrats have become a confused political party with a muddled message and an inability to turn out enough of its loyal voters, a party task force charged with how to revive the embattled party said Saturday.
“I am here to tell you the Democratic Party has lost its way,” said Gov. Steve Beshear of Kentucky, who presented the report to the Democratic National Committee WINTER.
Ok, I’m a sucker for the platitudes of moral failing, so let’s see what this process of reflection has produced.
“In order to win elections, the Democratic Party must reclaim voters that we’ve lost, including white Southern voters,” the report said. But the party also has to “excite key constituencies such as African American women and Latinas.”
Beshear talked tough about the DNC shortcomings. “This should be the time for Democratic leaders to rise up to the forefront as defenders of the people and we think we have,” he said.
But, he said, “the American people by their votes don’t agree with us.”
Hmmm, maybe it’s because you just aren’t explaining it pretty enough for us.
The Democratic Party, he added, “has too often allowed its message to become muddled.”
Placating a patchwork of demographics is a difficult job, and Democrats aren’t doing it very well. The other side has no problem lying (the real translation of muddled message) to their constituents in order to create enough blind outrage leading “white Southern voters” go out and vote…for Republicans.
So what did this internal report advise?
The Democratic task force, which will continue meeting through the spring, offered some general recommendations for change.
It called for an effort to “create a strong values-based national narrative” that encourages people to vote. Beshear urged better defining the Democratic brand, rather than just appear to be a series of policy statements.
Democrats had counted last year on strong turnouts by women, Hispanics, younger voters and African-Americans, but turnout was down from 2012. Get people out, officials said Saturday, and Democrats will do well.
“When we vote, we win,” said Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter.
A strong values-based national narrative? What the hell is that? What it’s not is an admission of the real problem: what Democrats actually do (or don’t do) once elected.
The McClatchy piece ends with this:
Though hundreds of millions were spent last year on ads, organizing and other strategies, party leaders insisted they’d prosper if they stressed their commitment to helping the middle class and the less fortunate.
“Democrats care about so many things. Republicans only care about taxes,” said Patsy Keever, North Carolina Democratic Chairman.
Sometimes, the insiders said, people got too many messages. “There are so many things Democrats care about, but not every Democrat cares about every issue,” Keever said.
Too many messages? That’s rich. I guess hundreds of millions of dollars spent on ads can’t change the reality people are actually experiencing in their day to day lives.
If I had to write a quick poem about it, it might go something like this:
AMERICA’S HELPING HAND
I like my national narrative
values-based, and strong
like how NATO helped out Libya
with lots of helpful bombs
and in this wondrous story
we help our friends, Ukraine
but only the western ones
who never shoot down planes
I like my national narrative
and the freedom fighters we arm
who never become jihadis
who blowback helpful harm