Chew gum and walk

Great analysis from The Intercept:

The divide between “team economic justice” and “team demographic destiny” now informs how different factions of the left, broadly defined, decipher the results of Democratic primaries and special election battles. And unfortunately, this has led to dangerously inaccurate and biased prescriptions for 2020. Nonwhite and/or female candidates are praised for advancing “identity politics” if they win — regardless of how they campaigned. And efforts to include white voters in one’s coalition are blamed for faltering campaigns — regardless of a candidate’s more substantive failures. If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. And with a belief that demographics hold the key to unlocking a Democratic victory, Democrats stand poised to ignore the most important lesson of 2016: People turn out for material change.

[…] According to the Demos paper, “[t]hese messages are stronger than a more traditional ‘Colorblind Economic Populism’ message,” because they “tap into people’s desire to come together and work together,” and because they include a dimension “beyond inequality” that resonates more broadly than just among the committed left. As it turns out, neither “economic equality” nor “identity politics” are sufficient framing devices on their own. You need both.

[…] It’s inevitable that every election between now and 2020 will be read like tea leaves, full of potential insights into how to unseat Trump. But that analysis must be rooted in evidence — what policies candidates actually support and how they frame them — rather than forcing pre-existing ideological commitments onto ill-fitting facts. Democratic success in 2020 may depend on getting this analysis right.

That’s a large pull quote, but it’s from a lengthy article that’s worth reading in its entirety.

There’s an odd tick amongst Democrats which makes them afraid of doing things that excite the Democratic base. While Republicans act like butchers throwing an endless supply of red meat to the most conservative of their voters, Democrats refuse to do so out of some hair-brained centrist idealism. Democrats need to do better and do more.