Thursday, August 10, 2017

A Self-Created Handicap

Writing at The American Interest, Jason Willick riffs on the David Wasserman article we cited two days ago. He observes:
By doubling down on an agenda that plays well in metropolitan centers but flounders in key states and districts, the Democrats have in a sense ceased to operate as “an organized attempt to gain control of the government,” acting instead as a vehicle for certain ideals—and in so doing, created their own handicap. There is nothing stopping the party from adopting a more Bill Clinton-esque cultural stance that could win more seats in the Midwest.

Yes, the Congressional map is biased against the Democratic Party as it is currently constituted—but that bias is a choice. If the Democrats constructed a different coalition, the effect of the bias would be significantly attenuated or disappear.
Okay, but would the "different coalition" still be Democrats? The Dems have 'painted' themselves into a victim-group corner and don't see a way out.

The never-Trumpers in the GOP made a similar choice for ideological purity. Trump won in spite of them. It left them unrepresented by a political party, as irrelevant as libertarians.

It is the genius of our American political system that successful political parties appeal to a broad spectrum of Americans. Today's state and federal electoral evidence suggests the GOP is that broadly appealing party. Trump is its popularly elected leader.