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 Post subject: The whole Democratic Party is now a smoking pile of rubble
PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2016 2:58 pm 
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http://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/ ... ile-rubble

Quote:
The whole Democratic Party is now a smoking pile of rubble
The down-ballot party has withered, and Obama’s policy legacy will be largely repealed.

Updated by Matthew Yglesias@mattyglesiasmatt@vox.com Nov 10, 2016, 11:00am EST

If Donald Trump’s win were the Democratic Party’s only problem, the party’s leaders would be justified in affecting a certain amount of complacency. After all, in a year when fundamentals-based models predicted a narrow Republican victory, Clinton actually pulled out a majority of the popular vote. That makes the Democrats from 1992 to 2016 the only political party in American history to win the popular vote in six elections out of seven. It’s actually kind of impressive.

What’s less impressive is that at the sub-presidential level, the Obama years have created a Democratic Party that’s essentially a smoking pile of rubble.

Republicans control the House, and they control the Senate. District lines are drawn in such a way that the median House district is far more conservative than the median American voter — resulting in situations like 2012 where House Democrats secured more votes than House Republicans but the GOP retained a healthy majority. The Senate, too, is in effect naturally gerrymandered to favor Republicans. Two years from now the Democratic Party will need to fight to retain seats in very difficult states like North Dakota, Montana, West Virginia, Indiana, and Missouri along with merely contestable ones in places like Florida, Ohio, Michigan, and Pennsylvania.

In state government things are worse, if anything. The GOP now controls historical record number of governors’ mansions, including a majority of New England governorships. Tuesday’s election swapped around a few state legislative houses but left Democrats controlling a distinct minority. The same story applies further down ballot, where most elected attorneys general, insurance commissioners, secretaries of state, and so forth are Republicans.

One could perhaps overlook all of this if the Obama years had bequeathed the nation an enduring legacy along the lines of the New Deal or the Great Society. But to a striking extent, even as President Obama prepares to leave office with strong approval ratings, his policy legacy is extraordinarily vulnerable. And the odds that it will be essentially extinguished are high.

Due to a combination of bad luck and poor decisions, the story of the 21st-century Democratic Party looks to be overwhelmingly the story of failure.

Obama’s vulnerable policy legacy

We don’t know for sure what policymaking in the Donald Trump era will look like. But dismantling core pillars of the Obama legacy is going to be high on the list, and the odds are extremely good that he and his Republican colleagues in Congress will have an extremely high success rate.

That starts, naturally, with Obama’s executive actions designed to shelter otherwise law-abiding unauthorized residents of the United States from deportation. Always somewhat legally tenuous, these will be cast to the wind at the soonest possible opportunity.

Obama’s climate change legacy is multifaceted, and some of it will endure. But an extremely large share of Obama’s most consequential actions have taken the form of Environmental Protection Agency regulation of greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act. A Trump administration will roll these measures back as soon as possible. But more fundamentally, congressional Republicans will move legislation amending the Clean Air Act to permanently eliminate the regulatory authority — ensuring that even if Trump loses in 2020, an Obama-style framework can’t simply be recreated.

Congressional Republicans have already laid the groundwork to repeal the Affordable Care Act with a budget reconciliation measure that only requires 51 votes to pass.

When Obamacare first passed, Democrats were optimistic that the program would eventually create its own constituency and become politically difficult to assault — the way that Medicare and Medicaid did. At the time, I thought they were right. But it hasn’t proven to be true. What is true is that people (typically lower-income people who receive generous subsidies) who do buy plans on the Obamacare exchanges rate the plans very highly. But this is actually not very many people, as signing up — particularly for those eligible only for small subsidies — has proven far less popular than the law’s authors imagined. What has done a lot to reduce the ranks of the uninsured is the expansion of Medicaid.

But Medicaid is stigmatized as a program for the poor. And, worse, as a joint state-federal program, it’s vulnerable to stealth cuts via block-granting, which is exactly what Republicans will do.

Last but by no means least, Obama’s decision to opt for an elaborate financial regulatory scheme rather than simply smashing up the largest banks and throwing some CEOs in jail was technically sound but politically vulnerable. Once Trump is inaugurated, he and House Republicans will engage in large-scale financial deregulation. But beyond that, Trump will be appointing the regulators and appears to be exclusively considering industry-friendly candidates.

Weakness down ballot begets further weakness

Meanwhile, Democrats’ very weakness down ballot threatens to breed more weakness. The 2010 midterm elections went very poorly for Democrats, pushing the blue-to-purple states of Wisconsin, Michigan, and Ohio into total Republican control. In all three states, the new GOP regimes used their newfound clout to enact anti-union measures. Those measures, by weakening the progressive infrastructure in the states, helped contribute to an ongoing reddening trend that reached its fruition in Trump seizing those states’ electoral votes.

This same basic pattern threatens to reassert itself across large swaths of the country.

In states where Democratic Party politics can’t be anchored in a large cosmopolitan city or a burgeoning nonwhite population, a heavy labor union presence seems necessary. (In Nevada, the one state whose local Democratic Party has been getting stronger lately, there’s both.) But Republican strength in state politics eats away at union strength, begetting further Republican strength.

More prosaically, an attorney general or an insurance commissioner is someone who could be a good future candidate for a Senate seat or a governorship. When you don’t hold the lower offices, it’s hard to move up to the higher ones. And when you don’t hold a majority in the state legislature, it’s hard for a legislator to author bills that pass and become a track record of accomplishment that can boost you in a race for House or an insurance commissioner gig.

The donkey will rise again

The point here is not that the Democratic Party has suffered some kind of knockout blow from which it will never return. Every bad electoral defeat is overinterpreted by some circle of pundits as signaling the death knell for one party or the other, and the loser always comes back.

Indeed, given the existing down-ballot weakness of the Democratic Party after the 2010 and 2014 midterms, Hillary Clinton’s loss does more to hasten Democrats’ resurrection than to delay it. A Republican president in office will tarnish the brand of blue-state Republican parties, making it easier for Democrats to regain ground in their own turf. At the same time, the absence of a high-profile national Democratic leader will make it easier for state parties in more conservative regions to build up independent identities.

But while Democrats shouldn’t be left for dead, it’s also the case that resurrection takes work and specific action. Party leaders who a week ago were confident they were leading the blue team to yet another presidential victory are going to look around and realize they didn’t just lose, they got essentially annihilated — even though the presidential election itself was close. They’re going to have to start doing something different. In particular, something that takes note of the fact that whether you think the constitutional system is fair or not (I don’t, personally), the existing setup simply doesn’t allow you to run up the score in California to compensate for weakness in the Midwest.

More broadly, the Obama-Clinton style of liberal incrementalism promised that while it wouldn’t deliver utopia, it would deliver wins and concrete results. And for a while, it did. But no strategy can guarantee an uninterrupted series of presidential election wins. And the withering of the down-ballot party paired with the failure to create entrenched policy accomplishments means much of Obama-era policymaking will have vanished without a trace within six months.

To make its comeback, what’s left of the Democratic Party establishment — not just its elected officials but the leaders of its aligned institutions and its major donors — need to recognize that a strategy they believed was working as recently as Tuesday afternoon has in fact failed quite badly.

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 Post subject: Re: The whole Democratic Party is now a smoking pile of rubb
PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2016 5:08 pm 
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Some of the same from another article/publication:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the ... isualized/

Quote:
The decimation of the Democratic Party, visualized

By Philip Bump November 10

There's a certain type of pedant who gets mad if you use the word "decimated" inaccurately, the accurate usage being that it refers to the culling of a tenth of something, hence the prefix deci- which, as we all know, is a Latin-born numeric reference blah blah blah pedants am i right

When I use the term "decimate" in reference to what's happened to the Democratic Party in the era of Barack Obama, I admit that I am using the word in a way that would annoy those same pedants. After all, the number of Democrats in Congress and in state leadership positions has dropped far more than 10 percent since 2008.

Chris Cillizza wrote about the sorry state of the Democratic bench after Tuesday, pointing out that a bad situation got much worse with the Donald Trump-driven failure of the party at the polls. Think of a political party like an Army. To have effective generals, you need to bring leaders up through the ranks. If everyone keeps getting killed off on the first Tuesday after the first Monday of any given November, you're not going to be able to win many battles. The Democrats gained two Senate seats -- in a year that it was long assumed they would regain control of the chamber.

Since 2008, this is what the Democratic decimation has looked like. (Data sources are below.)

Image

Two patterns to note. The first is that the Democrats surged into power in 2006 and 2008, winning seats in elections that would normally have leaned to the Republicans. So some of the losses since 2008 are a function of reversion to norm, light-red areas going red once again. The second is that federal and state races largely correlate. A good year for the GOP nationally tends to make a good year at all levels.

It can be hard to see the extent to which the Democratic collapse has occurred. Here is the percentage change in each case since 2008.

Image

That whistling sound you hear is the party Thelma-and-Louiseing.

Two days after its candidate for the presidency suffered a stunning loss, the tension within the party became uncontainable. The Huffington Post reports that at a party meeting on Thursday, a staffer named Zach yelled at Donna Brazile, who took over as chair following the resignation of Debbie Wasserman Schultz this summer.

"Why should we trust you as chair to lead us through this?" he said, according to HuffPo's Jennifer Bendery. He went on to accuse Brazile of having "backed a flawed candidate," Hillary Clinton, and having "plotted through this to support your own gain and yourself."

"You are part of the problem," Zach reportedly said.

We tend to focus on the loss of the presidency as the example of Democratic failure. That's blinkered. Since 2008, by our estimates, the party has shed 870 legislators and leaders at the state and federal levels -- and that estimate may be on the low side. As Donald Trump might put it, that's decimation times 50.

No wonder Zach got mad.


With the notable exception of Donald Trump, your national candidates (presidents, Senators, House Representatives) normally start and rise through local and state elected offices. That the Democratic Party has lost so many state and local offices means that they will have a thin bench for the foreseeable future.

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 Post subject: Re: The whole Democratic Party is now a smoking pile of rubb
PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2016 8:27 pm 
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http://www.latimes.com/nation/politics/ ... story.html

Quote:
NOV. 11, 2016, 2:10 P.M.

Is a Muslim from the Midwest set to take over the Democratic National Committee?

Kurtis Lee

He's a Muslim from the heartland and he could be the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee.

Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota is slowly raking up support from some key figures within the party, such as Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and New York Sen. Charles Schumer, who want him to be the next leader, following the party’s humbling presidential loss earlier this week.

Citing more than 250,000 signatures in support of Ellison on a petition posted to his website, Sanders said the congressman is the future of the party.

"The Democratic Party needs to look itself in the mirror and work tirelessly to become once again the party that working people know will work for their interests," Sanders, who amassed a youthful, liberal following during the Democratic primary, said in a statement. "Keith is one of the most progressive members of Congress, and he was an early supporter of our political revolution."

The DNC entered a rebuilding phase after Tuesday’s stunning victory by Republican Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton.

Yet even before the election results were tallied, the DNC faced several controversies with its former and interim chairs -- Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida and Donna Brazile, respectively.

In July, WikiLeaks released emails that showed members of the DNC acting favorably toward Clinton during the Democratic primary. It led to Wasserman Schultz's resignation. After Brazile replaced her as interim chair, additional leaked emails showed Brazile, who was also a CNN contributor, had shared debate questions with the Clinton campaign during the primary last spring.

Others who are seeking to lead the DNC include former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean, who held the role from 2005 until 2009, and former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley. In addition, Missouri Secretary of State Jason Kander, who waged a competitive Missouri Senate race this year but fell short, is also eyeing the position.


Yeah.....good luck with that.

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 Post subject: Re: The whole Democratic Party is now a smoking pile of rubb
PostPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2016 3:49 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: The whole Democratic Party is now a smoking pile of rubb
PostPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2016 7:25 pm 
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http://www.breitbart.com/2016-president ... ird-party/

Quote:
Democrat Disaster: Former Clinton Labor Secretary Robert Reich Threatens Creation of Third Party


by KATHERINE RODRIGUEZ
12 Nov 2016

As Democrats are reeling from Tuesday night’s election loss, some in the party are calling for a split from the Democratic Party if it does not change.
Bill Clinton former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich talked about creating a third party if the Democratic Party does not move in a more progressive direction.

“The Democratic Party can no longer be the same; it has been repudiated,” Reich said on a conference call with members from the progressive grassroots group Democracy for America.

“This has been a huge refutation of establishment politics, and the political organization has got to be changed. … If the Democratic Party can’t do it, we’ll do it through a third party.”

The Democratic Party is in an all-out civil war between the more progressive wing of the party and the more corporate wing of the party.

Some in the party are blaming progressives who supported Bernie Sanders for refusing to rally behind Hillary Clinton.

“The Sanders people should be mad at themselves,” said one well-connected Democratic strategist to the Hill. “If they had come out to vote, Donald Trump wouldn’t be president.”

Others say that the corporate wing of the party has to be purged to appeal to more working-class voters.

“Everybody in the building needs to be fired immediately,” Cenk Uygur, the host of the progressive political commentary show The Young Turks, told the Hill.

It is unknown who will lead the Democratic Party as the party looks forward to the midterm elections in 2018 and then the 2020 presidential election.

But one thing Democrats agree on is that they were ineffective at turning out older, working-class voters in states like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

“There were people who felt left out of the economy over the last eight years, who were never able to get back on their feet–blue collar men and women,” former Sen. Ken Salazar (D-Colo.) said. “Donald Trump was able to capture them in terms of emotion and sentiment.”

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The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money.
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 Post subject: Re: The whole Democratic Party is now a smoking pile of rubb
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 5:58 pm 
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http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/201 ... ty-leader/

Quote:
Pelosi moves to intimidate Democratic rivals as she tries to cling to power

By Seth McLaughlin - The Washington Times - Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Rep. Nancy Pelosi formally announced Wednesday she is running to retain her spot as House minority leader and sent a warning shot to potential rivals by informing her colleagues that she has already locked up “the support of more than two-thirds” of the Democratic caucus.

Mrs. Pelosi has led the caucus since 2003, but the results of the election last week convinced the caucus to delay a scheduled vote this week on leadership posts until Nov. 30, with members saying they want more time to digest the shellacking the party took.

Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio, meanwhile, has emerged as a potential challenger and has warned that the party has lost touch with working-class voters in the Rust Belt and Midwest that it will need to recapture a House majority.

Mrs. Pelosi, though, made it clear in a letter to her colleagues Wednesday that she does not plan on giving up her post.

“It is with both humility and confidence that I write to request your support for House Democratic Leader,” the 76-year-old wrote to her colleagues. “As of this writing, I am pleased to report the support of more than two-thirds of the Caucus.”

Democrats were optimistic early on in the 2016 race about their chances of flipping control of the 30 seats they needed to retake control of the House.


Hillary and the Democratic Party lost (according to many reports I have seen) because they have lost touch with blue collar, middle class, Rush Belt voters.
And the solution is to keep Frau Blucher, the millionaire California liberal as the Democratic leader of the US House. :roll:

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 Post subject: Re: The whole Democratic Party is now a smoking pile of rubb
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 6:28 pm 
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Good. Leave her in there. I don't watch the news any more so I won't have to listen to her voice (which is almost as bad as Hilalry's). Anything to harm the Democrat party.

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 Post subject: Re: The whole Democratic Party is now a smoking pile of rubb
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 6:35 pm 
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IMO we should get rid of parties. Just go with a system where every candidate for federal elected office has to gather 1000 signatures to be on the ballot, and in all debates. That might really blow up the parties.


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 Post subject: Re: The whole Democratic Party is now a smoking pile of rubb
PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2016 9:41 am 
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It seems Hillary is not taking the loss very well...

Quote:
Hillary Clinton has laid bare her disappointment at her election defeat to Donald Trump in her first public appearance since she lost a week ago.

The Democratic candidate said she had wanted to "curl up with a good book and never leave the house again".

But in a speech at a children's charity she urged the audience to fight for American values and "never give up."

Mrs Clinton won the popular vote but was beaten to the presidency in the all-important US electoral college

"Now I will admit coming here tonight wasn't the easiest thing for me," she said as she was honoured by the Children's Defense Fund.

She continued: "I know many of you are deeply disappointed about the results of the election. I am, too, more than I can ever express.

"I know this isn't easy. I know that over the past week a lot of people have asked themselves whether America is the country we thought it was.

There was little ceremony and no sign of security for the former presidential candidate who is known simply as "Hillary" in this circle of friends.

The audience were on their feet and chanting her name as she took to the podium. When she talked about her disappointment, murmurs of agreement spread through the room in waves.

That murmur grew louder as she urged those listening not to lose heart - this was an emotional plea for action.

The event was entitled Beat the Odds, which offers hope for some of America's most underprivileged children and celebrates their achievements.

But I spoke to one man who told me that he could offer little hope to the young African Americans he mentors in the wake of this election.

Hillary Clinton used her voice tonight to try to help change that and dissuade others from feeling despondent.

The candidate may be gone, and right now "Hillary" looks like she might run home and curl back up on the sofa, but there is still a spark left in the first woman who got this far in trying to reach the White House.

"The divisions laid bare by this election run deep, but please listen to me when I say this.

"America is worth it. Our children are worth it. Believe in our country, fight for our values and never, ever give up."

In her concession speech after her shock defeat last week, Mrs Clinton said rival Donald Trump must be given the chance to lead.

Since then she has kept a low profile, although she was spotted while out walking.

In a phone call leaked to US media she also blamed her loss on FBI director James Comey, who announced a new inquiry into her use of a private email server in the run up to the vote.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-38008954


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 Post subject: Re: The whole Democratic Party is now a smoking pile of rubb
PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2016 9:54 am 
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Different paint job ...

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