Do Democrats want to beat Trump

Rogifan

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I’m no fan of Tom Nichols but he’s 100% right in this column. What was the point of this LGBTQ forum (and the global warming one that came before it)? The people Democrats need to come out and vote for them to win back the White House aren’t people obsessed with what pronoun someone uses and are probably turned off when they hear a candidate say they’re going to punish religious institutions for exercising their First Amendment rights. If the DNC believes their voters are worried about where their candidates stand on these issues then they are in big trouble come 2020. And that’s only good news for Donald Trump and Mike Pence.
 
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RichardMZhlubb

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I’m no fan of Tom Nichols but he’s 100% right in this column. What was the point of this LGBTQ forum (and the global warming one that came before it)? The people Democrats need to come out and vote for them to win back the White House aren’t people obsessed with what pronoun someone uses and are probably turned off when they hear a candidate say they’re going to punish religious institutions for exercising their First Amendment rights. If the DNC believes their voters are worried about where their candidates stand on these issues then they are in big trouble come 2020. And that’s only good news for Donald Trump and Mike Pence.
Anyone who would choose to vote for Trump because the Democrats are discussing climate change and LGBTQ issues is going to vote for Trump anyway. The people complaining about this sort of stuff are Republican anti-Trumpers. The Democrats should not be shaping their candidacies to appeal to that tiny group at the expense of their own base. The 2020 election is going to be driven by which candidate best excites and drives turnout of their base, not by converting Trump leaners to the Democratic candidate.
 

Rogifan

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Anyone who would choose to vote for Trump because the Democrats are discussing climate change and LGBTQ issues is going to vote for Trump anyway. The people complaining about this sort of stuff are Republican anti-Trumpers. The Democrats should not be shaping their candidacies to appeal to that tiny group at the expense of their own base. The 2020 election is going to be driven by which candidate best excites and drives turnout of their base, not by converting Trump leaners to the Democratic candidate.
I’m not talking about Trump leaners. I’m talking about suburban voters who are not partisans and are not crazy about Trump. Democrats won them over in 2018 because they talked about kitchen table issues not I’m going to take away your health insurance and raise your taxes; not decriminalizing illegal border crossings and giving illegal immigrants free healthcare, not punishing religious institutions for exercising their First Amendment rights. Neither party can win only with their base. but I think a large portion of the Democrat party is more moderate, hence why Biden is leading in the polls and Beto barely registers. And pandering to the far left turns off suburban voters who don’t like Trump. They may choose to stay home like I did in 2018.
 

RichardMZhlubb

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They may choose to stay home like I did in 2018.
So, what specific positions did the Democratic candidate for your local House seat take that led you to decide that it wasn’t worth doing something that could actually limit Trump’s abuses of power?

You can’t blame the Democratic candidates when you admit that you don’t care enough about stopping Trump to actually vote.
 

Lord Blackadder

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...pandering to the far left turns off suburban voters who don’t like Trump. They may choose to stay home like I did in 2018.
Pandering to the far right worked pretty well for the Republicans. Extremism sells, to a degree.

The difference, of course, is that conservatives have been targeting local elections for years while progressives have had tunnel vision for federal-level politics. As a result, the GOP built from the bottom up (or fostered astroturf movements like the Tea Party), gerrymandered voting districts, and engineered it so that they can consistently win elections while actually being in the minority in terms of popular vote.

The Presidency and even Congress are red herrings in a way. Democrats need to start winning city council positions, electing county officials, and state legislators. Until they can do that Republicans will continue to tighten their grip on local politics, turning this country into a quasi-one party state. At least until the baby boomers start dying off.

As an addendum - I respect your freedom to choose how you participate in the political process, but I consider refraining from voting to be unforgivable. The most powerful thing you can do as a citizen is to vote - in EVERY election and at every level of government. Many important elections are decided by a few thousand or a few hundred votes - tiny margins. By staying away from the ballot box you are saying "I don't like my choices; let other people decide who runs the country." As a result, your opinion by definition carries less value, both to political parties and to more active citizens.

Politicians like to say that Americans died to protect this or that freedom or value. That is usually trite in the extreme, but the one activity above all others that characterizes the system we all claim to celebrate is the ability to choose how we govern ourselves. There are times that refraining from voting makes a statement and fulfills a purpose, but I have not yet heard anyone make a convincing argument to me for staying away from the last couple major elections.

Low turnouts / voter apathy = a failed democracy. Vote!!!
 

Rogifan

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So, what specific positions did the Democratic candidate for your local House seat take that led you to decide that it wasn’t worth doing something that could actually limit Trump’s abuses of power?

You can’t blame the Democratic candidates when you admit that you don’t care enough about stopping Trump to actually vote.
There’s very little from a policy standpoint I agree with Democrats on. That’s why they’ll never get my vote.
 

JayMysterio

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There’s very little from a policy standpoint I agree with Democrats on. That’s why they’ll never get my vote.
Then the question I've often asked, why do you thing it's relevant ( not being insulting ) what your view of "Do democrats want to beat/win/defeat... whatever"? By your own admission there is NOTHING that the dems can do to get your vote or win, because they don't align with your interests. By trying to win you over, they stand a very good chance of alienating those that have supported them all this time. What's the importance of winning someone over who has no intention of actually caring for anything on their chosen platform? Unless they contort breaking their own backs to cater to someone who may not support them continually in the future like other groups have?

I ask that, because I've never heard someone leaning left go, "I'd vote for republican if they were more..." At least not me personally, so I've often wondered why those on the right ( or supposed middle ) insist those on the left do things to cater to them?
 
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Lord Blackadder

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There’s very little from a policy standpoint I agree with Democrats on. That’s why they’ll never get my vote.
As long as both sides pander to the extremes, and as long as the media do the same, and as long as voters lap this up, you're not going to see broad movements towards the middle.

The bigger question is, do YOU want to see that? Because that means conscious moderation on both sides, the recognition that the center is in fact the center. Right now the Republicans in particular, with the reins of government in their hands, have a skewed perspective of the political spectrum. Any platform not conforming to what neutral observers consider center-right to far-right is slandered as "far left" politics. Some Democrats indulge in an opposite form of biased characterization, though it is currently more pronounced on the right.

How, in this environment, do you expect anyone to be able to champion moderate politics?
 

LizKat

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There’s very little from a policy standpoint I agree with Democrats on. That’s why they’ll never get my vote.
Baby. Bathwater. Sometimes one has to take a stand against an incumbent official or a majority (and personally preferred) party seen as getting too far off track or as abusing power.

Also, it's important to sort out what's a platform plank laid down as perennial litmus test for a party, and what's a plank offered as an actionable way forward distinct from whatever's the current situation related to that policy issue.

There are planks in both major parties' platforms that don't vary from season to season, even if "nothing happens" regarding legislation on those issues due to polarization or sometimes because the issues are constitutionally fraught and have been tested unsuccessfully in recent years.

There's no way in hell I'd ever be a one-note voter on, for instance, either the abortion issue or on gun control. If I don't like how things go with respect to those issues, I know the phone numbers and email addresses of state and congressional representatives and the White House... and I use them. And those issues will remain constitutionally fraught.

Meanwhile there are other issues on which the two major parties differ and those may affect my vote for either a particular level of public office (president, county sheriff) or occasionally cause me to vote the equivalent of a straight party line, top to bottom.

Sometimes I've been completely dismayed by major party behavior on both sides of the aisle and it has been a third party gets a top-to-bottom boost from me. Not any more though. In my book now it's office by office and most times I'm going to vote for the Democrat if one stands for an office, because I think the GOP has gone off its own best rails in its behavior, in its track record, not just in its campaigns or speechifying in front of cameras.

On taking one for the sake of democracy, and on counting on the free press: there were times I voted for conservatives in NYC in the Congressional races. Sure they were not going to win in my area of Manhattan. I was sending a message about dissatisfaction. I liked it when the dissatisfaction with the Democrat advanced past the 7-10% mark. it started having an effect on, among other things, how the news media bothered to cover the behavior of the winner after the elections were over. When the press starts paying attention then so does the congress critter and after that in no particular order so do the voters and the District Attorney's office.

Indictments of corrupt pols don't happen because a DA wakes up some morning and thinks geez I have nothing to do today, I think I'm going to prowl around and see what the guy in the xxth district is up to. No. The law's impetus for looking at a legislator is from either a whistleblower, a wronged party, someone with a different (and sometimes also corrupt) agenda, or the media on its own initiative.

The voter's impetus for looking at an incumbent and at other options can depend on how siloed his or her info stream is. Today I could weep for the idiots not looking with open eyes at their idol Donald Trump. Just the public demeanor of the man tramples on the values some of them hold personally and would not permit in their homes or if demonstrated by one of their children. They tolerate it for "preferred policy" but then also tolerate policy of which they have no awareness. There's likely some bright line each of them won't cross to defend him in the end, though, despite the theory of the Fifth Avenue wink-and-nod. Trump and the GOP seem to be banking that's not the case. It's too hard for them to figure out where that line for their whole base might be, because it's impossible to figure out what Trump might not do on the average Tuesday to cause one more and one more and one more voter to say uh ok that's it, this guy is... not for me.
 

samcraig

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Then the question I've often asked, why do you thing it's relevant ( not being insulting ) what your view of "Do democrats want to beat/win/defeat... whatever"? By your own admission there is NOTHING that the dems can do to get your vote or win, because they don't align with your interests. By trying to win you over, they stand a very good chance of alienating those that have supported them all this time. What's the importance of winning someone over who has no intention of actually caring for anything on their chosen platform? Unless they contort breaking their own backs to cater to someone who may not support them continually in the future like other groups have?

I ask that, because I've never heard someone leaning left go, "I'd vote for republican if they were more..." At least not me personally, so I've often wondered why those on the right ) or supposed middle ) insist those on the left do things to cater to them?
If it were between Trump and another Republican, I would vote most anyone else. Which again begs the question, why are conservatives backing Trump vs bringing a true leader to the frontlines. It seems they could get the agenda they want without having to deal with Trump and his abhorrent behavior.
 

linuxcooldude

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Mainstream Republican politics are no longer conservative; they are reactionary. From that perspective, moderate politics are seen as left-wing and progressive politics as "radical."
Just like the Green new deal, radical solution that will cost Trillions to implement.
- - Post merged: - -

Ah yes, the radicalism of treating people like people.
Don't need to implement radical policies to treat people like people.
 
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Lord Blackadder

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Going back to the OP - The Democrats do not need to make special appeals to moderate voters to win elections. The Republicans have won recently by going down a completely opposite route - tripling down on certain wedge issues and promising voters they will never compromise on them. Democrats will likely do the same. The margins are tight enough for either party to continue trading victories through this destructive approach.

How long will we, the voters, keep preferring warriors over diplomats in congress? How stupid are we? Politicians run on promises to defeat or at least stymie their enemies, which gets us nowhere. But we voters keep buying it. We want the heads of our enemies.

Nowadays, when a politician claims they will get things done, voters assume they mean getting things done over the shattered bodies of their opponents, not through compromise and consensus-building. The latter process may not be sexy or easy for the simple-minded or lazy to understand, nor is it easy to achieve, but its the only way to a better world. One-party rule by either "side" would be disastrous. One-sided political "victories" are always either ephemeral or pyrrhic, and the longer they persist the further we move away from democracy.
 
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RichardMZhlubb

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Because the issues they decide to focus on, are not realistic solutions, but radical ones.
A pretty significant majority of all Americans support things like same sex marriage and workplace protections for members of the LGBTQ community, and believe that the primary driver of increasing global temperatures is human activity and that government should take significant actions to try to remedy this problem.
 

LizKat

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Because the issues they decide to focus on, are not realistic solutions, but radical ones.
In your opinion they are "radical". You get to express your opinions and characterize their views as you wish, but you don't get to define the Democratic Party platform, and it's up to the primary voters to sort out what that platform will look like in the general election.

Sure there are right-leaning voters who try to game the system in states with open primaries, but it's not clear whether their idea of gaming the system is to vote for the most "lefty" candidate or merely to vote for the one they figure cannot win the general.

In their own individual minds that may be one and the same candidate. But in reality those two categories are likely to be filled by two different Democrats, for a number of unrelated reasons, or in the case of a large array as in 2020, a whole bunch of Democrats.

The bottom line there is that right-leaning voters still don't get any kind of a leg up by trying to define either the Democratic Party or particular candidates as "radical". So it's better for them to concentrate on who's a candidate on their own side of the aisle who has the best chance of a) meeting their own personal policy preferences in a Republican primary contest, but b) also may best attract voters from the other side of the aisle in the general election.

In 2020, the chances in the general election appear to be quite different to what was going on in 2016. It's not that populism is dead in the USA now, it's just that the Republican Party's massively faux representation of it has been exposed by Trump and the GOP's actual track record. The 2018 midterms were a clue of that awareness coming home to roost among independent voters. To dismiss that blue shift, as the GOP largely seems to have done (at least for attribution in media interviews) will have proved a gigantic error.

Perhaps no one could have anticipated Trump's folly in greenlighting the Turkish incursion, for instance, and then again perhaps that midterm vote has anticipated exactly the awareness that there's nothing under the sun should really shock us any more that Trump might do, or not do, in a given day or hour.

This awareness is not something one remains comfortable with over long periods of time. Four years is a long time with a guy like Trump, when even a week can feel exhausting.

Yeah Democrats want to win in 2020, and they're probably going to win by default and lack of interest among opposition voters. To me, right-leaning folk not trying to pave a Republican path for 2020 that doesn't offer an alternative to Trump are myopic.
 

linuxcooldude

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A pretty significant majority of all Americans support things like same sex marriage and workplace protections for members of the LGBTQ community, and believe that the primary driver of increasing global temperatures is human activity and that government should take significant actions to try to remedy this problem.
I don't see focusing on transgender issues which comprise .04% of the population as a winning strategy for Democrats. Something that applies to most Americans would be a better strategy.
 
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Rogifan

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If it were between Trump and another Republican, I would vote most anyone else. Which again begs the question, why are conservatives backing Trump vs bringing a true leader to the frontlines. It seems they could get the agenda they want without having to deal with Trump and his abhorrent behavior.
Because it’s not about policy. It’s about attitude. And victimhood. Which they get with Trump in spades. For me it’s the opposite. OK Trump fights but to what end? For what reason? More often than not it’s because he can’t survive without constantly being in a fight with someone. But he’s not converting anyone who isn’t already converted. The only way he wins again is if Democrats move so far left they’re out of step with the mainstream of the country.

A pretty significant majority of all Americans support things like same sex marriage and workplace protections for members of the LGBTQ community, and believe that the primary driver of increasing global temperatures is human activity and that government should take significant actions to try to remedy this problem.
Um, same sex marriage is legal and the number of LGBTQ individuals being discriminated at work is incredibly small. Focus on things that impact most people not a tiny minority of the population that is already in your corner.
 
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linuxcooldude

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In your opinion they are "radical". You get to express your opinions and characterize their views as you wish, but you don't get to define the Democratic Party platform, and it's up to the primary voters to sort out what that platform will look like in the general election.
Other than maybe Biden, the rest seem to push some radical solutions that cost trillions and won't do much except warm and fussy feeling for some.

I'm not defining the Democrats platform, but what their selling, I'm just not buying. Thats totally different. Its up to them to convince me what their offering is good enough to vote for them, but its not.
 

LizKat

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Other than maybe Biden, the rest seem to push some radical solutions that cost trillions and won't do much except warm and fussy feeling for some.

I'm not defining the Democrats platform, but what their selling, I'm just not buying. Thats totally different. Its up to them to convince me what their offering is good enough to vote for them, but its not.

The idea that Democrats' proposals "cost trillions" is mostly underwritten by groups in K street (or way farther back, actually, in the shadows of dark money stacked to the stratosphere) who like exactly how and where the trillions have got allocated over the last forty years. Time for a change, not just another unfunded proposal for another uptick in the deficit... and not just a change in majority definition of how to spend it this year or that year, but in how the Democrats and Republicans BOTH look at policy on their own side of the aisle.