Time to Move Forward: Step Three
Strengthen the Democratic Party or Leave it: One undeniable truth exposed in the recent election was that Republicans despite all their alleged misgivings… voted Republican. They didn’t stay home… Democrats did. Leading Republicans called Trump a “con man,” said his actions were, “the definition of racism,” they called him a “sexual predator.” And still they voted for him. Given the size of the Republican base. A third party would have a difficult time in beating Trump in four years or Mike Pence should Trump choose not to run again.
That said it’s not impossible if there were a true coalition of like-minded people and groups that started now. A movement could swell to the point where it could defeat the Republicans. It’s not impossible but not the best option either. The best option would be to build on the infrastructure of the Democratic Party while changing it from within to reflect its membership.
The next step forward requires new leadership within the Democratic Party. Harry Reid is retired and Chuck Schumer has taken his place. I don’t know if he represents real change but time will soon tell. In the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi wants to stay the head of the Minority Party. Others are challenging to take her place. The Democratic Party needs leaders that can appeal to the various constituencies that make up the Party, millennials included. Schumer and Pelosi have contributed much over time and been steadfastly loyal to the Party. I think they should move to advisory roles and let youth be served. The DNC needs a new Chairperson. Keith Ellison is one of several announced candidates. Howard Dean another. Let new blood be given a chance.
The Democratic Party is a coalition of many groups. They must resist the urge to focus for example on the White Working Class for example and ignore the rest of the coalition. What’s needed are policies that represent the whole Party and not just certain constituents. Democrats need a strong economic message and must exhibit no tolerance for voter suppression and the normalization of White Nationalism.
Lastly the process for choosing candidates must be fair. There must not even be the appearance of favoritism for establishment candidates and a rigged system. Let the Democratic Party select its candidates and not its leaders and donors. This means the DNC should not be in the business of helping determine the nominee or making rules favoring one candidate over another. It also means the Caucus states should consider holding elections for the populace instead of letting a limited number of people determine the winner.
Democrats have a strategic advantage going into the midterms and the next Presidential Election. Donald Trump! Make no mistake he is already pursuing an immigration policy that will appease much of his base but most Americans will see it for what it is. When he and his Chief Strategist Steve Bannon develop policies that only help Americans of a certain hue. The rest of the Nation will take note. If he is effective in killing the Affordable Care Act and removing healthcare from twenty million people. If he builds a wall. If he enacts a massive tax cut for the rich as he promised. These things will alienate many Americans. He will insult foreign leaders, the media and anyone who disagrees with his views. He will demean women. He will send stupid tweets. The number of people reviled by Trump will only grow. What is needed now is a Party that stands for something to embrace them.
Should the Democratic Party fail to make positive changes, demonstrate transparency and reach out to all its members. It will be time for a change.