In the wake of a devastating result in the 2016 presidential election, the Democrat Party has been forced to do some soul searching. Improving their message may be an uphill climb, and not only at the presidential level. Democrats also failed to regain a majority in the House and the Senate, while continuing their downhill spiral in state legislatures all across the country. At this point, the Democrat Party is in crisis mode.
For awhile, it seemed like the party wasn’t learning its lesson. Democrats blamed everyone from Russian hackers to racism for their 2016 defeat, proving how out of touch the party had become. However, the new direction the party is embracing may not be much better.
From The Hill:
Democrats previously reticent to welcoming Sen. Bernie Sanders into their fold are coming around.
More than a dozen Democrats interviewed by The Hill say the Vermont Independent has become a powerful and welcome voice for a party struggling to find its identity after a devastating defeat in 2016.
While misgivings remain about giving too much leadership to a politician who technically isn’t a Democrat, a clear warming trend is on the rise.
Although the socialist firebrand surprised pundits with a spirited campaign against Hillary Clinton, his message is unlikely to connect with the majority of Americans. His base of support was young college students, a demographic that trends more conservative as they age. Nevertheless, party leaders seem ready to embrace his brand of liberalism for the future:
“I talk to a lot of people who now believe that Democrats nominated the wrong candidate, and they can’t say for sure that Bernie would have won, but they know Bernie was more in tune with the wavelength of the American people [than Clinton],” he said. “He was an agent of change. Clinton was not.”
The push further left could prove to be a fatal one for Democrats. After all, nobody within the party seems to be considering the fact that Americans just weren’t fond of Hillary Clinton. It wasn’t Sanders’ message that connected with Democrat primary voters, but the fact that he was an alternative to an unpopular candidate.
Of course, the prospect of a Democrat Party pushing a socialist agenda is a scary one. As liberal policies continue to do damage to the economy, it will be vital for moderate Democrats and Republicans to push back against the new direction of the Democrat Party.
Shifting left isn’t just bad for the party, it’s bad for the country. In their desperation, Democrats seem willing to make that mistake.
[Note: This post was authored by Michael Lee. Follow him on Twitter @UAMichaelLee]