It’s no secret that America is a country divided by politics. But some self-reflective Democrats came forward to reflect on the things they believe their own party has gotten all wrong.
Note: Some quotes in this piece have been lightly edited for grammar.
An Inner Look
Too often we critique the other political side only for the criticisms to fall on deaf ears, according to a commenter who started a thread encouraging Democrats to reflect on what their party does poorly. “Perhaps what can be more productive is to point out what our own party gets wrong or can do a better job with.” Many Democrats stepped up to the plate to do just that.
1: Tried and Failed
One Democrat thinks fellow Dems have mostly failed to build model urban centers in America, citing them as unaffordable, sprawly, car-dependent, and crime-ridden with weak social safety nets. “Blue states should be passing major legislation to reshape how our cities are built and operate,” they said. “The problem is that few blue states are making truly transformational reforms.”
2: Missed the Boat
Another Dem thinks their party missed the boat on expanding labor rights after the pandemic. “They are still missing it. It’s baffling and disappointing,” they continued. “There are some minor state-level victories like the right to work in Michigan, but the party as a whole failed.”
3: Out With the Old
“Dems need younger voices,” one leftist said. “Relying on Biden, the oldest president in US history, is failing. We need another person in their 40s, like Obama, who can speak effectively and provide modern solutions.”
4: Know Your Enemy
One person thinks fellow Democrats lack a transformative vision for America. To fix it, they should look to the enemy’s strategy. “Basically, [Republicans] offered an alternative to government as usual, created the intellectual, ideological, and organizational groundwork to make it happen, and as such have been dominant in the last 40 years, even when not in power.”
5: Cloudy Objectives
Another Democrat agrees that their party lacks a clear objective, and it’s their biggest downfall. “Dems have no initiative because they represent the progressive status quo/trajectory of the US, which was very hard fought for 20-40+ years ago but is generally speaking taken for granted at this point,” they said.
6: Answer Me
Democrats fail hard on messaging Republicans, according to a Democrat. “Their Achilles heel is believing that their opponents are reasonable and that eventually they’ll come around to sensibility,” they said. “Ask a Dem a question, and you’ll get a novel. Ask a GOP a question, and you’ll get a clever 3-word answer filled with snark and rage and absolutism.”
7: Shifting Focus
According to one Democrat, their party figures out the most apparent things Republicans have done wrong, like attempting a violent coup, lying about election results, etc., and drops the ball. “They set those issues aside to instead talk about transgender people and drag queens.”
8: Expand Your Horizons
A common complaint among Democrats is that they generally look down upon rural and blue-collar people. “It costs them FUNCTIONAL majorities,” one says. “I would like the Democrats to heed the concerns of not just the Berkley campus.”
9: Ignoring Rural Voters
Another Democrat believes their party has failed to speak to rural voters. “I always think of ghouls like Rahm Emmanuel saying that they’re gonna teach 55-year-old coal miners to be software engineers.”
10: Cherry Picking
One Democrat believes that their party doesn’t actually care about the disenfranchised. They explained that they have seemingly no sympathy for impoverished working-class folks who have fallen victim to addiction. “What does that say about you? You care about human suffering as long as it has the proper pedigree.”
11: Fleeing Florida
“If you want a clear area to point to where Democrats have overwhelmingly completely ruined their electability, it’s Florida,” one Democrat says. They added that it went from being a reasonably purple state to comparable to Texas in 2022.
12: Some Things Never Change
One Democrat says Republicans represent their constituents “painfully, frustratingly well,” but Democrats fail to represent the majority of their supporters. “Democrats in government lack the spine and fortitude to make the things they claim to stand for happen, and this will never change until more left-leaning Democrats come to power.”
13: Forgotten About
Yet another Democrat said their party is neglecting rural communities and overlooking them almost every election cycle. “They don’t listen to them and instead cater their decisions to people in the city.”
14: Broken Promises
One Democrat noticed that folks have been pandering to far-left, progressive party members during election season. However, when those progressed priorities come to light, they’re thrown out or severely watered down. “The moderates in the party are more likely to try to negotiate with the never-gonna-happen Republicans than they are with the party’s left side.”
15: Life Is a Highway
“Democrats have been trying to take the high road when the high road has become impassible,” one liberal said. But they came up with a solution. “They need to be pragmatic and do what needs to be done to save democracy and our institution.”
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