A reminder from the 2020 election
Just in case anyone forgot.
It's common sense: Democratic politicians who support "radical" notions like Medicare for All, free college, or preserving a habitable planet via a Green New Deal guarantee their own defeat....
It may be common sense, but it's wrong. Every single Congressional co-sponsor of the "Medicare for All" bills in the House and Senate who were up for reelection beat their Republican opponents in 2020. And in 2018. And in 2016. And every Democrat who lost reelection to a Republican had campaigned on the "boring, moderate" platform that Shor contends is the formula for success.
In fact, you have to go back a full decade to find a single Democratic incumbent who co-sponsored a Medicare for All bill and lost their reelection bid. One lost in 2010, when 52 total House Democrats lost reelection in the Republican blowout. For the entire period from 2002 to 2020, there were two. During that time Medicare for All has had between 38 and 124 co-sponsors in the House.
And let's not forget how everyone hates socialism.
The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), an organization that boasts nearly 80,000 members nationwide, endorsed 29 candidates and 11 ballot initiatives, winning 20 and 8 respectively. There are now democratic socialist caucuses in 15 statehouses, including Montana.
Imagine that. People support socialism and M4A. Who would have guessed.
But how are you gonna pay for it, amirite?
Last week, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released an estimate of the cost of implementing a single-payer health insurance program in the United States. The CBO’s report is more exhaustive than any other recent study on the subject and concludes that replacing our current system with a single-payer system would insure every American while reducing overall health spending in the country...
The CBO answered these questions for four different single-payer designs and found that a single-payer system would save $42 billion to $743 billion in 2030 alone.
The CBO option that most closely approximates current Medicare for All proposals is Option 3, which features low payment rates and low cost-sharing. That option produces $650 billion of savings in 2030.
If there's one thing we know for certain, the Democratic party establishment knows that you don't actually want what you think you want.
The Democratic party establishment knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that all of those election results are "misleading". The right policy to "win in politics" isn't reflected in mere election results. Nor in the polls.
If you want to know how to "win in politics" then there is only one trick that you must master:
Punch Left and Punch Down.
This is what they learned from their ass kicking in 2010.
And this is what they learned from their ass kicking in 2016.
And this is what they learned from their ass kicking in 2020.
"No one should say 'defund the police' ever again," Spanberger yelled on the leaked call. "Nobody should be talking about socialism."
She added that if progressives continue to use this rhetoric, "We will get f-----g torn apart in 2022."
Rep. Stephanie Murphy was even more direct and to the point.
“I think that the Democratic party needs to clearly push that we are not supportive of ideas like socialism or defunding the police or anti-Semitism,” said Rep. Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla., a co-chair of the House’s centrist Blue Dog Coalition.
...“This playing footsies with socialism is not going to win over most of America,” she said. “There’s no amount of lipstick that can cover up the fact that these far left ideas are costing us races.”
It's all the fault of the left! That's all you need to know.
Of course if you think about this for just one second the logic breaks down.
For starters, only conservative Democrats lost. No incumbent progressive Democrat lost. So something's wrong with this logic.
Florida voted overwhelmingly to raise the minimum wage. Even Red counties supported it.
The Florida Democratic Party rejected raising the minimum wage as too far left - thus the majority of voters in Florida are too far left for the Democratic Party. Several of Florida's conservative candidates lost.
Fox News exit poll: 72% want a government-run healthcare plan aka Medicare for All
FL voted for a $15 minimum wage
SD, MT, AZ & NJ voted to legalize marijuana
CO voted for 12 weeks of paid family & medical leave
Get back to basics by unifying behind an FDR agenda for the 99% https://t.co/tx3CO5CLf6
— Warren Gunnels (@GunnelsWarren) November 5, 2020
And then, there's the much more important implication of what they're saying.
So are we supposed to believe that if Rep. Pramila Jayapal, who represents Seattle, never let the word “socialism” pass her lips again, then that would mean that some centrist Democrat from a district 3,000 miles away would have an easy path to victory in every future election?
And what exactly are centrists asking progressives to do? It sounds like they’re saying, “Republicans falsely accused me of believing what you believe, so that means you have to change your positions and believe only what I believe.” Do they want the progressives to change their beliefs on health care or economics or some other issue? Should the progressives just stop advocating for their preferred agenda at all?
That is what they are saying: the Democrats can't win as long as any progressives exist in the party. They are advocating for a purge of the left. They are advocating for a second Republican Party.
Not exactly a big tent party is it? Race and gender? Big tent.
Political ideology? Very small tent.