Shoulder to Shoulder

Markos Moulitsas says to build a new and winning Democratic Party, you can’t start by cutting it in half:

Too many people are still caught up in the Clinton vs. Sanders bullshit from back during the primaries. Even the article I linked above is framed as a battle between big-money donors from those two camps. But most liberals don’t give a fuck, and they shouldn’t. Something new is being built, and it transcends the battles of the past. New people are being drawn in and engaging. New leaders will emerge at the local level, organizing in their own towns and cities. And that’ll be the new center of the party. It will be explicitly liberal, the Third Ways of the party won’t have traction. It will adopt Sanders’ economic rhetoric, but be much broader than that, and have much greater buy-in among the party’s growth demographics (Latinos, Asians, African Americans). It’ll be the best parts of both Sanders’ and Clinton’s core demographics, making it a glorious beautiful new thing. Sure, people in places like here [Daily Kos] will insist in fighting stupid old battles, but most people will focus on the greater good.

So my advice to donors and progressive groups trying to make sense of what comes ahead? Don’t try to build anything. Things are already being built. Instead, ride the wave. Let it carry you. If you are a donor, support the new leaders and institutions that arise from this (just like the Kochs spent countless millions supporting tea party initiatives). Embrace this new generation of activists, because these are the women and men who will deliver us to the promised land.

In a time of darkness, this new resistance movement promises to not just mitigate the damage Trump and his Republican allies seeks to cause, but to build a new lasting progressive majority. So please please please, look for the best of what came before us, no matter which “side” it was associated with, and then embrace this future. Because it’ll be glorious.

Some are too focused on re-litigating the Sanders v. Hillary primary, and thus focused on making sure no one who supported Hillary in any fashion over the last two years has a voice in the party going forward.  For surely the best way to grow a party and win the next election is to engage in a Stalinist purge, shrinking the party down to only its purist core.   Yeah, I don’t think so.

But that also doesn’t mean that we embrace the Third Way or the Delaware Way.  That doesn’t mean we don’t criticize elected Democrats or party officials who do, like Tom Carper and John Carney.  It doesn’t mean we don’t criticize Lisa Blunt Rochester and Chris Coons when they stray from progressive principles.  When they do, they deserved to be blasted relentlessly.   And the same goes for our much less noticed General Assembly officials (though we at Blue Delaware hope to change their lack of notice).

To put this as simply as I can: it is time we liberals and Democrats and progressives start standing shoulder to shoulder facing our enemy in Donald Trump and his Republican Party, rather than facing each other.



Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

8 comments on “Shoulder to Shoulder

  1. HyperbolicDem

    Dems are notorious for the circular firing squad approach to governing. One big issue is the dividing up into categories like progressives, moderates, etc. Dems need to put all the internal squabbles aside and relinquish the all-or-nothing philosophy that factionalizes us and keeps the guns pointed inward. That is easier said than done, because compromise has been synonymous with defeat for the past 16 years. That is the first thing that needs to change, within the Party.

  2. cassandram

    When I discovered the Daily Kos, it was in the worst of the BushCo days and finally I found people who were not cowering. Markos is right and at some point those from the Hillary and Bernie camps who are interested in real resistance and in moving an agenda forward will find each other and go. It is going to be a grassroots thing, though. And the people are are more interested in labels and purity rather than progress towards shared goals will do what they’ve always done. Not much.

    I saw the Will.I.Am Yes We Can video today and while it made me sad for Obama’s leaving tomorrow, the real sadness is around how few of us really embraced his Yes I Can. This thing works for the people who show up. It always has. And Obama’s insight that we were always the ones who had to push was right and it was usually derided by those who just wanted to wake up to something different.

    At some point we’ll find the people who are committed to some change. There are groups forming here that are looking to be effective change agents. And maybe we’ll get serious about this Yes I Can thing.

  3. Bernie was able to build a following almost over night, to me it demonstrated that the spirit of The New Deal was alive and well. If only the Carpers and Coons of this world would recognize that. The party has a lot of baggage that needs to go, much of it in high political office, I doubt they will change. But we can come together to fight back and to move forward, I’m no optimist and realize it will be difficult. The Trump regime will be one of ever increasing disappointment for the nation and especially for the voters that believed him and his pie in the sky promises. I see it as a painful opportunity and we need to be prepared to exploit it.

    • I agree, bamboozer.

      (The rest of this comment is not directed at you, b. Your comment triggered some thoughts.)

      Where I see a problem is the way some of us are freaking out over every thing – like writing off Lisa Blunt Rochester for attending the inauguration today. Yes, I wish she would boycott it, but I’m more concerned on how she votes on issues. We need to target our fight, stay on point, and not always throw the baby out with the bath water.

      And yes, there are some politicians who will will never change and they deserve our scorn, but there are some who could turn out to be allies, and we need to cultivate them. We can be disappointed in Lisa Blunt Rochester’s decision to attend the inauguration, but it isn’t a window into her soul or how she will vote.

      We also need to hold every politician to the same standard. If voting the wrong way on an issue makes them the enemy, not progressive, etc. then that standard must be applied across the board. It’s frustrating to see certain progressive politicians get away with votes that other progressive politicians get excoriated for. And the only difference I see for this behavior is that we like the politician we give a pass to. If how a politician votes count, then they count equally. Consistency will matter in this fight.


      • I tend to be as hard as the rest of you on Carney, Carper, Coons and for some today Rochester. Everyone seems irritated they went to the inauguration. I was to until I got thinking about it. They all left with Biden and took the one o’clock train back to Delaware. Has anyone thought that they might have gone to honor Biden and take the ride home from Washington with him? This time I will give them all the benefit of the doubt.

        • I agree. I do not blame either of the three for attending. I actually like the argument of showing resistance to his face. And you got a good point about honoring Biden.

  4. Early in the main article the statement is made that the main growth demographics are Asian, Latinos, and African Americans. I would not be so quick to write off the white union guy whose job went overseas, who lost his good paying job and pension and maybe his house and is now making half or less than he was making before. His retraining if he got any, did not keep him even money wise and he may not even like what he is doing. Once he realizes Trump screwed him over we can get these people back as long as we open our arms and not treat them badly. I think we also need to admit that the trade deals were good on paper but in execution left a lot to be desired. Sometimes the truth hurts. Politicians need to learn to admir mistakes and let their ego get bruised once in awhile.

  5. We must remember, as Democrats, that this great party (based on the many monumental, historic humane positions it has taken in recent decades) is a coalition. A complicated one at that, with ethnic, gender, lifestyle, income, geographic and yes, some ideological diversity. We come together on values centered on equity, equality, social and economic justice. Within our coalition, we differ on what we choose to emphasize and that is quite OK. Coalitions require feeding and watering….nurturing and most of all, mutual respect for differences. With these characteristics, we can rebuild, especially at the neighborhood, county and state levels with robust participation. The DNC can and must be the sum of these grassroots parts, not a creature of the Beltway. We can make this work. There is room for both progressive populism and internationalism.

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