Why democrats need to wise up

Geoffrey Dochat, Editor in Chief

Even though the Democratic candidate, Joe Biden, has won the Presidential election, was this year really a success for the Democratic party? Projections showed that the Senate and many state legislatures were supposed to turn bluebut they didn’t. In fact, they even lost seats in the House of Representatives. As the party that sided with the Black Lives Matter movement after a year filled with police brutality and violence towards Black Americans, Democrat’s number of minority votes went down. How could that be? Why can’t Democrats win the support of the people they are outspokenly trying to defend and support? To put it short, the party lacks the ability to maintain a respectable image.


Trump and the Republican party did an amazing job at painting their opponent, Joe Biden, as a communist and socialist. Trump stirred up anti-communist sentiment in Latin-American citizens because many of them came from Cuba and Venezuela, which have historically been dictatorial-socialist nations. 


American’s mistaken fear that the U.S. will turn towards similar authoritarianism has led many to vote red. Trump saw a six percent leap in votes from Black men in the 2020 election. A Pew Research Center study from January 2020 found that nearly a quarter of black Democrats are conservative, and 43 percent are moderate. Ismail White, Professor of Politics and Public Affairs, and Chrul Laird, Assistant-Professor of Government at Bowdoin College, co-wrote the book, “Steadfast Democrats” in which they suggested that Black people vote blue more consistently is due to pressure from other Black voters, not because their beliefs align with Democratic ideals. 


The way I see it, a majority of the country dislikes Donald Trump, but can’t seem to align themselves with the Democratic party. The party’s most prominent figures, such as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders, are used to generalize the entire party as socialist. Misinformation like this is what gives Republicans an edge, and when Democrats don’t do anything to deny it, Republicans win. I do believe that right-wing media has a habit of bending Democratic rhetoric in a way that makes them look more radical. However, Democrats and Liberals don’t exactly help their case when they claim “everyone who votes for Trump is racist.” They seriously need to reevaluate the messages they try to send to the American people, because they often end up shooting themselves in the foot.


In an interview with CBS on November 9, 2020, House Majority Whip James Clyburn says Donald Trump’s victory in the 2016 election was because people thought Democrats had gone “too far to the left.” The logical move would be to attempt to convince the public that was not the case, but instead, Democrats doubled down on this notion by feeding into the Republican conspiracies about the party. Take “Defund the Police” for example. The phrase is extremely broad and has pigeonholed Democrats nation-wide as radical-leftists that want to abolish law enforcement. Clyburn said that “‘Defund the Police’ is killing our party, and we’ve got to stop it.” The fact that different Democrat politicians are contradicting the messages of people in their own party means that they lack a clear vision, and this only deters voters from having confidence in the party.


To moderates and conservatives, Democrats have become the party of cancel-culture, radical social justice and injecting identity politics into every aspect of life. These things don’t attract voters; they steer them away. People don’t want to hear that they should be held responsible for things their ancestors did or how they can’t be friends with someone because they support Trump. Many people vote for Trump because they don’t want radical-progressivism becoming the new standard. This is not what a majority of Democrats want, but they can’t seem to explain that to the American people. 


You may not have been able to tell this from reading the article, but I am a Democrat—something I find difficult to admit. My views lean left on the political spectrum, but I am displeased with the party that  The reason I wrote this article is because I see the issues with my political party and am willing to speak out about them. Far too many people are blinded by their own spite against those on the other end of the political spectrum that they will do anything to not agree with them. Not only is this counterproductive to political discourse, but, as we have seen, it is dangerous. For example, many Republican governors and senators follow President Trump simply because he is a Republican.They choose to ignore facts, science, and common sense simply to appeal to their fearless leader. Due to their following of Trump’s premature and unsafe recommendations for states to reopen amidst a pandemic, we have been losing nearly the same amount of people lost on 9-11 daily.


Democrats should be able to win much more than they do. Pew Research Center found that a majority of Americans are pro-choice, pro-legalization of marijuana, are in favor of affordable healthcare, and want climate reform. 


My advice? Stick with the points people agree with and speak out against the radicalism that infects the Democratic image. Let the people who don’t believe in the party know that what someone on the left does is not representative of the whole left, and acknowledge that the same goes for the right. Formulate talking points so a clear and consistent message can be conveyed to the American people instead of hearing something different from every Democratic politician. Stop apologizing.  People don’t want to support a person who apologizes for every miniscule slip-up, they want a strong leader who doesn’t bend under pressure. In 2019, Comedian and talk-show host Bill Maher said “I know more about what Democratic candidates have apologized for  than I know their stance on the issues.” And finally, get rid of the notion that everyone now has to be extremely “woke” and politically correct at all times. Forcing dramatic and rapid social change simply fuels the hate for the left and makes Democrats appear more radical. 


I have to use another Bill Maher quote because he put this situation into very simple terms.


“Democrats too often don’t come across as having common sense to a huge swath of Americans–and these are people who believe in QAnon.”