Sorry, Tyler! You’ve got it exactly right, but they’re not listening to you.
But if my party continues to shift left on every major issue, demonize centrist and conservative Democrats, or ignore rural America, we’ll never take advantage of this historic opportunity.The Jeff Flakes of the world will never become Democrats if the party’s only coherent message calls for “free this” and “free that” or if its most recognizable leader is a 76 year-old socialist from Vermont or an ultra-liberal Harvard professor from Massachusetts…
Our party would be wise to take a step back and consider the opportunity that is being placed at its feet. We should firmly reject efforts to turn the Democratic Party into an entirely coastal and urban party dominated by the far-left wing, where we demand every candidate support single-payer health care, $15 minimum wage and free college for everyone.
Instead, I believe the path to success requires us to go back to being a big-tent, center-left party; one that resists the urge to grow government so that we can balance the budget, eliminate debt and invest in the future. We should strive to be the party of rural America again. But first, we’ll need to actually show up and understand a culture that many in our party too often treat condescendingly. We should once again be a party that is home to proud people of faith, filled with candidates from all across America who aren’t afraid to talk about it.
Instead of pursuing the unrealistic goal of single-payer healthcare in 2017, we should be laser-focused on putting a stop to the opioid epidemic that is literally killing off thousands of young people every day in small towns across the country.
We must demonstrate a priority and commitment to jobs and opportunities for American citizens who work hard and play by the rules.
Instead of looking to figures like Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) to move the party forward, we should be listening to Governors like Steve Bullock of Montana and Roy Cooper of North Carolina who actually won elections in red states.
If we want to win again, Democrats must get out of the bubbles of New York, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., and listen to the rest of America again.
An old boss once told me, “Winners govern and losers yell at their television.”