As GOP leaders in the House claim they have enough votes to pass their disastrous health care reform bill, Democrats were more occupied keeping attention on the 2016 election while still blaming everyone but themselves for their failings.
In federal court, DNC lawyer Bruce Spiva told Judge William J. Zloch that the party had no legal obligation to act impartially in the 2016 primaries. The Democratic Party’s charter says that the DNC chair should, “exercise impartiality and evenhandedness as between the Presidential candidates and campaigns.” But regardless of that language, Spiva says that the party can chose their candidate however they see fit:
“We could have voluntarily decided that, ‘Look we’re gonna go into back rooms like they used to and smoke cigars and pick the candidate that way.”
Those statements were made during a hearing on a class-action lawsuit brought by DNC donors, as well as Bernie Sanders’ supporters.
Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton told a luncheon crowd that she is now “part of the resistance” and says that President Trump should stop worrying about the election and instead should focus on the issues facing the country. Clinton then went on to spend quite a bit of time ignoring issues and talking about the 2016 election. While she said she takes “absolute” responsibility for the campaign, she immediately deflected as much responsibility as she could. Clinton said would have been elected President if it weren’t for James Comey’s letter and WikiLeaks:
“I take absolute personal responsibility. I was the candidate, I was the person who was on the ballot, and I am very aware of the challenges, the problems, the shortfalls that we had. It wasn’t a perfect campaign, there is no such thing But I was on the way to winning until a combination of Jim Comey’s letter, on October 28, and Russian WikiLeaks raised doubts in the minds of people who were inclined to vote for me, but got scared off.”
President Obama’s former advisor David Axelrod, appearing on CNN, did not agree with Hillary’s assessment:
“Jim Comey didn’t tell her not to campaign in Wisconsin after the convention. Jim Comey didn’t say don’t put any resources into Michigan until the final week of the campaign.”
“And one of the things that hindered her in the campaign was a sense that she never fully was willing to take responsibility for her mistakes, particularly that server.”
“If I were here, if I were advising her, I would say, ‘Don’t do this. Don’t go back and appear as if you’re shifting responsibility.’ […] She said the words ‘I’m responsible,’ but the – everything else suggested that she doesn’t really feel that way.”
It seems as though Hillary and the rest of the DNC brass are stuck using the same tired talking points to cover up their train wreck of a campaign. Donald Trump was the least popular candidate to win the Presidency. It takes a whole lot of incompetence to lose to him. But when you run a campaign completely disconnected from the very people you are claiming to represent, it is easy to see why the Hillary campaign could not win.
“If I were her I would move on.”
— New Day (@NewDay) May 3, 2017
Still, there are plenty of opportunities for Democrats to move forward at this juncture. With a spending bill that did not give a dime to Trump’s wall or Jeff Sessions’ war on medical marijuana, the party needs to be claiming victory. With the Republicans set to attempt another vote on their American Health Care Act bill, the Democrats need to stand united behind HR676, the Medicare for All bill. However, currently 85 House Democrats have not supported the bill.
Right now, the DNC could be reaching out to the progressive wings of the party. Right now, the party could be capitalizing on a wholly ineffective President Trump. The Democratic Party could be presenting alternatives to the Republicans efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Instead, they are still blaming Comey and Putin to excuse the fact that they made a mockery of the electoral process. All that serves to do is give people like Kellyanne Conway more ammunition.
You Ignored WI
Called us deplorable/irredeemable
Had oodles of $$ & no message
Lost to a better candidate
From: Woman in the White House https://t.co/bJQ0xbXwH3
— Kellyanne Conway (@KellyannePolls) May 3, 2017
It wasn’t racism or Russians that elected Donald Trump. It wasn’t misogyny or FBI probes that sunk Hillary Clinton. Were they factors? Probably. However, the biggest factor was that the DNC offered no real message to middle America. Millions of voters felt ignored by the elitist policies of President Obama and saw Hillary Clinton as more of the same. They felt so strongly that the Democrats did not have their best interests in mind that they voted for the billionaire Donald Trump. It says a lot when Trump seems more connected to middle America than the Democratic party.
If the Democrats want to gain traction and want to regroup against an incredibly inept Republican government, they are going to have to fully accept their actions in 2016. They have to admit that they were wrong in the primaries. They have to do more to appeal to the American voter in need. They are going to have to recommit to their base that they are going to do whatever it takes to represent them. Of course, they are going to have to give up this tired story that everyone else cost them the election. And no, Bernie voters should not “get over it” and join the establishment; they should revolutionize the party.
As awful as the Tea Party is, it fundamentally changed the GOP. The DNC could learn a lot from that. The success of the movement signaled to career politicians that they no longer represented the values, albeit questionable ones, that their voters cared about. So, the Republican party shifted to appeal to those constituents. The Democrats will have to do the same to embrace disenfranchised voters in middle America or they risk alienating them for good. Continuing to brush aside their failings, covering them up with a ridiculous blame game is not the path to doing that.