Democrats are having a vehement internal debate about the role of socialism and left-wing priorities within the party, after a bruising election in which they may have won the presidency but also lost ground in Congress, contrary to expectations.
A New York Times analysis on Sunday presents two alternative views. One blames the “socialist” label for costing the party votes among Hispanic Americans and other immigrants from socialist countries. Another view claims that embracing far-left policies like the Green New Deal drove high voter turnout for the presidential race, even for “moderate” nominee Joe Biden:
While Mr. Biden rebuilt the Democrats’ Blue Wall — reclaiming the swing states of Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania — he carried them by a fraction of the margins former President Barack Obama achieved in both the 2008 and 2012 elections. As long as Republicans manage to amass enormous leads with working-class white voters, those states may not be safely Democratic anytime soon.
Just as troubling to the party, Democrats sagged with voters of color, particularly in Hispanic and Asian-American communities where Republicans’ attacks on Democrats as a left-wing party appear to have resonated, denying Mr. Biden a victory in Florida and costing the Democrats congressional seats in that state as well as Texas and California. Indeed, the only House seats Republicans picked up that were not in districts Mr. Trump also carried were in heavily Hispanic or Asian regions.
“Defund police, open borders, socialism — it’s killing us,” said Representative Vicente Gonzalez, a Democrat from South Texas who won just over 50 percent of the vote, two years after he nearly captured 60 percent. “I had to fight to explain all that.”
The “average white person,” Mr. Gonzalez added, may associate socialism with Nordic countries, but to Asian and Hispanic migrants it recalls despotic “left-wing regimes.”
In contrast, the Times reports, Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) — a co-sponsor of the “Medicare for All” bill in the House — said: “While there is a lot of sniping at defund the police, Medicare for all, the Green New Deal and things like that, we also have to recognize that the Black Lives Matter movement was a seminal moment for the country and it also boosted Democratic registration and turnout across the country.”
Read the full Times article here.
Separately, Politico noted that President Donald Trump did better than expected, and Biden did worse than expected, in many big cities. Biden’s large — and winning — margins appear to have come from suburban areas.
While Trump was described by the media as the candidate of “angry white men,” he actually performed better in 2020 than in 2016 in every other demographic.
“One of the most surprising trends in the exit polls was that Trump seems to have gained traction with every single demographic of voters, with the exception of white men,” MSNBC reported.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His newest e-book is The Trumpian Virtues: The Lessons and Legacy of Donald Trump’s Presidency. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.