Useless Concerns About Hillary Being Too Liberal
by Deacon Blues
Over the last several days, I’ve noted the Beltway is seemingly fixated on Hillary’s electoral strategy during the primaries. First, the New York Times reported over the weekend that Hillary’s campaign team was focused on appealing to the party’s base rather than a broad appeal to the middle and independent voters. It was said in the piece that this “base appeal” approach was causing concern with centrist Democrats about Hillary’s coattails and ability to pursue a mandate. How many Democrats were actually quoted with actual concerns? One (West Virginia senator Joe Manchin)
This mantra was carried on over the last couple of days by Chris Matthews and Lawrence O’Donnell on MSNBC, not unexpectedly since the latter openly wants someone other than Hillary to be the nominee. But what exactly concerns these concerned Democrats about Hillary? They think she’s moved too far to the left to attract white working class voters with her recent statements.
By emphatically staking out liberal positions on gay rights,immigration, criminal justice, voting rights and pay equity for women, Mrs. Clinton is showing core Democratic constituencies that she intends to give them a reason to support her.
Centrist Democrats also worry that focusing on liberal voters could lead to a continuation of the problems Mr. Obama has faced with a Congress elected by a vastly different subset of the nation.
"That’s not good for the country,” Mr. Manchin said, adding that he hoped Mrs. Clinton would “come to the middle” if she became president.
Of her campaign, he said, “If they get her too far over, it’s going to be more difficult to govern, it truly is."
Yes, yes; going "too far over". You mean like advocating positions on immigration reform, gay rights, and voting rights that are supported by over half of those polled? Or a position on campaign finance reform that is supported by more than three-quarters of those polled? Adopting those electorally-popular positions causes heartburn for white Democratic officeholders from swing states because Hillary will be too liberal to govern? I see.
What these nattering Democrats and media pundits don’t seem to understand is the reality of Hillary’s strategy: go left on social and justice issues, go center-left on economic issues, and stay center-right on international and security issues. Does Joe Manchin or any of these other Democrats really think Hillary will go soft on foreign policy to please the base? Hell, even seasoned political observers on the left don’t expect Hillary to swing all the way towards them on economic or security issues, yet the media and white Democratic leaders are giving her grief for being too liberal in a hyper-partisan, base-driven environment on social and justice issues where she is smack dab in the majority?
Yeah, that’s a fair expectation.