Democrats Play Ostrich After Electoral Meltdown


Via The Hill comes news that Democrats plan to keep the exact same Congressional leadership team in both chambers, with the exception of replacing Steve Israel (who perhaps embarrassed himself the least of all the Democrats on Tuesday). President Obama plans to keep his same leadership as well. More importantly, Democrats plan to keep the same message and focus on the same issues, including outside Democrat groups like American Bridge, who have promised to continue their quixotic quests against the Koch brothers. The message Democrats seem to have taken from the elections is that the deck was unfairly stacked against them, but there was nothing essentially wrong with what they were doing:

Leaders in both the House and the Senate — including Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV)Heritage ActionScorecardSen. Harry Reid11%Senate Democrat AverageSee Full Scorecard11% (D-Nev.) and Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)Heritage ActionScorecardRep. Nancy Pelosi9%House Democrat AverageSee Full Scorecard9% (D-Calif.) — are expected to retain their spots atop the party in the next Congress, while the White House, in similar fashion, says it will keep its top staff largely intact.

“The president is somebody who doesn’t make personnel changes just for cosmetic reasons,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Thursday.

The decision to stick with the status quo sends a clear message that Democrats believe Tuesday’s disastrous outcome was caused by factors beyond their control, and that they see themselves as best suited to steer a comeback.

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Party leaders were quick to note that, historically speaking, they always faced tough odds in the 2014 cycle. They lamented the slew of unsettling international headlines that undermined their economic message — topics as diverse as terrorist beheadings in Syria, Russian incursions into Ukraine and an Ebola epidemic in Africa — and emphasized that Obama’s low approval ratings were beyond their realm of influence.

“Since we have no control over what’s not in our control we don’t wring our hands over that,” Rep. Steve Israel (D-NY)Heritage ActionScorecardRep. Steve Israel15%House Democrat AverageSee Full Scorecard15% (D-N.Y.), head of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), said on election night.

The main problem with this fantasy thinking is that it is contradicted by what voters actually said on …read more    

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