Sen. Chuck Schumer says it doesn’t make sense to blame everyone else when you lose a winnable election. Instead, he suggests Democrats need to blame themselves and, in particular, need to blame the mushy message their candidate was putting out last year. From the Washington Post:
“When you lose to somebody who has 40 percent popularity, you don’t blame other things — Comey, Russia — you blame yourself,” Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) said in an interview previewing the new plan. “So what did we do wrong? People didn’t know what we stood for, just that we were against Trump. And still believe that.”
It’s impossible to read the first part of that statement as anything other than a reference to Hillary Clinton’s apology tour a couple months ago. Hillary blamed so many things for her loss—James Comey, Russia, misogyny, the DNC, etc.—that it actually became necessary to make a list to keep track of all the reasons the loss wasn’t her fault.
— FOX & friends (@foxandfriends) June 1, 2017
But if the first part of Schumer’s statement singles out Hillary, the second part must also apply to her. “People didn’t know what we stood for” is a nice way of saying they had a problem getting their message across. And why is that? You can either place the blame on the candidate or the campaign, but either way, it comes back to the candidate (who is in charge of the campaign and also the campaign’s top messenger). The problem, in other words, was Hillary Clinton.
Today Democrats will roll out a poll-tested solution to taking on Trump. It’s a package of policy proposals they are calling “A Better Deal” partly in reference to the New Deal and partly to Trump’s Art of the Deal. But already there is complaining from Democrats that this approach sounds awful. From the Post:
Grumblings about the “Better Deal” plan began late last week when a reporter for the news website Vox tweeted that Democrats’ messaging would include some focus-group language — “better skills, better jobs, better wages” — first used by Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.). The reporter later deleted the tweet, but the news tweaked left-wing critics who began tearing apart the alleged slogan, suggesting that “better skills” was an insult to workers — and that the “better” formulation itself evoked the corporate slogan of Papa John’s Pizza.
“Please God someone tell me this is not real,” Tommy Vietor, a former spokesman for President Barack Obama, tweeted at the news, adding later: “Fire the consultant who created it right now.”
In addition to push back from their own side of the aisle, a Republican super PAC called the Congressional Leadership Fund has already put out a response. Consider this a preview of 2018 congressional races across the country: