What did Hillary Clinton stand for? Why was she running? To millions of voters, she seemed to stand only for the old guard elite. And she was running because it was her turn, damn it.
Sure, Clinton can point to her binder full of position papers from the campaign. But being wonkish is not the same thing as standing for something, at least not to most casual voters. By contrast, it was easy to clearly distil the point and purpose of Trump’s campaign stand — so easy, in fact, that the four words fit on a red baseball cap. And that message appealed to millions of Americans who (not unjustly) felt that this country and its leaders had failed them.
The Democratic candidate in 2020 must clearly stand for something. Maybe, in the Trump tradition, that thing will be vague, and its attendant promises slightly outlandish. But it must be big, bold, and easily graspable.