Voters knew better. Lamb made it clear, time after time, that he would oppose Nancy Pelosi remaining in her position as the party’s leader in the House. He also said he would obey the law on abortion, although he personally opposed it. Moreover, like some on both the left and the right, he favored the Trump trade tariffs, as well as being a gun owner who liked shooting. And, as voters knew, he had been a U.S. Marine.

The truth is that Conor Lamb is, like Scoop Jackson decades ago, a centrist Democrat who opposed some social programs emphasized by the party’s left and avoided playing the game of identity politics, in which much of the Democratic left makes representing so-called oppressed groups, i.e., African-Americans, women, the gay community, transgender people, and other minorities at the center of the issues they emphasize during electoral campaigns.

That is why one can contrast his approach with that of the Democratic Party’s defeated presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton.