Former Missouri Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill, now a commentator for MSNBC, told viewers on Wednesday she was worried that far-left positions on issues were scaring potential voters away. Her remarks drew a rebuke from Ocasio-Cortez, who said McCaskill’s loss in 2016 means she’s no expert on winning elections. (McCaskill might have responded that AOC’s own victory in an inner-city House district hardly confers a great deal of political expertise.)
Even some progressives think it’s in the party’s best interest to at the very least stop using the word socialism.
“I think Republicans did get some traction trying to scare people on this ‘socialist narrative,'” Rep. Jared Huffman (D–Calif.), a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, told The Washington Post. “What’s the point of embracing a phrase like that?”
If a large number of Democrats actually absorbed this message, it would be icing on the cake. Right now, it appears that some of the worst impulses of both parties have been checked, and the next administration will take office with neither a mandate nor an ability to enact transformational economic policy changes.