Emanuel said that Democrats may have erred in not offering clearer plans about how they would rebuild the economy while also gaining control over the virus and in not batting back Republican efforts to label them socialists.
“Trump played to people’s fatigue about COVID,” he said. “If we had brought the same sense of urgency to getting the economy moving as we did getting COVID under control, it might have been different.”
Instead, some Democrats were advocating for expanding the Supreme Court and ending the filibuster in the Senate, proposals that might have prompted fear about one-party control.
“It’s clear there was more voter frustration with Trump than with the ideology of the Republican Party,” said Mike Murphy, a strategist to several Republican presidential campaigns who broke with his party over Trump. “Clearly the presidential race was operating in its own world from the congressional race.”