Babies and Bathwater

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An important corrective from TPM Reader JES

So much of the response from Dems in post-mortems seems like they are treating a problem that didn’t occur. Democrats won the popular vote (by what looks like it will be millions of votes) and would have won control of the House absent gerrymandering. It was a consequential election not a landslide. These things are different. The consequences haven’t been greater in a long time, but acting like it was 1984 or 1972 is an error all in itself.

I’m extremely skeptical of the “economic anxiety” argument and all of the pathos for the white working class and I’m completely fed up with being treated like I don’t exist because I live on the coast.

All of the interpretations of this as some massive failure by the Dems implicitly argue that (a) Trump was unelectable which requires us believing that partisanship isn’t as strong as we know it is, (b) that voters care about “norms” instead of outcomes, and (c) that the fundamentals of a third term election aren’t difficult to begin with.

But, Dems being Dems, they will blame themselves, learn the lesson, change into something they’re not, and lose anyway for not being authentic.

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Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.
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