Democrats need new lead­ers

Baltimore Sun - - FROM PAGE ONE - Jon McGill, Baltimore

One of the many things that is wor­ry­ing about post-elec­tion anal­y­sis is the re­sponse of the Demo­cratic Party so far. It seems they will lean on the the­sis that Demo­cratic can­di­dates were un­suc­cess­ful largely due to fac­tors out­side their con­trol. That kind of think­ing will not pro­vide lead­er­ship that can rea­son­ably ex­pect to gain the White House or Congress over the next four years (“Anti-Trump protests con­tinue in NewYork, LA, Philadel­phia,” Nov. 14).

What the party needs is brand new lead­er­ship, an end to the stran­gle­hold of the Clin­tons on the party for the past 25 years. Those new lead­ers need a vi­sion and mis­sion that re­tains cur­rent sup­port but also pro­vides gen­uine so­lu­tions to the kind of de­spair that led to a Don­ald Trump vic­tory in the Elec­toral Col­lege. Yes, Hil­lary Clin­ton won the na­tional pop­u­lar vote, but don’t let that make any­one think that she had poli­cies that could res­cue large parts of the coun­try from cyn­i­cism and a strong de­sire to throw out the vested in­ter­ests that know Wash­ing­ton, D.C. but have not vis­ited Ken­tucky or West Vir­ginia or African-Amer­i­can com­mu­nity cen­ters or His­panic neigh­bor­hoods.

The Democrats spent their pre-elec­tion week­end bop­ping with Bey­once and Jay Z. I am not sure how that speaks to the dis­il­lu­sioned, the hard-pressed or the strug­gling.

Yes, Mr. Trump did ap­peal to the de­plorables, a lot of them who came out of the mire to chant their way to public power. But he ob­vi­ously also ap­pealed to many peo­ple who voted in 2008 and 2012 for Barack Obama. There is, how­ever, lit­tle doubt that those who did not vote or who voted for third-party can­di­dates saw in the Demo­cratic Party, at the top, col­lec­tions of self-in­volved, self­in­ter­ested ca­reerists who did not un­der­stand the elec­torate and, even if they did, could not find sig­nif­i­cant poli­cies that promised real hope and tan­gi­ble change for the bet­ter. The job of the Democrats is to re­claim their nat­u­ral base, keep those who did vote for them and help or­ga­nize the ma­jor­ity of the coun­try that is ap­palled and fright­ened by what hap­pened to the na­tion on Novem­ber 8!

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