Sunday, November 06, 2016

Early Recriminations

The only thing we know for sure is after the Presidential election, those in the losing party will start blaming each other for blowing it.  Here's a preview.

If Trump loses, which seems likely, the GOP will be finger-pointing in every direction.  We were too conservative.  We weren't conservative enough.  We shouldn't have moved in the Trump direction.  We have to go all in with Trump's populism in the future.  We shouldn't have chosen someone with no experience who's such a loose cannon.  We blame the media.  And so on.

Truth is, Republicans will have to figure out what their party stands for whether Trump wins or not--are they becoming the party of the white working class, or do they want to make sure they get reasonably well-off white suburbanites, or do they need more outreach to minorities and women?  (They want to appeal as widely as possible, of course, but many positions that move them toward one group move them away from another.)

The fight over the party's direction will likely be strongest if Trump loses in a close race, since then his supporters can say the message worked, but it came in the wrong package--and also he didn't get the backing of the Establishment of the party.  If he gets walloped, perhaps it'll scare or shock the GOP into going back to more conventional candidates.

If Hillary loses, it's hard to say how the Dems will react.  Will they say she just wasn't a good candidate?  Parties always do when they lose, but who did they have who was any better?  For that matter, will they blame James Comey, WikiLeaks and overblown scandals?

The main question is will they convince themselves that someone more radical (but magnetic) like a Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren, is needed, or will they say it's time to return to the third-way politics represented by Bill Clinton (that Hillary moved away from this election).  In 1992, it appeared the Democrats were forced into moderation (as they see it) after being out of the White House for 20 out of 24 years. But now that they've seen they can win these days with someone a lot more left, and as a party find Bernie Sanders far more appealing than, say, Jim Webb, there may be no going back, at least not for a few more election cycles.

4 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

What do you mean, will they blame Comey? Duh. That and the media for being so conservative and--can you believe this--sexist.

1:17 AM, November 06, 2016  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The last three GOP primary seasons have chosen the least conservative candidate. I used to say most reasonable centrist candidate but then y'know, this year.

I would also say that the head to head presidential match up tends (especially this year) to not be a contest of ideas but a contrast of personalities. Something will no doubt change the dynamic at some point but I don't see it in the near future. I think if this had been Hillary vs. Cruz or Rubio (though I don't ever the GOP nominating either), we might be in sort of the same place with numbers though the colors on the electoral map would be moved around a lot. The white working class who hates her so much now probably would have switched to vote against the Hispanic candidate.

Anyway plenty of time to dissect this in the months to come though I suspect the bloodletting against Trump will be vicious and early, as the spineless GOP leadership find their courage again after a defeat

7:48 AM, November 06, 2016  
Blogger ColumbusGuy said...

Oh, Good Lord. Bigoted much? The "white working class" would have crawled over broken glass to vote for Cruz against Hillary. Rubio, let's see if he wins his senate seat.

10:38 AM, November 06, 2016  
Anonymous Denver Guy said...

Honestly, the White Working Class just wants jobs and security (community and national). Rubio or Cruz would have done fine with them, not to mention Working Class Hispanics (who are allowed to vote) wouls have been great with either of them.

Cruz would have had an enormous gender gap, much like Trump. Isn't it funny, though, that Cruz, who by all accounts treats women fairly and decently, would lose women's votes because his faith-based belief in the sanctity of unborn life, while Trump, who gives lip service to the life movement, has lost votes because he's a pig toward women. And I suspect women would vote for Bill Clinton in a hearbeat if he were able to run again.

9:09 AM, November 07, 2016  

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