I know many friends who do not call themselves Democrats... or Republicans. There are many who say that neither party is any different than the other. For the most part, I disagree with that assessment.
BUT one thing that is apparent AND vital if the Democratic Party is going to gain ground after the 2016 elections, changes are are essential,,, imperative even.
We Democrats MUST prove we are different. We MUST hold the Republicans accountable for the policies and wholesale changes they are working so feverishly (in the dark of night even) to implement.
We MUST get lobbyists' hands out of our pockets. Yes, I know that sound idealistic. We all know politics is not cheap.
We MUST build a unified message and stick to it. If we are to prove we are the party of the people, especially those who are in need the most, we must show them that.
We MUST not let the Republicans divide us. And when the Republican policies hit the sh** fan as we know they will, we MUST not let them divert attention or blame us for their stupidity.
Obviously, the Democratic Party has not done a good job getting our message out, but we MUST prove to the American people we are better. We must build a party that has roots, not only on the east and west coasts but the center of our country too.
My friend Matt says we must get as down and dirty as they have. One thing is certain, we cannot always play nice, but even when not, we MUST hold the moral high ground (you know, when they go low, we go high). Matt would say being nice has done nothing to promote our cause. He feels getting in their face is the only answer. Usually, I am a bit more pragmatic, but in this case, I wonder if Matt is not right? And I think he is.
That's a lot of ifs and we MUST start looking at the lower end of government appointees. We Democrats have gotten caught with our pants down all the while the GOP quietly took control of our school boards, our local city and county offices and our statehouses. It is going to take a long time to get ourselves back on equal ground.
My hometown's mayor, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, is a candidate to serve as the Democratic National Committee chair. Mayor Pete is young, focused, charismatic, smart and very perceptive. The DNC would be well served to elect him. He has been a godsend to our city and has a lot of ideas to rebuild the party.
They always say change is hard. This is true even for political parties and completing these tasks is not going to be easy.