A party that seems to want to self-destruct.
A party whose members threaten to withhold support if they don’t get their way on whatever pet issue they have.
A party that seems unable to motivate supporters to cast a ballot.
A party that doesn’t seem to realize every decision must be laser focused on winning in 2024 or our democracy is doomed.
The situation is perfectly captured by a meme that floated across my FaceBook feed that l I restate as: You can vote for an 82-year-old in 2024 and then vote in 2028 for a next generation leader, or you can vote for a 79-year-old in 2024 and never vote again.
I’m discouraged that there is even a question about the outcome of the coming presidential race. That so many continue to back an incompetent insecure crook with a brain focused on self-interest. That some polls show he is winning against Biden despite indictments, lies, absence of any sense of loyalty to those working for him, and a complete lack of decency.
Because of all this, the Dems absolutely must pull out all the stops and win.
And that can’t happen using the boring methods of the past.
As I said, I have no idea what would work, but I think some thoughts are worth considering.
There are a few issues where polling shows a majority of the country’s voters of both major parties feel roughly the same way. Fortunately, that common feeling aligns with my own. I’m thinking about at least the following:
- Access to abortion
- Disgust with book banning in schools or elsewhere
- Worry about attacks on higher education
- Anger at the marginalization of the LGBTQ+ community
- Belief that climate change is real
- Support for taxing corporations more
- Overwhelming desire to not cut Medicare and Social Security
Campaigning should take advantage of the common feeling about these issues.
President Biden has said he will campaign on the abortion question. That’s all well and good. But it’s not good enough. This cannot be a single-issue campaign because different issues appeal to different people. And speeches are going to have no effect.
So what should the Democrats do?
I think issue a constant stream of television, radio, and social media ads, as many as can be afforded. A barrage that gives the same message over and over but in varying ways so people won’t turn off. It’s the same idea that if you say something enough, people will start to believe it. After all, the Republicans have been effective with that and have trained their voters to listen only to sources that constantly repeat their messages.
The barrage I’m suggesting hopefully will interrupt the restricted viewing habits of the target audience. Since so many of them have demonstrated a willingness to being told what to think, maybe we should just try to influence them in the same way.
Each of these ads should mention only one of the issues, be no more than 30 seconds (maybe even less) and non-annoying. There are extremely talented ad designers available to the Democrats. Use them.
This should be done for every issue where the majority of the population polls in favor of a position that aligns with ours.
For example, suppose the issue is abortion. Then the message should be something like, “Are you in favor of reasonable access to abortion? The Republicans aren’t.”
As another example: “Do you think it’s reasonable for corporations to pay no taxes and the wealthy not to pay their fair share? The Republicans do.”
The idea is to implant in voters’ minds over and over that it is the Republicans who are thwarting what they really want.
There are other issues that appeal to Democrats. A couple are:
- Student debt forgiveness
- Transgender rights
These are not popular with most people. Therefore, don’t push them. If asked about them, our candidate can indicate sympathy, but definitely do not strongly back them. If that angers some of our supporters, tough. We are not trying to make us happy. We are trying to save our country. And those angered should be too.
Finally, there are some issues important to some that we should outright avoid, even say we oppose. Defund the police is definitely one. That is such a non-winner and the vast majority of the country opposes it. And if one is in favor, suck it up, don’t talk about it, and vote Democratic anyway.
As with so much else, it’s easy to sit back and say what to do. Much easier than doing it. And how can I possibly know if any of my ideas are of value?
But I’m scared. I feel strongly that a Trump victory will indeed mean the end of our democracy. I fear third party attempts and independent presidential candidates will throw a close race to the Republicans. I worry that the babies in the Democratic party pushing their unpopular leftist agendas will turn reasonable people away from the cause. I’m terrified members of the Trump cult will demonstrate continued hatred of the democratic principles of our country. I’m afraid the right-wing nut jobs will try to enforce their views with guns.
So I hope those that still care about our land will find the means and the courage to cause us to emerge victorious. I will support anything that works. If the ideas contained here are useful, great.
But whoever plans the campaign, I hope they think outside the box and come up with a working and non-boring plan.
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