Browsing the blog archivesfor the day Tuesday, December 9th, 2014.

Dems: Forget the South

Democratic Party, Republican Party

How much the Democratic Party should even bother with the South has been a favorite topic of progressive conferences going back a few years. Michael Tomasky makes a good point that Dems have more to lose than to gain by trying to appeal to southern voters. “Practically the whole region has rejected nearly everything that’s good about this country and has become just one big nuclear waste site of choleric, and extremely racialized, resentment,” he says.

With Landrieu’s departure, the Democrats will have no more senators from the Deep South, and I say good. Forget about it. Forget about the whole fetid place. Write it off. Let the GOP have it and run it and turn it into Free-Market Jesus Paradise.

For presidential elections the Dems need Florida and Virginia, and maybe North Carolina, but from the congressional level on down Dems shouldn’t waste money on southern races except in extraordinary circumstances, Tomasky says.

Trying to win Southern seats is not worth the ideological cost for Democrats. As Memphis Rep. Steve Cohen recently told my colleague Ben Jacobs, the Democratic Party cannot (and I’d say should not) try to calibrate its positions to placate Southern mores: “It’s come to pass, and really a lot of white Southerners vote on gays and guns and God, and we’re not going to ever be too good on gays and guns and God.” …

… It’s lost. It’s gone. A different country. And maybe someday it really should be. I’ll save that for another column. Until that day comes, the Democratic Party shouldn’t bother trying. If they get no votes from the region, they will in turn owe it nothing, and in time the South, which is the biggest welfare moocher in the world in terms of the largesse it gets from the more advanced and innovative states, will be on its own, which is what Southerners always say they want anyway.

Probably for the best.

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