The “new progressive movement”?

Moon of Alabama has a fine rant on the “new progressive movement” which appears to be faint bubblings from within liberaldom concerned that its leaders in DC are either comatose or ignoring them.

If you want to broaden your voter base, why not look where most of the potential votes really are? These are with the people who today do not vote. Those are mostly the poor, the disenfranchised, the people who have no reason to vote because the ‘liberals’ are not really different from the ‘conservatives’.

They of course are precisely the same groups that used to be a welcome part of the Democratic constituency. They didn’t desert the Democratic Party, the party deserted them. The poor, minorities, labor unions, the working class – they were the backbone of the Democratic vote. Until Bill Clinton, triangulation, and appealing to the swing vote, that is.

All that Democrats need to do to become a dominant force again is to genuinely become a Big Tent party again. Emphasis on “genuinely.”


  1. I confess that I have not read the literature in about 15 years, but a substantial body of literature up to the mid-1990’s or so suggested that this argument was NOT valid, that the number of non-voters was split roughly equally and, even if forced to vote or otherwise motivated to come to the polls, would not influence the results.

    Has anybody kept up on the literature? Has something actually changed in the past 15 years? It’s possible, but I wouldn’t bet money on it.

  2. One thing that HAS happened is the conservatives’ massive grassroots organizing, bringing new conservative voters to the polls. Liberals have not followed suit– in fact, they seem to have retreated to their suburbs.

  3. The Democrats “strategy” is to appeal to swing voters, a ploy that often hasn’t worked, rather than shore up support among those who would and then GOTV.

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