Election losses are a little bit like “ink blot tests” in that you see what you want to see…
In 2008, it was said Republicans were too far right to appeal to most Americans, and many predicted Obama’s Presidency was the beginning of 50-year Democratic rule…Instead, the Tea Party swept into power.
In 2012, after Romney’s loss, the Republican Party did an “autopsy” that found that they needed to appeal more directly to female voters, minority voters, and moderates instead of the far-right…Instead, they nominated Donald Trump 4 years later.
Today, you’re seeing the AOC’s blaming the Democratic losses in the House and Senate all on Democrat’s refusal to “engage the grassroots support” which is absolutely ridiculous considering not a single state that went for Trump elected a Democratic-Senator. Ultra-tribalistic differences aren’t going to be overcome by slightly better grassroots organizing in an election with sky-high turnout.
Generally, progressives think the party lost seats because it wasn’t far-left enough (as they always think) and Democrats in red states are saying that identical politics is killing them.
People like Joe Manchin are saying one thing, and people like AOC are saying another, and usually it’s just a reinforcement of what they already believe.
BUT if you look at actual Democratic ballot measures (Florida increasing minimum wage, marijuana winning in every state it was on the ballot of, sports betting winning in every state it was on the ballot of, legal mushrooms in Oregon), they won overwhelmingly.
So I think it’s not so much the ideas of the Democratic Party that are not connecting, so much as the messaging of those ideas.