The DCCC, the Democrats’ Congressional fundraising arm, made waves after they said that they wouldn’t be withholding funds from Democrat candidates who were pro-life in 2018 and wouldn’t be applying a “litmus” test that ensure these candidates abide by the 2016 Democratic Party platform which claimed abortion is a right.
Pro-life movements in the Democratic Party are not as common as in the Republican Party but they do exist, most prominently in the form of the Democrats for Life of America. This decision is clearly spurred by a need to try to expand the Democratic Party’s base as they try to regain some of their lost ground in the 2018 mid-terms. However, it seems that some in this party view this as going too far and the Democratic Party chairman Tom Perez said that the party’s pro-choice position is non-negotiable.
There’s, of course, widespread division in the Democratic Party about this issue and it will certainly widen the already growing rift between more moderate Democrats and more progressive ones like Senator Bernie Sanders and Senator Elizabeth Warren who want to see the party move further to the Left. The concerns from some Democratic leadership about the need to expand their party’s base are warranted as during the 2016 election, Trump’s victory in traditionally blue-Democrat states showed a growing dissatisfaction among their own base, clearly weary of their double-speak.
While I applaud the noble effort to embrace the pro-life movement and support the rights of the unborn, trying to expand their tent-pegs will not be enough to save the floundering Democratic Party. The biggest flaw with the Democratic Party isn’t necessarily their messaging but rather their history and candidates. Their populist battle cries worked for President Obama but failed after his eight years of nothing. Democrats can promise a new “New Deal” for America and move to include more diverse groups of thought, but the reality is that they have been branded as failures.
Of course, thanks to the duplicity of American politics and its cycling nature, they will likely get another shot at governing, eight years from now. So unless Democrats are able to completely re-brand themselves and give their party a new face not haunted by email/IT related scandals, they don’t stand a single chance of winning any major election on their own merit.
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