Once again, Democrats found a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
By not learning from its costly failures in 2016, the Democratic Party is reaching new heights of arrogance and incompetence. In the case of Jon Ossoff, the Democratic candidate in Georgia’s 6th Congressional District election, his neoliberal views —such as not wanting to raise taxes on the rich and opposing a single-payer healthcare system — won him the support of the DNC and its donors. This provided him with huge sums of money and support — but not the support of voters.
The special election between Ossoff and Republican Karen Handel represents the most expensive congressional election in U.S. history, exceeding $50 million spent between the two candidates. It’s important to note that in District 6, Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton by one percentage point. But on June 20, 2017 — with the Republican Party in turmoil over health care reform and Trump’s approval rating reaching historic lows — Ossoff lost to Handel by four points.
The issue was not that Ossoff wasn’t conservative enough in his stances. Rather, it was that he was not liberal enough to give liberals and progressives reason enough to vote for him. When you give conservative voters the choice between a Republican and a Republican, they’ll vote Republican every time. Even Handel said he “talks like a Republican.”
The DNC would rather continue losing elections, performing business as usual, rather than winning elections with progressive candidates. To establishment Democrats, maintaining the status quo is the top priority.
Jon Ossoff gave the people of District 6 virtually nothing to vote for, just as the Democratic Party gives people nothing to vote for, existing only as the party of “…but, Trump!” How are reducing government waste or “bringing the government up to private sector standards” supposed to get people out to the polls? What does the Alpharetta Tech Corridor have to do with bettering the lives of people in Georgia District 6?
To quote Ossoff himself: “I’m interested in delivering results that require bipartisanship and that’s what voters in this district want.”
No, Jon. Voters want access to good and affordable healthcare, decent paying jobs, good schools for their children, etc. — all which Republicans are actively trying to destroy.
The only way to win elections is to muster up the courage to stand up and fight for policies that actually matter to people, that will actually improve their quality of life. Maybe if Ossoff had run on such a platform, 42 percent of all registered voters in District 6 wouldn’t have stayed home on election day. Voters are tired of voting for pragmatism, incrementalism and bipartisanship.
If Democrats want to win, they need to stop trying to be Republican-lite. Instead, Democrats must go left — and they have to mean it.