A crisis of trust—of brand—lies ahead for the Democratic Party. Good branding strategy isn’t salvation, of course. It must form part of a broader scheme for chronic winning that involves sustained grassroots organizing. But the more goodwill a party enjoys in the eyes of the public and of its base, the easier grassroots organizing will be. Political scientists often say that elections are determined not by campaigns so much as by “fundamentals”—the economy, incumbency, demographics, voting rules, and so forth. The comparative brand strength of the political parties is an intangible fundamental. The challenge, for the Democratic Party, is to turn the (D) designation into a resilient asset and the (R) designation into a resilient liability.
All Politics Is Local: Why Progressives Must Fight for the States
by Meaghan Winter
American Resistance: From the Women’s March to the Blue Wave
by Dana R. Fisher
The likes of Joe Biden and Barack Obama and Chuck Schumer seem actually averse to defeating Republicans. Unlike their opponents, they don’t appear to think that the job of Team Blue is to take on the other side as forcefully as possible. On the contrary: to this day, they apparently believe that Democrats should, whenever possible, bolster the GOP’s standing as a good-faith party with goals and principles as valid as their own. Their core mission is to practice a ceremonial innocence about the unshakable virtue of American conservatism—and to do so even as the worst, full of passionate intensity, are cleaning their clocks.
Primordial America (at least in the popular imagination) was where folks prayed hard, worked hard on the land, and had rightful recourse to violence. In this imaginary place, people were white, Christian, English-speaking. They had God-given dominion over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. All of this inevitably informs the way American nationals apprehend one another and their country. They feel in their bones that some people are Americans and other people are merely citizens of the United States.