I absolutely agree with Penny Adrian that "If the Dems want to win back the working class--across racial lines--they will have to take wages, housing and crime MUCH more seriously than they do now." But Trump's success has as much to do with cultural issues as economic ones. Feminism undercutting the role of the man of the house and the rise of the black and hispanic "native" minorities and the influx of non-caucasian Asians are visible samples of their perceived loss of status. Hillary Clinton's "deplorables" comment helped her lose the 2016 election and cemented their anger. These cultural issues will take a long time to resolve, but real advancement in the issues of wages, housing and and crime will help.

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Like a lotta times, I agree with some-a this, but not other parts. Some observations for M Mounk (if he so desires):

"The problem is that one day the gamble is not going to pay off. And that is why I find it immoral to take that risk."

I think it's somewhat funny to use the word "immoral" in this context. To judge the Ds actions from a *moral* POV, then whether it pays off or not doesn't even enter the conversation. It's a scurrilous way of conducting politics, if looked at strictly *morally,* right? Or not?

"There are certainly many things about Ron DeSantis I dislike, certainly many policies he has taken that break the kind of norms that I think governors of large states should observe."

I would need some examples, before I formed an opinion on this view. I suspect You mean You dislike some-a the *policies* rather than that they "break the kind of norms"... But ICBW.

To M Luce (if he so desires):

Thank You for Your views. Agree with a lot, or most, of them.

"to have a young candidate with kids (and he's always pictured with his kids) talking God in the way he talks God with a really quite terrifying sincerity, to judge by that ad. That concerns me."

I'm 50% Fundamentalist Atheist. I was raised that Way and never lost that core. I didn't see that ad, but I don't find it intellectually satisfying to decry how a man of faith portrays himself. As long as he recognizes the separation of Church and State, and doesn't insist others follow his *particular* Religion, I wouldn't see it as "terrifying."

"I cannot agree with you more that this sort of Pavlovian tendency to say that any Republican is just as bad as Trump is a horribly polarizing instinct amongst Democrats."

I think You, M Luce said this. Whoever.. I likewise agree. TYTY.

"But to the degree that there's an overlap between polarization and racialization, there is a greater risk to the stability of America. So this, to me, reduces some of the temperature."

You're right. Virtually all Ds would hate to hear You say this. Mebbe that just proves how correct it is.

"But because the Democrats did pretty well this week, I suspect that they're not going to revisit first principles on that. I would say, though, that even though he lost, Tim Ryan's campaign in Ohio was a model campaign.."

I believe Tim Ryan had Joe Manchin help him out at one point. That may, or may not, increase Your approbation of his campaign. Me? I dunno how many what-I-call "middle-a the road Ds" are out there. Like to see more-a them. The identity politics of the far left is gonna kill You, IMO. No crystal ball, of course.

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I agree a bit with jt (below) about whether it was immoral for the democrats to intervene in the republican primary elections. No one's ever accused me of being a moralist or a philosopher, so I only have a citizen's eye view of the problem, but when faced with a confirmed amoralist like Trump, I have to give the democrats' strategy some leeway.

It was inarguably cynical and meddlesome, but wasn't it also -- hear me out -- optimistic? Its premise is that the non-MAGA or less-MAGA republican voters will see, when the general election comes around, what democrats do: these candidates are beyond the pale, and represent something unseemly in their party.

As Yascha points out, this is a risk, but electoral politics is always about risks of various magnitude. None of the ads I saw said anything that wouldn't be entirely consistent with the democratic nominee's positions. A quote from an ad about Dan Cox in Maryland seems pretty consistent with others: "Too close to Trump, too conservative for Maryland." That's an honest characterization that any democrat could make in any context.

The bet is that this will thrill the MAGA voters, and leave the reasonable republican voters with a more reasonable choice in the general. And the bet paid off. There were enough reasonable republican voters who made what the democrats saw as a pragmatic choice.

I wouldn't want ultimate success to be the only measure of the strategy. But I also don't want a more favorable and generous interpretation to be left off the table. Yes, this was hardball politics. But it relied on a belief (reasonable, in my opinion) about the better angels republican voters might listen to when they had a consequential decision to make.

I'm not sure how I'd feel about this when the stakes are at the presidential election and the option isn't Trump adjacent but Trump himself. But the strategy this time added to everything else that is weakening Trump, and that is a good thing that has been hard to do in any other way. At best the motives were mixed. But I've always said that about Machiavelli, and human nature in general.

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Democrats will have to play identity politics (in a controlled way) because the Trump wing of the Republicans is the de facto White Man's Party. (Deliberate use of the word "Man.") In ope Primaries, pushing for the more radical Republican candidate is a good thing to do. In politics, as in athletics, "Nice guys finish last." Trump and his acolytes do not have to use the "N" word to get their message across. Even George Wallace, over 50 years ago, learned that. Trump gets a higher percentage of the "white" vote in the former Confederacy, but the message plays well nationally.

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