While complaining to anyone who will listen that white women won’t come out and vote for Democrats the way they “should,” the Democrats planning to run for president in 2020 are apparently ready to go “all in on identity politics” in their quest to challenge Donald Trump. According to a new feature story in Politico, the Democrats are ignoring fears that such an approach could drive white voters into the waiting arms of the current commander-in-chief; instead, they’re going to double down on the same asinine cultural wars that led many former Democrats in the Midwest to decide they were better off NOT being #withher.
Democrats thinking about running for president in 2020 are dramatically changing the way the party talks about race in Donald Trump’s America: Get ready to hear a lot more about intersectionality, allyship, inclusivity and POC.
White and nonwhite Democratic hopefuls are talking more explicitly about race than the party’s White House aspirants ever have — and shrugging off warnings that embracing so-called identity politics could distract from the party’s economic message and push white voters further into Donald Trump’s arms.
While the 2020 primary will feature debates about Medicare for all and college affordability, the Democratic base also wants to know how candidates will address systemic racism and what they think it means to be an ally to people of color.
The shift is largely a response to Trump. His words and actions on issues infused with race — from NFL players protesting police violence during the national anthem, to proposing a ban on all Muslim immigration, to family separations at the southern border — have roused Democratic activists to demand a full-throated response, according to interviews with dozens of progressive activists and aides to several potential 2020 candidates.
What they don’t seem to understand is that Trump was ALREADY a response to THEM. He was a response to transgender bathrooms and unhinged Black Lives Matter narratives. He was a response to a president who was too politically correct to call Islamic terrorism by its name. He was a response to Democrats holding a debate in Spanish and promising – PROMISING – not the enforce federal immigration laws. He’s a response to gay marriage and affirmative action and white people getting accused of racism every time they turn around. They are getting ready to double down on the very things that CREATED Donald Trump and made him President of the United States!
Oh, if we were Democratic Party political advisers, we would warn potential candidates to stay far, far away from these divisive tactics.
But then again, when you take away identity politics, what does the party really have left?