This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, October 11, 2021:
David Shor, perhaps the Democrat Party’s leading political analyst and forecasting guru, believes that unless his party’s messaging changes significantly, and soon, it will lose in 2022, lose badly in 2024, and runs the risk of disappearing altogether by 2032.
Shor, at age 30, has been heavily involved in Democrat Party polling since he was 16. Through his computer models he predicted the outcome of Barack Obama’s presidential campaign in 2012 within tenths of a percentage point. But when, following the death of George Floyd in 2020, he tweeted that the riots that followed would reduce the Democrat Party’s clout in the next election, he was fired.
He has come back from the dead, but not in a way Democrats want to hear. Ezra Klein, writing for the Times on Friday, declared that not only is “Biden’s agenda … in peril … Democrats are on the precipice of an era without any hope of a governing majority.”
Shor’s current model shows the Democrats losing seven seats in the Senate in 2024, giving Republicans the advantage: 57-43. Noted Kline:
The heart of Shor’s … work is the fear that Democrats are sleepwalking into catastrophe….
The Power Simulator [his current computer model] keeps telling him the same thing: we’re screwed in the Senate.
The problem, according to Shor, is that the Democrat Party is listening primarily to liberal college graduates for its messaging, and that message is greatly missing the mark: The party focuses on issues and agendas that the average working-class voter cares little about. As Ian Ward noted in Politico:
They probably majored, or are majoring, in political science or public policy….
They are … the foot soldiers of the Democratic Party’s permanent reserve army….
Democratic candidates hail these young people as a major political asset, pointing to them as proof of the party’s growing base of support among the next generation of leaders and voters.
But Shor disagrees. The agenda items that stir their hearts are at the very bottom of the list among those who actually vote. He noted that “the people the Obama campaign had hired to win over swing voters were seismically out of touch with the people they were meant to persuade … as a result their engagement with those voters may have hurt Obama’s chances more than it helped them.”
As an example, in 2015, nearly a quarter of Obama’s staffers believed that “income inequality” was the single most important issue facing the country, “whereas,” noted Shor, “fewer than one percent of all voters listed ‘the gap between rich and poor’ as the most important issue.”
Steve Phillips, founder of Democracy in Color and senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, agrees: The demographic composition of the Democratic Party’s staff does not reflect the demographic make-up of its key voters.
But the problem, according to Phillips, can be remedied by getting more of them to come to the polls to vote. Shor thinks the message needs to change instead. Absent a change — a substantial change — in the message the Democrat Party is delivering, the party is in desperate trouble.
Ward ends his Politico article:
Shor says that Democrats’ expectation that long-term demographic shifts would give the party a semi-permanent majority has fallen flat, and the rural bias of the Senate and the Electoral College will soon make it practically impossible for Democrats to win a governing majority without winning back at least some rural swing voters in key purple states.
Unless the party’s messaging changes, the highly educated young liberals who serve as the standard-bearers of the party’s platform are leading Democrats down a path toward political obscurity.
Unfortunately, for Democrats, this cadre of young people isn’t likely to disappear anytime soon.
For Republicans, this is good news. Will they take advantage of it?