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POLITICO Arena Question: Dems Wise to Flee Charlotte?

June 28, 2012

POLITICO regularly asks a question about what’s going on in politics, and posts answers from a range of political analysts. It’s called “The Arena.” I’ll be answering some of the Arena questions right here on this site (unbeknownst to, and without any endorsement or support from, POLITICO or any its staff).

The most recent question is whether or not Democratic candidates would be wise to listen to the advice of Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) chairman Rep. Steve Israel, who said Democrats should stay in their districts instead of attending the Democratic National Convention September 3-6 in Charlotte, NC. Just in case you don’t know, the DCCC is responsible for getting Democrats elected to the House of Representatives. The Republicans have their own counterpart, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC).

No, the Democrats are not wise for staying away from the Democratic National Convention en masse. It doesn’t make them look independent, it makes them look scared and afraid to run on their own party’s policies. It smacks of political expediency, which is more likely to engender cynicism than support. Everyone was clamoring to get into the convention in Denver in 2008 when Obama was the hottest thing since sliced bread. Now that his popularity has dipped from its astronomical levels and the economy hasn’t rebounded as hoped, people need to be in their districts all of a sudden. Are voters supposed to forget who supported Obama’s policies over the past few years and who didn’t? One weekend avoiding other Democrats isn’t going to paint a different picture.

If some Democrats truly need to stay in their districts based on the competitiveness of their races, then so be it. But literally running away from the party and its president as an election strategy is misguided.

From → Commentary

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