By Robert A. Vella
The news just keeps getting worse for the Democratic Party. Not only have they suffered the landslide defeats of the 2010 and 2014 midterms, their humiliating loss in the 2016 presidential election, and the severe ass-kicking Republicans have dealt them in state and local elections all across the country, new polling results show that the once-mighty political party of the center-left to be in the death-throes of an existential crisis.
Normally in America’s two-party system, the opposing party benefits – through increasing popular support – when the party in power goes off the rails of moderation by enacting extremist policies. In theory, then, Democrats should be unifying as well as drawing support from independents and even some Republicans right now considering that the rampaging megalomaniac Donald Trump is leading the nation from the White House. However, that expected trend doesn’t appear to be happening. A new Washington Post-ABC News poll indicates that the Democratic Party is just not connecting with the American people.
Only 1 in 10 of those who voted for Trump in November think he’s out of touch — but 90 percent of Hillary Clinton voters do. Partisan views are slightly more moderate, with 20 percent of Republicans and 87 percent of Democrats holding that position.
When it comes to the Republican Party, the numbers are a bit worse. Sixty-two percent of Americans, and 30 percent of Republicans themselves, think that the GOP is out of touch with the concerns of most people in the United States.
But none of this means that Democrats are seen as echoing the concerns of the common man. In fact, the Democratic Party is viewed as more out of touch than either Trump or the party’s political opponents. Two-thirds of Americans think the Democrats are out of touch — including nearly half of Democrats themselves.
The juxtaposition of what should be happening, in the hearts and minds of the public, versus what is actually happening points towards a fundamental flaw in political messaging. In the era of anti-establishment, populist backlash – which resulted in Brexit, President Trump, and today’s first round presidential elections in France – the Democratic Party is correctly being perceived as pro-establishment.