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Fri Aug 22, 2014, 06:53 AM

 

NYT: Where Are the National Democrats on Ferguson?

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2014/08/23/upshot/where-are-the-national-democrats-on-ferguson.html

There is something very strange about the national political reaction to the protests in Ferguson, Mo., (and nationally) over Michael Brown’s shooting. The protesters are angry, and they’re not aimlessly angry. They have a specific set of policy grievances about policing and criminal justice that are shared by a large slice of the electorate, particularly the Democratic primary electorate. Yet no national Democratic politician, nobody of the sort who is likely to mount a presidential run anytime soon, has risen to give voice to the anger we’re seeing in Ferguson. Nobody seems eager to make police abuses or racial injustice a key issue in a national campaign, even though an awful lot of Democratic voters could be activated on those issues.

Why not? African-Americans are a hugely important Democratic Party constituency. Gallup data suggests 22 percent of self-identified Democrats are black. Exit polls showed black voters made up one-third of North Carolina primary voters in 2008 and a majority in South Carolina. If there were an incident of similar salience to a group that made up such a large share of the Republican base, you can bet a number of Republican politicians would be lining up to associate themselves with the protesters.

...

Democrats also haven’t had to fear that not taking up this issue will cost them black votes. “Up until the last few months, there really hasn’t been any serious competition for the black vote on a policy level,” said Jeff Smith, a white Democrat who represented a racially mixed St. Louis district in the Missouri State Senate from 2006 to 2009. Even with Senator Rand Paul taking up the issues of over-incarceration and the drug war, Republicans remain too far from the median black voter on a swath of issues from economics to voter ID to make a serious general election play.

So there is a good general election logic for Democrats to give short shrift to the issues raised in Ferguson. But if the Tea Party has taught us anything, it’s that a base can force its party to take stances that won’t be popular in a general election. Black voters, and other Democratic voters who care about issues of policing and racial justice, don’t have to flex their political muscle by being willing to leave the party. If these issues are of importance to much of the electorate — and this month’s protests suggest they are — then a politician should be able to build a credible Democratic primary campaign by focusing on them.

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Arrow 28 replies Author Time Post
Reply NYT: Where Are the National Democrats on Ferguson? (Original post)
Scuba Aug 2014 OP
Nuclear Unicorn Aug 2014 #1
yeoman6987 Aug 2014 #2
seveneyes Aug 2014 #3
Scuba Aug 2014 #5
Puzzledtraveller Aug 2014 #13
B Calm Aug 2014 #20
frylock Aug 2014 #22
alcibiades_mystery Aug 2014 #4
VanGoghRocks Aug 2014 #23
lunasun Aug 2014 #27
Proud Liberal Dem Aug 2014 #6
Boom Sound 416 Aug 2014 #7
alcibiades_mystery Aug 2014 #8
Boom Sound 416 Aug 2014 #12
alcibiades_mystery Aug 2014 #15
Boom Sound 416 Aug 2014 #16
Boom Sound 416 Aug 2014 #14
treestar Aug 2014 #9
wyldwolf Aug 2014 #18
KittyWampus Aug 2014 #10
former9thward Aug 2014 #11
Stellar Aug 2014 #17
fredamae Aug 2014 #19
frylock Aug 2014 #21
hifiguy Aug 2014 #24
WilliamPitt Aug 2014 #25
malthaussen Aug 2014 #26
whatchamacallit Aug 2014 #28

Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 07:04 AM

1. Lawmakers make laws to control people. As long as they feel they are in control everything is good

in their world. Who here seriously believed that all those grand speeches about caring for people was anything more than a sick lie to sucker us out of our votes?

The only reason we're allowed to vote is because we won't complain so readily about the chains we put on ourselves.

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Response to Nuclear Unicorn (Reply #1)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 07:14 AM

2. Why would they

 

They don't want to make it about them. The state has a Democratic Governor and Senators. I think they are better off staying out of it.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 07:17 AM

3. The smart ones are waiting for the facts

 

Raw emotions and assumptions only breed chaos.

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Response to seveneyes (Reply #3)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 07:19 AM

5. What facts might surface that would change anything?

 

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Response to Scuba (Reply #5)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:46 AM

13. Who knows

and any sensible politician would wait before commenting in definitive. Most will say something in the middle even if they do comment, like "We feel for the community and want to see the process work so justice can prevail" they won't even say what that justice may be. I am not surprised by the silence at all.

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Response to seveneyes (Reply #3)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 09:32 AM

20. +1 Couldn't agree more!

 

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Response to seveneyes (Reply #3)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 01:11 PM

22. are there facts about the paramilitary police forces that are in dispute?

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 07:18 AM

4. A disgraceful performance, with O'Malley probably the only one coming off well

 

But we saw the reason even here: there is a predominant white, middle class response to Ferguson, and it is not good. The DNC figures that African Americans have no where else to go, so hold tight to the soft racism of the white middle class.

It's worked for years, so keep on.

It's disgusting beyond description.

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Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #4)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 01:19 PM

23. I read pretty widely and eclectically and I would like to note that the Socialist and

 

Communist press, both here and globally, has been almost uniform in its strident condemnation of the St. Louis-vicinity death squads' and mobile goon squads' attacks upon the people.

That's hardly surprising, given that the Communist and Socialist parties were several decades ahead of bourgeois Western liberals in their condemnation of South African apartheid and other such race- and class-based issues.

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Response to VanGoghRocks (Reply #23)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 02:28 PM

27. +1 yes other political parties have spoken out in uniform with the their message

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 07:38 AM

6. Probably best not to step in and say much now while everything is still under investigation?



I don't deny that there are lots of issues in play here and it appears that the police force has a lot of issues that need to be addressed, as well as the use of excessive (and militarized) force against peaceful protesters but the place is already in turmoil and the matter is being looked into by a Grand Jury. Plus, Holder/DOJ is involved with its own investigation. It's probably best to let investigations proceed to whatever conclusion they may come to first before potentially throwing more fuel on the fire by commenting on it politically. It would just be another distraction on top of all of the other distractions that Fox and right-wing media are trying to push to cover up what is going on with the Ferguson PD.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:11 AM

7. It seems Missouri is a Dem stronghold

 

Do I have that right?

Maybe no one want to criticize intra-party.

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Response to Boom Sound 416 (Reply #7)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:14 AM

8. ROFL

 



A Dem stronghold!



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Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #8)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:35 AM

12. I don't pretend to know without looking

 

But I know the gov is D and Miss Claire.

Care to check out the Furgeson council? Nervous?

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Response to Boom Sound 416 (Reply #12)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:48 AM

15. Nervous?

 

Oh, you're one of those.

In any case, you must have missed my post above where I called the national Dems disgusting for their response to this.

Calling Missouri a Dem stronghold displays a considerable ignorance of the political landscape. The Missouri State House and Senate are both dominated by Republicans; its House delegation in the US House of Representative has 6 Republicans to 2 Democrats. Missouri sent its electoral votes to John McCain and Mitt Romney.

Get a clue.

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Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #15)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:50 AM

16. Throttle back a little

 

Considerable ingnorance is what I admitted.

Jump off that pedestal and edjumicate yourself some more. It's not exactly as titled as you demand.

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Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #8)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:46 AM

14. The St. Louis county prosecutor

 

Is dem. looks like the city council is mixed to say the least.

Can I help you off the floor?

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:16 AM

9. The thread on Hillary not saying enough has links

to what Democrats have said.

The media doesn't pay attention when Democrats say something and then people like this claim they said nothing. When are they going to get it about the corporate media and start blaming that instead of the Democrats? It's like they are piling on to help the Republicans get even more of the attention.

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Response to treestar (Reply #9)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:56 AM

18. In order of impact (based on that thread)

1. Sanders in a Letter to the NY Times

LOTS OF SPACE HERE....

2. O'Malley in a statement at a Democratic picnic

A big chunk of space here...

3. Warren - a tweet.

Not much space here...

4. Clinton - nada yet.
5. Biden - nada yet.
6. Cuomo - nada yet.
7. Schweitzer - nada yet.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:18 AM

10. So Democrats need to emulate Republicans who use any bad situation

 

for their own political gain?

Oh, I get it. Elected Dems are supposed to voice their opinions on the MANY issues going on in Ferguson… but not every town where there is turmoil?

Even though the investigations (plural as it's state and federal) are going on?

One wonders why the NYTimes can post this crap and yet they can't bother TO ASK DEMOCRATS about any of the various issues.

And thanks to other DU'ers it's been pointed out that Dems HAVE spoken on the issues but the pathetic NYTimes apparently can't be bothered to actually find that out and report on it.

It's been explained why Obama has to be very circumspect.

Other elected Dems also have to deal with the hostile press and republican jerks just waiting to paint them "soft on crime".

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #10)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:24 AM

11. Investigations go on forever.

The federal investigation in the Trayvon Martin matter is still going on years later. Nobody would ever say anything about anything if waiting on investigations was a factor.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 08:54 AM

17. Great piece by Josh Barro

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 09:19 AM

19. Of course they're quiet

Who passed these laws upon the urging of LEO's in the first place? Who voted for the Patriot Act under BushCo? Who voted to Renew Pat Act/NDAA/FISA etc and use Our tax dollars to Refund it - over and over again? Who extended Sentencing? Who voted to create New laws to make felons out of people for crap that used to be considered "Public Nuisance"?
Who "ok'd" funding for the 1033 programs?
Both parties voted for All of this.
We Said NO, over and over during the past 30+ Years and we were/are ignored.
What Can they say?
The Buck Stops in Every State Legislature, Governor and Congress and POTUS' desk since Reagan who voted "YEA" and Signed said bills into law. Period.
They Broke it-they must fix it. I suspect they find themselves in a corner - No matter what they do-will they fear appearing Incompetent? Stupid? Or Liars?-when "they" told us This was for OUR "protection"?
The Noble ones will come out-admit the cumulative Errors and include constituencies in the Solutions. How many do you think are willing to "forget about politics" and do That?

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 01:10 PM

21. now watch the Libertarians take the ball and run on this issue..

while the Democrats sit on their collective nuts and wonder why voter enthusiasm is waning.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 01:21 PM

24. Marinating in their own cowardice, apparently.

 

Or possibly waiting for the focus group analyses to come in.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 01:24 PM

25. 1. Running for President; 2. Averse to pissing of the one(s) running for President.

 

Profiles in courage.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 01:56 PM

26. Don't really care?

The impression I've gotten is that even the most progressive of the lot are primarily concerned about income inequality and the consequences of lopsided wealth distribution to growth, not civil rights. Economic justice, not social.

-- Mal

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Fri Aug 22, 2014, 02:30 PM

28. They're not democrats (as we remember)

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