By Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (Twitter Account @AOC)
There are folks running around on TV blaming progressivism for Dem under-performance. I was curious, so I decided to open the hood on struggling campaigns of candidates who are blaming progressives for their problems. Almost all had awful execution on digital. DURING A PANDEMIC.
Under-investment across the board. Some campaigns spent $0 on digital the week before the election. Others who spent did so in very poor ways. If I spent only $12k on TV the week before an election & then blamed others after, you’d ask questions. That’s how it looks seeing this.
Ideology + messaging are the spicy conversations a lot of people jump to but sometimes it’s about execution and technical capacity. Digital execution was not good, polls were off, ironically DCCC banned the firms who are the best in the country at Facebook bc they work w progressives!
Also, the decision to stop knocking doors is one people need to grapple with and analyze. @IlhanMN and @RashidaTlaib never stopped and may very well have helped delivered a Biden Presidency because of it.
There are swing seat Dem incumbents who cosponsored the Green New Deal, Medicare for All, etc. and if I’m not mistaken every single one won re-election.
So the whole “progressivism is bad” argument just doesn’t have any compelling evidence that I’ve seen. When it comes to “Defund” and “Socialism” attacks, people need to realize these are racial resentment attacks. You’re not gonna make that go away. You can make it less effective.
How do you make it less effective? Invest in year-round deep canvassing. Data shows that this kind of work helps blunt the force of racial resentment at the polls. If you’re always running away from conversations about race, then the only people owning it are GOP. You’ll lose.
And on this hand-wringing about slight people-of-color increases for GOP in some areas – this is also an area w answers. But honestly when it comes to Latinos the party’s just never seriously made an effort. Mexicans, Central Am, Caribbean, Chicanos – Cubans are not the only important community.
By the way if white communities are getting more comfortable w overt racism or “cultural resentment” (if that’s what they’re rebranding it now) it’s only gonna get harder for people-of-color turnout to save everyone. Real organizing & strategy is needed that disarms bigotry, not avoids it.
You can’t just tell the Black, Brown, and youth organizers riding in to save us every election to be quiet or not have their reps champion them when they need us. Or wonder why they don’t show up for midterms when they’re scolded for existing. Especially when they’re delivering victories.
And by the way I’m happy to cede ground on things that aren’t working in some areas! But finger pointing is not gonna help. There’s real workable & productive paths here if the party is open to us.
After all, I got here by beating a Democratic who outspent me 10-1 who I knew had bad polling.