Note to Hillary Clinton: We need action behind the words.
She needed to broaden the narrative of the midterms from the failures of Republicans to one of the far larger failures of what will happen if a Democrat doesn’t retake the House and Senate in November.
Any conversation about the elections of 2020 involves these talking points: That Democrats need to show that they are not committed to a single-payer program or to some other big government-wide fix (Medicare-for-all, single-payer, etc.). That Democrats need to work closely with conservatives in order to get things done (in a bipartisan way, of course). To put it a little more bluntly, that Democrats need to run as a team, in order to get things done for Americans.
Clinton, in her speech in Flint, MI, was smart to focus on the things she was glad Democrats did last week. She spoke of the fact that the House had passed and the Senate had passed a number of sensible things related to putting our energy infrastructure back in the hands of the people. She spoke of Democrats taking leadership in efforts to restore access to college education and to make college more affordable, to put money into the pockets of middle-class Americans, to take steps to help refugees adjust to life in this country, to help those who may not own homes buy them and to tackle every challenge that comes along.
All true. And absolutely necessary. And yet, she and other Democrats need to do a better job of putting this perspective into the debate about the midterms.
They need to send a clear message: that the future of our country is bright. We’re not talking about these things because they are foreign issues, but because they are vitally important issues that only a Republican is ready to take us forward on. These actions show that Democrats aren’t just talking about the right thing to do in order to win political points. Democrats actually are committed to doing the right thing. Now all we need is to show that.