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The reason Democrats are, and have been, botching their opposition to Donald Trump is that their claims to meaningfully serve the middle- and working-classes are not credible. Their actions demonstrate that they serve the very rich almost as faithfully as Republicans, if not as brazenly, while directing a negligible amount of aid to the poor. It is not true that they were largely united in opposition to the Iraq War (58% of them in the Senate and 39% in the House voted in favor it) and it’s more likely that they’ll lose their traditional constituencies like people of color, low-income voters and young people to their own failures in representing those people than to voter suppression. They already lost enough of them to put Donald Trump in the White House. If they want to stop botching elections (which is the best way to stop botching resistance against Trump), they need to start actually serving the people they say they serve. They can do this by aggressively pursuing policies that are in accord with what the electorate wants, like a $15 minimum wage (favored by 52% of all voters and 82% of those who supported Clinton in the election), a federally-funded single-payer healthcare system (favored by 58% of Americans), tax reform to close loopholes for corporations and the wealthy (64% of Americans feel some corporations don’t pay their fair share in taxes, and 61% feel the same about wealthy individuals), and vehement resistance to non-defensive military intervention (majorities have for a long time preferred that we mind our own business). If they don’t, they’ll only win elections intermittently, after voters’ lives do not improve under Republican administrations, and they’ll lose them again after those lives do not improve under Democrats. Or else they’ll stop winning altogether as voters continue to reject both parties in favor of norm-breaking outsiders like Donald Trump. There are already people in the Democratic Party who are working toward these policies, and they’re the ones all Democrats should follow if they want to recover.

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