The New Reagan Democrats and Joe Piscopo’s Farewell to the Dems

By IAfrica
In World News
Aug 17th, 2014
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Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.

Reagan-Democrat-Party

It’s interesting to note how some former cast members from Saturday Night Live, from back when it was funny, drifted over to the right.

Piscopo though isn’t in that category. Yet. What’s interesting though is what his departure article says about the independent voter.

When I met President Reagan, I felt inspired. I want to feel inspired again. Like Reagan, I think the time has come for me to leave the party I’ve been a member of my entire life — not because I want to leave it, but because it has already left me…

I don’t think I’m ready to become a Republican yet (although despite their lack of solutions, I still find myself rooting for the Republicans in the midterm elections for the first time I can recall).

There’s a familiar pattern here.

He’s disillusioned by what the Democratic Party has become without having any particular enthusiasm for the Republican Party. He’s rooting for the Republicans to win because they’re an alternative to a disastrous party, not because he likes what they stand for.

He joins a lot of Democrats turned independent voters who might have become Reagan Democrats in 2012 if there had been a Reagan running. But the Republican Party still has no real leadership and it hasn’t been able to articulate much in the way of a positive vision. Instead it spends much of its time playing defense or offense, games that the wider public doesn’t care much about.

But the open space is there.

Hillary’s new semi-conservative persona is all about trying to win back somewhat apolitical working class white voters. It’s the opposite of the Obama strategy which was to increase turnout by a committed base and demonize the opposition.

There’s a mishmash of things here.

I was a Democrat because I believed in civil rights, like Lyndon Johnson. I was a Democrat because while it was clear to me that the Republican politicians were out of touch and cared for only the upper class, Democrats like Franklin Roosevelt cared for the masses and helping the working man. I was a Democrat because I believed in a strong defense and opposed communism, like John F. Kennedy. And I was a Democrat because I loved the fact that Kennedy understood we needed lower marginal tax rates.

We can all poke holes in this, but that’s not the point. The point is how people think and what they want.

From where I’m standing, the party has largely abandoned its commitment to civil rights and instead allows race-baiters to be national power brokers…

I am hurt that there is not one Democrat in Washington who cares enough about the great inner cities of this country to help those in dire distress from poverty and crime. These cities are in worse shape than those countries from which all those illegal “children” crossing our borders daily are coming….

Most disheartening, though, is the Democrats’ weak commitment to a strong defense and maintaining America’s place in the world as the only superpower…

These are Dem weak points that the Republican Party has simply failed to exploit in any meaningful fashion. David Horowitz has written about it. So have others.

Some Republicans have managed decent messaging on point 3. Point 1 has been mostly ceded. So has Point 2.

Hillary’s people understand these weak points. She intends to close the messaging gaps on them, even if she alienates some on the left.

A serious Republican candidate is going to have to talk about them seriously.

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