Thursday, January 3, 2019

Will the Democratic Majority Be Able to Work Together?

Sure there'll be conflicts. But the question is, will they be worse or better than normal for a caucus that controls the House? I say better.
Ron Brownstein's new Atlantic article runs down the situation in detail and agrees with this assessment.
"In this suburban-centered Democratic majority, the most important fissures will probably come over spending and the role of government. It’s likely that some of the new suburban members—several of whom have joined the centrist Blue Dog and New Democrat coalition groups—will resist expensive new initiatives to expand government’s reach (like single-payer health care) or new taxes. Those suburban members, holding districts that previously voted Republican, will inevitably be sensitive to the risk of alienating white-collar voters who dislike Trump and largely agree with Democrats on culture, but may still lean right on spending.
Those strains will take skill to manage. But they are unlikely to prove as daunting as the cracks in House Democrats’ foundation that the party experienced in previous majorities. In fact, compared with the fundamental fault line that defined Democrats through the 20th century—between conservative southern Democrats and more progressive non-southerners—and with the rural/urban divides that have strained them more recently, this new caucus has an opportunity to become the party’s most cohesive in modern times. “My guess is they will be highly cohesive and more liberal on the standard scales that we use to measure that,” Jacobson says."
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House Democrats today are far more ideologically and geographically cohesive than they were during Nancy Pelosi’s previous speakership.

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