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View Diary: Where have the Blue Dogs gone? (and what it means for the Democratic Party's future) (153 comments)

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  •  There is some crossover (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Patango, musiccitymollie

    but there is some crossover between them and the Blue Dog/DLC wing of the Dem party as well.  In CT for example there are 3 New Dems, Courtney, Himes and Esty.  Esty is a centrist and Himes is cozy with Wall Street (understandingly so being his district is so close and so populated with Wall Streeters.  

    They're better than Blue Dogs and DLCer but they tend to be more neo-liberal than the typical progressives.

    This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

    by DisNoir36 on Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 10:12:55 AM PST

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    •  The New Dems are a strange group (3+ / 0-)

      While the Blue Dogs are founded directly on the principle of being moderate to conservative Democrats, New Dems span this whole range and do not seem to really move as a unit the way most of the Blue Dogs did.

      You've got Jared Polis, John Barrow, Eliot Engel, Mike McIntyre, Andre Carson...I don't get it.  Seems to be more of a fundraising club than anything, or a way for liberal Democrats to try to look bipartisan or whatever.  It does seem like a bunch of them come from suburban and wealthier seats though, and perhaps aren't as populist in rhetoric and legislation introduced as the progressive caucus overall.  Jim Himes is kinda the perfect example...I've never seen him vote with Republicans once, so his record is basically indistinguishable from someone like Rosa DeLauro.

      •  Himes has made some bad votes (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        mostly related to tax issues or issues, Dodd Frank type issues or issues related to the Financial sector which is understandable considering his district.

        This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

        by DisNoir36 on Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 10:47:46 AM PST

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      •  This: (5+ / 0-)
        a way for liberal Democrats to try to look bipartisan
        I think this is the case with a lot of New Dems. It's certainly the case with my Rep, Joe Courtney. In his newsletters, he talks about being bipartisan, and makes a big show of introducing some bills with Republicans once in a while, but his actual political positions and votes are pretty much in line with the Progressive Caucus.

        But hey, with Courtney, it works. In 2012, he got 68% of the vote, so a non-trivial number of Republicans must have voted for him.

        My guess is that once Esty is more secure in her seat (she got only 51.5% in 2012), she'll vote very similarly to Courtney. Himes basically does already, and he did vote for Dodd-Frank. Himes probably realizes that the voters who allowed him to defeat Chris Shays in 2008 were not the Wall Street types (those people largely stuck with Shays). No, Himes's victory was due to high turnout among urbanites, minorities, and liberals, and he hasn't forgotten that.

        (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

        by ProudNewEnglander on Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 10:59:52 AM PST

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        •  There are almost no... (0+ / 0-)

          "Urbanites" in CT-04.  Trust me, I grew up there.  There are small areas of Stamford and Norwalk which cater to young professionals who take the train into NYC, but I don't think they swing particularly left.  Beside Bridgeport, Fairfield County's Democratic base is Jews (mainly in Westport and Fairfield) and downscale whites.  

          •  you might be surprised (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY

            in Red State, Blue State, Rich State, Poor State they found Connecticut, while still a bit polarized by economic class, was among the least polarized states in that way.

            ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

            by James Allen on Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 11:23:58 AM PST

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          •  You seem to be forgetting (4+ / 0-)

            that I am from Connecticut, and I am an expert in the political geography of that state. So you probably shouldn't try to out-Connecticut me, because that won't work.

            Anyway, to what you said: 'urbanites' basically means anyone who lives in a city and has characteristic urban political beliefs. Thus, there are plenty of urbanites in Bridgeport, Norwalk, and Stamford (which happen to be the only three towns that Himes won in 2008). Sure, you won't find the large numbers of white liberals living in high-rises like you'd see in Manhattan, but Bridgeport is something like 30% white, and at least a majority of those people voted for Obama.

            Also, there's a lot more to the Democratic base in Fairfield County than the three groups that you mentioned. How about minorities and socially-liberal whites in Norwalk and Stamford? Their rise is one reason why Fairfield County has trended to the left recently.

            (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

            by ProudNewEnglander on Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 11:36:11 AM PST

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        •  Himes did get some cross over voters in 08 (0+ / 0-)

          Particularly in his home town of Greenwich.  You seem to forget that Shays is from Black Rock so his strong hold outside of the beat red traditionally GOP towns of Darien, New Canaan, Wilton and so on was Fairfield and Bridgeport.  In 08 Himes was carried by moderate Wall Street people as well as the more traditional Dem base that turned out for Obama in Norwalk, Bridgeport and Stamford in HUGE numbers as well as the more liberal towns like Westport, Weston and Redding.  Himes certainly didn't carry many of the smaller towns (he carried none of them in 08 and only Weston, Westport and Redding in 2010) but even if he only lost them 70-30 that was still a big improvement over the 85-15 margins that Dems typically lose by.  

          Also CT is NOT a state that's very conducive to the frothy tea bagger types.  Nutmeggers are far more practical.  Himes is a moderate on many business related issues and has voted on occasion with the GOP.  For example Himes proposed rolling back provisions of Dodd Frank.  It's not that big of a deal because on 85-90% of the issues he's with us but every so often I see Esty making some stupid vote or announcing she's in favor of something that makes me scratch my head and usually Himes is there too.  But Republicans will cross over and vote for him if his opposition is utter crap.    Dan Debicella and Steve Obstinik were both tea bagging idiots with little gravitas.   Even traditional republicans didn't vote for those guys.

          This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

          by DisNoir36 on Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 04:16:05 PM PST

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          •  A few things wrong with your analysis (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY

            Himes actually didn't get many crossover votes in 2008. In fact, in many of the towns in his district he did worse than Diane Farrell had in 2006 (and she lost). He won in 2008 by racking up huge margins in Stamford, Norwalk, and especially Bridgeport, and he also benefited enormously from the high turnout caused by Obama.

            Also, Democrats never lose any towns in CT by 85-15 margins (or anything close) except in massive landslides like Rell's 2006 re-election. Since then, only Darien and New Canaan have voted over 70% for any Republican in any statewide election (and that was in 2010).

            Finally, Himes actually won Fairfield by 1 vote in 2010, so add that to your list.

            That being said, I agree with your second paragraph.

            (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

            by ProudNewEnglander on Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 05:35:23 PM PST

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            •  Diane Farrell (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ProudNewEnglander

              A few things about the Diane Farrell comparison.  First she was a moderate chosen because of her supposed appeal to moderates.  So it wouldn't be surprising that she had cross over voters, that's why she was chosen to run.  She lost because she had the misfortune of running the same year Lieberman ran as an independent.  He ran up some big numbers in Bridgeport and in Naugatuck Valley, and since he embraced Shays in a big dickish FU Democrats move, Shays who is from Bridgeport, was able to peel some votes in what is a traditional heavy Dem area.  In 2004 when she ran the first time and lost she also underperformed in more traditional Dem areas but it was a tough climb against Shays in a year with Bush at the top of the ticket in a district that was his family's ancestral home.  Farrell was just not a very good candidate or person for that matter.  But in 2006 I believe she was hurt by Lieberman.  I also believe although I could be wrong that she underperformed in her own town of Westport and neighboring Weston.  She wasn't very liked there by some and for very good reasons which I am privy to and have to do with her heavy handed management of the town as First Selectwoman.    

              Himes was a bit different and he had a few things going for him in 08 that Farrell didn't.  First he speaks Spanish fluently.  Big plus in Norwalk, Stamford and especially Bridgeport.  Second, Obama at the top of the ticket turned out MANY Democratic voters in those 3 cities.  Himes ended up with over 50,000 more voters in 2008 than Farrel had in 2006 which was a full third of his total and 19,000 more voters than Farrell got in 2004 (a presidential year election).  So that of course helped him alot especially against a strong incumbent who had beaten back tough challengers in very close races in the past.  But don't for a second think he didn't get cross over voters.  He got enough support in the wealthier communities among traditional GOP voters to help both financially and electorally.  So did Obama.  I was exaggerating the Dem GOP margins in the towns and could have just as easily said 90-10.  The point was those towns are very GOP especially Darien, New Canaan (home of Ann Coulter's family and previously of Glen Beck) and Greenwich (home of the Bush's, McMahons and Foley) and the registration in some of them are very lopsided.  Himes lives in Cos Cob so of course he got some votes from Greenwich.  In fact I was there in 08 and saw plenty of Greenwich people turn out for him.  If Himes can get votes in a town once run by Prescott Bush (thankfully they seem to have moved his fucking photo from the Town Hall lobby so I don't have to see it every time I walk in) then that's a plus.    

              This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

              by DisNoir36 on Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 08:29:56 PM PST

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      •  Here's the New Dem (DLC) Hyde Park Declaration (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tikkun

        below, or a link to it.  

        They were/are a "highly organized" movement, IMHO.

        [Please see my reply to DisNoir36.]

        I don't recognize the names of the lawmakers above, but I"ll be back with a major list of DLC/Third Way/New Dem Democrats.

        Basically, they ARE the Democratic Party Leadership, although a small handful are not formal members.

        My understanding is that Rep James Clyburn was a "charter member" of the DLC, but pulled his formal membership due to constituent pressure, several years ago.

        Many of the most prominent Dems are very quiet about their association with this orgnaization.

        As the Hyde Park Declaration demonstrates, this is a very conservative and business-friendly crowd.

        Here's the link:

        DLC | Key Document | August 1, 2000

        The Hyde Park Declaration: A Statement of Principles and a Policy Agenda for the 21st Century

        Basically, this document provides a broad framework for the Bowles-Simpson Fiscal Commission Chairman's Mark, "The Moment Of Truth."

        But I agree with everyone--the loss of "Blue Dogs" is inevitable, partly due to demographics.  

        It is also a favorable outcome, in the long run.

        Mollie

        "Only he who can see the invisible, can do the impossible."-- Frank L. Gaines


        hiddennplainsight

        by musiccitymollie on Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 01:10:38 PM PST

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      •  That is why the New Dems formed (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        musiccitymollie

        They are basically business friendly and socially fairly liberal.  They separated themselves from the DLC because the DLC was basically the old Jacksonian wing of the Democratic party.

        Newt 2012. Sociopath, adulterer, hypocrite, Republican.

        by tikkun on Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 04:09:27 PM PST

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    •  That, and the fact that if lawmakers in (0+ / 0-)

      the Progressive Caucus are voting with DLCers and Blue Dogs, it's probably because they are moving to the right--not because the Blue Dogs and DLCers are moving to the left!

      Mollie

      "Only he who can see the invisible, can do the impossible."-- Frank L. Gaines


      hiddennplainsight

      by musiccitymollie on Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 04:40:44 PM PST

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