Coming upon the nonsensical rant against Millennials for not voting in 2010, when half of that generation were not eligible to vote then, I started to wonder what Bill Clinton was doing in 2010. It turns out he was courting the votes of Tea Party activists. No joke.
The former president always draws enthusiastic crowds, and they listened raptly to his latest political pitch, which included point by point explanations of the student loan reform, healthcare reform and the banking bill to his argument that he and his fellow Democrats — not the Republicans — deserve the affections of the Tea Party. ...
And, he noted, it was President Obama and the Democrats in Congress who have actually cut taxes for most Americans in the stimulus bill — not the Republicans. If the Tea Party movement wants more jobs, balanced budgets, lower taxes and smaller government, he insisted, they should be supporting Democrats.
“Where is the love?” he cried. “I ought to be the Tea Party’s poster child.”
And not only that, he actually was mystified that Democrats in the 2010 midterms weren’t touting their legislative accomplishments.
The reason that Democrats face such dire prospects in this campaign, he continued, is that the party’s elected leaders have spent the past year enduring a crescendo of attacks from Republican politicians and right-wing media — without answering them. He seemed mystified that the Democratic leaders had done so little to justify and promote their legislative achievements, which he has been touting at every stop.
And there’s this from Bill Clinton’s book:
“The Democrats did not counter the national Republican message with one of their own,” Clinton writes of the Democratic losses in 2010. “There was no national advertising campaign to explain and defend what they had done and to compare their agenda for the next two years with the GOP proposals.” He compares it with his own congressional defeats in 1994.
Oh, and in all of my research on Bill Clinton’s comments on the midterm losses, there was nothing about Millennials failing to show up to vote. He correctly laid the blame at the feet of the national party for their failure to do messaging correctly and to excite people to get out to vote.
So why blame Millennials now? It makes no sense whatsoever to alienate a large base of voters. Millennials are not some punching bag, they know the reality out there, and they know that they have goals that they want to fight for. They’re staring the trifecta in the face that keeps them down — student loans, rising rent, and increasing deductibles/co-pays. The American dream is slipping away from Millennials, and with the rise of the service-based economy and the oncoming future of automated jobs, Millennials will be even worse off.
Bill Clinton really does not understand the tremendous pressure that Millennials are under, and he does not get their pain. He’s out of touch, and it’s clear to many of us.