This is how liberals get used to defeat: declaring they should give up on the South.
I pointed out yesterday the significance of Mary Landrieu’s defeat in Louisiana—how she was not only defeated, but her Democratic allies all abandoned her because she had no chance of winning. It seems the new realities are really stinging the Democrats, if this Daily Beast editorial by Michael Tomasky is representative: “Dems, It’s Time to Dump Dixie.”
With Landrieu’s departure, the Democrats will have no more senators from the Deep South, and I say good. Forget about it. Forget about the whole fetid place. Write it off. Let the GOP have it and run it and turn it into Free-Market Jesus Paradise. The Democrats don’t need it anyway.
Right now Republicans have a majority. Presumably the Democrats need voters from somewhere in order to take back the Senate. Why is a Southern state any less susceptible than any other state that has elected a Republican Senator?
Furthermore, I have some bad news for Democrats. As I’ve mentioned before, population shifts are drawing away the number of representatives in Congress allowed in the Northeastern states and delivering them elsewhere. As I wrote:
People are leaving the Northeast United States. That means other parts of the country are gaining power in Congress. This doesn’t necessarily mean that conservatism is going to win. After all, Liberals are undoubtedly fleeing the area and the economic consequences of their own liberalism. Sadly, many people refuse to recognize the source of the problems they see. It is possible that the Southern states might become more liberal as populations move to them.
But if this pessimistic editorial is correct (pessimistic from a liberal perspective) then it seems that the South will stay conservative. And its population will grow.
How much how fast? Maybe some of those people are moving West and Mid-West. Still the South is growing, not shrinking, in political power in Congress. Even if you don’t need “Dixie” now, you will need them when Michigan and the Northeast are all ghost towns and have few representatives in contrast.
So all this insulting of the South is really just proof that the Democrats care more about ideology than winning elections. They have nothing left to do than to throw insults at people who resist their charms. Tomasky is quite clear:
The main point is this: Trying to win Southern seats is not worth the ideological cost for Democrats. As Memphis Rep. Steve Cohen recently told my colleague Ben Jacobs, the Democratic Party cannot (and I’d say should not) try to calibrate its positions to placate Southern mores: “It’s come to pass, and really a lot of white Southerners vote on gays and guns and God, and we’re not going to ever be too good on gays and guns and God.”
It’s lost. It’s gone. A different country. And maybe someday it really should be. I’ll save that for another column. Until that day comes, the Democratic Party shouldn’t bother trying.
Well, good. If Democrats follow Tomasky’s advice then the Democrats are history.