Required Reading

Salena Zito has a must-read report on the underreported divides with the D-party:

Republicans have all types of factions dividing them as they look past November’s midterm elections to 2016.

“The Democrats have a very similar problem but, because we are the party in power, the focus is on the other guys,” said Larry Ceisler, a Philadelphia Democrat media consultant. “I don’t think, as Democrats, we are as fractured as the Republicans but I think we certainly have strong divisions and some of the same problems as the GOP.”

Adam Bonin, board chairman of Netroots Nation, the annual progressive convention that will descend on Detroit this week, breaks down the division between two types of Democrats: “There are the establishment Democrats who are supportive of the president, excited about Hillary, and who are interested in preserving the liberal state as we know it.

“Contrast that with the progressive Democrats, who are much more concerned with income equity and who are frustrated with Obama and his excessive connection to Wall Street, the NSA stuff, and felt that ObamaCare did not go far enough” — the single-payer crowd.

Many Democrats, like Marilyn, argue that scars remain from the Hillary-Obama primary race of 2008 and that no one from the Obama team reached across the divide to heal.


Read the whole thing, of course.

After eight years of George Bush, it was easy for the various factions in the Democratic coalition to gloss over their differences, which is usually the case for any out-of-power party. The Democrats in 2008 were further aided by “Black Jesus,” and the promise of supermajorities on Capitol Hill. Between the charismatic new candidate and unfettered access to trillions of dollars to divvy up, Democrats came together like at no time since 1964.

But then some actual governing had to be done and, as always, there were winners and losers within the coalition. The GOP coalition began to split after 9/11. Big-L Libertarians had doubts about even Afghanistan, and Iraq and the PATRIOT Act soured them on the GOP for perhaps a generation. Small-government types never reconciled with the “compassionate” wing after Bush and Hastert shoved Medicare Part D through the House, and rightly so. Libertarians bolted, and what was left was RINOs versus the grassroots — with the SoCons at turns sitting out, playing peacemaker, or trying to wrest control.

Six years out of the White House, eight years out of the Senate, and the GOP Civil War wages on. Even now, in Year Six of the “recovery,” and scads of weak Democrat incumbents, and winning the Senate back still isn’t a sure thing. Only the burst of Tea Party energy in 2010 allows the GOP any Washington credibility at all.

They key to winning in 2016 will be to find a way for Republicans to gloss over their differences, while creatively exploiting the fault lines amongst the Donks — but at this early stage, it isn’t looking very good.



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