The Moose mulls over the Democratic brand.
The Moose has returned from Denver and the DLC National Conversation with his antlers re-charged. It was truly refreshing talking issues, ideas and politics with leaders from across America. It was particularly enlightening to hear from legislators who represent "red" districts that are generally right of center.
Many of these "red" Dems are in the South, but not all of them are there. The Moose also chatted with some who reside in places as distinct as Minnesota and New Hampshire. They had a similar complaint about the "brand" of the national Democratic party.
Fairly or unfairly, in many parts of the country, the national Democrats are perceived as ultra-liberal, secular and hostile to religious folks and weak on defense. And the Hollywood set and chattering nutroots don't help matters, at all.
What will have a disastrous impact on the national Democrat brand is the defeat of its former Vice-Presidential standard bearer and one of its most visible leaders on social and national security issues. The Republicans will long-exploit a lefty triumph as an example of the Democrats saying "no" to tradionalist, hawkish Americans.
Don't just take the Moose's word on this. One of the most politically astute Democrats in the history of the party comprehends the importance of a Lieberman victory for the long term health of the donkey. Yesterday, President Bill Clinton was in Connecticut stumping for Joe. President Clinton is working for Joe not only because he is a good man and a superb statesman, but also because the brand of the Democratic Party is at stake.
Democrats beware - over thirty years ago, the ideological ancestors of the nutroots and the activist leftists took over the party as a result of an unpopular war. And to this day, the party's brand is anathema in many parts of the country.
Don't let history repeat itself. --