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Opening a New Way for Democrats to Run and Win

Opening a New Way for Democrats to Run and Win

Robert Borosage

Conor Lamb’s stunning win in the special election for Pennsylvania’s 18th House District showed the blue wave building as the November midterms approach.

It also triggered an immediate debate about what the victory says about Democratic strategy this fall, amid warnings from the Democratic political pros that efforts to drive a bold progressive agenda will undermine Democratic prospects in conservative districts like Lamb’s.

Conor Lamb certainly isn’t a Republican. At least not a 2018 Republican. He is nowhere close to that. He would not support a president who is a racist and is authoritarian. I would say Lamb is a center left Democrat who is slightly to the right of Hillary Clinton. In any case, this election is hard to analyze. Despite Lamb’s appeal to working class voters he lost all three of the more rural counties. He may have won because of the large margin he piled up in suburban Allegheny County which I believe is where a lot of professionals live. Since his opponent claimed to be Trump before Trump this probably got Lamb many votes in Allegheny County where as I understand it Trump is largely despised. To me the lesson is for Democrats to win in a largely conservative District they should clearly be Democrats but be more toward the center than on the far left. I think Trump is bringing out a lot of Democrats to vote. Good Democratic candidates should do well in any district that includes at least part of a metropolitan area. There does seem to be a blue wave. The way Trump is behaving it could turn into a tsunami. Democrats don’t have to run against Trump. Voters know who is in the White House and want a Congress that will stand up to him and oppose his appointments, determine what is going on with the ICE police, look into all his conflicts of interest, etc.

Well, I can’t speak for anyone else, but if I had my druthers between a centrist dem and either a very progressive democrat (at least up to the rough guidelines of Bernie’s 2016 run) or a green party or some other progressive independent, I’d be voting as progressive as I am. So, no, not gonna vote for anymore centrists - NEVER works. Only brainwashing makes voting in more centrists seem smart to my mind.

I don’t trust the dem’s for obvious reasons. However, I’ll vote for one if they are progressive, but not if they are centrist (because I only vote progressive). For instance, I live in Washington state. Given that Denny Heck, Cantwell & Murray are all opposed to single payer, I will not be voting for them. Sure, yup, they’ve done good things. But I will vote for their green party or independent challengers instead.

But then again, I may be an anomaly - I vote for what I value - not a party itself. I won’t vote based on some algorithm/hypothesis that purports to tell me what is best for the country. Especially those that underline the crucial need to ALWAYS vote Democrat no matter how consistently full of shit they are.

I was DEFINITELY an anamolay in 2016 since i voted for Jill Stein. Again, didn’t vote for her because of her party itself, but for the platform they espouse and also because I found Jill inspiring.

So, I’m writing this just to be a voice of one person that the strategy you propose (putting up centrist demo’s) would not fit me and my voting preferences.



Many of the policy stances that the USian media call “centrist” would be labeled “right wing” if not “extreme right” in many civilized countries.


To me the lesson is for whomever wants to run for an office take a progressive position which is inclusive for all people and the planet not the corporate few. The use of the terms right-center-left no longer serve in any discussion. I will never support anyone who is “center” as that is a nothing; they have no courage, they stand for nothing and they are traitors to the regular people they claim to want to serve. Corporate “center of the road” Democrats stand for nothing but their moneyed donors. Because of their complicity we have Trump and all the criminals that he brought with him and confirmed by the democrats in the Senate. Soon we will watch the “center” democrat Senators confirm a torturer. Sixteen of them just voted to deregulate banks even further which will put all of us once again in financial ruin probably sooner than later. When candidates speak to the issues and be a voice for the people, they will win because they speak about progressive ideas and stand for something important.


I think left center has meaning. On health care it could mean wanting universal health care but health care insurance companies could play a role whereas on the left it could mean the federal government being the only insurer, single payer. On higher education center left could mean that the government would help students pay their loans or give bigger grants to reduce loans whereas on the left it could mean free tuition at all public colleges and universities. The big advantage of the center left is that makes it easier to get bipartisan legislation. I would say all but two Democratic senators (I am including Sanders as a Democrat) are center left. So basically the Democratic Party is a center left party. In fact it is getting more center left with the victory of Doug Jones in Alabama and Conor Lamb in Pennsylvania. I would say both of them are more toward the center than Hillary Clinton. They are probably close to where Tim Kane is politically. I would expect much more progressive candidates to win the more liberal part of the US but not in the more conservative parts. But the 2018 election should clarify things about where the Democratic Party stands. I think it should be inclusive enough to include both center left politicians and the more progressive politicians.

Online blockchain voting is the way.


I only vote for someone who will implement most of the policies I want, without having to push them to do so. If there is nobody running with whom I agree, I will not vote. I will not vote for the lesser of two evils, because, I believe, if you vote for what you don’t want you will never get what you do want.