Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren may be all the rage among young liberals on social media, but centrists within the Democratic Party are beginning to worry that their online popularity masks a deep antipathy among actual American voters. Growing irritated with the hostile, take-no-prisoners approach of Ocasio-Cortez – who has warned she will help liberals primary Democrats who aren’t on the progressive social justice train – these moderate Democrats are trying desperately to pull their party back from the edge of extinction.
“From the halls of Congress to the presidential campaign trail, Democratic moderates are beginning to push back against the wave of liberal energy and shoot-the-moon policy ideas that have captured the party’s imagination over the past two months,” reports the Washington Post. “They worry that the sweeping proposals and hardball tactics of liberal firebrands could alienate centrist voters in the 2020 election, even as they hold out hope that Democratic primary voters, focused on defeating President Trump, will check the party’s move to the left.”
The Post noted that while Ocasio-Cortez and her merry brand of progressive spit-fires soak up much of the media’s attention, there is little evidence to suggest that this socialist wave has any bearing on the way Democrats actually vote.
From the Post:
John Anzalone, an Alabama-based Democratic pollster, said the perception that the party’s primary voters are enthusiastically liberal is not based on data.
“There is, without a doubt, a myth that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez somehow represents the narrative of Democratic primary voters in the country,” Anzalone said. “Almost half of them identify themselves as moderates or conservative.”
That appears to be at least somewhat borne out by the midterms, when less-ideological candidates often won when facing purist opponents. Thirty-three of the 40 GOP seats that Democrats picked up were won by candidates who had been endorsed by the moderate NewDem PAC.
A November Gallup poll found a pragmatic streak in the party — 54 percent of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents wanted the party to become “more moderate,” while only 41 percent wanted it to be more liberal. That contrasted with the Republicans and their allies, 57 percent of whom wanted a more conservative party.
This is in line with our observations. One thing that people like Ocasio-Cortez get wrong is in their view of Democrat primary voters. To wit: There is this perception that to win Democrat primaries, you have to win over the young. But the fact remains that more than half of their voters are over the age of 50. Very few of them are excited about a Green New Deal or any of the other SJW proposals coming out of the hard left wing of the party. And if they nominate a crackpot who embraces all of this nonsense, they could very well be staring at a repeat of the 2016 election.