Politics

Dems Should Stop Neglecting Issues that Impact People for Identity Politics

On Friday’s broadcast of HBO’s “Real Time,” host Bill Maher stated that “Democrats should move on from identity politics” and one reason is that “The more you obsess over identity, the more you ignore the bread-and-butter issues that win and lose elections.”

Maher began by calling for the end of St. Patrick’s Day as a holiday and said, “I never understood Irish pride or any pride in anything other than what you’ve actually accomplished. And, as holidays go, St. Patty’s is kind of malarky. You don’t get presents like Christmas or candy like Easter or joyless appointment sex like Valentine’s Day. You don’t even get a ‘Peanuts’ special. There’s just a parade. And what rights are we marching for, the right to drink in the day? Do we still need to take to the streets in a public expression of support for Irish migrants? I think now, more than ever, we need to stop talking about the things that make Americans different from each other and start honoring the things that make us the same. So, let my people, the Irish, lead the way, because, again, the Irish thing? I don’t give a shit. But I do give a shit who wins the next election, and outdated racial pandering is one reason Democrats lose elections.”

He added, “The liberal group MoveOn.org formed in 1998 to urge Republicans to move on from the Clinton impeachment. Today’s Democrats should move on from identity politics. It’s not working, for them or for us. Democrats are hemorrhaging the very voters they think they’re pandering to. The Financial Times writes, ‘Democrats are going backwards faster with voters of color than any other demographic.’ And suggests the reason is that ‘A less racially divided America is an America where people vote more based on their beliefs than their identity.’ Exactly. Far-left liberals are living in an old paradigm. Americans don’t fit into neat little boxes anymore.”

Maher concluded, “Democrats need to get the memo that you can’t win elections anymore by automatically assuming you’re going to get every voter who’s not [white and male]. The more you obsess over identity, the more you ignore the bread-and-butter issues that win and lose elections. The real issue is class, not race, and the real gap is the diploma divide and the real future of the party and maybe democracy depends on Democrats figuring that out.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett



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