Democrats thought they could coast to victory in the 2018 midterms based solely on their hatred of Trump. Yet now the midterms are less than a year away and they still have no message. It looks like their obsession with Trump could end up being their downfall.
Trump rebound has Democrats fretting over midterms
House Democrats are heading into the throes of the election haunted by many of the same problems that dogged them in 2016: a Trump-dominated news cycle, a message that’s struggling to break through and sharp divisions within the party about how to fix it.
Now many Democrats say they’re watching nervously as polls start to trend in Republicans’ favor — and worry they’re witnessing the beginning of a slow-motion train wreck that they have no idea how to stop.
There are still widespread disagreements within the diverse 193-member caucus about what campaign message Democrats should rally around in the final months before the midterms and even who should be the party’s chief messenger.
Some Democrats worry a rerun of the Republican playbook employed in the past several cycles — painting House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) as the GOP’s central villain — will again be successful in denying them the House majority.
Other members say the caucus’ main problems are internal. Democrats on the far ends of the party’s ideological spectrum continue to battle over what their focus should be in the election — and how much of it should center on President Donald Trump.
Democrats don’t deserve to take power again. They haven’t even accepted the results of the last election yet.
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