Pelosi and Democratic 'resistance' lose with 'blame game' strategy

Pelosi and Democratic 'resistance' lose with 'blame game' strategy
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Beginning last Wednesday morning, House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiFeehery: The problem with the Dem wave theory Senior Dem on leadership shake-up: ‘All of us have got to go’ if GOP holds House To succeed in Syria, Democrats should not resist Trump policy MORE (D-Calif.) took the floor to deliver an eight-hour speech, setting a House record. Her speech was meant to advocate for preserving the status of Dreamers, immigrants who arrived illegally as children but have been up to now protected by the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, by preventing the passage of a budget bill until the House holds a more thorough debate on immigration.

The approach that Pelosi was taking would have meant no budget deal, weakening their ability to protect Dreamers, and hurting the party’s position in the 2018 midterms. In full, Pelosi’s lengthy address is more representative of wider Democrat strategy right now, which is focused primarily on “resistance” to Trump and the Republicans.

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On Jan. 16, for instance, Tom PerezThomas Edward PerezClinton’s top five vice presidential picks Government social programs: Triumph of hope over evidence Labor’s 'wasteful spending and mismanagement” at Workers’ Comp MORE and the Democratic National Committee released the first of a series of strategic memos, entitled “Trump At One Year: President For The 1 Percent.” But, in reality, there is no strategy at all in the document. Rather, it consists only of attacks on Trump highlighting the president’s failures over his first year in office.

The Democrats are playing blame game politics, using every opportunity to grab attention and position themselves to appear morally superior to the Republicans. These tactics were evident at the State of the Union, when congressional Democrats sat on their hands and refused to stand to show their respect. This strategy is flawed and failing. More and more leaders and voters are becoming alienated from the party, and the advantage that they hold for the 2018 midterms appears to be shrinking.

For instance, Kevin Nicholson, a one-time head of the College Democrats of America who is now running for Senate in Wisconsin as a Republican, explained, “I saw the Democratic Party from the inside and saw the way that the party racially and ethnically balkanizes our country and encourages people to turn on each other and to look at each other as competing interests and not as fellow Americans.”

Voters agree. In the month of January alone, the lead of Democrats in the polls fell almost 4 points. Furthermore, the Democrats need to specifically focus their strategy on flipping Republican districts in the 2018 midterms. On average, Democrats lead in the districts they currently control by 38 points, while in Republican districts they trail by only 6 points. This means they should concentrate on attracting middle-of-the-road voters in Republican districts, rather than further galvanizing liberals in the regions they already hold.

To accomplish this and successfully retake the House this year, the Democrats must do more than criticize Trump and claim the moral high ground. It is time for the Democratic Party as a whole to listen to leaders like Rep. Seth MoultonSeth Wilbur MoultonLawmakers rip Trump for not seeking congressional approval for Syria strikes Five lawmakers facing tough primary races Democrats lay into Trump's pick of Bolton for national security adviser MORE (D-Mass.), who in an interview recently said, “Let’s talk about what we’re going to do, not just what Trump is doing wrong.”

If the Democrats hope to retake the House this year, they must follow this advice and show everyday Americans how voting blue will directly impact their lives for the better.

Douglas E. Schoen (@DouglasESchoen) served as a pollster for President Clinton. A longtime political consultant, he is also a Fox News contributor and the author of 11 books, including “Putin’s Master Plan: To Destroy Europe, Divide NATO, and Restore Russian Power and Global Influence.”