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Carville says Democrats have 'wokeness' problem: 'We all know it'

Democratic strategist James Carville says that Democrats have a "wokeness" problem and "we all know it," adding the party needs to talk about racial issues using the language of everyday Americans.

Speaking with Vox in an interview published Tuesday, Carville said that Democrats often discuss racial issues using language that is alienating to some of the communities they are trying to reach.

"Wokeness is a problem and everyone knows it. It’s hard to talk to anybody today — and I talk to lots of people in the Democratic Party — who doesn’t say this. But they don’t want to say it out loud," Carville said.

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"Why not?" responded interviewer Sean Illing.

"Because they’ll get clobbered or canceled," Carville responded. "And look, part of the problem is that lots of Democrats will say that we have to listen to everybody and we have to include every perspective, or that we don’t have to run a ruthless messaging campaign. Well, you kinda do. It really matters."

"I always tell people that we’ve got to stop speaking Hebrew and start speaking Yiddish. We have to speak the way regular people speak, the way voters speak," he continued.

Carville, who served as former President Clinton's chief strategist for his 1992 presidential campaign, said in the interview, "You ever get the sense that people in faculty lounges in fancy colleges use a different language than ordinary people? They come up with a word like 'Latinx' that no one else uses. Or they use a phrase like 'communities of color.' I don’t know anyone who speaks like that. I don’t know anyone who lives in a 'community of color.' I know lots of white and Black and brown people and they all live in ... neighborhoods."

Carville explained that Democrats also can't shy away from talking about racial issues but said that the party needs "to do it without using jargon-y language" that he called "unrecognizable to most people — including most Black people, by the way."

"This 'too cool for school' shit doesn’t work, and we have to stop it," Carville added.

His comments come amid a national debate on the issues of race and policing, and a discussion on Capitol Hill about the potential of passing bipartisan national police reform touching on issues of qualified immunity and the Justice Department's ability to investigate local police departments.

A poll released by the Washington Post and ABC News found that a majority of Americans believe people of color are treated differently or unfairly by law enforcement in the U.S., while 6 in 10 want police departments to be held accountable more than they are today for issues of discrimination and violence.