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Tapper: This is not a blue wave

CNN's Jake Tapper says that after the defeat of Democratic congressional candidate Amy McGrath by Rep. Andy Barr (R-KY), it does not look like there will be a blue wave in the midterm elections.

Posted: Nov 7, 2018 3:43 AM
Updated: Nov 7, 2018 4:07 AM

President Donald Trump speaks in fragmented sentences and fractured truths.

He is an adulterer, a hypocrite, politically clumsy and prone to retweeting racist posts. He has pushed well beyond the boundaries of any rational concept of presidential behavior, to say the least.

This is why may politicos thought the 2018 midterm election was going to be a referendum. And it was, in a sense -- but not so much on Trump or the Republican Party as it was for a Democratic Party that continues to struggle to compose a message about what it is for as opposed to what it is against.

Yes, the party took the House but the blue wave was not the tsunami party leadership had hoped it would be. This is in large part because the Democratic Party is still searching for its post 2008 identity. It wants to represent the young and diverse, but key leadership roles continue to be held by the old and the white, much like the Republican Party it chastises.

In 2010 and in 2014, Democratic incumbents seeking reelection distanced themselves from President Barack Obama's policies, not because they disagreed with them but because they weren't popular. As repulsive as some of Trump's rhetoric and policies may have been to Republicans over the past two years, you did not see the same level of retreat from them in this election as Obama experienced in his 2010 midterm shellacking. Which is why the Democrats victory was not so resounding.

Say what you will about the "Make America Great Again" slogan, the reality is that it's effective because it is a clear, proactive message. What exactly was the Democratic Party's message in 2016? 2018? What will it be in 2020?

Ten years ago, then-Sen. Obama was elected president behind a clear message of hope. Since then it's been a lot of finger-pointing and name-calling.

Don't get me wrong, taking the House is an important step for the Democratic Party's revival. And there were some fairly historic victories worth mentioning as well, such as Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar becoming the first Muslim women elected to Congress, or Jared Polis becoming the first openly gay man to be elected governor.

But if the party is to build momentum from the 2018 midterm, and not just tread water, leadership must spend more time defining what it is about and less time vilifying what it isn't. After all, people don't eat steak because it's not tofu. They eat steak because it's steak.

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3055568

Reported Deaths: 34441
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles103280614122
San Bernardino2561091560
Riverside2504362645
San Diego2168352109
Orange2148082477
Santa Clara943661109
Kern86718565
Fresno82485968
Sacramento806781111
Alameda67952765
Ventura62101436
San Joaquin58290786
Contra Costa52965450
Stanislaus42882758
Tulare41867506
Monterey36126255
San Mateo32596309
San Francisco29321262
Solano25806106
Imperial25317465
Santa Barbara25083236
Merced24452308
Sonoma24068240
Kings19435145
Placer17380180
San Luis Obispo15929136
Madera13443151
Santa Cruz12298113
Marin11693157
Yolo10620131
Shasta9776122
Butte9474123
El Dorado782644
Sutter775478
Napa760140
Lassen519516
San Benito496343
Yuba495127
Tehama397142
Tuolumne338240
Nevada320673
Mendocino311432
Amador301631
Lake261230
Humboldt239324
Glenn193519
Colusa17339
Calaveras161723
Siskiyou144613
Mono11214
Inyo97429
Del Norte8662
Plumas5895
Modoc3853
Mariposa3464
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Alpine730
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Lighter winds and mostly mild conditions are on the way for your Wednesday. We'll see cloudy skies and cooler temperatures on Thursday, and then a bigger drop in temperatures and showers on Friday. More wet weather looks likely from Sunday afternoon through early next week.
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