Sunday, July 10, 2022

The Political Science Story

The story of American presidential politics (Dem edition) is, basically, that Dem candidates run "to the left" to win the primaries, as Dem primary voters are more left than the general public, and then run "to the center" to win the coveted median voter.

A story with a certain logic to it, but it doesn't actually conform to reality. What actually happens is that Dem presidential candidates fight to be dubbed "the moderate," because NPR listening Dem primary voters are convinced that only "the moderate" can win the general election. They are all pundits, you see.

THEN the candidate puts together a fairly lefty agenda (good enough) for the general election. And wins! Must be popular! All the highly paid big brain consultants say, "this is how you win!" And it works!

THEN you win the election, are immediately informed that the agenda you ran and won on is, AKSHUALLY, unpopular, and some sort of sinister plot by the left wing activists who somehow run the Democratic party.

THEN you retreat from that agenda (not just by failing to pass it, but by sending all your surrogates out to trash it and agree that it was some left wing bullshit).

This strategy results in poll numbers in the 30s which is, somehow, all the fault of those Left Wing activists!!!

And this is "objective wisdom" from New York Times reporters.

That reporter of course had no answer to numerous polite good faith critics. They never do.