Since Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton lost the election in November, political pundits and other liberals have increasingly been analyzing why she lost. Some have asserted that the fault lies with FBI Director James Comey who brought the possibility of more Clinton scandal into play just days before the election by reopening the FBI’s investigation into Clinton’s email practices.
Others blamed the Russians and WikiLeaks for hacking and exposing the inner workings of the Democratic Party and the Clinton campaign. Some blamed a culture of hate and suggested that as the reason why people voted for President-elect Donald Trump.
A few Democrats have licked their wounds and looked more introspectively. This has led some to assert that the Democratic Party needs to reinvent itself in some form to better relate to the electorate. One of President Obama’s own appointees is in this camp.
Michael Wear, who served in the White House faith-based initiative said that the Democrats have a “religious illiteracy problem.” He asserted that this problem originated with the changing demographics of the country and of the Democratic Party leadership. The country remains largely “religious” while more irreligious 20- and 30-year-olds take positions of power in the party.
“They grew up in parts of the country where navigating religion was not important socially and not important to their political careers,” Wear said. “This is very different from, like, James Carville in Louisiana in the ‘80s. James Carville is not the most religious guy, but he gets religious people – if you didn’t get religious people running Democratic campaigns in the South in the ‘80s, you wouldn’t win.”
Wear also argues that the growing divide between Evangelicals and the Democratic Party is also significantly impacted by the issue of abortion. While many evangelicals are staunchly pro-life, the Democratic Party has increasingly refused to support any candidate who is not ardently pro-choice. The result has been that a large block of potential voters have been relatively dismissed by the Democratic Party. That block largely supported President-elect Trump in large numbers this year.
“Reaching out to evangelicals doesn’t mean you have to become pro-life,” Wear said. “It just means you have to not be so in love with how pro-choice you are, and so opposed to how pro-life we are. The Democratic Party used to welcome people who didn’t support abortion into the party. We are now so far from that, it’s insane.”