It’s amazing how the fringes of both the Republican and Democratic coalitions are able to be made into the boogeymen for both parties. You don’t see many politicians that can get elected on the far left and I believe that is due to the far left boogeymen. It’s interesting that the far right doesn’t seem to have the same problem. Until Donald Trump the most extreme social fringe of the Republican party has been squelched for years now and replaced by the values voters.
I feel like the Republicans have realized that almost no effort is needed in courting the white supremacist vote, as the Democratic party is so unpalatable to those voters. Donald Trump lit a fire under that group of voters, but it is unclear if that helped or hurt him in the general election. Many factors go into his primary run, but I don’t think it has been considered if some of the things that helped him in the primary hurt him in the general election.
It cannot be proved, but imagine a scenario where the following things are true:
- Donald Trump’s misogyny and appeal to racial sentiments cost him a large number of votes
- Hillary Clinton being painted as a radical left candidate cost her a large number of votes
Being associated with the fringe left of the country has been an absolute death sentence for politician’s campaigns usually. If your rhetoric sounds too close to a social justice warrior sentiment, it appears 90% of the population wants nothing to do with you. Hillary Clinton was painted as many things, but one that stuck throughout the campaign was that she was a radical. She did far too little to distance herself from this. She did the exact opposite
, I would say.
My point being… If you are the fringe of the right and think that slavery may be a good thing, prepare to be ignored again. The Republicans know that you will vote for them anyways, why would they message to make you happy?
If you are the fringe of the left, be prepared to be used as the noose that gets tied around every progressive candidate’s neck. Your rhetoric is too easily associated with liberal ideology to clearly distance yourself as a politician from what is said there. Your fringe views are just as damaging to a politician as being labeled a racist. It is just a lot easier to label someone as being on the radical left when compared to tying them to racists and white supremacists.
For the electorate, it is enough to say to them that you hate racism and think racists are vile people and you want nothing to do with them. What is the equivalent on the left to distance yourself from “safe spaces” and political correctness that doesn’t ring logically inconsistent? I don’t know what it is other then to completely avoid the topics that can be associated with it.
It’s much like saying something that can be construed in any way to not be part of the agenda on advancing Israel. You’ll be labeled an anti-Semite
. If you speak up on social justice issues, you’ll be labeled a social justice warrior and have no chance at election.