Once Upon A Time, Democrats Knew How To Appeal to the Working Class
Though the labels "Republican" and "Democrat" occupy so much of our political conversation, they are an inadequate way to understand many people's needs. That disconnect may explain why about one in three eligible voters sat out the most recent presidential election. After the 2020 election, eight in ten Americans who did not vote said politicians did not care about people like them. This perception is very much a part of the alienation felt by many who were once proud Democrats, like my extended family members and friends who are considering the surprising candidacy of Robert F. Kennedy Jr., now rising in public esteem and awareness.
A transformation of the Democratic Party's base in particular has left out working-class Americans who make up the economic backbone of the country. A philosophical divorce between them and younger, mostly college-educated voters is tearing the party apart. Anyone looking to revive enthusiasm for America's oldest political party must make an appeal for the forgotten Democrat, whose practical needs and economic stresses are just as important as newer agendas.
The Democratic Party was once known for serving the least of these. Once led by the likes of President John F. Kennedy and his brother Robert, they were characterized not by an angry agenda but a determined hope.
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