Tags: democrats | weak | state | local

WSJ: Democrats Have Weak Bench at State, Local Levels

By    |   Monday, 20 Jul 2015 10:48 PM

Democrats worry they may have trouble rising to prominence again as they have suffered losses at the state and local levels, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Fewer state legislators make for fewer qualified Democrats running for Congress, and fewer state attorneys general mean fewer candidates who can move up to governor's mansions. The weak party infrastructure even at the county commission level means there is no farm system to feed the party.

Republican control of state legislatures allows for the party to draw redistricted congressional boundaries that favor the GOP on Capitol Hill. Republicans already control both the House and Senate.

Despite two presidential victories by Barack Obama, Democrats have lost several offices during his tenure, including 11 governorships, four state attorneys general, 910 legislative seats and majorities in 30 state legislatures, the Journal noted.

Republicans control the governor's office and the legislature in 23 states, while Democrats control only seven.

Obama has gotten the blame from some Democrats, who say his Organizing for Action political machine helped him get elected, but hasn't been much help to other Democrats.

"That did hurt the Democratic Party, because a lot of money went into OFA that might have ordinarily gone into the Democratic National Committee," former DNC Chairman Howard Dean told the Journal.

Obama's team "basically ignored" the party, former DNC Chairman Ed Rendell agreed.

Obama supporters counter that he left a legacy for Democrats by modernizing the high tech tools for them to run future campaigns.

Democrats do have an advantage at the executive level.

With 48 percent of Americans identifying as Democrats or leaning Democratic and 39 indentifying with Republicans or leaning that way, presidential elections remain the party strong suit.

But the party put up few challengers to frontrunner Hillary Clinton, and that, too, may be attributed to a weak bench, including fewer Democratic governors, the Journal said.

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Democrats worry they may have trouble rising to prominence again as they have suffered losses at the state and local levels, The Wall Street Journal reports.
democrats, weak, state, local
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2015-48-20
Monday, 20 Jul 2015 10:48 PM
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