Democrats claim that one of their strengths against Republicans is that they are the big tent party. Democrats will also acknowledge that one of their weaknesses is that they are a big tent party. Unlike Republicans who easily fall in line, Democrats have a more difficult time getting all of the many factions marching in the same direction. As Will Rogers said, “I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat.”
One of the Big Tent consequences is that Democrats have a hard time settling on a short, simple winning message. As Al Franken said, “Our bumper stickers usually end with “continued on the next bumper sticker.” Donald Trump is the worst president in America’s history, but he knew that “Make America Great Again” was a great message. As with many things he did, he had no problem stealing it from Ronald Regan.
The search is on for an effective Democratic message, talking point, or slogan. It needs to be easy to remember, fits on a bumper sticker or baseball cap, and separates us from the hated Republicans. Yes, I said, “the hated Republicans.” I know that with President-elect Joe Biden leading us now, we are supposed to be reaching across the aisle to hold hands with our Republican brethren. I’m not ready to compromise yet. If we are going to select a message, let’s make sure that it helps Democrats and hurts Republicans.
Here is my recommended new message or talking point for the Democratic Party:
Democrats Value Facts. Republicans Value Lies.
I believe that this message captures the most significant difference between Democrats and Republicans. There is no better illustration of this message’s appropriateness than Trump lying about winning the election and saying it was the most corrupt in history. Many Republicans believe these lies.
Democrats need a better message because Republicans have been beating us with theirs. Here was their message in 2020: “Democrats want to kill babies, take your guns away, raise taxes, and defund the police.” Notice that the message was about how bad the Democrats are and nothing about what they planned to do for the voters. If Republicans are not squeamish about painting Democrats as evil, then we should not have any reservations in calling Republicans Bold-Face Liars
Democrats can use this message to remind voters in 2022 and 2024 which party used facts and which side used lies in responding to the coronavirus pandemic. Joe Biden and the Democrats listened to scientists, wore masks, and socially distanced. Republicans listened to Trump’s lies, didn’t wear masks, and the pandemic spiked in North Dakota, South Dakota, and states around the country.
Finally, this message helps combat one of the greatest sources of misinformation in the national media – bothsidesism. According to Wikipedia, “Bothsidesism is a media bias in which journalists present an issue as being more balanced between opposing viewpoints than the evidence supports.” An example is climate change. A news program will hear from one scientist who represents 99% of climate scientists’ views and then hear from one person whose views are supported by the petroleum industry. The news program will then act as if it had presented both sides of this issue. The proper talking point for Democrats when they are caught in a news program’s bothsidesism trap is to say, “Well, we all know that Democrats value facts and Republicans value lies.”
Democrats need to adopt the message that Democrats value facts and Republicans value lies because, Lord knows, the Republicans and Fox News will be lying to the American public in 2021 and 2022. We cannot let them get away with deceiving the voters any longer because REPUBLICANS VALUE LIES!