Common Dreams - August 9, 2019
"Ultimately, this is about reach. Electoral College Mindset has led us to believe that there are certain demographics who are lost to us totally, but this is ridiculous.
...But Electoral College Mindset doesn’t just influence our thoughts on elections—it influences how we feel about messaging. WhenBernie Sanderswent on Fox News in April for an hour-long town hall, many pundits and voters called him out for “normalizing” the conservative news network, rather than recognizing the opportunity the appearance presented. Fox News doesn’t need Bernie Sanders to be normalized, but Bernie Sanders does need Fox News in order to get any progressive ideas broadcast on that network, which is otherwise a cesspool of Trumpian Republican thought."
Many otherwise well-meaning Americans have succumbed to a phenomenon I call “Electoral College Mindset.” The reasons are totally understandable—partly because of our terrible system, and partly because of Republican social engineering, the concepts of “red” and “blue” America resonate like never before. There’s a perceived cultural divide that seems unbridgeable, and it’s manipulated our brains into accepting a prevailing narrative of “two Americas.”
When we suffer from Electoral College Mindset, we believe implicitly that voters from Louisiana, to use an example, are worthless, because that state’s electoral votes likely won’t go to a Democratic candidate in the near future. And while that conclusion is true, it ignores the fact that 38.5% of Louisianans who voted in the last presidential election—almost one million people—chose the Democratic candidate. Not enough to win the state, of course, but enough to show that progressive ideas are far from dead, and enough to make it clear that victories are possible in local and state-wide and even U.S. Senate elections. By ignoring those people, we ignore the future. Electoral College Mindset is why Republicans have dominated state legislatures, governor’s mansions, and both chambers of Congress for so long—Democrats cede turf, and they do it constantly. ...
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