The Campaign Spot

Democrats Can Reveal Their Loathing of the South Again

Michael Tomasky responds to Mary Landrieu’s defeat in Louisiana by assuring Democrats that they don’t need to win anywhere in “almost the entire South” because “practically the whole region has rejected nearly everything that’s good about this country and has become just one big nuclear waste site of choleric, and extremely racialized, resentment.”

Because if we’ve seen anything in the news lately from Berkeley, Calif., Ferguson, Mo., and New York City, it’s that the rest of the country doesn’t have much “choleric, and extremely racialized, resentment.”

He goes on to argue that Democrats might need Florida.

And Virginia.

And perhaps North Carolina.

And he’s optimistic about what the demographic changes in Georgia and Texas mean for Democrats.

But other than that!

The question will be whether, in two, four, or six years, Tomasky resists the siren call of the Democrats’ Great Rural Hope candidates. Because right now, after Democrats have lost in the Southern states, Tomasky and his friends can and will dismiss them as irredeemable racist backwaters full of violence, hatred, and poverty. (Wait, weren’t the Democrats the compassionate ones, who cared about the impoverished?)

In another two years, we’ll probably get another crop of Democratic Great Rural Hope candidates, posing in their pink sneakers and cowboy boots: Another Wendy Davis, another Alison Lundergan Grimes, another Jim Webb, another John Edwards. And then Tomasky’s denunciation of the region will be forgotten. All of the political press in New York and Washington will journey to the South and write their glowing profile pieces about how these new moderate, sensible, populist Democrats can win in Republican-leaning states.


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