Quick Pitch: A Critique of the Democratic Party By Jerome Mileur
To reclaim anything of their former power, Democrats must reverse strategy in several major respects. They have become too dependent upon the courts to make law, too dependent on rights, looking away from Congress and state legislatures and the historic and more secure method of change through the legislative process.
They have become too national in their view of politics, too focused on a handful of groups, too little concerned with the greater complexity and diversity of the American nation, and too exclusively centered on the presidency as the instrument of governance.
Finally, they have become too enamored of political movements and protests as means of political persuasion at the expense of a viable party organization that could carry criticism and proposals for change directly to communities across the country, giving persuasion a human face rather than a TV image.
None of this will be easy. The Democrats, like the Republicans, are a party of special interests whose influence is grounded in the status quo. They will be more attentive to their interests than those of others and reluctant to change the bases of their power.
Jerry Mileur is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at The University of Massachusetts at Amherst. His most recent book, "The Stars are Back; The St. Louis Cardinals, the Boston Red Sox, and Player Unrest in 1946" (Southern Illinois University Press, 2013) combines his love for baseball and politics.