Democrats realize that with the far-left bent they've embraced, the Party has lost a substantial portion of its core demographic, particularly among rural and white working-class voters. Desperate to reclaim them, one Wisconsin senator is pandering as best she can... by declaring a war on almond milk in the hopes it will woo rural dairy farmers. Politico reports
Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) has declared war on almond milk as she prepares to run for reelection in 2018:
Though not a cause célèbre driving political talk on cable news, plant-based beverages called milk are a major sore spot for dairy farmers in Wisconsin, where President Donald Trump swept up to 71 percent of the vote in rural counties last November. Baldwin has introduced a bill banning the nontraditional drinks from being labeled “milk” — one of several rural issues Baldwin and fellow Democratic senators have championed early and often this year.
While many voters in rural areas complained that Democrats forgot them in 2016, and party strategists rush this year to find a new message to bring them back in the fold, Democratic senators up for reelection in 2018 have little time to spare to fix their party’s issues. These battleground-state Democrats are quick to note that they got elected in the first place by tending to voters outside their states’ biggest population centers. And they are focused this year on winning back voters their party has failed to connect with since the last time they appeared on the ballot.
As Sen. Debbie Stabenow visited a dam in Michigan’s far-northern Upper Peninsula — one-time Democratic turf that has grown reliably Republican — during a recent congressional recess, Sen. Sherrod Brown held two separate events on fighting the opioid crisis that disproportionately affects rural Ohio. In Missouri, Sen. Claire McCaskill has this year been holding town halls in places Trump carried by double-digits last fall.
The Wisconsin Democratic Party has already hired five outreach coordinators specifically focused on rural counties, ahead of Baldwin’s first reelection run and the 2018 gubernatorial race in the state. In addition to her milk bill, Baldwin — who represented her state’s most liberal city, Madison, in the House but still carried 36 counties when she won her Senate seat in 2012 — has been advocating for rural health care and rural broadband. Baldwin also joined Trump in tweeting her dismay in April when Canada made it harder to import milk.
"It’s a matter of earning those [rural supporters’] votes again in 2018," said Baldwin’s campaign manager Scott Spector.
No, it's about pandering in sad and increasingly desperate ways. Perhaps Democrats should assess why they are so tone deaf, and perhaps then, the Party can make a comeback.