Left-leaning think tank warns party extremism could cost Democrats in midterms

Center-left think tank "Third Way" issued a warning to Democrats on the eve of Tuesday's midterms, arguing that voters view the party as "extreme" and "less concerned" with the issues that matter to them the most.

"If Democrats manage to hold on to the House and Senate, it will be in spite of the party brand, not because of it," the organization wrote in a memo shared with Axios Monday.

"Despite a roster of GOP candidates who are extreme by any standard, voters see Democrats as just as extreme, as well as far less concerned about the issues that most worry them," the memo added.

"Third Way" argued the Democratic Party's "saving grace" could come in the form of more moderate candidates, claiming their appeal may push them across the finish line in tight races with "weak" Republican challengers.

MIDTERM ELECTIONS 2022 ARE UNDERWAY AS VOTERS HEAD TO POLLS, CONTROL OF CONGRESS IS ON THE BALLOT

"If this brand problem persists, Democrats will face an uphill climb in 2024 and beyond," the memo warned.

"Third Way" claimed that, while Democrats are considered more apt for handling issues such as climate change and abortion, voters are less concerned with these issues than those of the economy, inflation and more.

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"Voters do trust Democrats more than Republicans to handle certain topics, but unfortunately for Democrats, the issues where they stand on stronger ground are also those which voters consistently say are less important to them—at least at the federal level," they added.

Axios, who reported on the development Monday, reiterated that other Democrats have issued similar warnings about party extremism for some time, including James Carville and Ruy Teixeira, particularly citing the "defund the police" issue that reached a pinnacle during the George Floyd protests of 2020.

Some Democrats have since attempted to distance themselves from the movement.

NEW YORK DEMOCRAT RUNNING FOR CONGRESS ATTACKED NANCY PELOSI AS ‘AUTHORITARIAN’

In "Third Way's" warning to Democrats, the think tank continually slammed the extremist wing as "out of touch," particularly on ideology, "priorities," and "values."

They then encouraged Democrats to rise up to the challenge of combating the GOP's "increasing extremism" by moving back to the center and away from the fringes.

"Democrats must face up to the challenge of convincing voters that they are the reasonable, mainstream, and competent party to preserve themselves as a palatable alternative to Republicans’ increasing extremism," the organization wrote, adding, "in an era when Republicans are leapfrogging each other to drive their party to ever-more dangerous extremes, it is imperative that Democrats be seen as the mainstream alternative—not simply a mirror image of polarization," "Third Way" added.


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Center-left think tank "Third Way" issued a warning to Democrats on the eve of Tuesday's midterms, arguing that voters view the party as "extreme" and "less concerned" with the issues that matter to them the most.

"If Democrats manage to hold on to the House and Senate, it will be in spite of the party brand, not because of it," the organization wrote in a memo shared with Axios Monday.

"Despite a roster of GOP candidates who are extreme by any standard, voters see Democrats as just as extreme, as well as far less concerned about the issues that most worry them," the memo added.

"Third Way" argued the Democratic Party's "saving grace" could come in the form of more moderate candidates, claiming their appeal may push them across the finish line in tight races with "weak" Republican challengers.

MIDTERM ELECTIONS 2022 ARE UNDERWAY AS VOTERS HEAD TO POLLS, CONTROL OF CONGRESS IS ON THE BALLOT

"If this brand problem persists, Democrats will face an uphill climb in 2024 and beyond," the memo warned.

"Third Way" claimed that, while Democrats are considered more apt for handling issues such as climate change and abortion, voters are less concerned with these issues than those of the economy, inflation and more.

LIBERALS MELT DOWN AFTER MUUSK CLAIMS THE DEMOCRAT PARTY WAS ‘HIJACKED BY EXTREMISTS’

"Voters do trust Democrats more than Republicans to handle certain topics, but unfortunately for Democrats, the issues where they stand on stronger ground are also those which voters consistently say are less important to them—at least at the federal level," they added.

Axios, who reported on the development Monday, reiterated that other Democrats have issued similar warnings about party extremism for some time, including James Carville and Ruy Teixeira, particularly citing the "defund the police" issue that reached a pinnacle during the George Floyd protests of 2020.

Some Democrats have since attempted to distance themselves from the movement.

NEW YORK DEMOCRAT RUNNING FOR CONGRESS ATTACKED NANCY PELOSI AS ‘AUTHORITARIAN’

In "Third Way's" warning to Democrats, the think tank continually slammed the extremist wing as "out of touch," particularly on ideology, "priorities," and "values."

They then encouraged Democrats to rise up to the challenge of combating the GOP's "increasing extremism" by moving back to the center and away from the fringes.

"Democrats must face up to the challenge of convincing voters that they are the reasonable, mainstream, and competent party to preserve themselves as a palatable alternative to Republicans’ increasing extremism," the organization wrote, adding, "in an era when Republicans are leapfrogging each other to drive their party to ever-more dangerous extremes, it is imperative that Democrats be seen as the mainstream alternative—not simply a mirror image of polarization," "Third Way" added.

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