There’s no doubt 2016 was a rough year for the Democrat Party. Not only did they lose the White House, but the Party got clobbered in Congress and at the state level. For many within the party, the results of the election were shocking. Areas that were once considered safely blue went red, resulting in one of the biggest Republican sweeps of the map in U.S. history.Worse yet, 2017 isn’t off to a better start. Although they have successfully created a circus in D.C., polls show that if a new election were held they would lose by an even greater margin. Part of the problem is the Democrats still don’t have a coherent message. Sure, we know they hate Trump, but what are they offering the American people? So far…. not much.
Although Democrats still haven’t gotten their act together, a new face of the Party is starting to emerge. While many thought that might be Bernie Sanders, the actual trend is leaving many stunned.
From NBC News:
Virginia native Danica Roem is running for a seat in her state’s House of Delegates. Should she emerge victorious from the June 13 Democratic primary, the 32-year-old would challenge longtime Republican incumbent Bob Marshall to represent Virginia’s 13th district and become the first openly transgender representative in the chamber.A win in the general election would also make Roem the third openly transgender state legislator to ever hold office in the U.S., and one of only a few openly trans elected officials in the world.
“There is no reason why a transgender person should feel disqualified from office because of who they are,” Roem told NBC Out. “Transgender people have as much right to bring their public policy ideas to the table as much as anyone else.”
While Roem’s candidacy may be a long shot, she represents a larger trend sweeping the nation:“We are making 2017 the year of the trans candidate,” Victory Fund President Aisha C. Moodie-Mills said. “We have more transgender people running this cycle than almost all other cycles combined.”
Roem is one of at least 20 transgender candidates currently running for office across the U.S., according to the LGBTQ Representation and Rights Initiative.The running of so many trans candidates may be a feel good story for the Democrats, but it still doesn’t tell the American people what the Party can do to help them. Americans are concerned about the economy and terrorism, not the gender or sexual orientation of their candidates.
And lest they forget, the transgender community in the United States represents just three-tenths of a percent. Talk about a minority!
Democrats are certainly right to look for a new face. After all, Hillary Clinton was one of the most unpopular candidates ever to run for president. However, it appears the Party is unable to ditch the identity politics strategy. In fact, they appear to be doubling down.
[Note: This post was authored by Michael Lee. Follow him on Twitter @UAMichaelLee]