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Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Teixeira: Obama’s Advice for Common Sense Democrats

The following article by Ruy Teixeira, author of The Optimistic Leftist and other works of political analysis, is cross-posted from his Facebook page:

Barack Obama: Common Sense Democrat

Tax the rich and don’t do dumb stuff. I like it!

“Democrats should focus less on the “tactical disagreements” among the candidates, Mr. Obama said, and avoid making false choices between appealing to white working class voters or minority voters, or between energizing the party’s base or reaching out to independents and Republicans….

Mr. Obama…warned against demanding that the party’s hopefuls meet inflexible standards.

“I’m always suspicious of purity tests during elections,” Mr. Obama said. “Because you know what? The country’s complicated.”…

“When you listen to the average voter — even ones who aren’t stalwart Democrats, but who are more independent or are low-information voters — they don’t feel that things are working well, but they’re also nervous about changes that might take away what little they have,” he said.

At the same time, Mr. Obama said he was open to the idea of higher taxes for the wealthy, adding that the conversation around the country has changed dramatically since his campaigns.

“I’ve got a lot of room to pay more taxes — and I already pay really high taxes,” he said. “That’s one area where I guarantee you where you will get Joe six-pack and the single inner-city mom agreeing. They would like to see a little bigger share of the pie and you know, the rent is too damn high.”…

“At the end of the day, we are going to need everybody,” Mr. Obama said. “We will not win just by increasing the turnout of people who already agrees with us completely on everything.”

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