At Slow Boring, Matthew Yglesias reviews the history of factional disputes in the Democratic party over the last couple of decades and offers some tips for rectifying current internal conflicts, including: “…there’s no cheat code that lets you do politics in a way that is detached from the contours of public opinion, including the reality that self-identified conservatives outnumber self-identified liberals by a large margin, so to win, Democrats need to secure large margins among self-identified moderates….The implications of that for positioning on specific issues vary, but it makes a big difference in terms of the overall approach. Running around and promising “sweeping,” “bold,” “structural” change is probably a bad idea compared to “common-sense reforms.”….reflecting how Martin Luther King, Bayard Rustin, and other Civil Rights Movement leaders thought about the questions facing America after the successes of the early 1960s….involves exhorting people to find unity in common economic uplift rather than emphasizing elite-level diversity or the need to center the racial angle in every controversy.”….Americans in Iowa and Ohio and Florida were ready to vote twice for Barack Obama based on a message of unity. And while I think his administration had serious failings, I think these were mostly failures of technical policy analysis (especially about the deficit/stimulus balance) rather than basic political judgment.”
To get and share some simple clarity to the debate about the threat to Roe v. Wade, read “Do Republicans want to throw doctors who break abortion laws in jail? Their plans say yes” by Jon Greenberg at Politifact. As Greenberg writes, “Over a dozen Republican-controlled states have passed abortion laws that permit jail sentences for doctors….45 Republicans in the U.S. Senate sponsored or co-sponsered the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, that would impose a prison sentence of up to five years.” Greenberg notes further, “The day after the leak of Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito’s draft opinion reversing Roe v. Wade, the National Republican Senatorial Committee sent lawmakers and candidates suggested talking points on abortion….The May 3 guidance advised Republicans to show compassion for pregnant women, criticize Democratic positions, and emphasize “the facts” about Republican policies….One of those facts was: “Republicans DO NOT want to throw doctors and women in jail. Mothers should be held harmless under the law.” Say it plain, Dems. This is pure horeshite. “In Florida,” Greenberg notes, “Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill on April 14 that, with some exceptions, bans abortions after 15 weeks. Doctors that violate the law are guilty of a third degree felony. That carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.” In OK, a physician can get 10 years. In TX, it’s 5 to life, 10 to 99 in AL. The NRSC memo shows Republicans fear these facts, and Dems would be guilty of malpractice not to share them loudly and often.
Kyle Kondik, Larry Schack and Mick McWilliams explain “How Abortion Might Motivate or Persuade Voters in the Midterms” at Sabato’s Crystal Ball: “In a forthcoming analysis of voters based on their 2022 voting intentions, we found that “Preventing women from losing access to safe and legal abortion services” emerges as one of the stronger issues for motivating Democratic base and swing voters to get to the polls in 2022 and potentially persuading Republican-leaning voters near the Democratic vs. Republican dividing line to shift their voting intentions to the other side from their present leanings. However, the data also suggest that abortion is more powerful in motivating Democrats than persuading Republican swing voters. Still, these voters present as open to maintaining a woman’s right to choose on abortion and the idea that America should be doing more to ensure this, not less. There are also other salient issues/messages for these voters besides abortion, which we’ll explore more in-depth in that forthcoming piece….Looking forward, it’s very much unclear what will happen with abortion in the 2022 election. For starters, we do not even know if the U.S. Supreme Court’s eventual opinion in Dobbs vs. Jackson Women’s Health Organization will be the same as the one that Politico reported on earlier this week. We also know that, abortion aside, this looks like a Republican-leaning political environment, both based on history and the president’s weak approval ratings….But our analysis does suggest that 1. The public, broadly speaking, is more supportive of abortion rights and more concerned about women’s access to abortion services than not and 2. There are voters who may be animated by Roe vs. Wade being overturned, which could give Democrats a desperately-needed shot in the arm this November given their many other political problems this year. Whether abortion would trump the concerns that persuadable voters have on other issues — such as inflation and broader economic concerns, where the Democrats appear very vulnerable — remains to be seen, but we may find out if and when the Supreme Court releases their potentially explosive actual opinion on abortion.”
At FivThirtyEight, Geoffrey Skelley takres a look at “The 10 Governorships Most Likely To Flip Parties In 2022,” and writes: “As it turns out, the two most likely seats to flip may be Maryland and Massachusetts, where popular Republican governors are leaving office, and the GOP could end up nominating candidates who struggle to appeal in those deep-blue states. Meanwhile, primary battles in Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin could also hurt GOP efforts to capture Democratic-held governorships. After all, while gubernatorial races have become more nationalized, voters still show a greater tendency to break from their baseline partisan preferences in these races than in contests for Congress, meaning a poor nominee can still cause the seemingly favored party to stumble….That said, even though Republicans have two of the toughest seats to defend this cycle, they also have their own juicy target in Kansas, the reddest state Democrats control. Moreover, Democrats hold more highly competitive seats, which could easily flip. Based on early race ratings data from Inside Elections, Sabato’s Crystal Ball and The Cook Political Report, we’ve identified 10 states that are especially competitive, six of which Democrats currently control. This list could certainly change, but at this point, the GOP is playing on friendlier turf….”