Democrats have a growing problem with working class voters of ALL ethnicities and races (not just white working class voters as a lot of party elites like to claim but yet, many Democratic elected officials in the state continue to be suckered into cultural battles by Governor DeSantis – the same types of battles the Governor used to win by 19 points this past year, shattering the image of Florida as a purple state.
While the 50th Anniversary of Roe v Wade allowed Democrats to focus for a day on reproductive freedom, a critical issue they should be harping on every day, DeSantis continued use of cultural issues and Democrats getting sucked into taking what appear to be extreme views to much of the electorate is killing the party’s ability to rebuild.
Here is a messaging primer:
- Avoid getting sucked into conversations about things like AP African History and Queer Theory. Press DeSantis on whether slavery, lynching (Ocoee Massacre, Rosewood, Claude Neal, etc) and Jim Crow should be discussed rather than getting sucked into defending “queer theory,” discussions of Marxism and Angela Davis. (as an aside we will be dedicating much of our site’s bandwidth in February to telling these Black History stories from Florida, the sort of stuff DeSantis should be forced to comment on – stay tuned for more details.)
- As horrible as DeSantis decisions regarding New College and UF are, these do not play with the electorate and should be avoided.
- DeSantis is clearly playing to racial fears and anxieties, but we need to redefine why DeSantis is BAD FOR THE WORKING CLASS of ALL RACES. Calling him a racist without any broader context on how it hurts individuals, only drives more sympathy toward him and sounds whiny. Talk about why his policies hurt African-Americans economically.
- Talk about Florida’s Health Care problem and the lack of Medicaid programs (I don’t want to call it expansion because it was expanded a decade ago in the rest of the nation) as pandemic benefits run out.
- Discuss how private school vouchers are a redistributionist scheme to benefit the rich, powerful and DeSantis donor class.
- On COVID, quickly point out how DeSantis is now tacitly urging discrimination against vaccinated people and those who choose to wear masks (like myself) by spreading misinformation like the press conference he gave last week where he talked about boosters. THEN LINK THE DISCUSSION TO MEDICAID.
- On the Andrew Warren situation regularly point out DeSantis gagged the free sppech rights of an elected official and link it back to the reproductive freedom issue.
Feel free to leave thoughts below.