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Dem Gov Takes Shot at the Party: If You’re Running For Public Office, You Need to Be for Something

“You got tell people what you’re going to do…[and] why the person you’re running against shouldn’t be doing it,” Roy Cooper told Politico.

Gov. Roy Cooper (D-NC) has some advice for up-and-coming politicians: have deeply-held principles and communicate your priorities clearly. Cooper’s remarks, divulged in an interview with Politico, could be seen as a shot at the Democratic Party, which has struggled with messaging.

Cooper and Politico’s Edward-Isaac Dovere were discussing the governor’s first race for public office, which Cooper won when he was just 28 years old. He said he finds the lessons learned from that race applicable today.

“It’s even more applicable today than it was then. You’ve got to be for something,” Cooper told Dovere. “You got tell people what you’re going to do just as much as you have to tell people why the person you’re running against shouldn’t be doing it.”

Cooper’s remarks might be interpreted as a shot at the national Democratic Party, which has struggled to find a clear message. Writing in the Washington Post Tuesday, columnist Eugene Robinson noted, “The Democratic Party needs a plan, a message and a sense of urgency.”