The panel on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” highlighted how the Democratic Party doesn’t have a bench that can help it retake the House in 2018.
MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” panel on Monday discussed how the upcoming special election in Georgia’s Sixth Congressional District exposes a weakness within the Democratic Party, which is that it doesn’t have a strong bench after the party was decimated at the state level during the 2010 and 2014 midterm elections.
The lack of a strong bench is problematic for the Democratic Party’s hopes to retake the House of Representative in 2018 midterm elections, the panel noted.
MSNBC’s John Heilemann said that Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff’s background as a documentary filmmaker isn’t something that voters in the district can relate to.
“If he had a little bit of private sector experience that felt relatable, I think it would have helped him a lot,” Heilemann noted. “[Ossoff’s] not actually from the district. He doesn’t live there, which has a carpetbagger feel, and it gets reinforced by all this Hollywood money coming in and all this San Francisco money coming in.”
The New York Times’ Nicholas Confessore said that even though there is a lot of money flowing into these races the Democratic Party, “[they] still can’t find the best candidates for a lot of these districts. If they can’t recruit the best candidates, they can’t retake the House.”
MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough said that, if Democrats had a businessperson running in Georgia’s Sixth Congressional District, that candidate would be winning by 25 points.
“But the Democrats in D.C. don’t seem to be recruiting those type of candidates,” Scarborough told the panel.
The Washington Post’s Robert Costa chimed in: “To build on that point, think about when the Democrats took back the House in 2006. How did they do it? Many veterans from the Iraq War.”
“Here’s the challenge for Democrats and Ossoff is so revealing of the challenge,” Costa said. “In 2010 Democrats were wiped out not only of the U.S. House but of state legislatures across the country. That Democratic farm team that, seven years on, could have been there to have these candidates who are state reps and state senators, it’s not there. It was depleted in 2010. That’s why they don’t have the lawmakers in states to turn to at a potential wave election like this.”
Scarborough responded: “That is such a great point. They were wiped out in 2010. Those who survived were then wiped out in 2014. You had almost a record-setting landslide on the state and national level, over 700 seats in 2014. So you’ve got to rebuild the bench.”
MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski concluded the discussion by saying that even if Democrats win tomorrow’s special election, they still have a lot of work to do before they can retake the House.
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