The Democrat Party is in big trouble across the country and dreading what’s coming in the midterm elections this November. Though the party’s fortunes aren’t the same everywhere; they still feel pretty good about scooping up the vote in California.
They’ve still paid off all the right unions and special interest groups to make sure their powerbrokers get a seat at the legislative table and keep a fair bit of power.
The real problem for Democrats is a repeat of what happened in 2016: serious struggles in the Rust Belt, Midwest, and purple states.
States and districts that often swing both ways are turning very red. Democrats don’t know what to do.
A prime example of this comes out of Ohio’s Senate race, where even the Democrats seem to want to run on a Trump-like platform.
Meet Tim Ryan, a Democrat From Ohio
The perfect example is Democrat Tim Ryan of Ohio. He’s running for Senate against JD Vance, the author of Hillbilly Elegy and a nationalist conservative.
Vance, who formerly opposed Trump and criticized him strongly, has emerged as a strong America First conservative. He won the race to run for the GOP for Ohio’s Senate seat.
His opponent Tim Ryan is a Democrat, but he’s shied away from a lot of what we think of as Democrats. He’s criticized Vance on abortion, but not because Vance opposes on-demand abortion. Ryan hasn’t mentioned that.
No, instead he’s just called out Vance for being against abortion even in cases of incest or rape.
This is far from the only area where Ryan is trying to play conservative and edging away from the kind of rhetoric that’s come to define the modern Democrat Party.
Ryan even said he basically supports Trump. He’s strongly stood up for increasing funding to police; he’s come out against the “elites” and Washington establishment.
Ryan has also made it crystal clear that he despises woke-ism and all its variants.
Democrat Tim Ryan is using his big fundraising advantage over Republican J.D. Vance in Ohio's Senate race to define himself as conservative-friendly through TV ads targeting GOP audiences — while Vance's campaign remains silent. https://t.co/V4R1S8HKv2
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) July 18, 2022
What’s Going On?
What’s going on is actually quite simple. Ryan is pursuing a brilliant strategy; he is trying to flank Vance on the right.
He wants to portray Vance as an elitist who’s out of touch with ordinary Ohioans because of his Ivy League background and status as a bestselling author whose work was made into a film.
Ryan wants to recapture a kind of old-style Democrat that used to exist before the party was taken over by screaming radicals and anti-American nutjobs.
Can he pull it off? That remains to be seen, but he’s certainly committing resources, courting the conservative vote, and taking this race very seriously.
Tim Ryan is committed to making sure rural Ohioans and working families don’t get left behind.
In Congress, Tim fought to make investments in Ohio's roads and bridges and in affordable high-speed internet that connects communities…/1#TruBlue #ResistanceUnited #wtpBLUE #Fresh pic.twitter.com/ZvVBVQJ1H7
— Rogue Citizen One 💔 (@RogueCitizenOne) July 18, 2022
The Bottom Line
Democrats are increasingly unpopular in the Heartland and Midwest. The best they can do in many areas is say “yes I’m a Democrat, but…”
This article appeared in StatesmanPost and has been published here with permission.