The Democrats’ well-considered unity lasted about six months. After a summer when moderates and progressives teamed up to elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s president, his victory now allowed the party to devote time and energy to the difficult task. Towel is his core ideological classification.
House Democrats, reeling from sudden failures in competitive races, wasted no time. Moderates have blamed progressive organizations for promoting policies like “Medicare for all” and defaming police, which are unpopular in suburban counties.
But the progressive, rallying to influence Mr. Biden on cabinet appointments and initial policy, have been pushed back. New York representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez confirmed the House̵7;s losses due to the poor digital campaign, saying that its members had “sat down” for the Republicans themselves.
Conor Lamb, 36, a Pennsylvania Democrat who beat a Republican challenge in an area that President Trump won in 2016, is one of the doers who believe the wing Left is costing Democrats in key areas. In an interview with The New York Times, Mr. Lamb said he expected the upcoming administration to run exactly as it had been campaigning: with progress at hand.
This interview has been condensed and slightly edited for clarity.
Q. What are your expectations for Joe Biden’s Democrat? How do you expect him to fall into a moderate split compared to the progress we see in the House?
A. I think he meant what he said when he said, “I ran for a Democrat, but I will serve as an American president.” And that means, I believe, every day, and in all matters, he will work to attract as many people around the table and sing from the same piece of music as possible. And sometimes that will be everyone in a Democratic caucus. Sometimes it will be some people in the secret meeting of the Democrats and some Republicans. I think the problem will change, but he’s someone who truly believes that our real job in Washington, DC, is to work together, compromise to get the best deal possible and then on. complete the work. And I also believe that.
What happened to House Democrats when they were supposed to choose seats?
I will give you an honest report on what I have heard from my own voters, which is that they are extremely disappointed by the message of refusing the police and prohibiting crackdowns. And I, as a Democrat, are just as disappointed. Because these are not only uncommon, they are completely impractical and they will not happen. And they have vain promises by those who call them.
If someone in your family makes a living in some way related to natural gas, whether it’s on the pipeline, or you know, even in a restaurant that serves workers. Natural gas, then this is not something to joke or casual about your language.
That’s what we’re trying to say: that rhetoric and policies and all that – it went too far. It needs to be rewritten. It should be rooted in common sense, in reality, and yes, politics. Because we need districts like mine to stay for the most part and get something done for the people we care about most.
Let’s consider that. Joe Biden is not in favor of taking down the police. Almost all members of the Democratic Congress, even those like Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, oppose it. What should the party do that it doesn’t?
I think we can do it more clearly and over and over and express it with our actions. We need a unified Democracy message about good law enforcement and how to keep people safe, while tackling systematic racism that I believe exist and inadequacies Race equality exists. And when we passed the George Floyd Policy and Justice Act, that’s exactly what we did.
But the people I was talking to on the phone, when we were talking at the time, weren’t the freshmen who were criticizing us today. It’s Karen Bass and Cedric Richmond and Colin Allred – and I’m listening to them. And, you know, most of our moderately conservative Democrats vote on that bill. We listened, we compromised, and we accomplished something. And that’s what this job is really about.
Is it the view of the moderate Democrats that the progressive or the so-called Squad takes up too much space in the national dialogue?
I wouldn’t say it that way. Because that really focuses on them as their individuality and personality. And that’s not what we are trying to do. We are trying to discuss policy, not personality. And I want to be really clear about that, because I respect each of those members and how hard they worked to get elected and how hard they worked to be elected and represented. their constituencies. But the reality is that they and others are advocating unfeasible and extremely unpopular policies.
So I just want to say that our point of view is that we want a clearer, sharper, more unified message about the policy itself, regardless of who gets credit or who is receiving credit. mind for that.
In the Democratic primary, even when progressive candidates lose, polls show that their problems are still favored by Democrats. Even things like single-pay health insurance or things like the Green New Deal. What’s your reaction to that?
At the end of the day, it’s the individual candidates who must win races, and then work with their office workers to pass bills into legislation and change people’s lives. . So you can tell me all the votes you want, but you have to win the election.
And now I have had three very difficult elections in a Republican district, with the president personally campaigning against me. And I can tell you that people are not supporting the two policies you just asked about. So that’s just what differentiates a winner from a loser in a district like me.
On Saturday, I interviewed Rep. Ocasio-Cortez and she mentioned you and how some of the House of Representatives run their campaigns. I want to verify the authenticity quickly: Did you all only spend $ 2,000 on Facebook the week before the election?
She doesn’t know how we ran our campaign or what we spent, honestly tell you. That’s right, her statement was wrong. But there’s a deeper truth out there, that’s this – that our counties and our campaigns are vastly different. You know, I just left it there.
She says the way moderators run their campaigns make them “sitting ducks”. What’s your reaction?
I must honestly say I was amazed about the whole interview on the day that the Vice President and now President-elect Biden is having the election called for him. I just don’t think it’s a day for everyone to snipe other members, especially in districts that are too different from them.
I respect her and how hard she works. And what she did in the Democratic primary was extremely low voter turnout. But the reality is in general elections in these counties – especially in those where President Trump himself campaigned over and over again and again, and attacked members in counties leaning towards his own Republican Party them, like me and Representative Slotkin and Representative Spanberger – that is a great message. It is not a question of a knock on the door or a Facebook. What policies you support and which ones you do not support. And that’s all we’re trying to say.
The American people show us that in large numbers, in general, on which side of these problems are they on. They sent us a Republican Senate and a Democratic president; we will have to do things that we can compromise on.
You mentioned sniping. Are the advancers leading it or are the moderators doing the same? I was thinking of all the anonymous quotes that attacked leftist members, which she mentioned.
Honestly, that’s a difficult question to answer, because I don’t know who the anonymous are. I believe we should put your name behind those kinds of comments and that’s what I usually do.
But I have to say that, as you’ve said a lot about Representative Ocasio-Cortez, she can put her name behind things and I guess that’s courage, but when it’s a damaging idea or bad policies, such as she tweeted that the crack is bad in the middle of the presidential debate as we are trying to win in western Pennsylvania – it’s not anything like a player in the team. And honestly making a false and ineffective promise to people makes it very difficult to win over the areas that President Trump is most popular with in campaigns.
You and Congressman Ocasio-Cortez are on two different sides of the ideological spectrum, but on the same side of the generational divide between Democrats. The party leadership in the House of Representatives said they plan to run again. Is there a need for more youth in the leadership of the Democratic Party?
The most important thing is that our leadership must listen to the newer, younger members and actually give us some input and help us achieve our policy-level achievements.
But what seems to happen sometimes is that when the impetus happens to push, young members from really tough realms and this tough race don’t always feel that the leadership is watching. take our opinion as seriously as we’d like. And I think that’s something they need to improve on, and I bet the Ocasio-Cortez Rep will feel the same way – even if it’s different issues.