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Romney predicts Trump would win the 2024 GOP nomination if he ran for president.

Utah Senator Mitt Romney said on Tuesday that he believed Donald J. Trump would win the Republican nomination for president if he ran for his old job in 2024, another indication of Mr. Trump in the party.

“I don’t know if he’ll run in 2024 or not, but if he does, I’m pretty sure he’ll win the nomination,” Romney told the DealBook DC Policy Project.

Mr Romney noted that “a lot can happen by 2024,” but added: “I look at the polls, and the polls show that among the names put forward as potential candidates in 2024, if you put the president Trump in there among the Republicans, he wins in a landslide.

Mr. Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential candidate, is the only Republican senator to vote to convict Mr. Trump in his two impeachment trials.

Asked by Andrew Ross Sorkin of the New York Times about whether he would campaign against Mr. Trump, Mr. Romney replied, “I will no longer vote for President Trump. I haven’t voted for him in the past. And I would probably be behind someone who, in my opinion, represented more of the small wing of the Republican Party that I represent.

Mr. Romney’s comments were a clear sign of Mr. Trump’s enduring position within the Republican Party, even after his election defeat last year and his impeachment for inciting aggression against the Capitol on January 6.

“He has by far the biggest voice and a big impact in my party,” Mr. Romney said.

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The Democrats’ big tent helped them win. Now that threatens Biden’s agenda.

Mr Sanders has targeted recent news that a moderate think tank, Third Way, is working on a project to push Democrats to the center for the midterm elections. He said issues such as canceling student debt, raising the minimum wage to $ 15 an hour and tackling climate change were “political winners.”

Today’s American working class – white, black, Latino – is suffering. They want us to react vigorously, ”he said. “If we do, I think they’ll reward us in 2022. If we fail them, Republicans will be able to say, ‘Hey, you gave these people the House, the Senate, and the White House and they got nothing. done for you, “we won’t do well in 2022.”

Yet entrenchment by moderate senators – and the president’s current deference to it – presents a challenge for activists hoping to sway the administration. And while progressive elected officials are confident that Mr. Biden will eventually join them, a growing chorus of activists are looking to him for more immediate action.

K Trainor, a student activist who has worked with progressive groups to train Democratic students, said Mr Biden’s response to mayor was deeply disappointing. She said if the administration ignored young voters, it would be more difficult to persuade them to participate in future elections.

“I think a lot of people in my generation ask, ‘Where’s the courage? ”Ms. Trainor said. “It feels like they’re going backwards and we don’t even have 100 days.”

The Reverend William J. Barber II, a co-chair of the Campaign of the Poor who organized the meeting of West Virginia workers with Mr Manchin, said the debate reflected an ugly belly of Democratic politics. While the working poor and low-income, especially those who are racial minorities or young people, form the core of the Democratic base, he said, the policies that interest them most have often been sacrificed because of the political calculations.

They represent the human cost of the big tent, he said.

“The Democrats ran on it, they put it in their platform and they said that’s what has to happen,” Dr. Barber said. “It would be the ultimate surrender and betrayal to then get here and have the power to do it and then step back.”

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To ‘re-engage the world’, Biden seeks first to win over US diplomats

WASHINGTON – Pledging to rebuild international alliances and strengthen the moral standing of the United States, President Biden on Thursday presented plans to “re-engage the world.”

But first, he sought to convince diplomats whose job it is to realize his vision.

As State Department employees connected from across the country and abroad, Mr. Biden pledged to “support you” in a speech to career diplomats and public service personnel who have fought under President Donald J. Trump to promote American values ​​abroad while they were assaulted at home.

Mr. Biden acknowledged this. “The last few years have been difficult,” he said in a short speech to an auditorium of around 50 masked employees at the State Department’s headquarters in Washington.

But, he said, “you are the face of America, and that’s important.”

“You are at the center of everything I intend to do,” said the president. “You are the heart of it.”

Still, some diplomats remained skeptical. Mr. Biden’s gesture was appreciated, they said, and his promises of employee empowerment hit all the right notes.

But as political appointments begin to occupy the upper echelons of the State Department, career diplomats who have said they have held up during the Trump administration have expressed frustration at being passed through loyalists to Mr. Biden.

“Our diplomats have heard a lot about boast and ethics over the past four years,” said Brett Bruen, former foreign service officer and member of the Obama administration’s National Security Council. “What they really want is support and substance.”

He said he spoke to diplomats and other former colleagues who were still in the department; they had expressed some disappointment with Mr Biden’s speech, given that it did not deal with how to promote and elevate officials to higher positions. “While President Biden gave a pep talk,” Mr. Bruen said, “he didn’t come up with any new plans.”

For some, the speech was a necessary antidote to the distrust and contempt of the diplomats who had permeated the department under Rex W. Hillerson and Mike Pompeo, Mr. Trump’s secretaries of state.

Mr. Tillerson oversaw a purge that ultimately wiped out around 1,000 State Department employees before being expelled.

Mr. Pompeo had promised to restore “swagger” to the diplomatic corps, disconcerting employees who were more successful in foreign affairs by being less confrontational. But he declined to support the staff members who angered Mr. Trump or to refute the beard of the former president of the “Deep State Department”.

In the week since Mr Biden’s Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken was sworn in, the ministry has yet to release a list of staff who are placed in the most senior positions.

In his absence, former and current State Department employees compiled a tally of Mr. Biden’s political appointments, which was shared with The New York Times. It includes at least nine new deputy under-secretaries of state and four senior advisers, out of dozens of available positions.

Some of them had previously worked in the department but left under Mr. Trump’s leadership, returning to more powerful positions that are also open to career diplomats.

While it’s not particularly unusual for a president to install his supporters in key political positions, Mr Biden’s hires hire staff who have already been burned by those appointed by Mr Trump, many of whom had little. or no experience in diplomacy.

Ned Price, the spokesperson for the department, told reporters on Tuesday that the number of people appointed to political positions so far was “a very small sample” and that career staff would be represented in the highest ranking. management ranks.

“You will see a number of respected career public servants occupy some of the most senior positions in this building,” said Price. “There is no doubt.”

Several diplomats have also privately voiced concerns about officials who have remained in senior positions after appearing, in the opinion of some foreign service officials, not to have sufficiently defended the ministry under Mr. Trump.

Among them, David Hale, the Under Secretary for Political Affairs, who accused diplomats of leaking information about Mr. Pompeo’s wife; and Carol Z. Perez, who, as Director General of the Foreign Service, has not publicly repudiated Mr. Trump’s impeachment of Marie L. Yovanovitch as ambassador to Ukraine after casting doubts on the president’s leadership. Ms Perez is currently the ministry’s Acting Under-Secretary for Management.

In his speech, Biden said he demanded the integrity, transparency and accountability of his diplomats “to restore confidence in America and the world.”

He also said he would ensure the ministry’s workforce reflects “diversity, equity, inclusion,” echoing a goal that Mr Blinken said he sees as a benchmark for its own success. Far fewer women and people of color are being promoted to high-level jobs in what has been described as a “pale, masculine and yale” culture at the State Department.

In his own speech to employees last week, Blinken pledged to rebuild the department as “truly representative of the American people.”

The fact that Blinken started his own career at the State Department did not go unnoticed by employees, and his message resonated with many diplomats who have felt neglected or sidelined in previous years.

Mr Blinken noted on Thursday the mosaic of the faces of 165 diplomats – the new class of foreign service officers – who attended the president’s speech via video call and could be seen on screens placed on stage.

“These women and men represent America’s extraordinary talent and diversity,” said Mr. Blinken. “They represent the future of this department. We are delighted that they have joined our team. “

Michael crowley contribution to reports.

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Video: ‘We will win the Covid war,’ Cuomo says in his 2021 agenda speech

Today I am called upon to answer what is most of the time a simple question, but for the moment it is anything but: what is the state of our condition? Well, in some ways it’s like the state of the nation, and even the state of the world. We are hurt. We are frustrated. We are in mourning. We are anxious. We are shocked that an unseen enemy can cause such death and destruction, especially in this richest and most powerful nation in the world. And it wasn’t just the virus itself that showed our vulnerabilities, it’s that Covid created the low tide in America, and the ugliness that lurked beneath the surface was exposed and became visible to all. Racial divisions, religious tensions, government incompetence, health care disparities, social injustice and the danger of hateful leadership. In New York, we experience it all. But in other ways, New York State is different because New York is different. What Covid has done to us is different, and the way we have responded to Covid is different. We know what to do. And we will. We will win the Covid War, and we will learn and grow from the experience. The problems don’t just go away. They’re going up. It’s a national crisis, but New York will lead.

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A senior Georgia election official said Jon Ossoff would likely win.

A senior Georgia election official said it was almost certain that Jon Ossoff, the 33-year-old media executive who issued an unlikely challenge to a sitting senator, would emerge victorious against David Perdue.

“The senator will probably be Ossoff,” Gabriel Sterling, a senior Georgia election official, said at a press conference Wednesday morning.

In his briefing, Sterling said it was also likely that Mr. Ossoff’s victory would exceed the margin – ½ of 1 percent – that would trigger an election recount in Georgia.

Mr Ossoff currently leads Mr Perdue by more than 17,500 votes after Tuesday’s second round of the Senate, in which more than 4.4 million voters voted, a record in Georgia.

Just over 60,000 votes remain to be counted, with the biggest numbers coming from Democratic or Democratic counties in the metro Atlanta area. These include DeKalb (17,902 votes); Henry (9,078); Fulton (5,294); and Gwinnett (5,068).

The remaining votes are largely absent votes that were delivered by mail or placed in drop boxes on Tuesday, according to Mr Sterling, who said he expected most between them are counted at 1 p.m.

During the meeting, Mr Sterling, a former Republican political agent, said there was no evidence of irregularities in the Senate election and, once again, expressed frustration with of President Donald Trump, whom he accused of having started a “war within a GOP that must be united to get through this difficult fight.”

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Joe From Scranton did not win back the working class

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For years, Democrats have preached the gospel of changing demographics.

As the country diversified, they argued, the electorate would inevitably tilt in their favor and give their party an unbeatable advantage.

Well, the country is more racially diverse than ever. But exit polls suggest Joe Biden lost ground among Latin American, black, and Asian-American voters in 2020 compared to Hillary Clinton’s performance in 2016.

It turns out that demography is not a political fate. But degrees could well be.

The clearest way to understand the results of the 2020 election – and, perhaps, the changing state of our politics – is through the voting gap in education. Voters with college degrees flocked to Mr Biden, emerging as the crucial voting bloc in the suburbs. Those who did not have continued their flight from the Democratic Party.

“The overall problem is that the Democratic Party increasingly reflects the cultural values ​​and political preferences of educated whites,” said David Shor, a data scientist who advises Democratic campaigns and organizations. “Culturally, working class non-whites have more in common with working class whites.”

The changes were marginal: Voters of color still overwhelmingly supported Mr Biden, sticking with the Democratic candidate as they had for decades. But these small fluctuations suggest the possibility of a broader realignment of US policy. Political parties, after all, are dynamic. Coalitions can and do.

Think about how Democrats have won over the past four years. In 2018, they toppled wealthy, diverse suburbs and increased their margins in cities to take control of the House of Representatives. Mr Biden followed the same path to the presidency: A New York Times analysis found he had improved Ms Clinton’s performance in suburban counties by about five percentage points on average.

What else do these areas have in common? They are more likely to be dominated by highly qualified voters.

One way to look at this county-by-county trend is to look at the number of voters who have white or blue collar jobs. (I know, your boyfriend was never a college graduate and is now making a killing as a real estate broker. It’s not a perfect measure but a pretty good indicator of education, given the economic data available.)

The results were striking. Of the 265 counties most dominated by blue-collar workers – fields where at least 40% of employed adults have jobs in construction, the service sector or other non-professional fields – Mr Biden won only 15, according to data from researchers at the Economic Innovation Group, a bipartisan policy research group.

On average, the counties’ workforce won by Mr Biden was around 23% blue-collar workers. In counties won by President Trump, blue-collar workers made up an average of 31% of the workforce.

This is not a new trend. For decades, Democrats traded support from union members for broader support from professional classes. And the GOP, once the party of college-educated white voters, has increasingly found support from white working-class voters.

Many Democratic primary voters saw Mr. Biden as being in a unique position to cut the Republican advantage with the working class. For decades, he built his political brand as a rambling kid from Scranton, Pa. Who became just another guy on the train to work. The rallying cry for his campaign over the past few weeks was, “This election is Scranton vs. Park Avenue.”

But Mr Biden did worse than Clinton in 2016 and Barack Obama in 2012 and 2008 in counties dominated by blue collar workers.

This result should frighten Democratic strategists about the future of their party, Mr Shor said, because of structural dynamics like the electoral college which gives rural areas political influence far beyond the size of their population. .

If Democrats can’t win blue collar workers in less populated areas – or at least cut some of their losses – gaining control of the Senate or the White House will become very difficult. And with Republicans maintaining their grip on state legislatures, Democrats may find themselves cut off from some of those friendlier suburban seats when districts are redesigned after the census.

“It is very difficult for us to imagine that we will take the Senate by the end of the decade,” Mr. Shor said. “And it would be very difficult to win the presidency. Our institutions are very biased specifically against this coalition that we are in the process of setting up.


Georgia is on my mind this week. (Yes, I know, low shot.)

With control of the Senate based on two second-round elections, the political world injects money and resources into the state. But as we reported this week, things are getting a little… complicated.

Unsurprisingly, the cause of the political chaos is President Trump. As he continues to make unsubstantiated claims about the presidential election results in Georgia – a state he lost – Republicans fear his attacks will reduce their turnout in the Jan.5 runoff.

Some Trump allies in the state have urged Tories to boycott the election or write on behalf of Mr. Trump – an option not even on the run-off. Although Mr. Trump and his campaign have tried to distance themselves from this effort, they have continued their drumbeat of attacks on Gov. Brian Kemp, a Republican, and other GOP election officials. Some Republican strategists feared the rhetoric might further alienate suburban voters, who helped Trump deal with his loss in Georgia, but may be more receptive to Republican run-off candidates, sitting Senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue .

Mr. Trump is expected to campaign with them in Valdosta, Georgia on Saturday. Republicans are unsure if his remarks could do more harm than help, especially if he remains unable to put aside some of his personal pique about his own loss.

… This is the new starting point for negotiations for another pandemic relief bill.

As coronavirus cases increase and the economy shows signs of weakening, Democrats made a big concession – they had demanded at least $ 2 trillion – to push Republicans and the Trump administration to pass legislation compromise.

In addition to ending a several-month congressional standoff, passing stimulus legislation could help the new Biden administration take office on slightly stronger economic foundations.

I didn’t think anything could top Rudy Giuliani’s dripping face.

I was wrong.


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Virginia Democrats overjoyed at Biden’s win don’t seek carbon copy

ANNANDALE, Virginia – Katherine White has spent countless hours this year organizing voters to support Joseph R. Biden Jr. for president.

One of the millions of suburban women who became politically active for the first time after Donald J. Trump was elected in 2016, Ms White is among the coterie of Biden voters who are treating her victory by reflecting on what go follow.

She won’t have to wait long – the Virginia gubernatorial contest for 2021 is already underway, with three main Democratic candidates declared and two more planning to enter the race as early as next week. The big question Ms. White and other Democrats in Washington’s northern suburbs are now asking is whether the political model of Biden – a stable and experienced white man – is what they want from Democrats in Washington. post-Trump era.

Mr Biden’s victory was fueled by suburban voters, especially women like Mrs White, who were motivated during the primaries and general elections by what they saw as the existential threat of a second term for President. Without Mr. Trump on the ballot, Ms. White and other liberal suburban women are looking to see the Democratic Party field more candidates who look like them – and they’re not interested in waiting any longer.

“We’re beyond what the nation was looking for when they elected Biden, I think Virginia is beyond that,” said Ms. White, 56, whose organization, Network NoVA, serves as a collective. to dozens of liberal groups in the Washington suburbs. . “This is where we need to lead; that we don’t need a white man to bring us back to get us elected. We can do it in Virginia.

Fairfax County, which includes Mrs. White’s hometown of Annandale, has grown into a generation of a place George W. Bush brought in the 2000 presidential election to one of the Democratic strongholds. most reliable in the country. Fairfax gave Mr. Biden 70 percent of his vote, a higher percentage than the party’s traditional battlefield state strongholds in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin, or Wayne County, Michigan, which includes Detroit.

In nearby Arlington and Alexandria, more than 80% of voters chose Mr Biden. Loudoun County, a battleground as recently as 2016, gave Mr Biden 61% of his vote and Mr Biden transported Stafford County, the first time a Democratic presidential candidate there has won since 1976.

Northern Virginia is expected to provide about half of the vote in the June Democratic primary for governor of Virginia, a race that for months has included two black women – Jennifer McClellan, a 15-year-old state legislator; and Jennifer Carroll Foy, a member of the House of Delegates first elected in 2017 – and Justin Fairfax, Lieutenant Governor of Virginia, who is also black.

Virginia law prohibits governors from seeking consecutive terms. Outgoing governor, Democrat Ralph Northam, served as Mr McAuliffe’s lieutenant governor and in February 2019 was caught in a cascading scandal when he apologized and then later denied having posed in black on a photo that appeared in the directory of his faculty of medicine. At the same time, Mr. Fairfax was accused by two women of sexual assault years earlier. He denied the allegations.

Interviews last week with more than a dozen Democratic activists in northern Virginia revealed a group of voters delighted at Mr. Biden’s success and yearning for him to keep campaign promises to stop the spread the coronavirus, tackle income inequality and racial justice disparities, and reverse the Trump administration’s environmental policies.

But he also found an eager electorate to move beyond Mr. Biden’s America’s soul healing policy and set a marker for progressive politics in a Virginia that Mr. Biden wore over. by 10 percentage points. This result has given every Democrat questioned the certainty that whoever wins the primary will win the general election next November.

The two Republican candidates announced in the race are Kirk Cox, former speaker of the House of Delegates, and Amanda Chase, a state senator in the mold of Mr. Trump.

“I never doubted that there would be a problem getting Joe Biden elected in Virginia,” said Joanne Collins of Reston, Va., Who is a leader of a local chapter of Indivisible, the organization of progressive base that started after the 2016 Election. “It didn’t even cross my mind. And I think the governor’s race will be similar.

Robbin Warner, who formed an organization that sent more than 460,000 postcards to voters this fall, said his volunteers were excited about the prospect of Virginia electing its first female governor after an unbroken streak of 73 men that began with Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson.

“We love our Jennifers and are very excited to have two wonderful women running,” she said. “They are capable, they are articulate, they are responsive, they understand Virginia. That’s what we were so excited to work on, bringing in more progressive ideas, more grassroots ideas, with a focus on women.

The problem for the two women running for governor is that, as happened in the presidential primary, they threaten to cancel each other out, leaving a wide voice for Mr McAuliffe among voters who appreciate his experience. of governor at a time when the country is in difficulty. to fight against the coronavirus and resuscitate an economy which, by the time of the June primary, will have been battered by the pandemic for more than a year.

“Trump’s demise won’t change the fact that people’s kids are not in school and jobs are gone, and they’re going to look for people who can solve these problems,” said Dan Helmer, a lawmaker from the democratic state. who represents western Fairfax County and is not aligned in the governor’s race.

Although Mr McAuliffe has not yet entered the race, assistants to candidates already in the race have long assumed his entry into the race and wasted little time in settling his potential political responsibilities. Virginia’s turnout in 2013, when Mr. McAuliffe was elected governor, was just 43%, among the lowest turnout numbers in modern state history. The only time Virginia Democrats nominated a black candidate for governor, in 1989, 67 percent of the state’s registered voters turned out to elect L. Douglas Wilder, the country’s first elected black governor.

And Mr. McAuliffe, like Mr. Biden, has a long political record that will look different in 2021 than he was when he was governor. In 2015, Mr. McAuliffe ended the issuance of Virginia license plates bearing the Confederate flag but, like many of the state’s leading Democrats at the time, opposed the removal of Confederate statues in Richmond, the state capital.

“It’s part of our heritage,” he said at the time. “That’s who we are in Virginia. And it’s an important part of our heritage. The flag is different. In 2017, after white nationalists marched on Charlottesville, Virginia, Mr. McAuliffe changed his mind and called for the monuments to be destroyed.

Mr. McAuliffe’s supporters describe him as the strongest hand to lead the state during what is expected to be a health and economic crisis. And his aides point out that his Political Action Committee was the state’s biggest donor to the Democratic Party in the 2019 election, when Democrats reversed control of the state Senate and the House of Delegates.

And Mr McAuliffe’s aides are certain to call for the support of Mr Biden, who at a campaign rally in March in Norfolk called Mr McAuliffe “the former and future governor of Virginia.” (A Biden aide declined to say whether the praise constituted endorsement.)

Monique Alcala, former chair of the Virginia Democratic Party’s Latino Caucus, was a supporter of Senator Elizabeth Warren in the 2020 presidential primaries before accepting a position as director of Biden’s coalitions for Virginia. Now she said Mr. McAuliffe was the best choice because he knew how to run the Virginia government.

“As we deal with unprecedented challengers with Covid, as we face economic uncertainty, people will be looking at her experiences as governor,” said Ms Alcala, who lives in Alexandria. “They’re going to want someone with leadership experience in a crisis, and I think Terry will do it.”

Yet among the throng of activists in Northern Virginia who were women, valuing Ms. Alcala’s experience is offset by the prospect of electing the Commonwealth’s first female governor.

“It would send a real message to Virginia and maybe the country that Virginia is on a different path,” said Heidi Zollo, who opened an indivisible chapter in Herndon, Va., After the 2016 election.

Ms Zollo supported Mr Biden in the 2020 primary because she saw him as having the best chance of beating Mr Trump. She now wants the Virginia Democrats to nominate either Ms. McClellan or Ms. Carroll Foy, she said, to “show that we take women and women of color seriously and that we would be confident and comfortable. in their leadership.

And Lisa Sales, who is the chair of the Fairfax County Commission for Women, said she “loves and adores” Mr. McAuliffe, but the time has come for Virginia to elect a woman to the post of. governor.

“The only way to solve our problems is to have more women in power,” she said. “This idea that a white man is the most eligible is a false premise. The election of a female governor is long overdue. White men should get behind women, and men should get behind women, especially women of color.

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Palestine is considering ending the payment of prisoners in an attempt to win favor with the Biden administration.

In an effort to restore their defiled image in Washington, Palestinians are laying the groundwork for an overhaul of one of their most expensive but controversial practices: compensating those serving time in Israeli jails, including for violent attacks .

Eager to make a fresh start with the new Biden administration, Palestinian officials are heeding advice from sympathetic Democrats who have repeatedly warned that without the end of the payments it would be impossible for the new administration to do the heavy lifting in them. last name.

The Palestinian Authority’s policy of paying allowances to prisoners held by Israel, in a system critics call “pay to kill”, has long been denounced by Israel and its supporters as an incitement to terrorism because it guarantees potential attackers than their dependents will. be well cared for. Because the payments are based largely on the length of the prison sentence, critics say the most heinous crimes are the most rewarded.

In a bipartisan rebuke to the system, Congress has repeatedly passed legislation to reduce aid to Palestinians by the amount of these payments. The payments were cited by the Trump administration when it cut funding and took other punitive measures against Palestinians starting in 2018.

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Conor Lamb, House Moderate, on Biden’s win, ‘the team’ and the future of the Democratic Party

The carefully calibrated unity of the Democratic Party lasted for about six months. After a summer when moderates and progressives came together to elect President Joseph R. Biden Jr., his victory has now given the party permission to devote time and energy to the difficult task of sorting out its ideological core .

House Democrats, reeling from unexpected losses in competitive races, wasted no time. Moderates blamed progressives for pushing policies such as “Medicare for all” and defunding the police, which are unpopular in swing neighborhoods.

But progressives, rallying to influence Mr. Biden over cabinet appointments and initial policy, have pushed back. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York pinned those losses in the House to a bad digital campaign, saying members have been “sitting ducks” for Republicans.

Conor Lamb, the 36-year-old Democrat from Pennsylvania who pushed aside a Republican challenge in a district won by President Trump in 2016, is one of those moderates who believes the left is costing Democrats in key areas. In an interview with the New York Times, Mr Lamb said he expected the new administration to rule like it campaigned: with arm’s-length progressives.

This interview has been condensed and slightly edited for clarity.

Q. What do you expect from Joe Biden’s Democratic Party? How do you expect him to come across the moderate versus progressive divisions that we see in the House?

A. I think he means what he says when he says, “I have led a Democrat, but I will serve as US President.” And what that means, I believe, is that every day, and on every issue, he’s going to work to get as many people around the table and sing from the same sheet music as possible. And sometimes it will be everyone in the Democratic caucus. Sometimes it will be people from the Democratic caucus and Republicans. I think that will change by the question, but this is a person who truly believes that our real job in Washington, DC is to work with each other, to compromise to get the best deal possible, and then to to make things progress. And I believe it too.

What went wrong for House Democrats when they were supposed to take seats?

I give you an honest account of what I hear from my own constituents which is that they are extremely frustrated with the message of defunding the police and banning fracking. And I, as a Democrat, am just as frustrated. Because these things are not only unpopular, they are completely unrealistic and they will not happen. And that amounts to false promises on the part of the people who claim them.

If a member of your family makes a living in one way or another being connected to natural gas, either on the gas pipeline itself, or you know, even in a restaurant that serves gas workers natural, it is not something to be joked about or to be laid back about. Your language.

That’s what we’re trying to say: that the rhetoric, the policies and everything – it’s gone way too far. It must be redialed. It has to be rooted in the right way, in reality, and yes, in politics. Because we need neighborhoods like mine to stay in the majority and do something for the people we care about most.

Take this problem. Joe Biden did not support the postponement of police funding. Almost every member of the Democratic Congress, even people like Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, have spoken out against it. What is the party supposed to do that it hasn’t?

I think we can do this much more clearly and repeatedly and show it through our actions. We need to have a unified democratic message about good law enforcement and how to protect people, while addressing the systemic racism that I think exists and the racial inequalities that absolutely exist. And when we passed the George Floyd Justice and Policing Act, that’s exactly what we did.

But the people I was on the phone with when we were doing this back then weren’t the freshmen criticizing us today. It was Karen Bass and Cedric Richmond and Colin Allred – and I was listening to them. And, you know, pretty much most of our moderate Conservative Democrats all voted for this bill. We listened, we made compromises and we did something. And that’s really what this job is.

Do moderate Democrats think the Progressives or the so-called Squad have taken too much space in the national conversation?

I wouldn’t put it that way. Because it really focuses on them as individuals and their personalities. And that’s not what we’re trying to do. We’re trying to have a discussion about politics, not personality. And I want to be very clear about that, because I respect each of these MPs and how hard they worked to get elected and how hard they worked to stay elected and represent their ridings. But the point is, they and others advocate unworkable and hugely unpopular policies.

So I would just say that our point of view is more that we want to have a clearer, more specific, and more unified message about the policy itself, no matter who deserves it or who is in the limelight.

In the Democratic primary, even though the progressive candidates lost, polls showed their issues remained popular among Democrats. Even things like single-payer health insurance or things like the Green New Deal. What’s your response to this?

At the end of the day, it’s the individual candidates who have to win races and then work with their colleagues to get bills through and change people’s lives. So you can tell me all the polls you want, but you have to win the election.

And I have now gone through three very difficult elections in a Republican-leaning district, with the president personally campaigning against me. And I can tell you that people are not asking for the two policies you just mentioned. So that’s what probably distinguishes a winner from a loser in a neighborhood like mine.

On Saturday I interviewed Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez and she mentioned to you and how some House moderates ran their campaigns. I wanted to quickly get a fact check: Did you all spend just $ 2,000 on Facebook the week before the election?

She has no idea how we ran our campaign, or what we spent, to be honest with you. So yes, his statement was false. But there is a deeper truth here, which is that our districts and our countryside are vastly different. You know, I stick to that.

She said the way the moderates ran their campaigns left them like “sitting ducks.” What was your reaction?

I have to be honest and say I was surprised by the whole interview the day Vice President and now President-elect Biden was called up for election for him. I just don’t think it was a day for people to shoot other members, especially in districts so different from theirs.

I respect her and how hard she works. And what she did in a very low turnout Democratic primary. But the point is that in general elections in those districts – especially in ones where President Trump himself campaigns over and over and over and attacks members in their own Republican-leaning districts, like me and Rep. Slotkin and Spanberger representative – it’s the message that counts. It’s not about knocking on the door or Facebook. It doesn’t matter which policies you stand for and which ones you don’t. And that’s all we’re trying to say.

The American people have just shown us in large numbers, in general, which side of these problems they are on. They sent us a Republican Senate and a Democratic President; we’re going to have to do things that we can compromise on.

You mentioned snipers. Are the progressives leading this or are the moderates doing it too? I think of all the anonymous quotes attacking members of the left, which she mentioned.

This is honestly a difficult question to answer because I don’t know who the anonymous are. I think we should put your name behind those kinds of comments and that’s usually what I do.

But I have to say that since you’ve talked a lot about Rep Ocasio-Cortez, she can put her name behind stuff and it’s, I guess, brave, but when it’s a damaging idea or bad policy, like if she tweeted that fracking was bad. in the midst of a presidential debate as we try to win western Pennsylvania – it doesn’t sound like a team player. And it’s honestly giving people a false and ineffective promise that makes it very difficult to win the areas where President Trump is most popular in the countryside.

You and Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez are on a different side of the ideological spectrum, but on the same side of a generational divide between Democrats. Party leaders in the House have said they plan to run again. Should there be more young people among Democratic leaders?

The most important thing is that the leadership we have must listen to new and young members, give us input and help us achieve political achievement.

But what seems to happen sometimes is that when things are going well, the young members who come from these really tough districts and tough races don’t always think that the leadership takes our contribution as seriously as we would like. And I think that’s something they need to improve on, and I’d bet Rep Ocasio-Cortez would feel the same – even if it was on different issues.

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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Biden’s win, house losses and the left-wing streak

For months, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has been a good soldier for the Democratic Party and Joseph R. Biden Jr as he sought to defeat President Trump.

But on Saturday, in an interview nearly an hour shortly after President-elect Biden was declared the winner, Ms Ocasio-Cortez clarified that the divisions within the party that drove the primary still existed. And she rejected recent criticism from some members of the Democratic House who accused the party’s left of costing them important seats. Some of the limbs that lost, she said, had made themselves “sitting ducks”.

These are edited excerpts from the conversation.

We finally have a better understanding of the results. What’s your take-out macro?

Well, I think the main thing is that we are no longer in free fall in hell. But the question that remains is whether or not we are going to get up. We interrupted this hasty descent. And the question is whether and how we are going to rebuild ourselves.

We know race is an issue, and avoiding it will not solve any electoral problem. We must actively disarm the powerful influence of racism at the ballot box.

But we’ve also learned that progressive policies don’t hurt candidates. Every candidate who co-sponsored Medicare for All in a swing neighborhood retained their seat. We also know that the co-sponsorship of the Green New Deal has not been a problem. Mike Levin was one of the original co-sponsors of Bill and he retained his seat.

Coming back to your first point, Democrats lost seats in an election where they were supposed to win them. Is that what you attribute to racism and white supremacy at the ballot box?

I think it will be very important how the party deals with this issue internally, and whether the party is going to be honest about doing a real postmortem and figuring out why it lost. Because before we even had data on many of these races, there was already a finger on the fact that it was the fault of the progressives and that it was the fault of the Black Lives Movement.

I have already started to look at how these campaigns actually work. And the point is, I’ve been destroying Democrats for two years. I defeated the campaigns led by DCCC for two years. That’s how I got to Congress. This is how we elected Ayanna Pressley. This is how Jamaal Bowman won. This is how Cori Bush won. And so we know the extreme vulnerabilities in the way Democrats run their campaigns.

Part of it is criminal. It is professional misconduct. Conor Lamb spent $ 2,000 on Facebook the week before the election. I don’t think anyone who isn’t actually on the internet in the year of our Lord 2020 and loses an election can blame someone else when you aren’t even really on the internet.

And I’ve been through a lot of those campaigns that lost, and the point is, if you don’t spend $ 200,000 on Facebook on fundraising, persuading, recruiting volunteers, voting the week before the election, you don’t shoot all the cylinders. And not a single one of those campaigns fired on all cylinders.

Well, Conor Lamb won. So what do you say: investing in digital advertising and canvassing is a bigger reason moderate Democrats have lost than any progressive politics?

These people point to the Republican message that they feel killed, right? But why were you so vulnerable to this attack?

If you don’t knock on the door, if you are not on the Internet, if your main points of trust are television and mail, then you are not running a campaign on all cylinders. I just don’t see how anyone could make ideological claims when they haven’t run a full-fledged campaign.

Our party is not even online, not in a real way that shows its competence. And so, yes, they were vulnerable to those messages, because they weren’t even on the mediums where those messages were most powerful. Of course, you can point the message, but they were also sitting ducks. They were sitting ducks.

There’s a reason Barack Obama built a whole national campaign apparatus outside of the Democratic National Committee. And there is a reason why when he did not activate or continue this, we lost majorities in the House. Because the party – per se – lacks the basic skills, and no amount of money is going to fix that.

If I lost my election, I went out and said, “It’s the moderates’ fault. It’s because you didn’t let us vote on the ground on Medicare for All. And they opened the hood on my campaign, and they found that I had only spent $ 5,000 on TV commercials the week before the election? They would laugh. And that’s what they look like right now trying to blame the Black Lives Movement for their loss.

Was there something about Tuesday that surprised you? Or made you rethink your previous views?

The share of white support for Trump. I thought the ballot was closed, but just seeing it there was this feeling of doing the job we have to do.

We need to do a lot of anti-racism and deep demarches in this country. Because if we keep losing white stocks and just allow Facebook to radicalize more and more elements of white voters and white voters, there aren’t many people of color and young people. that can compensate for that.

But the problem is, at the moment I think a big part of the Dem strategy is to avoid working through this. I’m just trying to avoid biting the bear. That’s their argument with cutting police funding, right? So as not to stir up racial resentment. I don’t think it’s sustainable.

There are a lot of magical thoughts in Washington that these are only special people who come from above. Year after year, we decline the idea that they have worked and conducted sophisticated operations in favor of the idea that they are magical and special people. I need people to take these glasses off and see how we can do things better.

If you are the DCCC and treating incumbents to progressive insurgents, you might think that you might want to use some of these companies. But instead, we banned them. Thus, the DCCC has banned every company that is the best in the country when it comes to digital organization.

The leaders and elements of the party – frankly, the people in some of the most important decision-making positions in the party – become so blind to this anti-activist sentiment that they become clouded over the very strengths they offer.

I have been begging the party to let me help them for two years. This is also the point. I tried to help. Before the election, I offered to help every swing district Democrat in their operation. And all but five of them refused my help. And the five vulnerable or swing district people I helped have won or are on the way to victory. And everyone who rejected my help is losing. And now they blame us for their loss.

So I need my colleagues to understand that we are not the enemy. And that their base is not the enemy. That the Black Lives Movement is not the enemy, that Medicare for all is not the enemy. It’s not even just about winning an argument. It’s that if they keep going after the wrong thing, I mean, they’re just creating their own obsolescence.

What do you expect from the opening of the Biden administration to the left? And what is the strategy to move it?

I don’t know how open they will be. And this is not a personal matter. That’s right, the party story tends to be that we are really excited about the grassroots to get elected. And then these communities are quickly abandoned just after an election.

I think the transition period is going to indicate whether the administration is taking a more open and collaborative approach or whether it is taking some sort of icing approach. Because Obama’s transition set a course for 2010 and some of our losses in the House. It was a lot of those transition decisions – and one that was placed in leadership positions – that really informed, unsurprisingly, the governance strategy.

What if the administration is hostile? If they take John Kasich’s take on who Joe Biden should be? What to do?

Well I would be disappointed because we are going to lose. And that’s exactly what it is. These transitional appointments, they send a signal. They tell to whom the administration attributes this victory. And so it’s going to be very difficult after the young immigrant activists help hand over Arizona and Nevada. It’s going to be really tough after Detroit and Rashida Tlaib upped the numbers in her district.

It is really difficult for us to become non-voters when they feel like nothing is changing for them. When they feel like people don’t see them, or even don’t recognize their participation.

If the party believes that after 94% of Detroit went to Biden, after black organizers just doubled and tripled the turnout in Georgia, after so many people organized Philadelphia, the Democratic Party’s signal is that the John Kasichs won us this election? I mean, I can’t even describe how dangerous it is.

You diagnose national trends. You are perhaps the most famous voice on the left today. What can we expect from you over the next four years?

I do not know. I think I’ll probably have more answers as we get through the transition and into the next term. How the party reacts will inform a lot of my approach and what I think will be necessary.

The past two years have been quite hostile. Externally, we have won. Externally there has been a ton of support, but internally he’s been extremely hostile to anything that even smacks of progressive.

Is the party ready to sit down and work together and figure out how we’re going to use everyone’s assets at the party? Or will they just double down on this stifling approach? And that will inform what I’m doing.

Is there a universe in which they are hostile enough to be talking about a led Senate in a few years?

I really do not know. I don’t even know if I want to be in politics. You know, for real, in the first six months of my tenure, I didn’t even know if I was going to run for office this year.

Really? Why?

This is the incoming. It’s stress. It is violence. It is the lack of support from your own party. It is your own party that thinks you are the enemy. When your own coworkers speak anonymously in the press and then turn around and say you are bad because you are actually adding your name to your opinion.

I chose to run for office because I felt I had to prove it was real. That this movement was real. That I was no accident. That people really want guaranteed health care and that people really want the Democratic Party to stand up for them.

But I’m serious when I tell people the odds of me running for senior positions and the odds of leaving just trying to start a farm somewhere – they’re probably the same.