And “reaching out” isn’t the same as pandering to their ‘deplorableness’. But we seem to forget that quite a few Democratic voters vote Democratic in spite their bigotry (boldface mine):
Democrats dwelled on the most obvious–and politically convenient–part–which indicates that Trump supporters are a lot more racist than anyone else. But this figure also contains an inconvenient truth (to use a phrase). The most optimistic reading of this is that at least one out of five Democrats are racist–and that estimate includes black people (I’m assuming most [black people] don’t believe these things; i.e., the denominator should be smaller). I don’t think it’s unreasonable to assume that one in four Democrats is racist–which admittedly is better than Republicans, especially once the Trumpists are factored in. We, too, have our deplorables.
If white bigots always voted their bigotry, Democrats would be dead in the water–probably everywhere. Yet they don’t. Which brings us to an inconvenient truth from the 2008 elections (boldface mine):
There is no need to pretend the white working class is a monolith of moral excellence. Many working-class people, like many middle- and upper-class people, are bigoted, hostile to all kinds of people and lifestyles. But the job of a presidential candidate is to appeal to our better angels and win votes anyway. In 2008, the Democratic coalition included millions of black churchgoers who opposed same-sex marriage. In 2012, Democrats welcomed millions of Catholic Latino voters who opposed abortion. These people were not scolded for their shortcomings but celebrated for their virtues. This year, Democratic elites decided that the entire white working class was unworthy of sharing their company.
(Most years, according to Pew Research, there is a fifteen to twenty point approval gap for gay marriage between whites and blacks. Hispanic (Pew’s term) voters are more likely (50 to 40 percent) to oppose legal abortion in most or all cases.)
To win certain states nationally and a fair number of down ballot races we need white working class voters (think of that as the ‘Republican firewall‘). The good news is that there are white working class voters who do and would vote Democratic even with all of their flaws, if we try to earn their votes.