Will Our Discourse, Such As It Is, Ever Focus on Democrats?

If past trends are any indication, probably not. A couple of weeks ago, some asshole with a blog noted:

One of the undercovered ‘results’ of the 2020 election is the victory celebration phenomenon: in many metro areas, people were ecstatic, as if we had just destroyed the Death Star or won a war. Despite that reaction, there are no calls for reporters to travel to the hinterlands of the Bronx to do the whole ‘Trump supporter in a Midwestern diner’ interview (aka Cletus safaris).

…there are very few, if any, stories going the other direction. That is, while coastal news outlets will send out reporters to Trumpist strongholds, the converse doesn’t seem to happen. Part of the reason is economic–these outlets might not have the money to do that. But it needs to happen as it’s pretty clear that people living in Trump strongholds also have no understanding of what motivates other people (though it’s not clear at all if they care to know). Remember how Portland and D.C. were supposedly on fire night after night?

This is important, because faced with a resounding defeat, conservatives also need to start the ‘healing’ work, and they won’t be able to do that without understanding Democratic areas.

Eric Boehlert makes a very good point about the neglected Biden voter (boldface mine):

The fact that the Democratic nominee received 80 million votes amidst a pandemic, with some states seeing an astronomical voter turnout rate this year hovering at 80 percent, should have triggered constant coverage about Biden’s successful campaign and his unprecedented ability to attract voters. You’d think cable news panels and opinion pages would be flooded with debates and insights into how Biden pulled off such a stunning performance — how he received 34 million (!) more votes than Bill Clinton did in 1996, and 16 million more than Obama received in 2012. Shouldn’t that make Biden a political phenomenon?

Instead of dissecting Biden’s sprawling Black, Brown and white coalition of voters, who helped flip five states on Election Day, the press continues to be amazed by how many votes the losing candidate received. It’s a singular focus we’ve never seen before in American politics.

Have you seen “Why Did 80 Million People Vote For Joe Biden?” headlines in the New York Times or Washington Post since Election Day? I have not…

It feels like because Biden voters don’t embrace hateful lies and delusional conspiracy theories, the press penalizes them in terms of the time and attention they receive.

“Perhaps it is time to understand the 80 million voters who chose President-elect Joe Biden,” noted Jennifer Rubin in the Washington Post, as she admonished journalists for coddling Trump voters and continuing to shower them with attention. Rubin stressed that Biden captured that huge number of votes not by running as a safe, centrist candidate, but by running on the most progressive Democratic Party platform ever.

The irony is that while the press shrugs its shoulders over Biden’s staggering 80 million votes, Trump and his loyalists continue to express amazement and shock. In fact, the 80 million number for them is so vast, it’s not to be believed….

But it’s interesting to note that voter turnout was through the roof in blue states, while red states made up the states with the lowest participation rate this year. That undercuts the idea that Trump motivates an army of voters to the polls on Election Day.

It’s telling that large parts of the discourse see Neera Tanden as an activist*. We need a lot more safaris to Democratic areas. A lot more.

*She’s not a Third Way Democrat, but using #Resistance a lot on Twitter doesn’t really make her part of the liberal Democrat (circa 1990)-leftist fold by a long shot.

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1 Response to Will Our Discourse, Such As It Is, Ever Focus on Democrats?

  1. Anat says:

    The press doesn’t feel the need to explain why people vote for Biden because to the writers this is what a ‘normal’ person would do, there’s nothing to explain.

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