Let’s resolve to stop over-analyzing why Trump won. And start focusing on winning state and local elections, beginning in 2017.
Yes, Clinton’s loss was stunning and demoralizing. But over-analysis breeds paralysis. And blinds us to more-pressing problems.
Democrats are in far better shape in presidential races than down the ballot. For all that went wrong, Clinton came close. How close? Here’s the one vital fact you need to know:
Five battleground states were decided by one percentage point or less. Clinton won only one of them, New Hampshire. Trump won four: Florida, Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania.
Four crucial battleground states. Each lost by less than one percentage point.
This insight came from a New York Times analysis of the Electoral College, which noted, “Outside of those five states, the electoral vote was basically tied, with Mr. Trump edging out Mrs. Clinton, 231 to 228.”
That’s how she won the popular vote and lost the election.
Democrats should focus now on where we’ve been decimated since President Obama was elected in 2008: Congressional, statewide and legislative races.
Take a tip from the always-outspoken Harry Reid, who blasted the Democratic National Committee for not strengthening state parties.
Reid built a powerful political machine in Nevada by relentlessly focusing on fundamentals: raising money, recruiting good people to run, registering voters and turning out voters.
That’s essential now in North Carolina, especially after the Republican legislature’s supposed “hurricane relief” session, which turned into a “politicians’ power grab” orgy.
It’s time for Democrats to move on from 2016. And get to work on 2017, 2018 and 2020.
Happier New Year.