Once upon a time, the South was known as the “Solid South” for the Donkey Party and “yellow-dog Democrats” kept it that way. (The name came from a proudly stated determination that they would vote for a yellow dog, if it was on the Democratic ballot.)
Times have changed, and this report on the current situation shows a real similarity between what’s happening in the south and the current condition of party politics in SOUTH Dakota.
For Democrats in the South, the most ominous part of a disastrous year may not be what happened on Election Day but what has happened in the weeks since. After suffering a historic rout — in which nearly every white Deep South Democrat in the U.S. House was defeated and Republicans took over or gained seats in legislatures across the region — the party’s ranks in Dixie have thinned even further.
THe gory details of what’s happening in Dixie have some resemblance to events in SD:
In Georgia, Louisiana and Alabama, Democratic state legislators have become Republicans, concluding that there is no future in the party that once dominated the so-called Solid South.
Hmmm. Nygaard’s jump in the SD Senate comes readily to mind.
The realignment in the South has resulted in more similarity to SD – with the GOP in control of both houses of the legislatures…in many cases for the first time since the post-Civil War reconstruction ended in the 1870’s.
The losses and party switching, one former Southern Democratic governor noted, “leave us with little bench for upcoming and future elections. There’s little reason to be optimistic in my region,…We can opportunistically pick up statewides every now and then, but building a sustainable party program isn’t in the cards.
Looks like the situation of the SD Donkeys at this point. While the benefits of a vigorous “loyal opposition” certainly are worth talking about…there is no entitlement for any party to hold power, win elections, etc. At some point, a pattern of overwhelming defeat HAS to be a big clue that there is a lack of situational awareness, and that there is a major disconnect between the afflicted party and the voters.
If any party continues to advocate and stand for policies and principles that the sovereign voters decide they want no part of, then what else could be expected than a pattern of electoral defeat and political stagnation. In the here and now, as long as the Democratic Party continues, like a stubborn donkey to adhere to the failed liberal-progressive paradigm, they will continue their slide, and IMHO, will deserve nothing more.
Meanwhile, if the Republicans assume they now have a license to play “politics as usual” and turn away from principles, they can easily end up in the same political dust-bin as the Democrats. Time will tell.