A Talk with Celinda Lake: Lessons For the Left From Election 2014

Richard Eskow

On Wednesday we spoke with Celinda Lake, a leading strategist for Democrats and progressive organizations, about the election’s results. Her key observations:

● It was a “wave” election. That can be seen in the Democrats’ devastating gubernatorial, as well as senatorial, losses.

● The wave began forming years ago, with perceptions about the effectiveness of Washington’s leadership.

● Turnout shaped the results.

● Given current economic conditions, and lacking a coherent plan for changing them, Democratic candidates were waging an all-but-impossible struggle in many states.

“There was not a rejection of the Democratic agenda,” she points out, noting that when voters had an opportunity to vote directly on policy issues like the minimum wage – “when voters could take matters into their own hands” – they supported progressive positions.

The link above goes to a portion of the discussion which occurs about midway through the interview, but it is all worth hearing.

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