Democrats are still feeling the sting of defeat over the presidential election and many of them are hopeful for some form of victory in the 2018 midterms.

They’re going to face a tougher opponent than the Republicans however, and it’s coming from inside their own party.

The Progressive movement, which makes up a significant portion of the party’s base, wants candidates who reflect their values and that doesn’t bode well for victory.

Alex Seitz-Wald writes at NBC News:

Democrats Beware: Sanders ‘Movement’ Turns to Midterms

With Democrats facing tough prospects in the midterm elections, will they also have to worry about primary challenges from their left flank?

During his presidential campaign, Sen. Bernie Sanders never quite decided whether his “political revolution” could coexist with the Democratic Party or needed to overthrow it. Now, Sanders is one of the most popular political figures in the country and the activists he galvanized have gone on to start new groups, join old ones, or run electoral campaigns.

The path of Sanders’ former staffers reflects the split in his movement, and the some are already galvanizing for the 2018 elections — and setting their sights on their own.

Rep. Keith Ellison, one of Sanders’ most prominent allies, preached unity during his bid for the chairmanship of the Democratic National Committee and is now the party’s deputy chairman.

But the more radical strain, which led hundreds of Sanders delegates to walk out of the Democratic National Convention in protest last summer, is still present on the left and emboldened by the loss of Hillary Clinton and their belief that “Bernie would have won.”

This faction of Democrats thinks that the solution to their problem is going further to the left. It is the exact wrong prescription for a party already on life support.

Dominic Lynch of The Federalist suggests that the Progressive movement could ultimately lead to the destruction of the Democrats as a party:

Is The Democratic Party Going Extinct?

November 8 revealed that the Democratic base is retreating to urban areas (mostly along the coasts). Their decision to cut bait with working class whites was a mistake. And the Obama coalition disintegrated as soon as Obama was off the ballot. Unless Democrats address these issues, they can expect to see even more losses over the next four years…

Progressivism Has Coopted The Democratic Party

Secondly, the policies of the Democratic party increasingly serve as an ideological purity test that lies outside the political mainstream. Internal dissent is often not tolerated. The party position on divisive issues like transgender bathrooms, wedding cake mandates, sanctuary cities, unlimited and unrestricted abortion access, and illegal immigration is mismatched with public opinion. Moderate Blue Dog Democrats, once a large part of the Democratic coalition, are all but extinct. This leaves a party consumed by progressive policies but without a counterbalancing ideology to keep the party apparatus in check.

Finally, the decision to excise the white working class from the Democratic coalition proved to be a fatal mistake. The Clinton team assumed it would win the “Blue Wall” states on the backs of reliable white working class voters who have voted Democratic since 1992 (and in some states, like Wisconsin, since 1984). But her rhetoric on coal, globalism, social issues and Trump’s temperament—combined with the fact that she campaigned around those states—doomed her campaign from the start.

If Democrats suffer even a minor loss in the 2018 midterms, expect to hear a gnashing of teeth almost as loud as the one heard on November 9th of 2016.


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