New York Times editorial board tells Democrats to swing center following Tuesday losses

The notoriously left-leaning NYT editorial board is telling Democratic lawmakers that the American people just aren't that into progressivism

Updated: November 5, 2021 - 1:09pm

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A recent editorial from the New York Times cautions the Democratic party to head the results of Tuesday night's elections in some parts of the country and workshop a game plan to pivot back toward more centrist policies, and away from the progressive-leaning ideologies that many voters dismissed this week.

The editorial reads, "what is badly needed, is an honest conversation in the Democratic Party about how to return to the moderate policies and values that fueled the blue-wave victories in 2018 and won Joe Biden the presidency in 2020."

"The party has become distracted from crucial issues like the economy, inflation, ending the coronavirus pandemic and restoring normalcy in schools and isn’t offering moderate, unifying solutions to them," it continues.

The progressive editorial board's call for a return to moderate policy is a reflection not just of Glenn Youngkin's victory (and that of his entire ticket) over former Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe on Tuesday, but of a general rejection of progressive candidates and policies across most races. As the editorial establishes, Seattle voters, who have nary elected a Republican since the 1980s, elected a GOP city attorney over a police abolitionist candidate running as a Democrat. Likewise in Minneapolis, by a large margin, a referendum to replace the city's police department with a Department of Public Safety failed. 

New York Times editorial members appear to be taking serious stock of the message the electorate was sending Tuesday, which is to say "A national Democratic Party that talks up progressive policies at the expense of bipartisan ideas, and that dwells on Donald Trump at the expense of forward-looking ideas, is at risk of becoming a marginal Democratic Party appealing only to the left."

Representative Abigail Spanberger, a moderate Democrat from a swing district in Virginia, noted "Nobody elected him (Joe Biden) to be FDR. They elected him to be normal and stop the chaos."

Voting Democrat is, in the estimation of the editorial board, the only rational decision one can make given that, according to the piece, there is only one  "party right now that shows an interest in governing and preserving democratic norms." A statement that is undermined, at least in part, by the very election results that prompted the board to write the piece.

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