How to Make Numbers Lie: 14 Million Democrats Did Not “Leave the Party”

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33 Responses

  1. Jon Chammings says:

    I’m going to be as respectful as I can as I suggest that you seek counseling. You are overtly angry and refuse to accept reality. These issues will not clear away on their own. A professional can help you understand and process your deeply held feelings. Remember that, despite the stigma around mental illness, you are not evil and there is assistance for people in your condition. Best of luck in your journey.

    • Luis says:

      Interesting. Were you reading this post, or something else? “Overtly angry?” No. Contemptuous, yes. Snarky, yes. But these are justifiable reactions to a movement that takes on the mantle of liberalism—bound, as we like to note, by reason and fact—but to attempt to propel that splinter movement first and foremost with a dishonest lie.

      At least in my takedown of that lie, I offered copious evidence resulting in a proof—not one bit of it you refuted, not one fact you countered with another, not one assertion you even touched. You simply note that I had a touch of emotion and gaslighted your way to suggesting I get professional help.

      I find that, when presented with hard evidence they cannot refute, a certain type of people do exactly what you do: put up a stark denial without a single shred of evidence or argument, and simply condescend and call names. Because that’s the only option you apparently have. Arrogant pride or stubborn denial prevents you from accepting fact and changing your mind on even the most superficial of issues.

      I have found this typical of the group that supported Bernie Sanders vehemently, hated Hillary with inexplicable rage, bought into all the right-wing smears about her and more, believed every single election fraud conspiracy theory, then refused to vote for Clinton, allowing the madman Trump to win—and then snidely refuse to take even a bit of responsibility for their actions which brought that horrific turn of events.

      You know who else does stuff like that? The Republican base. Intellectually, you’re their spitting image.

      The third-party movement insists that, rather than changing the party from within—what Sanders himself feels is best—that we instead abandon the Democratic party and form a new one, despite the fact that every single reasonable indicator tells us that a splinter movement on the left would split our votes and eviscerate our influence, guaranteeing a powerful lock on government for the conservatives for at least a generation.

      You just got finished handing the presidency to Trump, and now you want to do something that will give Republicans a supermajority for decades.

      I’m not the one who needs help.

      • Go Sanders says:

        It is not a “lie,” since it is not intentional. In my experience, most university professors (in the humanities, history, etc.) don’t have the remotest idea how to interpret the simplest kinds of quantitative data and therefore easily fool themselves — let alone lay persons.

        I do support the progressives’ attempt to kill and replace the Democratic Party, which has corruption in its very DNA, but I want to thank you for soundly debunking one of the arguments that I myself used before reading your post. I had assumed the stats were based on something solid, but clearly they’re currently unfounded.

        It’ll be interesting to see the results of the next few iterations of the tracking poll.

      • Jason F says:

        Yes, right on and fucking-A. This this this. Most progressives have *absolutely no idea* what is required to make a third-party viable in under fifty years. It WILL NOT happen, but while we waste our lifetimes trying, it will be absolute paradise for our enemies. https://idohaveapoint.wordpress.com/2017/02/25/leave-the-democrats-start-a-new-party-the-gop-thanks-you/

        • Frank Cuccia says:

          So here is tge solution to your correct evaluation.. do the unthinkable demand that your candidates get off the payrolls if the bribing class. Demand that your reps in every state where they hold the majority… that they pass a statewide livable wage law, and raise taxes on the wealthy. And last that in each of these states they pass an effective system for publicly financed elections. And keep pushing for the same things at the federal level. Now, all if these things you should be fore anyway. Now by choosing to ignore these things – just realize you are choosing to lose.

      • Frank Cuccia says:

        I was gonna comment… but u nailed it.

    • Luis says:

      Another brilliant argument from the splinter movement. You didn’t read beyond the first few paragraphs, did you? Because if you had, you would realize that the link you threw in with your comment was the one that I used to prove the lie to be a lie.

      Apparently, you didn’t even check a single thing—you read a story that suited your interests, and then blindly believed it without checking a single bit of it.

      Thus adding further evidence to my assertion that the splinter movement is rife with people no more respectful of evidence, fact, or reality than the Republican base. Thank you for the added confirmation!

  2. Joe Marek says:

    Oh you liar! You know what? I’m one of those who left. I was only a Dem long enough to caucus for Senator Bernie Sanders. As long as your party runs Corporate Dems they will continue to lose. Under DWS you lost state legislatures, governorships, the House, the Senate, and now the Presidency. If you want to get some of those back you have to run Liberal Populists. Corporate Dems will just not win anymore.

    • Luis says:

      I’m a liar because you are one person who left? Great! Now show me 13,999,999 more people just like you, and your claim will be justified. People leave the party all the time. I never said that you didn’t leave; I said that 14 million didn’t. One person and their disgust with their party does not support a claim that 14 million left, especially when that claim is shown to come directly from dishonest calculations. It’s like somebody reading tea leaves pronouncing that 28 million people will buy a Tesla this month, and then you say, “Hey! I bought a Tesla this month! And I know some other people who did too! Wow, that guy was right about 28 million people doing it!”

      Look up “anecdotal evidence.”

      As for corporate Democrats and DWS, I fully agree; they suck. Hillary was one of them. She would have been 100 times better than Trump, but Sanders would have been 100 times better than her. You apparently did not read the post I wrote on the Democratic Party, nor the disgust I expressed about the party in my most recent post. I am no fan or supporter of most of the current lot of Democrats.

      The thing that surprises me is that so many in the party seem to have a deficiency of common sense; splitting off into a third party will break the back of liberalism, splitting our vote for a generation and giving Republicans a lock on power for decades. Not one single person in the splinter movement to whom I have pointed this out has even tried to refute this. It is a powerful reason not to splinter—and yet that group persists in insisting that it’ll be unicorns and rainbows as we all hold hands and sing Kumbaya while the evil witch of the DNC will melt away. It’s like they are addicted to a pipe dream.

      Bernie Sanders understands the realities, which is why he first ran as a Democrat instead of as a third-party candidate. He endorsed Hillary because he knew that as bad as she was, she would be orders of magnitude better than Trump. And when he lost the candidacy, he worked to change the Democratic party from within. He understands. He knows. And he is trying to lead us there.

      Do you know who is betraying him and sabotaging his efforts? The very people who idolized him and claim to speak in his name. They call him a brilliant genius for his campaign stands, but immediately started stabbing him in the back when he did the most reasonable and helpful thing in strategy as well as principle.

      That’s why I am disgusted with this group even more than I am with the spineless corporate Democrats.

      I support Sanders all the way. Why are there so many who claim they do, but won’t even listen to the man when he makes such a reasonable point?

      • rod brana says:

        200 million voters – a record for presidential election

        Nov. 2016
        34% democrats = 64 million

        Jan 2017
        25% democrats = 50 million

        Loss = 14 million

        http://www.politico.com/story/2016/10/how-many-registered-voters-are-in-america-2016-229993
        http://www.gallup.com/poll/15370/party-affiliation.aspx

        • Luis says:

          Yes: exactly as I reported in detail already. Did you not read the full post? Obviously not. After all, the links you point to are the exact sources I linked to in the post.

          You clearly did not read the part where I explained that those numbers constantly jump up and down, nor did you read the part where I showed several other excerpts from the exact same sources which similarly could be made to look like Obama drove 20 million people from the party after his election.

          I would explain it to you in full, but then, I already did that. In the post. Which you did not read.

          So, read it. Then understand the words. That usually works better than what you did.

        • Luis says:

          Democratic numbers back up to 31% in February. Told you so.

      • NICK says:

        “splitting off into a third party will break the back of liberalism, splitting our vote for a generation and giving Republicans a lock on power for decades”

        Sure, if the DNC didn’t do something to reign this in this is what would happen. OR….they would see that they have lost their base and take drastic steps to win their base back. We might not be able to get a 3rd party to a point where it can be elected, but we sure as shit can scare the DNC into doing what the voters want.

    • Mark says:

      You got that right, I’d feel filthy voting for either party!

  3. Troy says:

    People who prefer Trump over Hillary are either insane or “accelerationist”.

    http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Accelerationism

    Either way, not worth the kcals to engage in any sort of discussion or debate.

    They know it, we know it.

    > but Sanders would have been 100 times better than her

    nah, he had enough oppo dirt on him to get absolutely crushed in the general.

    plus Bernie without a Democratic Congress (like what Obama briefly had in 2009) would have been an utter shitshow, much worse than what we saw with the obstructionist Congress of 2011-2012.

    The GOP would have doubled down on that strategy, since it was working for them fine.

    Pudding for brains — the US is full of these people.

    • Cathy Paulino says:

      Sanders is a million times better than her.
      Worry about your own brains…

      • Mark says:

        Love you Cathy, couldn’t have said it better. The DNC needs to kiss Sanders ass if they ever want my or my family and friends vote ever again. I vote out of hope not fear!

  4. Troy says:

    >That’s why I am disgusted with this group even more than I am with the spineless corporate Democrats.

    plus there’s the possibility of false-flag Bernie Bros. Always a popular troll move.

    And trolling can be serious business when you’re trying to move public opinion.

    The purpose is to create heat and not light.

  5. John McAndrew says:

    Is there a similar trend, or lack thereof, with GOP registrations?

    • Luis says:

      John: Republicans showed a dip in 2013/2014, but other than that, their numbers have averaged out at about 28% since 2008. That’s where they stand now. Maybe you could argue that they did not fully recover to 28%, but they’re pretty close.

      Here’s their chart:

      Republicans

      • Luis says:

        One point to make about this chart, though: between May and October 2013, Republican identification dropped from 28% to 20%—a percentage point more than Democrats dropped between October 2016 and January 2017.

        If we accept the flawed assumption about such drops, we have to assume that some 16 million people fled the GOP in 2013. But then, we’d also have to assume that 26 million surged back in 2014. That many people did not leave or return to the GOP, just as they did not to the DNC. People can disfavor a party without leaving it.

        The Demexit people seem oblivious to this, and to the fact that peaks and dips are transient, and that trendlines are the only important indicator. We don’t have enough data to show where the current trend is heading. Gallup hasn’t updated these numbers, and it’ll take at least 6 months more to see what the current numbers mean.

  6. Chai Guy says:

    You made a good point Luis, but I think you’re missing the forest from the trees.

    There are only 16 Democratic Governors. left in 2017.

    Dems lost the house, and failed to regain control of the senate.

    Democrats now hold just 42 percent of legislative seats in the nation, the lowest in history.

    The Democratic party lost the Presidential election to a reality tv star with the lowest approval rating in history, who had very little party support after spending more money than any campaign, ever. (She lost Florida, where she had 68 campaign offices to Trump’s 29).

    The 2016 election had the lowest voter turn out since 1942

    On a personal note, we didn’t have enough registered Dems to hold a quorum at one of our recent monthly meetings for Clark County, Nevada (population 2.2 million).

    So party registrations? Who cares? Who cares if the party is gaining registered voters or losing them, because they’re losing EVERYTHING regardless of how many registrations they have. (and FYI, they are in fact, losing voters).

    What else do you need? You want Nancy Pelosi to come down from the mountain with two engraved stone tablets? Stick a fork in this party, they’re done. It’s over. They are DOA. They are not bouncing back from this. You can ignore all of the warning signs or you can stick your head in the sand and pretend that none of this happening. Your choice.

    • Luis says:

      Chai: I never said that the Democratic Party isn’t in trouble. However, it’s not because people are leaving the party. More specifically, this post is about debunking a false statement, not arguing that everything is peaches & cream for the DNC. You seem to be reading in all kinds of messages and assumptions to this post that I’m just not making. Also, like so many on the “Democratic Party is Dying” page, you failed to address the biggest point: that splintering off into a third party would kill out power base and hand conservatives complete control over the country for a generation.

      Furthermore, you did not read other posts in this blog in which I made clear my feeling that the DNC must be taken over from within and made into a real liberal party.

      And that word, “liberal,” is an excellent example of why Democrats are in trouble. The corporate neoliberal Dems are bad, but that’s not what is killing the party. It’s the lame-ass spinelessness, the cowardly shying away from anything that might not be middle-of-the-road mainstream. The very name “liberal” is a perfect example. It used to be a proud name (and still is, to me), but when Republicans led by Bush 41 started calling it the “L-word,” instead of standing up and saying “Damn fucking straight we’re liberals, we’re damned proud, and you can go the hell for trying to besmirch the name that built this country, you god-forsaken elitist smartasses!”

      No, they didn’t say that, which is too bad, because it would have kicked ass. What they did instead was to run away from the name like the chickenshit cowards they were. “We’re not liberals!” they pleaded; “We’re progressives now! Progressive isn’t liberal!”

      And voters saw that, quite rightly, as being the act of people who could not and would not stand up for their principles. That’s what has led to the demise of the left we have seen. Not the corporate thing, not the neoliberal thing—that has gained as many people from the middle as it has lost on the left.

      No, as Sanders has shown, and as the Tea Party and so many Republicans have shown, American voters respond to people who stand up for their beliefs, tell the opposition to go to hell, and never waver in their claim of support for their constituents. Now, Republicans do so as a cruel, twisted lie, bent on screwing over the very people they claim to stand for… but they do it with supreme confidence, righteous anger, and, strangely enough, authenticity. Not real authenticity, but what voters sense as authenticity. And that works.

      Sanders made a big splash, as Warren has, because of exactly that. I still hear people say, “Oh, Sanders could never have won, they had the goods on him, they would have killed him with the socialism thing in the general.”

      Bull. Shit.

      Sander gained as many independents as he did liberals. He appealed to exactly the left-leaning and middle-of-the-road independents that Trump won to put him over the top. Christ, Trump won on a platform of being a racist, bigoted, sexist lying asshat—do people really think Sanders would have lost because he championed Democratic Socialism?

      Hell no. He would have won, and handily, against Trump—exactly because he had what Trump had and what Hillary completely lacked: confidence, righteous anger, and authenticity. That’s what wins elections, and Democrats now lack that. Look at the most popular Democrats—not the most powerful, maybe, but the most popular—and you’ll see that they all have those qualities.

      That’s why the DNC is losing—not dying, but losing. It’s because they have not figured out the fact that compromising and weaseling to the middle of the road is a death sentence. They’re afraid to be liberals. If they weren’t, if they came out guns blazing, they’d start winning.

      That’s how the DNC will be saved—from within, by people like Sanders, Warren, Ellison, and more, people with guts and determination, willing to take the fight to the people, for the people.

      But if people declare the Democratic Party dead and try to splinter off, they will kill liberalism’s only chance to wield power and, in handing power to conservatives, will surely destroy the country.

      • Chai Guy says:

        “That’s how the DNC will be saved—from within”

        Yeah, how is that working out? by electing the establishment favorite Thomas Perez to Party Chair? The Democratic Party is where progressive politics go to die. There is no interest in change within the party. Bernie Sanders supporters got to see that fact up close and personal last year. Nancy Pelosi’s “We ARE capitalists!” statements have reinforced that notion since the election. The fact that Bernie Sanders refuses (and rightly so) to turn over his email list to the DNC reinforces that as well.

        I was at the Nevada State Convention last year, the one where the establishment party decided to disqualify a hundred or so Bernie Sander’s delegates and re-write the rules of the convention the morning of to insure a Hillary victory. I sat down and spoke with a Hillary supporter and it went like this:

        Me: “I understand you support HRC and I support Bernie, HRC is probably going to win and I’d be ok with that, but changing the rules and disqualifying people because they claim they aren’t registered as Democrats after attending the caucus and county conventions? How do you think everyone is going to feel about that come November and beyond?”

        HRC Supporter: “Well, they’re just going to vote for Hillary if she wins the nomination, I’d vote for Bernie if he wins!”

        Me: “I think it’s very naive to think that all of these people are just going to forgive these tactics and continue on like nothing happened.”

        So I’m done. I’m #DEMEXIT – I may vote Democrat again in the future, but I’m not giving them so much as one red cent. I may donate directly to a Democrat that I believe in (once I’m assured that the party can’t take that money). I may volunteer for a Democrat in the future, but I’m done- done- done with the party. Unless there is some massive overhaul in the structure, beliefs and actions, there is no reason to believe that anything is going to change.

        Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

    • Mark says:

      The DNC is DOA!

  7. Oogly says:

    It doesn’t matter. People are leaving the Democratic Party and people are leaving the Republican Party. You can argue all year long about the exact number, but it doesn’t change the fact that the Democratic Party is doing more to piss off voters than to court their interests.

  8. Luis says:

    Hey, the new Gallup numbers are in for February.

    Guess what?

    That’s right! The number of people showing affiliation with the Democratic Party shot back up, almost to the same numbers we saw in October.

    The peak in October was 32%. That dropped over three months, from 32 to 31 to 30 to 29 to 25 in January.

    February? 31%.

    By the logic of the “DNC is Dead” group, 12 MILLION AMERICANS JUST SURGED BACK TO THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY! IT IS ROARING ALIVE AGAIN!

    Or, the number was a brief outlier, a spike, a transient number. LIKE I TOLD YOU SO.

  9. Fran says:

    Ok, I see your point and I respect it. You also can’t deny the fact that the democrats chose a terrible candidate in 2016, as the numbers were significantly lower in November 2016 when compared to 2008 or 2012. You might say it was because Obama was just a populist candidate, but you guys fail to realize that the party voted against free healthcare, better education, and a higher quality of life to protect the millionaire and billionaire class that is driving prices up and salaries down. Maybe 14
    Million people didn’t leave the party, but other people, myself included, are embarrassed to be a part of this party.

    • Luis says:

      Sorry, have been crazy busy at work.

      I fully understand your point, but your perspective is a bit flawed. More than a bit.

      Democrats didn’t so much “choose” a candidate as much as one forced her way into the position. You can tell that Hillary was planning this even before she left the White House in 2001. Everything she did was focused on building a power base. She used her husband for the political machinery, she ran for and served in the Senate (in an easy-to-win seat) to build credibility, and all the while, she made deals, more deals, and even more deals. She spent all the time up to 2008 tying up the Democratic Party, putting the superdelegates in her pocket, and making her candidacy appear inevitable. Remember, people thought it would be impossible for Obama to break the stranglehold she had. And after his major upset, she negotiated the SecState position and went right back to work jamming the party back into her pocket.

      That Sanders, not even a Democrat, was able to come so close to defeating her was incredibly significant. Sanders was far more unlikely than Obama ever was.

      The Democratic Party has good points and bad points; it is not the monolithic tower of corruption and greed that you suggest. It is made up of politicians, and any group made up of politicians, in today’s political world, will be in part beholden to monied interests.

      However, look at the policies that Democrats have pushed and even gained in the past decade: higher corporate taxes, higher taxes on the rich, more regulations on businesses and bankers, stronger protections for workers, health care for millions more people, fighting for people’s rights against corporate interests (e.g., Net Neutrality). Ever actually look at Hillary’s platform? It was probably 90% in agreement with your values—but people like you bought so fully into the right-wing smears, Russian propaganda, and fake-news-for-profit stories, that you failed to realize that while she was closer to business and neoliberlaism than many Democrats, she was still a liberal.

      For a party that “voted against free healthcare, better education, and a higher quality of life to protect the millionaire and billionaire class,” how come the party fought so hard against those very things? After all, look at what Trump and the Republicans are so busy tearing down: all the accomplishments of Democrats over the past 8 years which go against the very things you say Democrats were opposed to.

      So, how to explain Hillary’s candidacy?

      Exactly as I said: dealmaking. That’s part and parcel of politics. It’s the system, not the party. She came in with a boatload of power, with powerful backers, and spent 16 years building support and tying down votes, making deal after deal. Sixteen years.

      That’s how she got the nomination. Not because the DNC is hopelessly corrupt or that Democrats are 100% behind the rich and screw over the people at every chance. They have shown in their actions that they are more behind the people than they are the corporations or the rich.

      Hillary did not show how the DNC is hopelessly corrupt; she showed how politics can be derailed by an obsessively powerful person using her incredible weight and influence—and to get that power behind her, she had to appease some powerful interests herself.

      If you read this blog, you’ll know that I am no fan of the current party—but for reasons other than what you state. There are three things I see that people in the split-party movement seem to fail to recognize:

      1. Democratic politicians are, for the most part, the party of the people, whatever business interests they may back;

      2. The DNC is not frozen or unchangeable—like any party, it can be shifted, and Sanders is in the long-term process of doing exactly that (but no party well ever be totally free of corruption and special interests);

      3. Splitting off into a new liberal party will cause a division of liberal votes, condemning liberals in American politics to utter failure and total loss of power for at least a generation—handing total power to Republicans at the worst possible time.

      That last point is the biggest—and the one that no third-party supporter I have pointed this out to has ever, ever answered or even addressed. I have pointed it out time after time, and people who want to split off into a new liberal party always ignore it, as if it is not the most significant issue of the splinter movement.

      It is a certainty, and it is a total deal-killer. The only way to change liberal politics is to do it from within the party. Sanders recognizes that. You should listen to him; he’s a pretty smart guy. Every time I hear the people who supposedly back his positions spit on him for “joining with the corrupt Democrats,” it sickens me.

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