Georgia Democrats (mostly based around Metro Atlanta) know they must do better in rural areas. They know that, but so far they have failed to come up with a answer to solve ins woes in a region they once had a significant presence. Minority Leader Stacey Abrams doesn't have a clue because she is too tied up with her own personal and political ambitions at the expense of House Democrats who appear satisfied with being in the minority for the next 10, 15 years. The only people who know the pulse of rural Georgia are State Reps. Debbie Buckner (D-Junction City), Virgil Fludd (D-Fayetteville), Scott Holcomb (D-Tucker). Even with Dubose Porter who is a product of rural Georgia and a former disciple of former Senator Sam Nunn it seems doesn't have the answer of he in fact does have the answer, but is outnumbered by progressive liberals who know control the DPG and othe Democratic groups.
The bottom line is progressive Democrats based in metro Atlanta still don’t quite get what’s working at the grassroots down here. It’s not soft messaging about rural development. What’s working is a clear “Which side are you on?” message when it comes to defending rural schools and services, and the teachers and public employees who provide them, against a Republican austerity message that shifts even more of the burden from the wealthy to working families making less that $50,000 a year.
Schools and services are what keep small towns strong. If the fight is between Democrats who want to defend public schools, public services, and Republicans who want to sacrifice them in order to give tax breaks to the rich, that’s when you’ll see rural voters (White Working Class Voters) shifting back to the Democrats. The problem is how to break then from
|Candidate Chris Irvin Agriculture Commissioner 2010 in Vidalia|
Reaching rural voters will take a strong message from Democrats here in Georgia. Republicans offer a simple message of cutting taxes. When in power, their party is more unified. For Democrats to compete, they must have an economic message that also appeals to poor and middle class families.
Metro Atlanta Democrats like Minority Stacey Abrams may not want to hear it, but the temptation for those Midtown liberals is to shake their heads over those down state, godforsaken white-working-class voters who are voting against their own interests. But this reaction misses the complexity of the political dynamic that’s taken hold in this state. It misdiagnoses the Democratic Party’s growing conundrum with working-class white voters. And it also keeps them from fully grasping what’s going on in communities like Hahira, Eastman, Vidalia where conditions have deteriorated. If the Democrats are to avoid going the way of the dinosaur, they have to solve the rural riddle here in the Peach State!