The New Middle Class Populism

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A new Democracy Corps survey shows that to capture voters’ support on economic issues as they have on health care, Democrats should pursue a strategy that begins with cleaning out the corporate special interests from Washington, and returns focus to the squeezed and disappearing middle class. Focusing on policies that address rising costs and outsourced jobs as the central economic problems, and offering tax cuts as a “for whom” proposition rather than a “for-or-against” will demostrate a an openness to break with convention and gridlock and get things done for the country.


Democracy Corps and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner recently completed a national survey that focused on voters’ attitudes toward the economy. The survey of 1,000 likely voters showed that to really make 2008 a change election, Democrats need to shift their approach on the economy to advance a new middle class populism.

In their comprehensive analysis of the survey, Al Quinlan, Mike Bocian, Stan Greenberg, and James Carville outline an economic message strategy for Democrats that 1) recognizes that cleaning out the corporate special interests in Washington is the starting point, 2) puts the squeezed and disappearing middle class as the main object of their work, 3) focuses on policies that address rising costs and outsourced jobs as the central economic problems, 4) advocates tax cuts as a for whom proposition instead of a “for-or-against” proposition, and 5) demonstrates an openness to break with convention and gridlock – to work with businesses and both parties – to get things done for the country.

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