Josh Kraushaar in National Journal:

[T]he most glar­ing prob­lem for the Demo­crat­ic Party is an un­will­ing­ness to even en­ter­tain the pos­sib­il­ity that its policy agenda had any­thing to do with its stun­ning de­feat…
Let me of­fer a piece of un­so­li­cited ad­vice, one that Demo­crat­ic strategists have dis­cussed privately but are reti­cent to promote pub­licly for fear of ali­en­at­ing green act­iv­ists. Tak­ing a more mod­er­ate stand on en­ergy policy—wheth­er it’s supporting the Key­stone XL pipeline, cham­pi­on­ing the frack­ing boom that’s trans­form­ing re­gion­al eco­nom­ies, or simply sound­ing a more skep­tic­al note on the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion’s lit­any of en­vir­on­ment­al reg­u­la­tions—would do won­ders for the Demo­crat­ic Party’s abil­ity to com­pete for the work­ing-class voters who have drif­ted away from the party.

I believe that there’s really something to this, and it hasn’t gotten enough attention since the election. What if the Green Lobby is the great unsung villain for Democrats in 2016?

Kraushaar goes straight to a discussion of the oil pipeline issue, which definitely looms large here. (Speaking of which, North Dakota’s three-member congressional delegation was all Democratic as of 2009.) But it isn’t just oil or even energy. The destruction of Clinton’s “Blue Wall” is part of a bigger story that was already underway before Trump came on the scene.

It wasn’t long ago that West Virginia was its own Blue Wall. Bill Clinton carried Kentucky twice. Today, both are in the late stages of becoming one-party Republican states. The Democratic brand has not been able to survive the Obama EPA’s “crucify them” approach to coal country. Hillary Clinton played a large part in this as well. Her infamous comment that “we’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business” is often described as taken “out of context.” But in fact it wasn’t. She was describing how yes, maybe her policies would take away the real coal jobs that had supported families and communities for generations, but she would come in with a plan to replace them with theoretical, clean energy jobs.

This is supposed to make it better? Is it any wonder Democrats have lost so much ground in Kentucky, West Virginia, eastern Ohio and western Pennsylvania?

This isn’t just about energy, either, but also Trump’s main focus: Manufacturing jobs. These are also negatively affected by the Ozone Rule, the Clean Power Plan, the Waters of the U.S. Rule, and any number of other Obama-era regulations that Trump has promised to repeal.

Trump’s promise to bring back manufacturing jobs might be unrealistic. But Democrats can never match it, let alone accomplish it, as long as they are themselves under the control of the environmental lobby.

They might want to start thinking about that. Democrats in Colorado did so when they cut a deal to remove anti-fracking initiative from the ballot in 2014, and they’re still running that state. But imagine what the electoral map will look like if Republicans not only survive the Trump presidency, but even somehow turn any or all of Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota into the next West Virginia over the next 20 years. Will that 2018 endorsement from the League of Conservation Voters’ be worth it?

Dems cool to GOP's Mattis strategy

Also from the Washington Examiner

They say they want a full vetting process to consider the retired general as defense secretary next year.

12/07/16 8:47 AM

Dems cool to GOP's Mattis strategy

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They say they want a full vetting process to consider the retired general as defense secretary.

12/07/16 8:47 AM

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