Unbreakable Rule No. 3

Fourth in a series on The 4 Unbreakable Rules of Democratic Campaigning

Rule No. 3: Be a proud Democrat.

It is the job of every Democratic candidate to reinforce the Democratic brand. Every candidate needs to encourage Americans to vote not just for him or her but for Democrats generally. Every race should be not just about one candidate against another but about the proud traditions and achievements of the Democratic Party versus conservatives and the Tea Party. The message is that Democrats are the party of the people. We have been on the side of unions and workers for a hundred years. We are defenders of the poor and middle class. We have been the engine that drives progress in our nation, from women’s rights and civil rights to Social Security, the minimum wage, and health care. Every significant improvement in America’s quality of life in the last century has come from Democrats. Tell the story! America does not move forward without the Democratic Party.

Here’s a two-minute example of how candidates can fight for the party during their race:

“I’ve voted for Democrats since I was old enough to vote, and here’s why: Democrats fight for the underdog. They fight for the average American, for workers, and the poor. Democrats believe in the deeply American values I was taught as a kid, like freedom and equality for everyone, and in religious and moral values like helping people less fortunate than ourselves. Just in my lifetime, Democrats have given Americans civil rights, equal rights and equal pay for women, higher minimum wages, worker health and safety laws, Medicaid for the desperately poor, and now health care, gay rights, credit card reforms, and consumer protection from financial abuses. We’ve supported unions and workers for a hundred years, since the days when fighting for a union could get your head busted in. We’ve given America Social Security, the 40-hour work week, child labor laws, unemployment insurance, and Medicare. Conservatives opposed all those things. On every level, Democrats have made the lives of you and your family better and easier. No one has fought harder or accomplished more for the average American family than Democrats. America doesn’t progress without Democrats. In so many ways, we have made America what it is today—freer, fairer, and more equal for everyone. That’s what America is about. That’s what makes us a great nation. And I could not be prouder to be a Democrat.”

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