“Wokeness is a problem and we all know it”
James Carville on the state of Democratic politics.
I called James Carville hoping to get his thoughts on President Joe Biden’s first 100 days in office.
He obliged — then, one question in, brushed aside the exercise to talk instead about why the Democrats might be poised to squander their political advantage against a damaged GOP.
His failure to cooperate may have been for the best since the first 100 days ritual can sometimes lead to dull, dutiful analysis. What Carville offered up instead was a blunt critique of his own party even after a successful 2020 election cycle — a sequel of sorts to his fulminations during last year’s Democratic primaries. The longtime Democratic strategist is mostly pleased with Biden, but it’s where much of the party seems to be going that has him worried.
“Wokeness is a problem,” he told me, “and we all know it.” According to Carville, Democrats are in power for now, but they also onlynarrowly defeated Donald Trump, “a world-historical buffoon,” and they lost congressional seats and failed to pick up state legislatures. The reason is simple: They’ve got a “messaging problem.”
A lightly edited transcript of our conversation follows: