DNC Rebranding Falls Flat as Trump Keeps Edge on Jobs, Economy
Democrats ripped for clunky slogan, reboot of tired talking points designed to woo working Americans
People on both the Left and the Right are shaking their heads at the Democrats’ attempt to rebrand their party with the roll-out of their new slogan, “A Better Deal: Better Jobs, Better Wages, Better Future.”
The catchphrase quickly invited comparisons to a fast-food marketing campaign and drew ridicule from all corners of the internet.
“Congratulations to those of you who reflexively whispered ‘…Papa John’s’ before burying your head in your arms and sobbing quietly,” reporter Jay Willis wrote in a July 21 GQ article of the similarity of the slogan to the Papa John’s tagline, “Better Ingredients. Better Pizza.”
Willis went on to say that the new DNC slogan reminded him of a "marketing tagline for Corinthian Colleges."
Mic magazine rounded up the comments of a slew of professional advertising agencies, all of which panned the new Dem slogan, with one saying, "There's just no soul there," another calling it "painfully dry" and another, "a missed opportunity." One even said the slogan is "exactly how the Republicans win."
Tammy Bruce, a feminist and GOP convert from liberalism, said on Fox Business on Monday that the problem for Democrats is that Trump has been so successful, while Democratic policies have "ruined people's lives."
"That's their problem, and if they think that this is going to solve it, they've got another think coming."
America Rising PAC, a Republican opposition-research firm, is pointing out that the Democrats' "new" ideas are some of the same ones that were floated by candidate Hillary Clinton two years ago at the start of the presidential race.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi wrote in an op-ed about the slogan in Monday's Washington Post that Democrats will offer a tax credit for employers to encourage apprenticeships. But in 2015, America Rising points out, Clinton proposed this very thing, saying she'd offer a business tax credit of $1,500 for each apprentice a company brings on board.
"Democrats are so exhausted of new ideas that Schumer and Pelosi have stooped to cherry-picking ones from Hillary Clinton's failed campaign and calling them their own," said Scott Sloofman, press secretary for the PAC.
In an op-ed in the New York Times, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said the Democratic Party will do three things:
"First, we're going to increase people's pay. Second, we're going to reduce their everyday expenses. And third, we're going to provide workers with the tools they need for the 21st-century economy." He also wrote that the party would rebuild rural America and "fundamentally change trade laws to benefit workers, not multinational corporations."
But it's unclear how the Democrats will do these things, especially because some of the policy promises behind the new tagline seem to conflict with the party's open-borders policies, which grant millions of illegal immigrants access to the U.S. job market.
"If you are worried about better jobs and better wages for American workers, especially the most vulnerable, tightening up immigration is the first thing you do," says Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies.
"One way Democrats should show solidarity with regular working people is to become a little less extreme on immigration," Krikorian told LifeZette.
"Better Deal" is, of course, an echo of the New Deal, a package of new federal spending programs and government policies from Democratic President Franklin D. Roosevelt, which are credited with pulling the American economy up out of the Great Depression, but that also created welfare programs that radically changed the nature of the country.
In a press conference on Monday in Berryville, Virginia, Sen. Schumer stood on a podium with Rep. Pelosi, Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and other members of Congress, dressed in a crisp white shirt and no coat, and attempted to steal back the political high ground on the issue of job creation that Trump wrested from the Democrats in the 2016 presidential election.
"Too many families in America feel the rules of the economy are rigged against them," he said. "They feel like they're getting a raw deal. And they're right. They're almost powerless to change them. We are here today to tell the people of Berryville and the working people of America, 'Someone has your back.'"
He went on to say "Americans deserve a better deal" and then launched into an attack on government favoring special interests over ordinary Americans.
The Republican National Committee responded later Monday.
"After losing to Republicans at the ballot box year after year, this is the best they have to offer?" Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said in a statement. "Today's recycled Democrat talking points do nothing to change the fact that the far left has taken hold of the party and continues to push a message of more resistance and obstruction. Until Democrats make a real effort to work with Republicans and President Trump on the priorities voters supported last November, they are going to continue to be lost in the electoral wilderness."
But the Democratic Party's issues seem to go deeper than a few elections. After Trump won the election in November, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said it was "an embarrassment" to the Democratic Party that millions of working-class voters backed Trump over Clinton, saying it "suggests that the Democratic message of standing up for working people no longer holds much sway among workers in this country."
In his first week as president, Trump withdrew from the Trans-Pacific Partnership and met with labor leaders at the White House to talk about his plans to rebuild the nation's infrastructure, promising to hire only American workers to do it.
"We believe that President Trump really is going to put America first," Sean McGarvey, head of North America's Building Trades Unions, told The Washington Post afterwards. "I've been around this town long enough to know things are said in the heat of battle. The details we just heard from the president, we're very excited about."
The Democratic National Committee, it was reported this week, is more than $3 million in debt as it looks to defend candidates in several states and districts that voted for Trump in 2016.