Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen predicted disastrous results for her party — and she said that they only had themselves to blame after repeatedly failing to “listen to voters” in the weeks and months leading up to Tuesday’s midterm elections.
Rosen joined a panel discussion, moderated by host Dana Bash, on CNN’s “State of the Union” — and she predicted that Democrats were likely to have “a bad night” on Tuesday, largely because they had not tailored their midterm message to the issues that voters had said were most important — namely inflation and the economy.
Longtime dem strategist @hilaryr: “I'm a loyal Democrat, but I am not happy. I just thinking we did not listen to voters in this election and I think we are going to have a bad night”
Notes that voters kept saying the economy was the number 1 issue
— Alex Thompson (@AlexThomp) November 6, 2022
Rosen began by explaining that she considered herself to be a “loyal Democrat” but she was definitely not impressed with the direction her party’s leadership had chosen in recent weeks.
“I’m a loyal Democrat, but I am not happy. I just think that we are — we did not listen to voters in this election and I think we are going to have a bad night,” Rosen began, noting that there wasn’t really enough time to reverse course ahead of Election Day and warning Democrats to learn from what she expected to be a tough election.
“You know, this conversation’s not going to have much impact on Tuesday, but I hope it has an impact going forward,” Rosen continued. “Because when voters tell you over and over and over again that they care mostly about the economy, listen to them! Stop talking about democracy being at stake! Democracy is at stake because people are fighting so much about what elections mean. I mean, voters have told us what they wanted to hear, and I don’t think Democrats have delivered this cycle.”
CNN’s Bakari Sellers chimed in, arguing that while the national messaging might have gone astray, there were some Democratic candidates — naming Mark Kelly (D-AZ) and Raphael Warnock (D-GA) specifically — who he said were running good races and focusing on what their constituents wanted.
But Rosen pushed back, saying that even where there were Democratic candidates who were relatively popular, there were also Republican candidates who were popular in their own rights or being buoyed in part by the fact that Biden is not popular.
“Mark Kelly is popular,” Rosen agreed. “But Kari Lake is more popular. And the combination of Kari Lake’s popularity and Joe Biden’s unpopularity is going to hurt Mark Kelly. And so I think we’re going to — we’re in trouble because of the top of the ticket.”