Senate Minority Leader-elect Chuck Schumer, of New York, speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in his office on Capitol Hill, Friday, Nov. 18, 2016 in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Schumer Dings Hillary: ‘Don’t Blame Russia, Blame Yourself’

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer had nothing but tough love for his former colleague and 2016 presidential nominee in an interview over the weekend.

“When you lose to somebody who has 40 percent popularity, you don’t blame other things—Comey, Russia—you blame yourself,” he said of Clinton’s stunning election loss.

Speaking to The Washington Post, Schumer discussed Democrats’ plans to revamp their message and win back congressional seats in the upcoming midterms. In a stunning admission, the Senate minority leader was very frank on what the American people care about – and what they don’t care about. Instead of focusing on Russia conspiracies and other excuses for their election defeat, Democratic leaders say they need to stick to economic issues to win back voters.

“[N]ot one has brought up Russia to me, not one has brought up impeachment,” stated Cheri Bustos, an Illinos Democrat who represents a northwestern district in the state that went heavily in Trump’s favor. “We have to figure out this heartland messaging if we’re going to get to 218 members of Congress by 2018.” Because of the makeup of her district, Democratic leaders have named Bustos Chairwoman of Heartland Engagement. The congresswoman is tasked with messaging to the “middle America” voters that have left the Democratic Party in droves over the years. Her assignment is a central tenet of the party’s 2018 strategy.

It’s no surprise liberals need work connecting to rural voters. This has been a problem for them since Bill Clinton retired from politics. But the problem has since peaked with the arrival of Donald Trump and the breaking of the Democrat’s “Blue Wall” in November.

“So what did we do wrong? People didn’t know what we stood for, just that we were against Trump. And still believe that,” Schumer went on to say. He believes poor messaging was one of the biggest factors leading to their poor 2016 showing. Leaders have recently released their new campaign motto to change that around.

“A Better Deal: Better Jobs, Better Wages, Better Future” is the official party slogan.

After reportedly months of research and development, Democrats unveiled their 2018 slogan to the public. The line – carrying a striking resemblance to the Papa John’s motto – was largely lampooned by Democrats and Republicans alike.

Don’t tell that to Schumer, however. He believes the slogan is a rebuke to Trump’s Art of the Deal book – and he thinks the word repetition will stick in the minds of voters. “Part of this is its usability, its repetition and its relation to both the New Deal and a better deal than Trump,” Schumer insisted. “He’s supposed to be a dealmaker; he’s not very good at that.”

Lame slogans aside – it’s refreshing to hear a major Democratic player admit that they genuinely lost last November. Since President Trump’s victory, liberals have relentlessly stuck to allegations that his campaign team colluded with the Russian government to help them win. They do this because they 1) want the president to fail and 2) need an excuse for losing to one of the most beatable candidates in recent American history. Like a child that won’t accept responsibility, Democrats have shied away from admitting defeat by screaming, “BUT RUSSIA!”

With another round of elections already on the horizon, leaders such as Schumer have no choice but to live in reality and realize that voters care about jobs, national security, etc. Perhaps the Senate minority leader’s admission means they are finally moving on to real topics for political discussion.

Democrats will also need to work on their creativity. Before the Papa John’s revamp, party leaders had tested out this inspiring motto to woo the American people: “Have you seen the other guys?”

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Jason Hopkins

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