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Entrepreneur Andrew Yang came under fire from liberals after he called out the Democratic Party for losing touch with working-class Americans.
The former 2020 Democratic presidential candidate was attacked after he spoke on CNN about the disappointing election results for the party in Congress. As the presidential race continues to hang in the balance, many of the down-ballot Democratic candidates did not fare well and failed to win control of the U.S. Senate while also losing some House seats.
Yang discussed his own campaign experience during a CNN panel discussion on Thursday, recalling how voters would “flinch” when he would tell them he was running for president as a Democrat.
“And there’s something deeply wrong when working-class Americans have that response to a major party that theoretically is supposed to be fighting for them,” he told CNN host Don Lemon.
Andrew Yang says Democrats need to improve their appeal to the working class: “In there minds the Democratic party unfortunately has taken on this role of the coastal urban elites who are more concerned about policing various cultural issues than improving their way of life.” pic.twitter.com/UljmEH0sEn
— The Matt Skidmore Show (@ZachandMattShow) November 6, 2020
“So you have to ask yourself, what has the Democratic Party been standing for in their minds? And in their minds, the Democratic Party, unfortunately, has taken on this role of the coastal urban elites who are more concerned about policing various cultural issues than improving their way of life that has been declining for years,” Yang continued.
“And so if you’re in that situation, this to me is a fundamental problem for the Democratic Party because if they don’t figure this out, then this polarization and division will get worse not better,” he predicted.
“Is that real or messaging or both?” Lemon asked.
“It’s real, I mean [Democratic Rep.] Debbie [Dingle of Michigan] just said they lost a plant that had 1,500 workers, and so if you’re a laid-off worker from that plant and you look up and say ‘what is the Democratic Party doing for me,’ its unclear,” the New York businessman, and current CNN contributor, said.
“And we can talk about a unifying message from Joe Biden, he’s a naturally very unifying figure,” he added. “But then there’s the reality on the ground where their way of life has been disintegrating for years and if we don’t address that then you’re going to see a continued acceleration towards the institutional mistrust that animated the Trump vote and will continue to do so.”
Though others have previously leveled the same criticisms against the Party, Yang’s remarks touched off a wave of liberal backlash on social media.
“Andrew Yang is a clown and a buffoon who is here using antisemitic and homophobic tropes because (and this is true) he is also an a**hole,” liberal commentator Noah Berlatsky tweeted.
Journalist and historian David Perry blasted Yang as “a multi-millionaire from New York, living in New York, which locates him on a coast and makes him extraordinarily elite.” He went on to accuse Republicans who have “propagated a narrative of coastal elites vs real Americans,” adding, “We need to teach them to blame the GOP.”
6) We need to teach them to blame the GOP.
— David M. Perry (@Lollardfish) November 6, 2020
Now is NOT the time for this 🤬
— 🆘 ssǝl ǝʇɐɥ ǝɹoɯ ǝʌol😷🗳 (@love_not_hate20) November 6, 2020
Yang continues to disappoint
— Ryan (@RyanFilmLover) November 6, 2020
While many slammed the former 2020 hopeful, there were others who defended his remarks and praised him for boldly calling out the party.
This is why @AndrewYang NEEDS to be at the front of a new, well organized, well funded, legitimate alternative #ThirdParty. 🇺🇲✊
— AJ for CT (@AJKerouacCT) November 6, 2020
If only Yang would have stayed in the race!
— The Murphman (@_murphman29) November 6, 2020
Absolutely love Andrew yang, His brain is to powerful for the people.
— GO PNIK (@Colby_Gopnik) November 6, 2020
The man doesn’t miss…ever!
— Anthony Corona (not the virus) (@anthonyscards) November 6, 2020
This is fair. @AndrewYang is the real deal. Listen to him.
— Sharon Little (@SalesCraft) November 6, 2020
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