The Atlantic

What Democrats Can Learn From Yogi Berra

Despite the party suffering yet another identity crisis, Trump backlash may be sufficiently strong to propel it to victory, whichever route it takes.
Source: Win McNamee / Getty

As Democrats prepare to pitch themselves to midterm voters—in a potentially historic election that may determine whether Donald Trump can be checked and balanced—they appear poised to heed the wisdom of Yogi Berra: “When you come to a fork in the road, take it.”

But that advice might actually work, because if the latest poll showing a 12-point Democratic lead in congressional battleground districts is prophetic, there may well be several simultaneous paths out of the wilderness.

In the meantime, however, Democrats are suffering their periodic identity crisis—should they tilt leftward and work the populist grassroots, or should they cautiously hew to the center? That internal debate, which split the party during the 2016 primary, has been stoked anew of the self-identified Democratic socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who ousted the House insider Joe Crowley in a New York primary. But midterm elections are traditionally a referendum on the incumbent president, and the backlash against Trump, particularly in swing suburban districts, might be strong enough to tamp down Democratic divisiveness and propel the party to a share of power.

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