Former Virginia Senator Jim Webb announced his 2016 candidacy earlier this month and has begun staking out the moderate, some would say even conservative, ground within his party. In a recent interview with NBC News, Webb lamented what he sees as the Democratic Party’s leftward tilt and says he can bring a “different tone” to the conversation.

Report from msnbc:

Democratic presidential candidate Jim Webb said his party has “moved way far to the left” and is “not my Democratic Party in and of itself” in an interview with “Fox News Sunday.”

The former Virginia senator and Navy secretary, who recently declared his presidential bid, was asked who his base is in a party that is excited by liberals like Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

“I believe we can bring a different tone to the Democratic party,” Webb told Fox News’ Bret Baier. “You’re right, the party has moved way far to the left. That’s not my Democratic Party in and of itself. We need to bring working people back into the formula.”

Webb pointed to poor whites in the Appalachia section of Southwestern Virginia who lack medical care and said, “These are people who have been forgotten by both parties and I think they need a voice.” Sanders’ surge is driven largely by college-educated whites, who were also the core support base for Warren.

The candidate, who recently caught some flack for seeming to defend Confederate flag, compared liberals’ views of Southern white culture to Donald Trump’s controversial views of Mexican immigrants, which Webb condemned.

“This kind of divisive, inflammatory rhetoric, by people who want to be commander-in-chief is not helpful. And we have seen from the liberal side as well this kind of rhetoric as it goes to Southern white cultures,” Webb said.

He called for moving beyond the conversation on the flag to more substantive issues like jobs and racial reconciliation.

Webb himself is quite far outside the mainstream Democratic Party in many respects. He’ll have a tough time appealing to voters who twice supported Barack Obama for President and are currently leaning toward people like Bernie Sanders, who is fighting to the left of Hillary Clinton politically.

If anything, with Webb on the Democratic debate stage at some point, he will let Hillary appear to be the reasonable one who is not quite as far left as Sanders or O’Malley, but is more mainstream within the party compared to Jim Webb. I’ve said from the beginning, Webb will have a tough path, if any, to the Democratic nomination in 2016.

4 COMMENTS

  1. Webb won’t start getting attention until he gets on the debate stage. Then, his straight talk, compared to the others, will shine brightly. Once Democrats hear him, I think they’ll realize he is offering the “third way” that gave Bill Clinton eight years in office, and increasing popularity afterward.

    As for the flag issue, the media (as usual) didn’t listen. He did say southerners “fought valiantly,” but they fought AGAINST the United States of America. So did King George’s troops, but we don’t have the Union Jack flying over the White House.

    That’s not the “flag issue,” anyway. As Webb said in the same interview: “The Confederate Battle Flag has wrongly been used for racist and other
    purposes in recent decades. It should not be used in any way as a
    political symbol that divides us.”

    • I hope that your right about Webb. The more I learn about him the more I like him. However I don’t see how a moderate can survive in today’s polarized political environment.

  2. As I predicted over a year ago — Hillary won’t be heading to the White House, but most likely to the Big House, where she belongs.

    Seems Democrooks are finally figuring this out now…and some are braving to challenge the Clinton machine.

    Funny stuff….

    p.s. the undersized avatar states: “This flag isn’t racist, you are for thinking it is”.

  3. If we elect a president acceptable to either party establishment, our reward is
    continual political gridlock. The alternative is for common sense workers to pave
    a way to our own party. A third party won’t work, and the republican process is
    controlled by even a more extreme wing than the extreme democrats. Here is our
    path: (* represents state with open primaries; # represents state won by
    Governor Romney, & represents swing states) Iowa& is made for retail
    politics, then it’s on to New Hampshire*&, South Carolina*#, and
    Nevada&. Then, Super Tuesday has Alabama*#, Arkansas*#, Colorado
    caucuses&, Georgia*#, Massachusetts*, Minnesota caucuses, North
    Carolina*#&, Oklahoma#, Tennessee*#, Texas*#, Vermont*, and Virginia*&.
    That’s 12 open primaries, 7 red states and 5 swing states, with the potential
    for “Reagan Democrats” and mischievous anti-HRC republicans to join common
    sense workers in support of Leadership we can trust. Now we need the correct
    bandwagon and we nominate JIM WEBB: the only combat veteran (highly decorated)
    candidate, the only candidate that the “losing” party will even give a chance, and
    the only candidate to respect all sides of the cultural wars and not cater to
    just one side. He respects the constitution (see his comments on balance
    between the three branches), respects the need for leadership (even when it’s
    not popular) and has policies to rebalance the economy and opportunities for self-improvement
    (he is fed up with wall street). Yes, yes his campaign style can be
    aggravating, his speeches less than fiery, and his views complicated. But, and
    it’s a big but, He was Born Fighting and has been tested on the Fields of Fire.
    Strap on the combat boots and MARCH! Jim MARCH! He just may defy the statistics
    and resurrect a bygone coalition of workers that understand the need for
    governance.

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