The Times has a lovely piece up today looking at the Democrats' current non-platform.
The NYT found some guy (Micah) to go through the websites of Democratic and Republican candidates in the US' 33 most closely contested Congressional races to see what issues the candidates took a public position on. Mind you, nobody's evaluating the intelligence or nuance represented by these policy positions, merely that they exist.
Out of the websites of 29 Democrats and 29 Republicans:
3% of Republicans (I believe this amounts to one candidate) and a whopping 0% of Democrats said something about organized labor. Base? What's a base?
52% of Republicans and 14% of Democrats said something about abortion, meaning that no more than 4 of 29 Democrats said that they favored abortion rights. It could be less than 4, depending on what the candidates actually said.
Do you hear that? I think it's the sound of Liss gnashing her teeth down in vacationsville.
"Gay Rights"? (I prefer LGBTQ rights, but wev). You want to talk about gay rights? So do 2 out of 29 Democrats. 21% of Republicans and 7% of Democrats said something, anything about gay rights on their websites.
I understand that the web is merely one place for candidates to make positions public, and that not all candidate websites are equal. However, there's no excuse to ask to run the country whilst having a shitty website. These candidates have staff-- some of them should be htmling their asses off ATM. Not having a website and running for election is a lot like not reading the news and running for Congress, and we all know how that turned out.
Another thing: I don't care if you're William Jennings Bryan (if I only had a nickel for every time I said that), you're not going to have time to mention all of your policy positions in your stump speeches. One of the nice things about the Internet is that you can get a 2 GB website for free. That's like, 2 billion characters or so to get your point across, plus-or-minus a picture of you with your wife, kids, dog, and lawn.
In other words, if the Democratic candidates had a position on any of these issues, there's no excuse for them not to say so on their websites. Sure, opinions may offend some folks, but so did that Bryan guy. As for me, I'm sitting here fuming at the lack of an opinion over my full membership in society. As far as I'm concerned, this silence is not just a sign of a crappy political [non-]strategy; it's a personal failure to embrace the humanity of the electorate.