PHILADELPHIA — They came. They grappled with fresh losses. They searched for a new strategy. And then they danced their asses off.
This year’s House Democratic retreat, a three-day getaway in Philadelphia, gave lawmakers a chance to regroup after losing 13 seats in November. But if the goal was to find a new, well-crafted message that resonates with their base and draws the uninspired back into the fold, the result probably underwhelmed. The strategy that lawmakers decided to go with is not all that different from before.
“We came out of that session with the caucus absolutely unified on three essential messages going forward: It’s middle class, middle class and middle class,” Rep. Steve Israel (N.Y.), who chairs the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee, enthusiastically told reporters.
“We’ve got a former presidential candidate on the other side who suddenly is just deeply concerned about poverty,” the president said to laughs. “That’s great! Let’s go! Come on! Let’s do something about it!”
His enthusiasm clearly fired up Pelosi. After the press was kicked out of the event, the Democratic leader pulled her husband and a dozen other members to their feet and they all danced to “Love Train,” according to a source in the room.
“Member prom has ensued,” concluded the source.