The Six Wings of the Democratic Party

Which wing would have the best chance of beating Trump?

  • Total voters


Gold Member
Sep 25, 2012
A good article by fivethirtyeight breaking down the wide scope of beliefs contained within the Democratic party which is becoming especially relevant considering how many Dems are going to run in the primary. Click through to read a more detailed description of each group. My question is which wing has the best chance of winning against Trump in 2020? My bet is currently on the old progressive guard. I think that while they don't have the "new" energy that many more extreme progressive are looking for (AOC-types), that bloc will literally be motivated to vote for anyone other than Trump in the end. This is ironic as they are typically also the group that demands lip service the most, but because of the differences in voting motivations, that lip service just won't need to be catered to nearly as strongly. What's your opinion Gaf? Inb4 "they all bad vote Trump."

Super Progressives:
- Prominent examples: Ocasio-Cortez , Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Rep. Mark Pocan of Wisconsin, Rep. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan
- Very liberal on economic and identity/cultural issues, anti-establishment, dislike of centrists and center-left types

The Very Progressives:
- Prominent examples: Bill de Blasio, Sen. Jeff Merkley of Oregon, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren.
- Very liberal on economic issues, fairly liberal on identity issues, skeptical of the Democratic establishment.

Progressive New Guard (post-Obama):
- Prominent examples: Stacey Abrams, Cory Booker, Pete Buttigieg, Julian Castro, Kamala Harris, Jay Inslee, Beto O’Rourke.
- Liberal on both economic and identity issues but also somewhat concerned about the “electability” of candidates and the appeal of ideas to the political center

The Progressive Old Guard (pre-Obama)
- Prominent examples: Joe Biden, Cuomo, Dianne Feinstein, Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer.
- Solidly center-left on both economic and identity issues, but very concerned about the “electability” of candidates and the appeal of ideas to the political center; generally rose to prominence before Obama was elected president.

The Moderates
- Prominent examples: Rep. Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey, Rep. Conor Lamb of Pennsylvania, Rep. Abigail Spanberger of Virginia.
- More conservative and business-friendly than other Democrats on economic policies; somewhat liberal on cultural issues; anti-establishment.

Conservative Democrats
- Prominent examples: Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards, West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin.
- Skeptical of liberal views on both economic and cultural issues, often supportive of abortion limits, generally from conservative-leaning areas.
May 4, 2005
I think it depends more on the candidate than on the wing. Though a moderate or conservative leaning democrat will probably have a hard time, because Trump polarises and centrist candidates will not mobilise well. Te democrats have tried to run with a moderate / conservative candidate last time and failed. This time, it's harder because Trump has more experience for the job than all others (having been a president for four years by then).
Apr 9, 2009
Hillary Clinton was a moderate.

Nobody talks about her plan to make college cheaper, for example, because its not all that different from Trump's. Her healthcare policy was to merely keep Obamacare and give more paid leave to women starting families. Well Obamacare is still here and Trump specifically called for more family leave. in his last address.

A progressive is someone looking for stuff like medicare for all, free college tuition, reparations, universal basic income, legalize pot, $15 minimum wage, e.t.c.
Likes: Whitesnake
Aug 15, 2018
Six wings? Are we talking about a political party or Seraphim? lol.

Anyway, I think all the divisive identity politics is probably the wrong way to go for the democrats. It seems to me that many people are getting sick of it (though perhaps I'm wrong, I should take a look at statistics on this later). I definitely think focusing on moderates will help them move forward.
Jun 13, 2014
I thought the article was abysmal and its classification system borderline nonsensical. How does caring about "electability" substantively differentiate the progressive new wing? It also seems like the "Old Guard Progressives" are defined as politicians who obfuscate their positions to mislead swing voters. These aren't "wings" to a political party - they're corporate brands, telling you no more information than the Nabisco tag in the corner of a Triscuits box.

You would actually have more substantive demarcations if they went with things like "the antisemitism wing" or "the pro-blackface wing."
Likes: TheGreatYosh


my friends call me "Cunty"
Feb 22, 2009
Ottawa, Canada
Progressive old guard is my pick for one main reason: Biden. It's not just that he's ideologically opposed to Trump and "safe" as a choice, it's that he has the sort of personality that wouldn't let Trump's shit slide. I picture Biden absolutely drubbing Trump in debates by calling out his opponent's non-stop lying.

If not that, then it has to be a relatively charismatic but experienced politician like Sanders or Warren. Keep in mind that some of the "super progressives" aren't even old enough to run for President.

Afro Republican

Aug 24, 2016
When did Blue Dogs become Conservative democrats? Heck isn't that a contradiction of terms? Heck you may as well call them moderates.

Splitting Bernie from Cortez doesn't make sense either based on some of his actions and polices. The Socialist wing is a unified front. They want nothing to do with the other 4 wings unless they HAVE to.