Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said Democrats cannot just be the anti-Trump party in 2018 in an interview Wednesday night with CNN's Chris Cuomo. Schumer acknowledged in 2016, "there was too much emphasis on Trump" and "too many people lost that." He said Trump does enough to make the "anti-Trump argument himself."
"We can't just be anti-Trump," Schumer said of the party's message. "And people sort of know what Trump is, he makes the anti-Trump argument himself to the majority of Americans. We have to be for a lot of good positive things. And again, we have done some of those and we're going to do more of them so that the middle-class people, who are the Democratic Party know, not only care about them, and my prediction -- we will work with Republicans and if we get the majority, it’s going to start happening."
CUOMO: But you have to bring something to them, right? You can't just be anti-Trump, pro-Russia probe. Is that enough to win?
SCHUMER: Look, we -- it is not, and that’s taken care of, itself, we don't have to do that. But we have proposed things that the American people really, really think are important. ...
CUOMO: Last question, defining the party. There's criticism out there right now that the party has changed. Sure, you're the leader. I'm not questioning that, but --
SCHUMER: I'm one of the leaders.
CUOMO: Chuck Schumer, deal maker --
CUOJMO: -- little guy, working family, that the party is that any more. It’s the elite, the academic, the intellectual condescends to those who aren't smart enough to know what they know that adopts niche cultural issues and pushes out the blue collar men and women that you used to hold in your warm bosom of embrace.
SCHUMER: And still do. And I would say this, in 2016, maybe there was too much emphasis just on negative Trump and people lost that. We are getting it back.
SCHUMER: We are talking about things that matter, as I told you -- health care, infrastructure, taxes. We're talking to rural people about rural broadband. One third of all rural homes don't have broadband. You can’t get Netflix. You can’t do school work. You can't get small businesses to.
Franklin Roosevelt, 1930s, he said every American home should get electricity, even the rural homes. It’s hard to reach them, because it’s a necessity. We're saying the same thing about broadband, very popular in rural areas.
We’re talking about job training, so we can prepare people for jobs. We are focused like a laser on middle class and people who want to get there. And as we get closer and closer to the campaign, as these issues get crystallized, it's going to help us dramatically.
We can't just be anti-Trump. And people sort of know what Trump is, he makes the anti-Trump argument himself to the majority of Americans. We have to be for a lot of good positive things. And again, we have done some of those and we're going to do more of them so that the middle class people, who are the Democratic Party know, not only care about them, and my prediction -- we will work with Republicans and if we get the majority, it’s going to start happening.