Why do Democrats let Republicans set the terms of debate?

Source: Washington Post
by EJ Dionne Jr.

“Ever since this month’s elections in Virginia and New Jersey signaled real trouble for their party, Democrats have been tearing themselves apart over the controversies Republicans want them to talk about. Note to Democrats: This is the reason they’re called wedge issues. You can’t turn on your phone or computer without running across searing, inner-directed polemics about how one kind of Democrat is pursuing approaches destined to doom all Democrats on issues such as critical race theory and questions around education more generally. … The problem for Biden and his party is that the centrality of these topics is a mark of political failure. Taking your opponent’s bait and playing on your opposition’s turf is the surest path to defeat. To succeed in politics, you need to make your opponent respond to you.” (11/14/21)