- The Washington Times - Friday, March 10, 2017

In a recent interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” former Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean suggested that pro-life Americans are unwelcome in the party because the younger voters that Democrats need to energize are concerned with “social justice,” Townhall.com reported Tuesday.

During a March 2 segment of the program, MSNBC anchor Joe Scarborough held out former Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear — who gave the official Democratic response to President Trump’s address to Congress — as a model centrist Democrat whom Republicans used to have trouble defeating in much of the country.

“Those were guys that you just couldn’t beat in the South when you weren’t running too far left on guns, on God, on abortion, on all of these other social issues,” Mr. Scarborough observed.

“Can the Democratic Party ever have a big enough tent to have people who were progressive on economic issues and conservative on social issues in their party again?” he asked Mr. Dean.

“No. Because the young generation isn’t that way,” Mr. Dean, a former Vermont governor replied. “I think the old left/right is an anachronism. It exists in Washington. It exists in the media. Young people don’t think that way.

“They are not ideological,” Mr. Dean added. “They are extremely interested in social justice, so we are never going back to maybe making compromises on abortion.”

In June 2016 a survey of millennial voters found that that coveted demographic is actually fairly pro-life, with only 17 percent agreeing with the statement that abortion should be legal at any point in a pregnancy and with a majority — 53 percent — agreeing that abortion should be illegal in all or most circumstances.

• Ken Shepherd can be reached at kshepherd@washingtontimes.com.

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