Democrats asking what went wrong

Debbie Wasserman Schultz, February 23, 2012.
Debbie Wasserman Schultz, February 23, 2012. EL Nuevo Herald

The Democratic soul-searching has officially begun.

Top Democratic Party leaders began two days of meetings Friday in Hollywood, Florida, a session likely to feature discussions about how the party can rebound from stinging defeats last month.

To spearhead that effort, Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz announced that the members of a new “Democratic Victory Task Force” to review and assess “key components” of the party’s role in recent elections.

The group, said a party statement, will also “identify places where the party can strengthen and improve operations to better serve candidates and constituents in future elections.

“It will cast a wide net that will examine a range of issues that ultimately will produce recommendations on steps both the national and state parties must take to improve their performance including, but not limited to, future midterm elections.”

Its preliminary findings will be presented at the Democratic National Committee’s winter meeting in February, and final recommendations will be made in mid-2015.

“We all have a lot to learn from what we’ve done in the past - both successes and shortcomings,” said task force member Donna Brazile, a veteran party strategist.

Task force members will include Naomi Aberly, vice chair of the DNC’s national finance committee; Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear; Maria Cardona, a former DNC communications director; Marc Elias, attorney and election expert; Teddy Goff, digital director for President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign; Maneesh Goyal, a marketing expert; Colorado Democratic Party Chairman Rick Palacio, AFSCME President Lee Saunders and Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google.