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Matthews to Democrats: 'Now is the time to rebuild'

Let me finish tonight with this.  It seems the Democratic Party has an opportunity to grow after this election.

Let me finish tonight with this.  

It seems the Democratic Party has an opportunity to grow after this election.  

I know that most of the focus is the change that's being made in the Republican Party—how it's moving inexorably from a center-right party to an all-out right-wing party, how the moderates are dying off and the tea-partiers are becoming the mainstream.  

All that's happening. There's no real denying it, and it's because the Republican Party is morphing into an extreme right-wing party that I see the opportunity for the Democrats, should they choose to embrace it. 

There are a lot of people out there—I grew up with them—who would not call themselves liberal but who are pragmatic about a lot of the things liberals are for: they like and rely on Social Security, on Medicare, and, for purposes of long-term care, Medicaid. They care about good public schools and want the government to do a good job protecting the health of the air they breathe and of what they eat.  

These people believe in the science they studied in school, and take a live and let live attitude toward other people in this country. They don't want a churchy big government telling them how to live.  

So if the Democrats are smart, even reasonable, they will make the biggest grab in history for the people that the new right-wing party is leaving behind as it shifts further and further, leaving the legacy of Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan behind.  

Democrats, pay attention. This is your chance to build a party back up to the grand coalition of the New Deal and New Frontier years.