Most of us are familiar with the story of the Democratic Leadership Council and its successful push to bring the party to “the center” in order to reclaim voters in thrall to Ronald Reagan. This was a fizzy period in Washington in which wonks debated terms like “centrism” and “third way” that would later become widely accepted “truths.”
Some say this was a low point for liberalism, and there is something to be said for that. This was, after all, a period in which Clinton went out of his way to prove to white voters that the Democrats were not a black party. (Case in point, welfare reform).
From How Obama Changed Liberalism by John Stoehr