I honestly don't know whether the people who control the Democratic Party are actively seeking to defeat progressives, are uninterested in electing any candidate who is progressive, or are misguided about how to win back control of the House. Since I don't give money to the Party, but only directly to candidates, it makes very little difference in my behavior. I am convinced that we should fight for every seat, and that we should support any candidate who is to the left of the incumbent, regardless of the odds. There is strong evidence right now of a groundswell of enthusiasm on the left, and every percentage point we knock off the vote total of the Republican candidate feeds that enthusiasm, whether we win the election or not.
I think elaborate calculations of slipping in under the radar and not energizing the opposition are foolish, whether they are malign or not. Do I know this to be true? No. My total personal experience with electoral politics was an unsuccessful run for School Committee in Northampton, MA in the Seventies [the nineteen-seventies, not the eighteen-seventies.] But that is the operating assumption that will guide my own political activity, and considering the fact that I live in the benighted state of North Carolina, I should get plenty of experience fighting losing battles.