Tag Archives: Democrats

The Democratic Presidential Field & The Democratic Agenda

5050391_011019-cc-ap-possible-2020-dems-social-imgThis year, it seems like every week another candidate announces his or her bid for the Democratic nomination.

UnknownBernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Beto O’Rourke, Corey Booker, Amy Klobuchar, Julian Castro, Pete Buttigieg, John Hickenlooper – and maybe Scranton Joe Biden

I say come one — come all!

Let there be a robust, upbeat competition for the Democratic nomination.

VIXFV2FORVCZLLASFYVF6EHGQILet there be a robust, upbeat dialogue about the Democratic agenda.

First and foremost, let’s define the Green New Deal— and then extol its virtues. We need a visionary agenda as ambitious as FDR’s bold antidote to the Great Depression.

This country (and our world) needs another spasm of liberal advancement like Kennedy and Johnson shepherded in the mid-1960s. In fact, a new Voting Rights Act is needed to overcome the damage done by the Roberts Supreme Court. When more American citizens vote it’s better for progressives.

694940094001_6016070216001_6016070379001-vsDemocrats! Progressives! Young folks who don’t relate to political labels!

We need a comprehensive progressive vision for reversing climate change, modernizing our national infrastructure and addressing criminal justice reform, equal rights, economic justice, fair taxation and voting rights – not to mention universal health care!

Let’s see which candidate embraces such an agenda.

Let’s see which candidate stands on an inspiring, revolutionary platform.

And let’s see which candidate can sell it to the American people.

US-POLITICS-ELECTION-HARRIS-VOTEBut, for *@#! sake, let’s not fall into the “Are Democrats moving too far to the left?” trap! Let’s not defend ourselves against charges of “Socialism.” Instead, let’s ask whether people like Social Security and Medicare – not to mention the Interstate Highway System.

The fact is that progressive Democratic reforms reflect mainstream American values. Most Americans want to see human beings survive – and, hopefully, thrive! That’s why tackling climate change is Job #1.

FILES-US-POLITICS-VOTE-TRUMP-BIDENProvided Democratic candidates are in ideological agreement, our 2020 ticket must balance race, gender, age and geography. And so far, I must say — I’m delighted with the casting pool.

Other than the fact that at least one woman must be on the ticket — and someoneon the ticket should notbe a white person — there’s plenty of time and room for any of the contenders to define a progressive agenda, inspire us and fire our imaginations.

Like Obama, a Democratic winner must motivate young folk, women, people of color, principled professionals and working families. Without the enthusiastic support of all these American voters, we don’t stand a chance.

6pZz_T3l_400x400That means American sanity doesn’t stand a chance.

Humanity doesn’t stand a chance.

So, come on Democrats!

We may differ on how we get there. But, despite our internecine disagreements — let’s not give the right wing anything to exploit.

Democratic candidates should promote their progressivism proudly. And they should put it in historical context.

ows_153920112233316FDR’s progressive New Deal” saved mid-century America from the Great Depression, won World War II — and saved worldwide Capitalism.

Democrats running for President or any other office must educate voters on the millionaire tax rates under Republican President and World War Two hero, Dwight Eisenhower. Ike’s highest marginal income tax rate was 91% — during the years that built the great American middle class. Taxing the rich works.

john-hickenlooper-speaks-onstage-at-conversations-about-news-photo-1129660942-1553170112The American people know these things in their bones. (At least the majority of us do.) And we’ll vote in overwhelming numbers for a progressive, forward-looking agenda.

And I haven’t even mentioned the Great Orange Disaster. Leave him to Mueller and Congress.

Democrats must embrace the Green New Deal and an Agenda for a Great American Future.

But, most of all, we must get out and vote for a DEMOCRAT in 2020!

The GOP has proven itself unworthy of governing this still promising country.

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A Reminder to All You Patriots…

Photo on 11-5-18 Crop

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November 5, 2018 · 6:57 pm

Reject Trump This Tuesday!

Donald Trump is a proven serial liar. He has no business being the President of the United States.

We’ve simply got to check Trump’s power on November 6th!

Young voters! This will be your world long after I’m gone – and your future will be far better if you VOTE this coming Tuesday for Democrats.

I believe Wednesday morning, November 7th, will bring good news. Let’s make sure of it!

VOTE!

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A Mid-Term Message to Young Voters

We hear it over and over from the pundit class: Democrats have a chance to take over the House (and maybe the Senate) this year — but younger voters can’t be relied upon to turn out on Election Day.

In fact, many older Democrats that I know agree with the pundits. They don’t think you’ll turn out and vote on November 6th.

They don’t think you’ll vote in big numbers because that’s what history tells them. Statistically, older voters are more likely to vote.

IMG_7069Some older Democrats think that younger voters are not realistic, or too impatient, or too easily swayed by fringe candidates on the extreme left…

But I have three bright daughters between the ages of 38 and 23 – and I know that all of you young people are going to vote this Election Day.

I know you’re going to vote because Donald Trump must be stopped.

I know you’re going to vote because Climate Change is real.

IMG_6422I know you’re going to vote because the Parkland students have inspired us all to fight for sane gun laws.

I know you’re going to vote because GOP white supremacy and misogyny is off the charts.

I know you’re going to vote because GOP state officials are always coming up with legislative schemes to keep college voters and people of color from casting their votes – and that should piss you off!

IMG_6452I know you’re going to vote because Brett Kavanaugh is an embarrassment to the Supreme Court.

I know you’re going to vote because our future depends on it.

And you have a lot more future ahead of you than we do.

So, prove the old farts wrong. Show up at the polls on November 6th– and vote for a better future for America by kicking Republicans out of office. There are lots of exciting, progressive Democratic candidates to support. They need your votes.

But it’s not enough to vote. I know you’re going to vote. But you’ve also got to volunteer – and help get the vote out.

To volunteer, go to: https://multiplyyourvote2018.paperform.co

See you at the polls!IMG_6449

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Don’t Just Vote. Volunteer!

I had the privilege of producing this PSA along with my good friend, Brad Hall. It’s part of a social media campaign to encourage folks to volunteer to work for Democratic victory in the midterm elections on November 6th. Progressives must mobilize for these midterms like never before. Every vote counts. Give Democrats the gavels in those House committees and we’ll have a real check on the Mango Mussolini and his enabling GOP cohort in Congress.

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Vote for Bernie (& Hillary, Too!)

635501804068694446-2016IowaCaucus-720x163Iowa Banner 2Iowa Banner 3Tonight, Americans will begin the process of choosing their next President when voters across the state of Iowa gather to participate in a strange democratic ritual known as the Iowa Caucuses.

iowa-county-mapRepublicans and Democrats (and Independents joining one of the two major parties for the night) will get the electoral ball rolling just as a major winter storm threatens to keep them from congregating in large numbers at the 1,681 caucuses across the state.

I understand there will also be one Democratic telecaucus. I have no idea what a “telecaucus” is. (Sounds like a dinosaur.) I’m surprised I haven’t heard Rachel Maddow try to explain it to me dozens of times in the past two weeks.

For the Republicans, the caucus is a relatively simple affair: show up, register your vote, and go home to your warm hearth and home.

web1_0_no_image_title_151Democrats, however, will play an oddball game of musical chairs – herding themselves into “Presidential preference groups” supporting the candidate of their choice. Candidates who don’t garner the support of at least 15 percent of the folks in the room are no longer “viable” and their supporters can either “acquire people into their group to become viable” — or switch chairs and join another viable candidate’s herd. Sort of like a Midwestern political mating ritual.

screen-shot-2016-01-31-at-8-31-17-pmThen, in order to determine which candidate has won the most delegates at the caucus, the Democratic Party of Iowa uses this simple equation:

“(Attendees in preference group × Total delegates the caucus elects) ÷ Total number of eligible attendees = Delegates for group to elect”

Math was never my favorite subject, but I’m sure Iowa Democratic Party officials will eventually determine who came out on top in the Iowa Caucuses – and then the Presidential pageant will move on to New Hampshire and beyond.

bernie_2It’s my hope that Senator Bernie Sanders will emerge from the Iowa Caucuses with a victory – and that he’ll score another win in New Hampshire. I’ve been listening to Bernie for years, and I like his vote against the Iraq War, his passion for advancing the interests of the poor and middle class, and his refusal to accept Wall Street greed and rapacity.

I hope Bernie continues to mount a positive, uplifting and inspiring state-by-state primary challenge. I want to see him come to the convention with a ton of delegates. I’d love to see him become the Democratic nominee.

And I think Senator Sanders will mop the floor with Donald Trump or Ted Cruz or anyone else the Republicans serve up. (Plus, it’ll be fun to keep watching Larry David’s Bernie imitation on SNL.)

081815_otr_panelBut if Bernie doesn’t win the nomination – I will happily support Hillary Clinton.

And every progressive in America should do the same.

Alas, I’m starting to hear the same kind of “cut off your nose to spite your face” foolishness among some liberal friends about how they just can’t support Hillary. They’ll sit this one out if Bernie isn’t the nominee. Or they’ll vote third party. Yeah. Just like the Naderites couldn’t support Al Gore, spouting the nonsense that “both parties are the same.”

300px-2000aWe can thank such high-minded yet unimaginative progressives for the slim electoral margin that gave the GOP the White House in 2000 and the 8-year fiasco that was George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.

Don’t believe it? Here’s a quick history lesson. Bush won with 271 electoral votes. Gore had 266. New Hampshire was worth 4 electoral votes.

And here’s what happened in New Hampshire:NH

Do the math. If the progressives backing Nader had voted for Gore — Gore would’ve taken the Presidency 270-267.

Both parties are the same? Really?

140416_POL_BarackObama.jpg.CROP.promo-mediumlargeDo my well-meaning pro-Bernie/anti-Hillary progressive friends actually believe that Al Gore and George W. Bush are both climate change deniers? That President Obama and George W. Bush are the same on LGBT issues, a woman’s right to choose, and voting rights? Do they really feel that President Hillary Clinton and President Cruz or Trump will make appoint the same type of Justices to the Supreme Court? I could go on and on.

bernie-sandersI love me some Bernie Sanders. I really do. But if you think there’s no real difference between the Republican and Democratic parties then show me a self-avowed Socialist running in GOP primaries and calling for a political revolution in a GOP debate?

Senator Bernie Sander is not only welcome in the Democratic Party – he has a puncher’s chance of winning the Democratic nomination for President. And I hope he does.

But if he doesn’t – I’ll be a happy warrior for Hillary.

Let’s keep the “progress” in progressive.

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President Obama Shreds the Pundits.

121012_barack_obama_speaks_ap_328Screen Shot 2014-05-23 at 1.25.45 PMPresident Obama made the following remarks at a recent fundraiser, calling out the false equivalency narratives spun by the insufferable, Beltway-blinkered poobahs of the pundit class. He should continue to say these things publicly and emphatically – just like Harry Truman would have – all the way up to the mid-term elections.

“You’ll hear if you watch the nightly news or you read the newspapers that, well, there’s gridlock, Congress is broken, approval ratings for Congress are terrible.  And there’s a tendency to say, a plague on both your houses. 

“But the truth of the matter is that the problem in Congress is very specific. 

mitch-mcconnell“We have a group of folks in the Republican Party who have taken over who are so ideologically rigid, who are so committed to an economic theory that says if folks at the top do very well then everybody else is somehow going to do well; who deny the science of climate change; who don’t think making investments in early childhood education makes sense; who have repeatedly blocked raising a minimum wage so if you work full-time in this country you’re not living in poverty; who scoff at the notion that we might have a problem with women not getting paid for doing the same work that men are doing.

john-boehner-sequester“They, so far, at least, have refused to budge on bipartisan legislation to fix our immigration system, despite the fact that every economist who’s looked at it says it’s going to improve our economy, cut our deficits, help spawn entrepreneurship, and alleviate great pain from millions of families all across the country.

“So the problem…is not that the Democrats are overly ideological — because the truth of the matter is, is that the Democrats in Congress have consistently been willing to compromise and reach out to the other side. 

Barack Obama by Nitin Vadukul for Newsweek - 12/20/2004“There are no radical proposals coming out from the left.  When we talk about climate change, we talk about how do we incentivize through the market greater investment in clean energy.  When we talk about immigration reform there’s no wild-eyed romanticism.  We say we’re going to be tough on the borders, but let’s also make sure that the system works to allow families to stay together…

“When we talk about taxes we don’t say we’re going to have rates in the 70 percent or 90 percent when it comes to income like existed here 50, 60 years ago.  We say let’s just make sure that those of us who have been incredibly blessed by this country are giving back to kids so that they’re getting a good start in life, so that they get early childhood education…

“Health care — we didn’t suddenly impose some wild, crazy system.  All we said was let’s make sure everybody has insurance. And this made the other side go nuts — the simple idea that in the wealthiest nation on Earth, nobody should go bankrupt because somebody in their family gets sick, working within a private system.

paul_ryan_s640x427“So when you hear a false equivalence that somehow, well, Congress is just broken, it’s not true.  What’s broken right now is a Republican Party that repeatedly says no to proven, time-tested strategies to grow the economy, create more jobs, ensure fairness, open up opportunity to all people.”

Now, I wish the mainstream Democratic Party position on climate change was more radical – and I don’t like hearing President Obama extolling an “all of the above” strategy, especially if that means we all get “fracked” in the process.

20090805_nancy-pelosi_33But, let there be no doubt. Progressives must get out the vote this fall. The only answer to our broken Congress is a Senate controlled by Democrats – and a House of Representatives in which Nancy Pelosi once again holds the gavel. Important issues like climate change, immigration reform, raising the minimum wage, Wall Street reform and income inequality will never be addressed while Republicans are in a position to obstruct positive change.

clearly-john-boehner-wrote-this-press-release-before-the-jobs-report-came-outThen, in 2016, we must work to keep a Democrat in the White House – because our endangered democracy can’t afford another religiously biased, corporate stooge conservative on The Supreme Court.

But first – we’ve got to get that oversized gavel out of John Boehner’s hands.mitch-mcconnell1-e1365549079396

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