Some Democrats shake loose corporate chains
I’m so tired of hearing that progressives are lurching too far to the left and will surely re-elect President Donald Trump if we continue to insist on supporting candidates who will substantially address income inequality, climate change and gun safety.
It reminds me of the consistent whining we hear from Nevada Republicans who say “throwing” money at education won't improve our dismal standing in just about every education indicator. When did we ever throw money at education in Nevada, a state that consistently leads the nation in large class sizes and the highest percentage of children not enrolled in a pre-K program? Let's actually fund education at the national average before we conclude money has nothing to do with our poor rankings.
There are plenty of supposedly far-left ideas that are now part of our country's safety-net. The same Republican who denounces liberal “socialism” is quick to defend his right to health care at the VA or his wife's enrollment in Medicare. Republicans try to starve these “socialized” benefits through budget cuts, but even their base voters feel entitled to them.
Let's not forget that Obamacare, that half-step towards universal health care featuring a significant expansion of Medicaid for states like Nevada smart enough to accept the underlying federal dollars, is a health care model that was first implemented in 2006 under a Republican governor in Massachusetts, one Mitt Romney. When he ran for president six years later, Romney tried to deny and diminish his own successful program, which dramatically reduced the uninsured rate in Massachusetts, opting instead to appease virulent Republican voters who were in no mood to admit that Obamacare derived from Romneycare.
And after we elevated Trump to the highest office in the land, how dare the pundits tell us a person of color or a woman is unelectable in 2020?
At the opening of Elizabeth Warren's first Reno campaign office, a male supporter told me he was worried that she couldn't win because she's a woman. But as Rebecca Solnit points out in a post on the topic of unconscious bias on Literary Hub, “What makes a candidate electable is in part how much positive coverage they get, and how much positive coverage they get is tied to how the media powers decide who is electable, and so goes the double bind.”
Solnit writes that white men were approximately 34 percent of the electorate in 2016 but made up only 11 percent of Democratic votes, since the vast majority voted for Trump or a third-party candidate. She says, “One of the ugly facts about the 2020 election is that white men are a small minority of people who vote Democrat but have wildly disproportionate control of the money and media and look to have undue influence over the current race for the nomination, which is just one of the many fun ways that one person, one vote isn't really what we have.”
So, yes, a woman can be elected President in these turbulent times in the United States. After all, Hillary Clinton received three million more votes than Donald Trump in 2016, only to be defeated by the archaic electoral college system that allegedly protects smaller population states like Nevada but actually makes a mockery of the one person, one vote ideal we pretend to embrace.
Educate yourself during this long primary season, and support the candidate who inspires you, the person you think will lead us out of these dark days that reflect so poorly on our country's heritage and values. Elizabeth Warren had it right during the second debate last month when she said, “We can't choose a candidate we don't believe in just because we're too scared to do anything else.”