This will not be the first or last time you read or hear the next few lines today, “You know—I don’t understand why anybody does (sic) to all the trouble of running for President of the United States, just to talk about what we really can't do and shouldn’t fight for,” said Senator, Elizabeth Warren. The other memorable line was uttered by Mayor Pete Buttigieg who said, “It's time to stop worrying about what Republicans will say. It's true that if we embrace a far-left agenda, they're going to say we're a bunch of crazy socialists. If we embrace a conservative agenda, you know what they're gonna do? Say we're a bunch of crazy socialists.”
Those lines will be played on a loop today because, in the crazy WWE world of political debates, candidates are forced to use canned, pre-rehearsed lines to get a good sound bite for the next day's news. Partly out of sheer numbers, with over 20 Democratic candidates, and partly due to the CNN format choice, I felt as though I was watching the run-up to a WrestleMania match. The substance was lost to time constraints, issues were lost to unexplained accusations and for the most part, it was reduced to the previously mentioned one-liners.
What was interesting were the few candidates who dared to be different. I have no illusions that author Marianne Williamson will be the next President, nor do I want her to be, but what did impress me is that she is the first candidate to take a definite stance on reparations. Whether you agree or not she did not talk about committees, think groups or coalitions to exchange ideas. She spoke in financial terms about what “40 acres and a mule” would be worth in today’s economy.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren told former Maryland Congressman John Delaney, on every dollar above 50 million that you earn I want two cents in additional taxes to fund healthcare and free education. I was disappointed that she would not admit we will all have to participate and pay more in taxes to help with her Medicare for all plan; a framework I favor, by the way.
The main reason I consider myself a Democrat is because of the mantra of the party; health above greed, education above profits and people above corporations. The meaningless buzzwords Republicans throw around like socialism and government-run healthcare are effective scare tactics but baseless. I am sure you all remember the lie of government death panels, portrayed as truth by the likes of Sarah Palin and Fox News. The repeated calls to do away with the Department of Education by the current Energy Secretary Rick Perry and the infamous “corporations are people my friend” quote from former Republican Presidential candidate and current Utah Senator Mitt Romney.
Palin, Perry, and Romney were considered frontbenchers by their party at one point. Palin was the vice-presidential pick for John McCain. Perry before his disastrous debate performances, a viable GOP candidate for President and Romney was the GOP nominee in 2012. The Republican party has been revving up its’ engines and hurtling in the direction of money over the environment, wall street over Main street and the rich over the poor at breakneck speed since 1980. Heed and remember Senator Warren’s words to John Delaney about what Democrats should be and not “just to talk about what we really can't do and shouldn’t fight for.”
Vote in 2020 for Change.