As an Elizabeth Warren supporter, my new candidate is Vote Blue No Matter Who, meaning that I am staying neutral in the two man race between Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders. Whoever emerges as the nominee, I will enthusiastically support. But as many of you know, my passion has been to take back the U.S. Senate and for fellow Warren supporters still on the fence and angry about her departure, Adam Jentleson from GQ makes a great case to focus on now kore than ever on the Senate races:
If you read this far hoping to have your anger assuaged: sorry, you won’t find that here. Warren supporters have good reason to be angry about the persistent sexism in our political system, and they should stay angry, possibly forever. Consciously or not, those who tell you not to be angry are asking you to acquiescence in a set of sexist power dynamics that we cannot accept and must change. In the words of Rebecca Traister in her book Good and Mad, “Don't ever let them talk you out of being mad again.”
But the one piece of good news is that anger can still be used to satisfy Warren’s ultimate goal. The irony of perceiving Warren as “power-seeking” is that unlike most of the men in the race, she was not running for president mainly because she spent most of her professional life dreaming of and angling for the job. The policies, not the power, are what animate her.
If we take back the Senate, Warren will have a wide open field to enact her policies. So if you’re angry, and you can’t decide whether to support Bernie because he is much closer to Warren on substance, or Biden because he is building a broader coalition and generating stronger turnout, you can focus on paving the way for Warren’s policies by helping Democrats take back the Senate.
Jentleson, who was Harry Reid’s former chief of staff, brings up so many terrific points about why to focus heavily on the Senate.
If Democrats beat Trump in November, control of the Senate will determine whether we have the power to enact her policies or not—and will have a much bigger impact on the national agenda than the question of whether Bernie or Biden is in the White House. If Republicans retain control of the Senate, no Democratic president will get much done, period. McConnell will run the same obstructionist playbook against them that he ran against Obama. Racism might have been a key motivator in Republicans’ historic obstruction against Obama, but now, Republicans know the playbook they used against him works: it depressed Democrats’ base, and Republicans found it easy to dodge blame. There’s simply no reason for them not to run the same playbook, and ride a combination of a depressed Democratic base and dynamics that historically favor Republicans to big midterm gains in 2022.
Jentleson lists the different races and candidates to focus on and addresses the issue that I am obsessed with: the filibuster.
The absolute best case scenario for Senate Democrats still leaves them well short of the 60 votes needed to overcome a filibuster. Passing an ambitious agenda will require getting rid of the filibuster—a topic for another column. For now, suffice it to say that Biden and Bernie are equally fuzzy on the issue—but like Nixon going to China, Biden could have an easier time convincing senators to go nuclear.
Wit Governor Steve Bullock (D. MT)jumping in the race, our chances of taking back the Senate just improved greatly. So let’s go big with taking over the Senate. Click below to donate and get involved with these Senate Democratic candidates’ campaigns.