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What Are Democratic Candidates Offering? Sometimes It's Hard To Say


Schumer recruited Sinema and cleared the field for her; she's his ideal candidate-- arguably the worst Democrat in either House of Congress

If the most important-- life or death-- struggle for a candidate and their backers right now is to just get elected, what will they be like when they do get into Congress and the most important-- life or death-- struggle for them is to just get reelected? I get Val Demings e-mails. They're the worst e-mails of the cycle so far... like empty calories-- just pathetic, redundant and deceitful, histrionic pleading for money. I just checked out her website-- no issues page, just like Schumer wants it, no light shed on what she stands for, just a bunch of typical Democratic Party identity politics.


The dodge that the DSCC (and DCCC) suggest to their always shitty favored candidates is to not include an issues page-- that's because they are ashamed of Democratic values and squirrelly about the issues that motivate Democratic voters and that is how we wind up with garbage like Cal Cunningham (NC), Amy McGrath (KY), Patrick Murphy (FL), Joe Donnelly (IN), Barbara Bollier (KS), Evan Bayh (IN), Jaime Harrison (SC), Katie McGinty (PA) and Sara Gideon (ME)-- all of whom lost-- as our nominees. And when a Schumer candidate does win-- the way Kyrsten Sinema did-- it's just as bad as a Republican winning.


This isn't just about what a terrible, sure-to-lose candidate Val Demings is. In the Wisconsin race this year the two multimillionaire status quo shills, both shockingly sub-par candidates, Alex Lasry and Sarah Godlewski, use their campaign websites, just like Demings does, to solicit contributions, tout misleading biographies and boast long lists of meaningless endorsements-- but neither has an issues page and neither includes any indication they support Medicare-for-All or the Green New Deal. Surprisingly, one of the 3 progressives in the race, Lt. Governor Mandela Barnes, whose campaign is being run by a DCCC operative, uses the exact same formula! Most people say he'll support Medicare-for-All when he's in the Senate. Maybe he will, but he's sure not campaigning on it. Perhaps that's because the progressive shops all jumped on his campaign-- for whatever reason-- giving him a kind of permission to skate on (away from) progressive issues. He never mentions., for example


Go look at John Fetterman's campaign site. He's the frontrunner in the Pennsylvania Senate race and way ahead of the conservative establishment candidate, Conor Lamb. But call me unimpressed. At least he has an issues page, albeit just a series of videos that basically kind of skirt the issues. He's OK, if not inspiring, on the easy issues: legalizing weed, backing Choice (finally one he's clear about) and raising the minimum wage, (although to what hr dordn't say). His "Climate Justice" video its about the environment, not about Climate, let alone the Green New Deal and his healthcare video is tortured in trying to endorse something like Medicare-for-All in as bland and defensive a way as possible... and without ever mentioning the phrase. Mot helpful. In a recent interview, when asked, he said that if he were the deciding vote on Medicare-for-All, he wouldn't vote against it. Really? I sold my house in Stroudsburg, so I can't vote in Monroe County, luckily for Lt. Gov. Fetterman. I wouldn't vote for him in the primary.


Wow... even Charles Booker, who the DSCC is accepting as the Democratic candidate against Rand Paul, has no issues page this year.


This is how we wind up with garbage candidates like Cal Cunningham, Amy McGrath, Patrick Murphy, Joe Donnelly, Barbara Bollier, Evan Bayh, Jaime Harrison, Katie McGinty and Sara Gideon-- all of whom lost-- as our nominees. And when a Schumer candidate does win-- the way Kyrsten Sinema did-- it's virtually just as bad-- or almost as bad-- as a Republican winning.


There's a clear difference in the Wisconsin Senate race, with 2 candidates, Tom Nelson and Gillian Battino campaigning unabashedly and enthusiastically on Medicare-for-All, no apologies offered.


In the North Carolina Senate race, the two states quo establishment candidates, Cheri Beasley and Jeff Jackson have campaign websites with no issues pages, although at least Jackson has a page with his record on issues. The progressive in that race, Erica Smith, has a Platform For Progress section of her website that lays out where she stands of all the big issues North Carolinians are concerned about. This is exactly what I would expect from all serious candidates:


As for healthcare this is what candidates should be saying. Let me quote Erica Smith:


Our broken healthcare system prioritizes profits over people. That is fundamentally wrong and wholly immoral. I had a medically fragile son, and experienced first hand the horror of navigating a for profit health care system. Our medical insurance and children’s medicaid didn’t cover the medical equipment that his very life depended on. I had to get a part time job teaching at an alternative school and we sold the car my eldest son used to commute to and from work. Our system is broken. We saw that all too well this past year as millions were left vulnerable, without healthcare, during a pandemic. With Medicare for All, we can end the days when a family goes bankrupt because someone got sick and at long last we can put people at the center of our approach to healthcare.
Despite the progress made by Obamacare, 11% of North Carolinians remain uninsured (significantly above the national average). While we need the NCGA to approve the expansion of Medicaid which would immediately ensure coverage for 500k North Carolinians, we must embrace Medicare for All and ensure true universal healthcare.
Sometimes, tragedies grant us clarity and perspective, an ability to understand things we may have previously failed to grasp. The tragedy inflicted on us by the coronavirus has been no exception. One-third of COVID-19 related deaths have been connected to a lack of health coverage. COVID-19 has further laid bare the systemic racism that inflicts every aspect of our country. It’s revealed that despite what certain conservative pundits may want you to believe, we need government and that government matters. Most devastatingly, it’s exposed a healthcare system that is utterly inadequate, fueled by greed, morally bankrupt and in desperate need of change.
If there was ever any question as to whether our healthcare system needed more reforms or mass transformation, well, there shouldn’t be anymore. Over 500,000 and counting are dead. Hospitals have been overrun, nurses have been forced to work while lacking the proper protective gear and many who’ve been lucky enough to survive have been left with bills they cannot afford. The system currently in place, simply put, does not work.
The system we have is there for you least, just when you need it the most. Losing your job is hard enough, why should that struggle be further compounded by the loss of your health coverage? And even with the insurance coverage that people have, as Senator Warren pointed out last year, many people think that they like their health insurance until something actually goes wrong and then, they’re left with an untenable bill, a stack of paperwork and endless legal battles. Right now, we have a health INSURANCE system, what we need, is a health CARE system. Medicare for All moves us in that direction. Healthcare should be a human right, not a “benefit” that needs to be negotiated for and hard earned.
Reform is not enough when The entire system is centered around profits, not people.
When the wealthiest nation on the planet does not guarantee healthcare to its citizens, that’s a choice. An unconscionable choice. We as a nation deem poverty a death sentence. We, as the democratic party, have not done enough to change that. Obamacare was groundbreaking and it made a real palpable difference in the lives of millions of Americans. However, we can’t let the progress of the past keep us from fighting for the progress of the future.
Congressman Ro Khanna has called Medicare For All “the moral issue of our time.” He’s right. Let it be us who finally create a system of healthcare in which your zip code does not determine your quality of treatment, in which your life is prioritized over some corporation’s bottom line.
In his speech accepting the nomination, then Vice President Biden said that the best way to overcome tragedy is to derive purpose from it. Those were words of wisdom and a sentiment we should carry with us. As we continue to battle COVID, as we continue to wrestle with how we as a nation can possibly overcome this, let’s try, as hard as it may be, to find purpose. Let’s find purpose in ensuring that no more Americans die because we decided to line the pockets of corporations instead of saving the lives of our brothers and sisters. Let’s find purpose in allowing our legislation to match our rhetoric, and legislate a beloved community into existence by passing Medicare for All.

When it comes to his intentions on healthcare, Lucas Kunce's expansive issues pages can be boiled down to one sentence that gets right to the heart of the problem: "[H]ealth care is a human right. We need a universal health care system that empowers everyday people, not corporations seeking profit. And that includes protecting the right to abortion."


Morgan Harper's package of issues pages also sums up her healthcare plank in one sentence: "The best way to achieve universal healthcare is by extending Medicare, a proven program, to every citizen." Her primary opponent, Tim Ryan, has a pathetic '90s website with no issues pages and the look of something designed by Chuck Schumer. On the left is the Blue America 2022 Senate thermometer with our endorsed candidates. I hope you'll click on it and contribute to the candidates you want to see in the Senate-- instead of the ones, like Kyrsten Sinema, that Schumer wants in there.


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