The nation may be moving to the left, but we need more people to vote because the money and the rules currently favor the right. How did this happen? See the entire must-read article at Nationofchange.org.
by Dave Johnson
It might not seem so in the middle of a day’s news cycle, especially with that news always being about Donald Trump, but 2015 marked a year of change in a progressive direction. And the country is solidly behind this move.
The Democratic primaries reflect this progressive direction. If you watched Saturday’s Democratic debate you saw a solid, substance-filled progressive discussion of the country’s problems offering progressive solutions. Democratic candidates by and large line up with a progressive agenda that would be unheard of in previous election cycles. That’s progress.
Think Progress cites The 7 Most Important Progressive Victories Of 2015:
1) A growing number of workers are earning more – thanks to local and state progressive-pushed initiatives to raise the minimum wage and new overtime rules.
2) Same-sex marriage is legal. People can marry who they want now.
3) Health insurance, The Supreme Court didn’t back conservative efforts to kill Obamacare.(So now we push on toward a public option or Medicare-for-All.)
4) Some states have been able to push out gerrymandering, and a few places were able to pass measures fighting back against money in politics.
5) The world finally came together to begin to fight climate change. (Even if the timing has been compared to starting your Christmas shopping an hour before the stores close on Christmas Eve,) President Obama has introduced his Clean Power Plan.
6) Successfully replacing No Child Left Behind and historic graduation rates.
7) Historic Iran nuclear deal.
There are many other good examples of progressive progress in 2015.
Polling numbers at the Populist Majority website show that the public supports the progressive position on the issues. Money in politics, education, trade, inequality, Social Security and Medicare, taking on the big banks, you name it, across the board the public sees things the way progressives, not conservatives and their corporate/billionaire funders do.
Peter Beinart writes about the country’s leftward shift at The Atlantic, in Why America Is Moving Left. He writes that in the 60s and 70s “leftist” ideas faced a popular backlash, but now the country is embracing the ideas of a new progressive movement.
Beinart rites about the differences between today’s Democrats and those of the previous decade, “In the Senate, Bush’s 2001 tax cut passed with 12 Democratic votes; the Iraq War was authorized with 29. As the calamitous consequences of these votes became clear, the revolt against them destroyed the Democratic Party’s centrist wing.” As Beinart sees it, Howard Dean began the revolt of the “Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party.”
The Occupy Wall St. movement led to Elizabeth Warren’s election, Warren’s voice helped propel the Sanders candidacy. And Sanders has pushed Clinton left,
Today, all of the three democratic candidates are singing the same song: That economic inequality, the 30-year downward spiral of the middle class and the corruption of the campaign finance laws — Occupy Wall St.’s main themes — are the most important domestic threats to the American way of life.
Click here to read more about how money has put Republicans into power in the states, the effects of gerrymandering, obliteration of campaign finance laws and voter disenfranchisement.