Friday, May 22, 2015

Progressives shouldn't think of voting for Hillary Clinton as "settling"

By Richard Barry

My instinct is to push hard against wealth and privilege in American politics, which is what makes it hard for me to fully embrace Hillary Clinton's candidacy. I continue to hope that some of Bernie Sanders "social democratic" ideas get a fair hearing. I'm not optimist, but I'm hoping.

I don't intend to be an uncritical Hillary booster. In any case, she really doesn't need my help. 

Having said that, Hillary Clinton is not just "some women" who happens to be running for president. She is one of the smartest, most qualified candidates to seek the job in a long time. In addition, and this is key, she is not just progressive compared to the right-wing extremists seeking the GOP nomination. She is very progressive in the context of what the U.S. political market will bear. 

It's not the whole enchilada, but it's pretty good.

Don't take my word for it. You can have a look at an article that appeared in the  Huffington Post in mid-May by Ben Stein and Amanda Terkel. They compare, as they write, how "Hillary Clinton measures up on Bill De Blasio's 13-point progressive litmus test."

On immigration, criminal justice reform, labour reform, family sick leave, the carried interest loophole, expansion of the Earned Income Tax Credit, the refinancing of student loan debt, the Buffet Rule, and CEO pay she does well by any progressive measure.

Am I worried that her relationship to Wall Street and a penchant for pragmatism (in a bad sense) might impact what she would actually do if elected? Yes I am. But that's true of anyone.

No gaurantees, but read the piece and relax a little bit about the presumptive nominee. This could be a lot worse.


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  • I agree. I'm surprised all Democrats don't. Aren't we the pragmatic party? The truth is that I don't see Democrats having a problem with her in the end. It's democracy, and Clinton is fully representative of the Democratic Party. She isn't fully representative of my left flank of the party. But that's fine. If I wanted to be a jerk about ideological purity, I'd just be a Republican.

    By Blogger Unknown, at 10:26 PM  

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