In catching up from a weekend getaway, I was happy to catch Chris Bowers’ Sunday post entitled, “Think Big: Choosing the fights that build progressive power“. It detailed some things that have been rattling around in my head for a while.
First, liberal policy failures of 2009-2010:
Congress passed no significant legislation on climate change or immigration. The Bush tax cuts for the wealthy were extended. Even a watered down version of the Employee Free Choice Act went nowhere. The public option was defeated. The laws passed on reproductive rights were actually regressive. Congress accomplished nothing in response to a Supreme Court ruling that sent campaign finance law backward, and no progress was made on the partisan composition of judicial appointments to the federal bench. Expanding overseas military deployments went unchecked, as did the reduction of civil liberties in the name of fighting terrorism.
Chris also wrote this, and I believe it to be the primary reason why those policy failures occurred:
Specifically, a majority of legislators and candidates believe their electoral chances suffer more if they oppose conservative policy goals than if they oppose progressive ones. That was even the case in 2009-2010, when Democrats held massive majorities in Congress. As long [as] the majority of candidates and members of Congress continue to believe that veering to the left hurts them electorally, progressives will continue to see their public policy goals go largely unachieved even when Democrats are governing.
Liberals do not hold their elected officials accountable. It has nothing to do with “purity tests”. The faux-pragmatism approach pushed by those defending CorporateDems have shown us how false that argument is with their resounding lack of results when they were in charge.
The reason Chris outlined above is why I didn’t vote for a number of so-called Democrats in 2010. Votes need to be earned. Fear-mongering about what Republican Teabaggers might do if elected no longer works as a tactic for me. I’ve seen what CorporateDems do when they’re elected and it’s not different enough to talk about.
Keep electing CorporateDems or “the lesser of two evils”, Democrats. All you’re doing is delaying the inevitable, not preventing it.