Americans are sick of being told by both parties that they aren’t entitled to health and prosperity. That’s exactly what happened in 2016, an election year where Democrats were absolutely trounced because they offered no substantive change from a status quo that frequently centers the needs of massive corporations over normal people like you or me.
That’s why mainstream Democrats signing on to enact Bernie’s “Medicare-for-all” bill is a total game changer. It is exactly the sort of idea Democrats need to fight for if they want to win back the favor of their working class voters.
With Cory Booker throwing his hat in the ring yesterday, the list of senators that support Medicare-for-all is starting to look really impressive:
- Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.)
- Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.)
- Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.)
- Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.)
- Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.)
- Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii)
- Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.)
These are not small fish; these are some of the flat-out biggest names in politics, bar none. In fact, it’s likely more than one of them will be running on the Democratic ticket in 2020.
That’s why it’s so freaking exciting that they are getting behind an idea that so many paid-for politicians and hackish pundits have said is impossible. These are the leaders of the party, and with their support, it seems like only a matter of time before single-payer is an unquestionable component of what it means to be a Democrat.
Over time, some issues become so widely accepted within a party as to be a de facto requirement for anyone aspiring to lead it. No Democrat would run for president, or even for House or Senate minority leader, without supporting the DREAM Act. No Republican would try for a leadership position without supporting repeal of the estate tax.
And the way things are going, soon no Democratic leader will be able to oppose single-payer.
— Dylan Matthews, Vox
The very worst aspect of the Democratic party is, without a doubt, its insistence that things are just fine the way they are (“America is already great” comes to mind.) It’s awesome to see the Dems start to rally behind some of the ideas that make Bernie so popular. I’ve seen many people saying today that while Bernie may have lost in 2016, his campaign platform is still winning.
To illustrate, here’s Cory Booker carrying Sanders’ torch on NJTV:
This is something that’s got to happen. ObamaCare was a first step in advancing this country, but I won’t rest until every American has a basic security that comes with having access to affordable health care.
— Cory Booker
There are 39 senators left to get signed on to the movement to revolutionize healthcare in the United States. The next step is 100% to hound them until they have no choice. Get on Twitter, post on their Facebook walls, protest them at home and in D.C. Let them know it’s time to put the people before their lobbying dollars. If not, they won’t be in charge come next fall.