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Progressives: Keep Fighting

Unrepresentative Policy of the Week:Why Progressives Hold and Corporatists Fold

This past weekend, the political landscape changed, for the first time in modern memory, progressive Democrats held strong in the face of mounting political pressure. Corporatists like Gottheimer in the House, and Sinema and Manchin in the Senate had thought that by delaying the reconciliation bill and negotiating in bad faith, they could do to the progressives what Republicans normally do to Democrats: obstruct and bully the opposition, until the unwanted legislation is dead.

Yet this time, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was forced to postpone voting on the $1.2 trillion bipartisan bill AGAIN, this time, until the end of October, putting the two infrastructures bills back on their dual-track. The progressives seem to have won this first round of political chicken, and with it, hopefully changed the political calculus for years to come. Suddenly, the congressional progressive caucus, led by Pramila Jayapal, is a force to be reckoned with, that must be considered when crafting legislation.

This is fantastic news, not just for progressives and the American people, but for Democrats as well, who’s political survival as a party at least partly rests on passing this reconciliation package. Remember, despite protestations by Corporatists in Congress and the media, the reconciliation package is just the fulfillment of incredibly popular policies Biden ran on.

In spite of the incredible media blitz and propaganda spewed against it, Biden’s reconciliation bill still has overwhelming approval:

Do you support or oppose Biden’s build back better plan?

Support: 62%

Oppose: 32%

So how were CPC members able to hold strong, and why are corporatists trying to kill their own party’s future? As we always say at DSOT, it’s about the money, it’s about who is paying these politicians. Progressives in Congress could stay strong and withstand this pressure, because they raise much of their money from small dollar donations, i.e. the people. When you get your money from the people, you have the freedom to start serving them! Compare this to Senator Kirsten Sinema of Arizona, who literally left Washington DC in the middle of negotiations to go raise money from wealthy donors! Sinema, as a political creature seems to have no core ideology, she can’t even articulate what she’d want to get the reconciliation bill passed. That’s because she’s not really negotiating, she’s serving the the donors who pay her, from big pharma, to Wall St., and they don’t want this bill passed, they only want the bipartisan, corporate hand-out bill.

Breaking the power of the donor class over our politicians is the key to getting the policy we so desperately need. Progressive Democrats have delivered the first crack in this political stonecutting mission of ours, but we must keep hammering away if we want to turn this reprieve into lasting victory. The power of capital and the donor class is vast, and certainly will not give up on killing good policy for the people. To engage in the long struggle against them, to shore up our own political support, and grow our power, we need an economic cudgel. The donor class and their political lackeys only respond to money and power, so we must speak their language. So join us each Tuesday, as we grow our economic power together and build off the small success we just achieved!

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