Saturday, 23 September 2017

Progressives Should Support Kamala Harris Single-Payer Co-Sponsorship

Progressives Should Support Kamala Harris Single-Payer Co-Sponsorship

Kamala Harris will co-sponsor Bernie Sander’s single-payer bill when it is introduced in September. But the Progressive reaction to the news has been split. Some believe the establishment support for Harris nullifies her ability to sincerely stand for single-payer. Other Progressives are more than happy to accept her support.

And these guys aren’t wrong. And Lee Camp is a Progressive. But that doesn’t mean he and other Progressives are being smart about this.

How Progressives Should Respond to Kamala Harris Single-Payer stance

I hate to think it, but Progressives might be worse than Democrats at politics. This should be a no-brainer. There should be no debate. A politician with realistic eyes on a run in 2020 is throwing her support at single-payer. This should not upset us. At this rate, Progressives will have numerous presidential candidates to choose from in 2020 that support single-payer healthcare. That is a good thing. Even if it only makes the conversation louder.

Cenk Uygur just commented on TYTLive that Progressives should “Take their wins” in response to Harris co-sponsoring the bill. And he’s absolutely right. If a supposed establishment candidate is willing to support single-payer, that means Progressives are winning. That means Progressive voices are being heard and our political power is increasing.

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And how do we as Progressives continue to build power and increase our political leverage?

One powerful way is to support candidates when they stand for Progressive causes. Sounds obvious, right? We show Democrats – if you stand with us, we’ll stand with you. When we do that, more of them will be willing to shed the establishment strings controlling them, and continue standing with Progressives. This is the fastest way to single-payer. Unless you plan on waiting for real Progressives to take the House, Senate and White House while Republicans roll over and end their historic obstructionism.

I’m not interested in waiting.

Ask yourself a few questions.

Are we trying to convince people Progressive ideas are better options or are we trying to be an exclusive club? Do we want more Progressives and more politicians pushing single-payer, or do we want fewer?

Why would more Democrats throw their support at the bill if Progressives continue to attack them as frauds for it? If current Democrats and a few brave Republicans get the votes to pass the bill, would that not be a good thing? Is single-payer our healthcare goal or is punishing the Democrats our healthcare goal?

Progressives need to stop being mad and start being smart. When Democrats give Progressive ideas a platform, Progressives should support them. Just like with Cory Booker’s support for marijuana legalization.¬†Unless of course, you don’t want Progressiveism to spread. And unless you care more about punishing Democrats than universal healthcare.

This isn’t hard.

 

Ryan Black is a documentary filmmaker, political consultant, and digital media professional who writes about Progressive Politics.

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