They support public education as a prime directive, not allowing it to devolve into a voucher system eroding the right of all children to equal education access. Sen. Sanders wants free education from K-through four year college. Mrs. Clinton opposes vouchers, but has not committed to free four year college education. She and President Barack Obama joined Sen. Sanders in his call for free community college and an end to predatory student loan lending.
The Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Keystone Oil Pipeline are not supported by either candidate or the Democratic Party voters at large because of the potential negative impacts on American workers and the environment. The consistent message is how the American worker will be adversely impacted.
Considered one the most important challenges of US democracy, campaign finance reform and repeal of Citizens United Supreme Court decision are the clarion calls from Sen. Sanders and Mrs. Clinton because it affects how legislators are elected and vote once in office, the efficacy of regulatory agencies in protecting Americans, and the influence of corporations and moneyed interests in government. The Democratic message is totally clear and united. The viability and longevity of democracy must depend on the people’s interests, not corporations.
As presidential elections near, many times one of the criticisms is the candidates in both parties are too much alike. Cynics decry that politicians are all alike and cannot be trusted. In 2016 if the trajectory of the Democrats and Republicans continue along the same lines as exhibited in the last few months—there are definitely going to be differences and a choice. But we are not there yet, and the nominees will not be chosen until next summer. Still, a pattern of distinct dissimilarities is emerging.
The Republicans have their work cut out because they have yet to declare a unified platform message to consolidate the variables of the GOP and preserve a palatable conservative platform all Republicans can rally for, and more importantly be proud to support. One of the problems is individual candidates are appealing to single-issue voters many times culture related, rather than a cohesive multi-faceted base—often reaching out to angry conservative voters who believe they have been cast aside by the liberal-leaning majority of Democrats and some Republicans. Anti-abortion and anti-birth control voters invariably want a candidate who is sympathetic, and they will vote on that issue alone. Attacks on The Affordable Care Act (ACA) have been the vehicle for special interest groups and Congressional Republicans to politicize health care for Americans together with trying to take the ACA hostage over birth control provisions. Internationally health care is provided free as a right in almost all First World democratic countries. This is one example of how the “Party of No” fails the Middle Class and appeals to a niche of fundamentalists with disregard for the majority.
In the last GOP debate on Tuesday Nov. 10, the Republican candidates were consistent in their proposals on one level: On economic policy they put forward a flat tax at varying percentages that most of us already know favors the wealthy. Simply stated 7, 10, or 15 percent flat tax of $36,000 per year income is more disastrous for a family than a family living on $50,000 or more a year. Progressive taxation allows for a range of deductions including child care credits, earned income tax credits, mortgage interest and other deductions that level the taxation field for lower income earners.
The three Republican front runners Ben Carson, Donald Trump and Marco Rubio are against raising the minimum wage, which despite the machinations of the three has not been the economic apocalyptic occurrence they predict. On immigration reform, however, the candidates have failed to deliver a unified stance and remain splintered and chaotic. Gov. John Kasich and Jeb Bush favor comprehensive reform including path to citizenship. Donald Trump, on the other hand, has made immigrant deportation and building a bigger, better, “ beautiful” wall his brand—no matter what experts have to say about the efficacy of walls. Mr. Trump has waxed on about the Chinese Wall, but has carefully not mentioned the Berlin Wall that President Ronald Reagan and Republican icon was influential in bringing down.
The “Fight for 15,” $15 an hour for workers, is a unifying cry for Democrats, but not Republicans. "For many of us, these are workers who we see every day, yet they're invisible," said Harley Shaiken, a UC Berkeley labor expert. "What the Fight for 15 has done is give faces, names and personal stories that many, perhaps most, working Americans can identify with,” according to the LA Times.
The Democrats were “high fiving” on Tuesday as they watched the Republicans jockeying for disparate positions to appease tea party values, single-issue wedge voters, maintenance of corporate domination through low wages and control of Congress that relies on campaign donations and retention of Citizen United Supreme Court decision. All of which the Democrats en masse do not support.
Traditionally after a debate the media identifies who were the winners and losers that participated in the debate. After the Republican debates the losers were the Middle Class, poor, disabled and disenfranchised among us. Safety net programs would be delegated back to the states and probably eliminated meeting the same fate as Medicaid expansion, proliferation of low wage jobs would ensure Middle Class stagnation, education would devolve into a voucher system dismantling public education, women would become hostages of religious fundamentalists, health care for all could cease to exist, more cities would become ghost towns of their former selves, and the emergence of a society of the “haves” and “have-nots” would prevail. Corporations would flourish and every decision made in Washington and States’ governments would be at the altar of big business.
Democrats definitely have a not-so-secret weapon that becomes more powerful as November 2016 gets closer. They are united for the benefit of all Americans, not the moneyed few or those who continue to reject diversity and civil rights. Although Democrats might differ in approach, civility is ever present. And on the lighter foreign policy side—I trust our candidates know why the Egyptian pyramids were built!
is retired and lives in Clearlake, California. She has three grown
children and one grandson and a Bachelor’s degree in Health Services
Administration from St. Mary’s College in Moraga California. On the
home front Dava enjoys time with her family, reading, gardening, cooking
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