A common criticism of Bernie that I and others have made is that there is no chance for him to get his plans through Congress. A common retort I hear from Bernie supporters is ‘well, how would Hillary get her plans passed?’ Leaving aside the overarching fallacy of equivalence that Bernie and Hillary would face the same quality of opposition for diverse proposals, there is a fundamental mistake in the thinking that Hillary would face similar difficulty in advancing her agenda.
An ‘outsider’ like Bernie will be and has been eaten alive. He’s the ranking Democrat on the budget committee, and it took Boehner quitting to get a budget passed. We need the establishment to beat the establishment – Hillary.
Another mistake Bernie supporters make – it is not only about Congress. Government is not working right now. Instead of just admitting that fact, Bernie supporters talk about some imaginary populist wave that everyone knows is not coming. We already learned that. Stop being racists and pretending like Obama is not popular and his presidency does not exist, and that somehow Bernie will be better at everything, even race relations!
Obama has been successful using public/private partnerships and executive actions. He has been able to gain financial and political support from private corporations and institutions to advance the progressive agenda, and at times pressure Congress to move legislation and appointments.
Bernie says Obama is weak. A disappointment. He doesn’t want to do things Obama’s way. He wants to fight corporations, fight Wall street, fight banks. He doesn’t want to get their cooperation, he wants to go to war with them. He threatens them and calls them names – criminals, greedy, fraudsters.
Congressional Democrats have said that some of Bernie’s plans they will not support. So Bernie will not be able to move Congress. He will get zero help from the private sector. He will have decimated the Democratic party, weakening candidates down ballot across the country, leaving us all open to an increased tide of Republican voter suppression, religion-based legislation, environmental destruction, and all-around government dysfunction.
Hillary will use the Obama model. Hillary has the connections, global respect, and experience to bring together competing and aligned interests, to apply pressure where it will do the most good, and to make the most progress possible, even in Congress. Hillary Clinton got health insurance for children and organized international pressure that led to an historic deal with Iran. Where is Bernie’s landmark policy achievement?