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Democrat Litmus Test: Good or Bad Idea?

By Sofia Sepulveda

“The current model and the current strategy of the Democratic Party is an absolute failure,” Bernie Sanders said during his speech at the People’s Summit in July, 2017. He is correct.

This is am accurate depiction of the party we have today, is in many ways what gave us Trump. The uncertainty of many working poor and middle class Americans (White, Hispanic and Black) and the centrist campaign of one Hillary Clinton whom did not offer any bold ideas and embraced the policies of Barak Obama who did not help poor and middle class Americans, but rather made them fiscally insecure, was the deciding factor for many of us who decided to not partake during the 2016 general election.

And the Democratic Party seems to not learn its lesson. Tom Perez, who was elected Chair of the DNC, not because of true support from labor organizations (Most labor Unions backed Senator Bernie Sander’s pick, Keith Ellison) but because of the influence that both Clinton and Obama had on many party chairs, who are seemingly happy with keeping “business as usual” , has stated publicly his disdain for a Medicare for All measure, implying that it will take a King to make that possible, Nancy Pelosi, the minority leader for the party recently stated that we should all but ‘forget Medicare for all, it’s not going to happen

With the unveiling of a new slogan “A Better Deal: Better Skills, Better Jobs, Better Wages” but no substantial change on their platform (Medicare for All did not make it), the party does little to convince progressives, poor, and middle class Americans that continue hurting under the past and current administrations, that they are willing to undertake especial interests.

We progressives are not taking them at their word, we are pushing for an actual better deal “The People’s Platform” and Our Revolution President, Nina Turner, went to the DNC Headquarters to delivered 127,000 signatures, demonstrating that people are hungry for change, but rather than opening the doors to her, she was met with barricades, preventing her from delivering personally the petitions.

Now, we must ensure that we keep them accountable for their actions, and we must take a stand, the same way the Tea Party took a stand in 2010: If you want our support, you must show us you stand with us on the issues that matter to us.

So what is OUR litmus test? Medicare for All.

Despite of right wing fear tactic of “Government Run Healthcare is bad for our economy” and keep on spewing baseless statistics, we now understand that our Government spends twice as much on Healthcare than any other developed country.

With a growing number of Americans favoring this legislation, we need to start demanding that our politicians stand with us, and not with the Healthcare Industry. This has made many democrats nervous. Kamala Harris has spoken against the “purity test” we are trying to push for. Politico just publish an article stating that “Medicare for All Litmus test, alarms democrats”, but the wind is in our favor.

In other words, if they are “nervous” to back “Medicare for All” then maybe we should be nervous about their relationship with the healthcare industry, and begin the primary process against them. Example, Patty Murray received almost 3 million dollars of Contribution from the healthcare industry from within 5 years; Kamala Harris received $25,000.00 during her run for senate ; Cory booker received $409,528 in 5 years. And they are not the only ones in congress receiving substantial amounts from the healthcare industry at all.

With this information, it is VITAL we request them to sign onto a litmus test. This is not a bad idea, it is a terrific idea, and it is time we stop believing that only because they run under the Democratic Party means they are ready to fight for us. And if they are not fighting for us, we must fight for ourselves.

The “People’s Platform” or “Summer for Progress” contains the following measures:

HR 676 – Medicare for All Act
HR 1880 – College For All Act
HR 15 – Raise the Wage Act
HR 771 – Equal Access to Abortion Coverage in Health insurance Act
HR 2840 – Automatic Voter Registration Act
HR 3227 – Justice is Not For Sale Act of 2017
HR 1144 – Inclusive Prosperity Act
Climate Change Bill – Not Yet Introduced.

Please see https://summerforprogress.com/platform, for more information.