Politico (April 28, 2016) Ralph Nader on Bernie Sanders: "If independent voters could vote in those primaries this last Tuesday, he would have won them all."
Bernie Sanders wrote in his statement last night: “I am proud that we were able to win a resounding victory tonight in Rhode Island, the one state with an open primary where independents had a say in the outcome. Democrats should recognize that the ticket with the best chance of winning this November must attract support from independents as well as Democrats. I am proud of my campaign’s record in that regard." (That's why I made my case that he should run as an Independent, but Bernie doesn't read my blog.)
Earlier in an interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, Jane Sanders, when asked, said they would release more tax returns if Hillary Clinton would release the transcripts to her paid speeches. Jane also confirmed that Bernie would not run as an Independent, but that he would run until the very last vote on June 14 to gather as many delegates as they can and take their case to the convention in July. She also said that the Democratic Party had treated them fairly, so I didn't know what to think about that.
Here's what Bernie can bring to the convention (my short list). The more delegates he has, the greater the power of his persuasion to force the Democratic Party to endorse these points in the Democratic party's platform — to once again make them the "party of the working-class".
- Raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2020 and indexing it to inflation.
- Raise the cap for Social Security to $250,000 (expand benefits, no chained-CPI).
- Tax capital gains at the same rate as regular wages.
- Tax corporate profits at a minimum "effective" tax rate of 25% (many pay $0).
- Impose a tariff on American-made goods manufactured overseas (Apple, Nike, etc).
- Make corporate inversions illegal.
- Force the repatriation of overseas profits for taxation.
- End all corporate subsidtities for oil, gas and nuclear companies.
- End farm and dairy subsidtities.
- Impose a CEO-to-worker pay ratio of 50-1.
- Medicare for All.
- Crack down on Big Parma's price gouging and repeal abusive patent laws.
- Repeal Bill Clinton's NAFTA and PNTR with China (and kill the TPP).
- Repeal Bill Clinton's Communications Act limiting free political speech.
- Repeal Bill Clinton's Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (and break up the big banks).
- All bank executives will be prosecuted if engaged in any type of fraud.
- Overturn Citizens United (and have publicly financed elections).
- Enact a federal voter registration law that allows same day registration and voting.
- Enact a paid federal Holiday for voting.
- Enact a life-time ban on members of Congress from working as lobbyists.
But the one big problem is, we can't trust the Democrats to keep their word on ANY points Bernie Sanders brings up at the convention. They could agree to include some of those points in their platform, but just like an I.O.U., they can rip it up the moment after (if) Hillary Clinton is elected.
There weren't many surprises last night in the closed primary elections — with maybe the exception of Pennsylvania, because just like Ohio, they also voted for someone who supported NAFTA and PNTR with China — which is odd, considering they voted for someone who supported outsourcing all their jobs. Although Philly, I can understand, because of the demographics. But still, I would have liked to have seen much narrower margins. It was very disappointing and I keep asking myself, "Why exactly are they voting for her?" I know why the high-paid pundits on cable news would, but not regular working folks in PA. (More on the Pennsylvania primary here at the Nation: The Lesson for Progressives in Bernie’s Pennsylvania Loss)
When only registered Democrats can vote, Bernie Sanders loses to Hillary Clinton by wider margins, depending on the size of the African-American population. Democratic progressive-leaning white-working-class voters, young or first-time voters, and Independents (whether they voted for Obama or not) are going be stuck with Obama for another 8 years if Hillary Clinton becomes the president. It's just a political and demographic fact, because so few minorities vote for Republicans.
Other white-working-class, Independent and younger voters who didn't vote for Hillary or Bernie, voted for a Republican — meaning, Democratic progressive-leaning white voters have been at the mercy of the Black vote — those who voted for Obama and against Clinton in 2008; but then voted for Clinton in 2016 as the next best thing to an "Obama II" rather than Bernie Sanders.
So there is a large group of Americans who don't have a political party to represent them ... and they are being forced into the "lesser of two evils" vote. Bernie was their only hope, and maybe for most, maybe in their entire lifetime. Some of them have already waited a life time for Bernie to come, and they don't have time to wait or build on another new movement. This was the time and place for them.
I suspect Donald Trump has also been getting a lot of votes because of his opposition to bad trade policies, just like Bernie Sanders, votes that Sanders might have otherwise gotten if it had not also been for Sanders positions on immigration and racial injustice (things Republicans feel much differently about) — so the demographics voted against Sanders and voted for Clinton — someone who has a horrible history on trade deals. It's as though minorities voted against the only person who was really on their side (all his life), and so it must have been a real heartbreaking kick in the gut for him. It would be for me.
So in the meantime, below is my sarcastic concession speech to last night's elections, which isn't official until after the last vote is counted on June 14th in Washington D.C. — where Bernie Sanders will get literally creamed because of the Black vote. So unless Bernie Sanders changes his mind and runs as an Independent beginning in July — or a miracle happens and he wins California by 90% to 10% — and half of the corporate superdelegates that Hillary has will vote for Bernie — we can only hope that if Hillary becomes our next president she will, not only adopt a large portion of Bernie's demands for the Democratic platform, but she will keep all the promises she made during the primary campaign. But I have very little confidence in that either. As a corporate Democrat, who was supported by corporate Democrats all throughout the primary, I doubt there will be ANY CHANGE AT ALL if she becomes the next president.
Early Bernie Bro Concession Speech
For a self-proclaimed SOCIALIST (who once took a secret spy trip to Russia with his wife), Sanders didn't to do too bad running against the former U.S. Secretary of State (who is also the wife to a former two-term U.S. President and President Obama's BFF). So can you imagine if a real American had ran against Clinton — rather than an avowed SOCIALIST — how well he/she might have done against Hillary Clinton? Holy Toledo!
All I can say is, if Clinton becomes the next president, I just hope she will keep all her promises — and that all her pragmatic hopes and dreams (for the working-class) come true. The People (those that were allowed to vote) have spoken. So be it.
Clinton says she will continue with Obama’s polices, so if America is happy with those policies, then so be it — The People (those that were allowed to vote) have spoken — so let true democracy ring.
With all of Clinton’s minority and women voters, they should be able to outnumber the rest of the white-working class in any other closed primaries — winning those States as well. The rest of the working-class might just have to vote for Trump, or not vote at all in the general election. But that's OK, because the vast majority of America is "with her" (Just ask her ... she'll tell you exactly how many votes she has.)
Because it's just like Clinton had said: when people do their own research, and don't believe those nasty and artful smears (those lies) that Senator Sanders has been spreading around, then they usually vote for her. That's why the African-American community (especially in the South) have voted for her — because they vividly remember the good ole days of the 1990s — and because Senator Sanders thinks it's OK to kill little children at elementary schools. Oh, the SHAME of Sanders!
But the real shame is, millions of Americans don't have a political party that represents their views and their values ... and that's why I wish Bernie Sanders would run as an Independent and establish a permanent 3rd political party in the U.S. — even at the risk of losing one short election cycle to the GOP in 2016 — because people are fed up, and giving Bernie the bully pulpit for 4 years would do far more to influence the political conversation in this country than any compromises the Democrats might be willing to make at the convention in July to woo Sanders voters. The Democrats are just as notorious for breaking promises as are the Republicans — and pander for votes using fear rather than inspiration.
Oh, and those feminists (especially the older ones) ... they are truly remarkable, and I greatly admire them for taking the high road and putting aside those little differences they had with Uncle Bill — you know, those dozen or more slight "indiscretions" he had while he was in the White House the last time (wink-wink). It's nice that you have love and forgiveness in your hearts. Bless you all.
But all that dirt and ugliness is in the past, because what really matters more than anything else (much more than income and wealth inequality), is for America having "The First Woman President" — because that is what's most important of all! Golly gee! (Even though, there have been women presidents all over the world, and some weren't so great.)
But even so, "The First Woman President" might be much better than "The First Black President", because he tried to sell us the TPP trade deal in front of Nike's headquarters. In 2008 Obama ran like FDR, giving elegant speeches — but by 2012 he was doing trade deals like Bill Clinton. I hope this is one of those policies that Clinton won't continue. (Oh that's right. She said she wouldn't anymore.)
But with any luck, hopefully Clinton will also choose a woman VP too! Now THAT would really be making history! Wow! I'm so giddy just thinking about it that it sends a thrill up my leg! It would be great if she got Senator Elisabeth Warren, because Warren wouldn't endorse Bernie Sanders — so a knife in the back like that would make Sanders's defeat an even sweeter victory for Clinton. You go girl!!
So it looks like we’d also have Bill Clinton in Air Force One again for the next 8 years (or at least 4), because The People (those that were allowed to vote) have spoken — and they voted for someone that 95% of the Democratic members in Congress have backed for President (oddly, a Congress with only a 17% approval rating. Oh well.).
So if younger aspiring voters want a SOCIALIST in the White House, they will have to wait a little longer until all the other pro-corporate establishment Democrats die before those silly youngsters can ruin the economy with their “pie in the sky” hopes and dreams — and then they can just pray that another radical SOCIALIST comes along to run for President sometime later in their lifetime (when they are far too old to have a future to believe in anymore).
I even heard that Chelsea Clinton might also run for President in the future too (CLINTON III) ... and who knows, maybe Clinton's granddaughter will also run some day (CLINTON IV). Then the Clinton Dynasty will have more presidential libraries in their family than Saddam Hussein had palaces. Good for them! Yippee-ki-yeah!
With all those promises Clinton made, the barriers will finally be broken (especially that ugly glass ceiling, that was only cracked in 2008) — and thank goodness (FINALLY!!) America will be made whole again. I was thinking that, maybe we could celebrate with a ticker-tape parade in New York City. Wouldn't THAT be appropriate! Right on 5th Avenue (And we can tell all those Brooklynites where to go. Screw them and their dirty low-life votes!)
But I'll really feel sorry for those bankers on Wall Street (you know, the ones that laughed at the Occupy Wall street protestors), because they’re gonna get their asses kicked REAL bad if Clinton is in the Oval Office! A few of those ruthless and conniving CEOs might finally go to jail. And THAT you can take to the bank with Clinton as President! Hip-hip hooray!
It's a darn shame though, that so many super-duper-rich people are going to lose their treasured tax havens. How will those privileged people dodge their taxes now? Because there will be new sheriff in town, and she's going to crack down on all that greed and corruption. You can take THAT to bank too!
So maybe it’s a good thing that the Clintons will have the White house for a third term (or maybe even a fourth term), because America really does have to get the economy going again. Just think, she will break the barriers and create millions and millions of good high-paying jobs for all those unemployed college grads AND pay off all their college debt too! What a grand bargain! Whoopee!!
So I’ll be looking forward to all those promises Clinton made. And I can’t wait. I'm so happy I could punch a hole in the wall!
Maybe now that sexist Senator Sanders can pack his old duffle bag and limp back to Vermont and start running guns to New York again (like he used to do in the old days). He could also spend more time playing with his "extraordinary" grandchildren again — at least Hillary has one.
I'm just so grateful that the entire election process has went as smoothly as it has. If gives me great confidence (and great pride) to know that both our political parties don't rig their elections with fraud; because, that way I also know that we will also have a great fraud-free government as well — one that will be open and honest — and won't be beholden to special interests and wealthy campaign donors (just like the last few administrations we've had, which explains why the congressional approval rating is so high.)
Oh, and before I forget . . . I'd also like to give a special thanks to the Big 6 media corporations for being so bipartisan, fair and balanced in all their neutral political reporting, because in other countries they usually try to rig elections by influencing voter sentiment and by discouraging voter turn out for people they don't want to see elected.
As I sit here watching cable news, I write with great joy as I see others relishing in their victories as well ... the talking heads on MSNBC and CNN, who are so darn happy ... laughing ... smiling ... all warm and fuzzy ... so self-satisfied with last night's election results ... because they know that, because they all make so damn much money themselves, it wouldn't just be the media CEOs, but they too would have seen their taxes go up if Senator Sanders had become our next president.
Now, before I get my hopes up again, I just hope and pray that (if Clinton becomes President) she can avoid three little inconveniences before she attempts to also sully Donald Trump:
- She can convince millions of Bernie's supporters that she did everything she possibly could to run an honest and fair campaign (and that everything was legal),
- That she and her family weren't lying and conniving slime balls who would say and do anything to get HRC elected; and that she won't flip-flop on all the promises she made,
- And that she won't get indicted by the FBI (Oh, wait a minute ... silly me. Her BFF Obama can give her a full pardon just before she's sworn in.)
But if everything else works out OK, then let's all "unify" behind our new queen and pop open a bottle of Dom Perignon and party like it's 1929!!! — and let the good times roll!!! — because happy days are here again!!!! Yeaaaaahhhh!!!!
Upcoming Democratic Primary Elections
|May 3||Indiana - OPEN - Affiliation with a party is not required to vote in primaries. However, voters can only choose the primary ballot of the party who received a majority of their votes in the previous general election, and voter records are kept as public information. If a voter did not vote in the last general election, they must "intend to vote for the majority of the nominees on their desired party's ballot." Voters can be challenged by another eligible voter on suspicion of perjury. This system is an attempt to get voters to vote along party lines, but is not easily enforceable. (est. African-American population 9.5% to 11%)|
|May 7||Guam - Undermined|
|May 10||West Virginia - MIXED - Voters may or may not choose to affiliate with a political party. 19% of voters in West Virginia are registered as "no party" or "other." Parties decide who may participate in their primary elections. The two major parties both allow unaffiliated voters to participate in party primaries. Unaffiliated voters choose one party's ballot. Party members must vote in their party's primary. (est. African-American population 3.6% to 5%)|
|May 17||Kentucky - CLOSED - 8% of Kentucky voters are registered unaffiliated or other. (est. African-American population 8.2% to 9%)|
|Oregon - CLOSED - 30% of Oregon voters are registered as nonaffiliated or independent. Voter registration closes 21 days before the election. (est. African-American population 2% to 3%)|
|June 4||Virgin Islands - CLOSED - You must be registered no later than 30 days prior to an election in which you wish to vote. Party Affiliation: Primary elections are for members of parties only.|
|June 5||Puerto Rico - Undermined|
|June 7||California - MIXED - 24% of registered voters in California are unaffiliated or independent. Voter registration closes 15 days before the primary election. (est. African-American population 6.6% to 8%)|
|Montana - OPEN - (est. African-American population 0.6% to 1%)|
|New Jersey - CLOSED - 48% of New Jersey voters are registered as unaffiliated. Affiliation with a party is required to vote in primary elections. (est. African-American population 14.7% to 16%)|
|New Mexico - CLOSED - 19% of New Mexico voters declined to affiliate with a political party. (est. African-American population 2.5% to 3%)|
|North Dakota - OPEN - The state of North Dakota does not have voter registration, therefore there is no registration deadline. (est. African-American population 1.8% to 3%)|
|South Dakota - OPEN - Voter registration closes 15 days before the primary election. (est. African-American population 1.9% to 3%)|
|June 14||Washington D.C. - CLOSED - Only voters registered with one of two major parties may vote in their party's election. (est. African-American population 49.5% to 51%)|
|July||The Democratic National Convention will be held in late July in Philadelphia, Pa. where the nominee is chosen. (Bernie should run as a Third Party candidate after the Democrats establish their platform.)|
|Sept. 26||First presidential debate at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio|
|Oct. 4||Vice presidential debate at Longwood University in Farmville, Va.|
|Oct. 9||Second presidential debate at Washington University in St. Louis|
|Oct. 19||Third presidential debate at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas|
|Nov. 8||ELECTION DAY|