Progressives: Vote for Hillary Clinton
“A few progressives making a protest vote, or not voting at all, could be the difference between a President Clinton or a President Trump.”
By Anna Galland and Ilya Sheyman, MoveOn.org executive directors
As executive directors of one of the country’s largest progressive grassroots organizations, we have not always supported Hillary Clinton in her bids for higher office. In 2008, we enthusiastically supported then-Senator Barack Obama in his primary against then-Senator Clinton. In this election, we called on Senator Elizabeth Warren to run, then endorsed Senator Bernie Sanders in his primary campaign, and went on to run a positive campaign supporting his effort.
But one thing is clear as we enter the final weeks of this election. For progressives who care about the future of our country, there is only one true choice in this election. We strongly and unequivocally urge all progressives to vote for Hillary Clinton.
Anyone who has followed the history of MoveOn and Hillary Clinton might be surprised that we’re saying this so forcefully. One option in this election, for a group that has parted ways with Hillary Clinton in the past, might have been to sit relatively quietly on the sidelines, or to pull punches. Instead, we’re all in to help defeat Donald Trump and elect Hillary Clinton, while helping win back the Senate and doing everything we can to turn this into a wave election for progressive candidates, so that we relegate Trump’s racist, sexist, xenophobic, and hateful campaign to the dustbin of history where it belongs.
Yes, we have our differences with Hillary Clinton — and will surely disagree, respectfully, with her administration on various fronts, if she is elected. But let’s be clear that there’s a strong positive case for Hillary Clinton. As the Nation Magazine has put it, “Over the course of her public career, Clinton has more than demonstrated her intelligence, tenacity, ferocious work ethic, and seriousness of purpose.” We saw her powerful and full-throated defense of abortion rights in the third debate, and note her grace and determination in the face of relentlessly misogynistic attacks. We have tremendous respect for this candidate, even when we have our differences.
In the final weeks of this race, MoveOn is executing the largest field program we’ve run since helping take back the House in 2006, with nearly 200 organizers working alongside millions of MoveOn members to turn out the progressive vote in key battleground states. We’re also running a brand-new, in-house video production program that’s generating tens of millions of views for messages against Trump, for Clinton, and for our issue agenda. We’re staging creative and cultural campaigns, including producing a new online game called SwingVoterGo and a multi-city comedy tour. And we’re doing much more. We’re pulling out all the stops.
We’re doing all this because we believe we need to not only defeat Donald Trump, and those who support his hateful, reckless and dangerous rhetoric and policies, but also because we believe electing Hillary Clinton will allow us the opportunity to build upon the legacy of President Obama and enact real progressive policies — and, importantly, it is a genuinely historic opportunity to elect our first woman president.
In large part thanks to the incredible primary campaign of Bernie Sanders, as well as the millions of people who supported him, the Democratic Party’s Platform, which Hillary Clinton is running on, is the most progressive platform ever.
We believe a Clinton presidency will provide us an opportunity over the next four years to fight to fix our rigged economy, make college more affordable, address climate change, expand Social Security, and appoint Supreme Court justices who oppose Citizens United, support voting rights, and believe in abortion rights.
We stand ready to fight alongside a President Clinton as she works to make the progressive platform she ran on into progressive policy. We also stand ready to hold a President Clinton accountable when she veers away from progressive policies or appointments.
But none of that is possible unless we elect Hillary Clinton.
Either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump will be our next president. Either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump will sit in the Oval Office every day and represent us around the world. Either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump will negotiate with Congress over budgets and priorities. Either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump will likely appoint one or more Supreme Court justices to lifelong terms.
In 2012 in key battleground states, some precincts were decided by fewer than 10 votes. A handful of votes in key precincts were the difference between re-electing President Obama or electing a President Mitt Romney. This year a few progressives making a protest vote, or not voting at all, could be the difference between a President Clinton or a President Trump.
Donald Trump’s racist, bigoted, misogynistic, Islamophobic, and xenophobic rhetoric and policies are a clear and present danger to our nation and everything progressives believe in. And his continued peddling of conspiracy theory that the election will be rigged, including at Wednesday’s debate, is a terrifying rejection of one of the cornerstones of our democracy — that candidates accept the will of the voters and ensure a peaceful transition of power — and serves as the latest call to ensure that we defeat Trump clearly and by a significant margin.
We continue to have significant disagreements with Clinton, particularly around foreign policy. But we also see areas where her platform increasingly responds to and aligns with grassroots social movements. And electing her and continuing to organize alongside those vibrant grassroots movements for change is, without question, the best option for progressives this election.
As we digest Donald Trump’s shocking refusal to state he’ll accept the result of this vote, we call on every progressive in the country to help ensure an overwhelming victory for Hillary Clinton — to send an unequivocal message that we are United Against Hate.
In this election, the choice for progressives could not be clearer.