What Responsible Democrats Must Now Do

Some progressive Democrats aren’t happy with the choice of Tim Kaine as Hillary Clinton’s vice president. He’s a choice more banking on delivering Virginia as well as independents and disaffected Republicans. It’s a sound strategy but will it hurt her chances of securing the true progressives?

In my previous article called What Responsible Republicans Must Now Do, I argued that while it was a bitter pill, Responsible Republicans have no choice but to insure Donald Trump does not win the presidency. Democrats also have the duty to act responsibly and insure Trump doesn’t win. I will admit I am a moderate Democrat so Hillary falls nicely into my beliefs. I have never been a hard progressive and I found most of Bernie Sanders ideas fanciful and impractical, for a number of reasons. So, yes, it’s easier for me to say, let’s all make sure we vote for Hillary and vanquish Trump. This article isn’t for the Hillary Democrats or even for the non-Hillary Democrats who are, nonetheless, practical in their thinking and know what must be done. This is for you Democrats who still say “I can’t vote for Hillary.”

At some point, you have to let go of your idealism and embrace the practical, not to mention, see the clear and present danger of Donald Trump. If you’re a Bernie progressive, understand you lost the battle, but won the war. You moved Hillary much farther to the left than she would have wanted to be and got 80% of your objectives into the party platform. I also think you woke her up to a new reality in the party and she is not likely to ignore you in the future. I’m sorry you didn’t get your guy, but your best chance of seeing a progressive agenda implemented is with Hillary Clinton. Take your victory and move on to the next one. Political revolutions take time and are built piece by piece. You’re not going to take down the Democratic machine all at once. And you might not even want to take it down. Elect a Democratic Senate and push for Bernie to be the Majority Leader. Do you understand what kind of power that gives you? If you’re patient and methodical, you can co-opt the system rather than destroying it.

But right now, to make any of this happen, the next decision you make has to be to insure Hillary Clinton is elected. Without that, none of the rest is possible. One strategy says, let Trump win and we run against him in 4 years with another real progressive. That’s a dangerous gamble and you underestimate the damage he can do in 4 years. Changes on the Supreme Court alone could last generations. The truth is, you can work with Hillary, you can use her. As Bernie himself says, don’t focus so much on the particular individual but on the mission.

As I said to Republicans, it’s up to you Responsible Democrats, to do what you must do. Maybe it’s a bitter pill for some of you as well, but it’s what needs to be done. First, save the country, then we can look to reforming the system.