Be clear about what happened to Keith Ellison
Matt Bruenig

This comment about the Tom Perez versus Keith Ellison race for the head of the Democratic National Committee makes the problems for progressives clear. By portraying the “sides” in this race as the “right” and the “left,” it already takes readers in the wrong direction. There is no “right” within the Democratic Party, and certainly not Tom Perez. This is an example of the far left fighting the left over ideological purity. It was precisely this group that gave us Donald Trump. Over 8 million people voted for third party candidates, including a million and a half for Jill Stein, and this is what cost Hillary Clinton the election, and snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. What could have been a new progressive era, instead has turned into what increasingly looks like fascism. Bernie Sanders spent his entire political career outside the Democratic Party and then ran as a Democrat because he realized that there could be no victory outside the two-party system, and then as soon as the primary was over, he reverted back to being an independent who, somehow, should be able to remake the Democratic Party to his own ideological vision, despite having lost by 4 million votes in the primary, and lost the majority of both the pledged and the super delegates. A left that treats the Democratic Party as the enemy, instead of focusing primarily on defeating Republicans and the right-wing agenda of those who are working within it should be defeated. Democrats need to stick together, to work together, and to understand that progressive politics can only be successful within the two-party system given the structure of U.S. politics, and that means within the Democratic Party. Voting third party within this system is a vote for your worst enemy (to quote Bill Domhoff), and indeed, this is what the third party vote of the left led to in the 2016 election. Instead of a progressive Democrat in the White House who would have further the agenda that progressives wanted, the left voted us into our worst nightmare. Democrats can work together to improve policies and to foster preferences, but we should not be trying to destroy or undermine each other in ways that provide victory to the far right, alt-right, and white nationalist Republicans.

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