by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley
The Democrats can’t serve their Black and working class base because they get their money from the 1%. “Their allegiance to global elites prevents them from making even small changes.” Democratic House Leader Nancy Pelosi brags that no change is coming because “we’re capitalist.” But Pelosi’s fund-raising power “won’t bring victory to a party that has been thoroughly discredited.”
Freedom Rider: Nancy Pelosi Sends Democrats Over a Cliff
by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley
“They cannot reach out to their base, which mostly means black people.”
“We’re capitalist. That’s just the way it is.”
Nancy Pelosi, leader of congressional Democrats, should be ought of a job. Pelosi has few political victories to speak of but she does raise money, lots of money. That is the only reason she is still the House Leader. She is a wealthy woman with access to other rich people who in turn keep party coffers full. When asked about her defeats she counters with one theme, her fundraising prowess.
She has raised $568 million since becoming leader in 2002. That seems impressive until it is pointed out that Democrats controlled the House of Representatives for only four years, from 2006 through 2010. She and the rest of the Democratic Party leadership made a huge effort in Georgia’s 6th district recently but still came up empty handed after raising more than $15 million in two months.
The decision to wage a fight in a solidly Republican state may seem strange but it was nothing more than the Democrats being up to their old tricks. If conservative Democrat Jon Ossoff had emerged victorious they would have said that moving to the right was the only path to victory.
They steadfastly refuse to engage voters with the issues that concern them and for a very important reason. Doing so would jeopardize their ability to court favor with the 1% of rich individuals, banks, and corporations. Democratic voters want Medicare For All and living wage jobs but those policy decisions are in conflict with the wishes of the party’s rich sugar daddies. So the voters be damned.
“If conservative Democrat Jon Ossoff had emerged victorious they would have said that moving to the right was the only path to victory.”
The result is defeat after ignominious defeat. Hillary Clinton certainly knew how to raise money too, a cool $1 billion to be exact. And yet she still lost to the man she thought would be easiest to beat. After watching Donald Trump win an Electoral College victory there was no soul searching, no attempt to change. Pelosi has said publicly on more than one occasion, “We don’t need to change.” The decision to spend millions in the Georgia race should have been the end of Pelosi’s career.
But reason be damned too. The Democrats have lost all legitimacy and that process didn’t just begin in 2016. The Obama marketing juggernaut combined with black voter turnout staved off the inevitable but now they are back to square one. They refuse to offer even minimal reforms yet hope that the same failed strategies will somehow work again.
The Democrats are in a profound state of contradiction. Their allegiance to global elites prevents them from making even small changes. The party is in a bind, flailing about with no purpose other than proving to its rich contributors that they are still on board with capitalism. That is why they chose to spend political capital and real capital on the Georgia race. It was ludicrous to think that Republicans in that district would suddenly switch sides and vote for a Democrat. But the Democrats are only left with inexplicably foolish decisions because their operational model demands it.
“Pelosi has said publicly on more than one occasion, ‘We don’t need to change.’”
They can’t even go through the motions of progressive pretense. After the Trump victory debacle Pelosi was asked several times about the need for the party to change. Her reply is always the same. “We don’t need to change.” But amid the nonsense was a moment of absolute truth. “We’re capitalist. That’s just the way it is.”
That is the answer in a nutshell. The Democratic Party is tied to capitalism as it has never been before and at a moment when that system is under great stress. They cannot reform. They cannot change. They cannot reach out to their base, which mostly means black people. Doing so would put them in conflict with their patrons and with their long held dream of winning without having to campaign for black votes. We can expect more of the same attempts to squeak through to victory while promoting rejected policies and treachery to their most loyal voters.
The crisis of legitimacy against the global elites has been evident in the Brexit vote in the U.K. and in Donald Trump’s victory here. Endorsements, corporate media buy-in and even fundraising no longer determine electoral success. The elites have been rejected and that means the Pelosi’s money getting juggernaut won’t bring victory to a party that has been thoroughly discredited.
The Democrats can still get votes by pointing to Trump as the bogeyman, but that isn’t enough to get Flint residents to the polls when a Democratic administration didn’t get them clean water. The people laboring under a multitude of debt peonage aren’t buying it either and neither are low wage workers and the jobless.
Pelosi may brag that she is, “Worth the trouble,” but she and her cohorts are indeed the problem. That is why the Democratic Party must be rejected out of hand. Their fortunes will not improve and being loyal to them is doing nothing more than staying on the road to defeat. The future of the 99% depends upon ending any connection with the Democratic Party and their discredited leadership. Nancy Pelosi and her friends are not worth the trouble at all.
Margaret Kimberley's Freedom Rider column appears weekly in BAR, and is widely reprinted elsewhere. She maintains a frequently updated blog as well as at http://freedomrider.blogspot.com. Ms. Kimberley lives in New York City, and can be reached via e-Mail at Margaret.Kimberley(at)BlackAgendaReport.com.