Democratic Candidates begin to Line-Up for President
Mario Marcel Salas
Progressive candidates and centralists in the Democratic Party are beginning to line-up for president in 2020. Sens. Bernie Sanders, Cory Booker, Elizabeth Warren, Sens. Kamala Harris and Kirsten Gillibrand, and former Vice President Joe Biden are all indicating their desire to be the Democratic nominee for U.S. President in 2020. But the list goes on with folks that are foolish to even think about it. People like Sherrod Brown, a state senator from Ohio, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, and a slew of other people that are suffering from the same behavioral disorder of narcissism as Donald Trump (I know crazy when I see it!).
With Donald Trump being the darling of the extreme right and depraved racists Democrats are starting to line up for the 2020 presidential elections. There are a few candidates that are already starting to surface. Of course Bernie Sanders is out there with all of his good stuff and some narrow ideas to boot. Sanders has always been weak on discussions about racism. Though he has said many great things that are from progressive ideas, some of them are timed warped into a past that is outside of reality. Sanders has placed the idea of working class issues as separate from racism in the old Marxist view of the centrality of class over race. Racism and classism can no longer be separate issues of inequality. Racism and classism are tied at the hip and have been ever since slavery was a profitable enterprise. Europeans were collapsed into an invented “white race” in order to justify white privilege. This had its beginnings after the defeat of the Moors in Spain in 1492 and later became scientific racism in the 1700s.
Classism and racism are connected in profound ways that Bernie has yet to understand. He is not a racist in my opinion, but simply uneducated to the centrality of race and class. As long as he keeps putting class inequalities before racial inequalities he will keep placing racism into a secondary concern. He got this foolishness from old school Marxists that never understood the centrality of race and class, of how racism becomes the tool to eliminate class inequalities in the minds of some white workers and how that still works in the 21st Century. One is reminded of the propaganda that the southern confederacy put forth to the poor whites that died for the cause of slavery. The southern plantocracy emphasized that no matter how poor white workers were; they were all one class in terms of race. This idea is hundreds of years old and still holds white workers at bay.
Sanders has little understanding of this even though he is anti-racist. This does not mean that class is secondary to race, for both are key and on equal footing to understand how Trump can manipulate some white workers. Class has never been central in this country, but is an idea that originally applied to Europe and mistakenly applied to America which was founded on racism and slavery. U.S. leaders were racist slave owners while claiming to be anti-colonial freedom fighters against England. Most blacks actually fought for the British in the Revolutionary War and not the Virginia based slave owning patriots.
Another candidate is Kamala Harris. She is a California Senator (She is of Jamaican and East Indian heritage) who has been a thorn in the Trump bandwagon. She is a lawyer and was the California Attorney General for many years. Harris has not been without criticism however. Though she was awarded the Thurgood Marshall Award by the Urban League, she also has helped to keep innocent men in prison. Harris was overruled in the case of Daniel Larsen and later in an LBGT case that was the result of discrimination. Harris has a reputation of going to extremes to the left and to the right which may hurt her bid for the presidency. Harris is appealing to the left and the right and many feel that her posturing against Trump is only superficial. However, her positions against Trump have been consistent. Harris spoke in opposition to Trump's picks of Betsy DeVos for Secretary of Education, and Jeff Sessions for United States Attorney General. In her defense I would argue that her questioning of potential criminals or racists, such as Attorney General Jeff Sessions, is on target and makes her a strong potential candidate for President.
However, in interviews on The Today Show, Harris argued for treating truancy among children in primary schools as a crime committed by the parents of these children. This is problematic, as the parents of these children are often poor and without guidance themselves on how to raise children. Some of these children come from broken homes and punishing parents that are the victims of poverty is hardly any way to approach this problem. Often these parents have no control over these children no matter how hard they may try. Harris is thus playing the right wing game of blaming victims for a problem that is sociological, economic, and psychological in complexity. Blame the poor is what conservatives are doing, so Harris fails there.
The Democrats need to find a candidate that is not a candy-ass and can be strong against Trump, while not caving in to the corporate madness that often gets the country into trouble. I don’t believe that Sanders or Harris are right for the position. Some are saying that Cory Booker may be the best choice for president in a run against Trump if the President survives possible criminal prosecution. Others are saying that Senator Elizabeth Warren does not have the spirit or the mettle to be an effective president. We shall see, but the Democrats do not need to fill the stage with dozens of losers that will only end up arguing with each other and assure a Republican win. Sanders may end up being the spoiler that helps Trump to be re-elected.