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MellowDem

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Member since: Thu Jul 24, 2008, 05:59 PM
Number of posts: 5,018

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Why the War on Drugs is a Huge Failure



You want a more liberal Democratic candidate?

Well here's a reminder we are a pretty conservative country to this day, and that spills over into the Democratic Party.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/188129/conservatives-hang-ideology-lead-thread.aspx

Most Democrats don't describe themselves as "liberal", though it has been shifting that way for a while. Most of the party describes themselves as moderates or conservatives.

No liberal candidate is going to win a primary for a party with that ideological make up.

Part of the battle going forward, besides promoting liberal ideas, is just making liberal ideas seem normal and not whacky, and eventually people will think they're quite "moderate". The idea to mandate insurance to cover people with pre-existing conditions is seeming more and more "moderate" all the time for example (and yes, there are yet even better more liberal policies such as single payer that would eliminate the need, but it is getting people to think of healthcare as a right, a liberal idea). I think Sanders campaign is helping do that by simply bringing up major liberal policy goals in a country that hardly ever even hears them. But don't get your hopes up much more than that, or more positively, don't take for granted the positive aspects of this primary even if Sanders cannot win it.

And hold Hillary's feet to the fire, it won't lose her votes, and it will drive liberal ideas if we are consistent across candidates.

Progressives, we have a problem...

The party that most aligns to your views, the Democratic Party, isn't all that progressive, and a significant chunk of self-identified Democrats are bigots, homophobes, racists, sexists, and conservative.

This isn't from a collection of twitter posts. This is from polling. Feel free to dispute it, buy I think it represents a fairly accurate view.

First, keep in mind that only 32% of Americans describe themselves as Democrats. (2015)

http://www.people-press.org/2015/04/07/a-deep-dive-into-party-affiliation/

8% of Democrats are not willing to vote for a Jewish president. (2015)

http://www.gallup.com/poll/183713/socialist-presidential-candidates-least-appealing.aspx

11% of Democrats oppose interracial marriage (from 2011, the latest survey that split out by party affiliation).

http://www.gallup.com/poll/149390/record-high-approve-black-white-marriages.aspx

15% of Democrats oppose universal healthcare (2015)

http://kff.org/uninsured/poll-finding/kaiser-health-tracking-poll-december-2015/

19% of Democrats identify as conservative. (2014)

http://www.gallup.com/poll/180452/liberals-record-trail-conservatives.aspx

32% of Democrats don't identify as "pro-choice". (2015)

http://www.gallup.com/poll/183434/americans-choose-pro-choice-first-time-seven-years.aspx

36% of Democrats are not willing to vote for an atheist. (2015)

http://www.gallup.com/poll/183713/socialist-presidential-candidates-least-appealing.aspx

36% of Democrats identify as moderate. (2014)

http://www.gallup.com/poll/180452/liberals-record-trail-conservatives.aspx

41% of Democrats are not willing to vote for a socialist. (2015)

http://www.gallup.com/poll/183713/socialist-presidential-candidates-least-appealing.aspx

41% of Democrats are classified as "young Earth creationists". (2012)

http://www.gallup.com/poll/155003/hold-creationist-view-human-origins.aspx

44% of Democrats oppose gay marriage. (2015)

http://www.pewforum.org/2015/07/29/graphics-slideshow-changing-attitudes-on-gay-marriage/

A large portion of Democrats have views that are ban-worthy on DU. The way our electoral system works, progressives must work for a fairly conservative party. Only 44% of Democrats identify as "liberal".

It's hard to get excited working for a moderately conservative party. It's hard to have enthusiasm working with bigots, racists, sexists, homophobes and conservatives towards a watered down common goal. Without any political party that represents their interests, and no chance of one happening anytime soon (see corporate donations and lobbyist control), I think many progressives are disillusioned and apathetic, and may become more so, with the only motivation being fear of the far right.
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