With new survey evidence showing that the base Democratic Party voter has been steadily shifting to the left for the last 15 years, Dana Milbank of the Washington Post yesterday made it official:
When Bernie Sanders launched his bid for the Democratic nomination, he was often asked whether he, a democratic socialist, would actually become a Democrat. Now, more than a year after he ignited a movement with his unsuccessful bid, that question is moot. The Democrats have become socialists.
This became official, more or less, Wednesday afternoon, when Sanders rolled out his socialized health-care plan, Medicare for All, and he was supported by 16 of his Senate Democratic colleagues who signed on as co-sponsors, including the party’s rising stars and potential presidential candidates in 2020: Elizabeth Warren. Cory Booker. Kamala Harris. Kirsten Gillibrand.
Over at The new New Republic, John Judis agrees:
[M]uch to my surprise, socialism is making a comeback. The key event has been the campaign of self-identified democratic socialist Bernie Sanders, who almost won the Democratic nomination and is now reputedly the most popular politician in America. Several opinion polls have also found that young people now think favorably of socialism and ill of capitalism—a result that would have been almost inconceivable in the 1970s, when socialism, in the words of historian Staughton Lynd, was still a “forbidden word” in American politics. . . For the first time since the ‘60s, socialism looks like a politics with a future in the United States.
I’ll go on record to say that if Democrats want to make one-size-fits-all single-payer health care the centerpiece of their 2020 campaign, it will be the biggest albatross since George McGovern’s $1,000 per person “Demogrant” idea went down in flames in 1972. Yes—indeed people like “free stuff,” but there are tens of millions with health care they like just fine (including union workers with gold-plated plans they’d lose under Sanders’s scheme). The attack ads write themselves: just imagine a parade of veterans telling their stories of lousy care and long wait times at VA facilities, with the tag line “Government Single-Payer In Action. Or inaction.” Or something like that.
Meanwhile, Sen. Feinstein continues to receive blowback from the left for her blatant anti-Catholic bigotry. This time from someone who surely doesn’t want Prof. Amy Barrett confirmed to a circuit judgeship any more than Feinstein does, but at least Lawrence Tribe is willing to note honestly what has taken place:
Finally, just for fun, maybe my favorite headline from the campaign last year, appearing in the Washington Post in March:
And sure enough, white men decided that since Hillary didn’t need them, they didn’t need her. So what’s all the fuss about?