We desperately need a moderate and rational leader to win the Presidency in 2020. The destruction, both economic and diplomatic, already done to America’s international leadership by President Trump will take a generation to repair. We have equally pressing problems to solve here at home while the president stokes racist, white supremacist, and anti-immigrant hate to keep us divided.
What we do not need though is for the pendulum to swing to the opposite political extreme. Right now unless we have an economic crisis or a war healthcare and immigration are likely to be the key drivers of the 2020 election. So far Democrats aren’t ready for that campaign.
If our democracy survives another 20 or 40 years universal healthcare will be a fact of life and recognized even by conservatives as a fundamental American right. Meanwhile for the 2020 election some Democratic candidates for president are offering extreme solution; the most extreme are pushing a single payor Medicare for all that would eliminate the entire health insurance industry. A less extreme but still unworkable proposal is Medicare for all but with private insurers covering the deductible portion. The most reasonable approach being suggested by some is a Medicare buy-in as an initial public option.
Regardless of what candidates are saying we can’t achieve universal healthcare in one big single step. As a nation we aren’t smart enough to do that successfully. And Americans are not ready for radical changes. We must move toward that goal in incremental steps to prevent catastrophic unintended consequences. The Trump campaign is already exploiting the fear of candidates’ extreme Medicare ideas as representative of the mainstream of the Democratic Party and its “socialist” agenda.
Likewise, immigration, especially across our southern border, remains a humanitarian crisis and divisive issue. Democrats seem only willing to complain about the Trump Administration’s abuse of immigrants. That is not enough. The Democratic Party must offer a solution to the crisis that defines a rational strategic immigration policy and humane treatment of asylum seekers, but provides border security and endorses the rule of law in border violations. They don’t have to have every detail worked out, but as a Party they must be able to present and promote a common vision of what a just immigration policy under Democratic leadership would look like. Without a coherent plan, the Trump campaign will continue to define what Democrats stand for – OPEN BORDERS!
I am including a letter I wrote to the Chairman of the Democratic National Committee pushing the need for an aggressive coordinated effort to produce healthcare and immigration plans in preparation for the 2020 election. I realize that I may be wasting my time but it’s the only thing I know to do. If those of you who read my literature share my views and concerns a few more similar letters to politicians wouldn’t hurt.
July 23, 2019
Mr. Tom Perez
Democratic National Committee Chairman
430 south Capitol Street Southeast
Washington, DC 20003
Dear Chairman Perez,
I am a politically independent American concerned about the future of our democracy. We have a racist demagogue currently occupying the White House with a Republican Party whose members blindly endorse the president’s contempt for democratic principles, the constitution, and the rule of law. Now, in response, Democratic candidates for president seem to be moving to the extreme left – well beyond where most Americans are comfortable.
Currently several of those candidates are promoting radical solutions for our national healthcare crisis. Most Americans don’t want extreme disruption but incremental change. Likewise, Democratic candidates are not offering any clear comprehensive immigration reform plans, only complaints about the current humanitarian crisis. Unless the national economy tanks before the election, how the Democratic candidate handles both those issues is likely to be critical to winning the presidency in 2020.
It is time for the Democratic National Committee to exercise significant leadership and discipline in the Party. I recognize the Committee has only soft influence over members but it needs to do anything and everything possible to produce and publicize a Democratic consensus plan and strategy that deals with both healthcare and immigration in a rational way. And it needs all the Democratic candidates for president to buy into and support that common Democratic approach at some reasonable level.
I suggest the Committee engage the candidates as a group “today”, seek their ideas and input with the intention of defining the fundamental tenets of what the healthcare and immigration policies would look like under Democratic Party governance. If some candidates are unwilling to participate or support at least a nuanced version of a resulting Democratic Party vision, perhaps the Committee should withhold support for those individuals’ candidacies.
The Democratic Party can’t solve either crisis without the political power of the presidency. But it can, and in my opinion must, produce and promote rational strategic solutions to both during the current political season if it hopes to win. Donald Trump is a genius at twisting the facts, distorting the truth, and manipulating the media and public opinion for his benefit. The Committee needs to get Democratic candidates at least broadly on the same page soon. Trump is already effectively exploiting your differences and instilling fear of a Democratic presidency in much of the electorate.
Right now and for the foreseeable future until you put forward coherent strategic plans – including in the case of healthcare how you intend to pay for it – the Trump campaign will continue to define for public consumption what Democrats stand for – SOCIALISM AND OPEN BORDERS. If the Committee does not take control of its own message quickly, Americans will likely witness Trump’s re-election for another 4 years. I am not sure our democracy as we know it can survive that.
L. Mark Mathys
340 W Goodale St, Apt 506
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone – 864 378 4811
email – firstname.lastname@example.org
blog – blackwhiteorgray.com