In an outrageous act, the Democratic Party is threatening to pick a Speaker of the House who is even more conservative than Nancy Pelosi if the few progressives in Congress do not concede to the party establishment and endorse her.
The overwhelming majority of the opposition to Pelosi is coming from the right wing of the Democratic House caucus. Think about that. Congressional Democrats are so corporate that Nancy Pelosi is significantly left of center. The party gives us a choice between Pelosi and someone who is even more attached to Wall Street.
Faced with this threat, progressive Democrats like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Pramila Jayapal are giving in and endorsing Pelosi for Speaker. These are the kinds of no-win choices that the party forces progressives to make.
Endorsing everything that is wrong with the Democratic Party undermines your moral authority and grassroots support, which in turn makes elected progressives more dependent on the party machine. This is how Democrats have controlled and contained the progressive movement for decades. The party blocks most progressives with rigged primaries then forces the few who get elected to capitulate to its corporate agenda.
In 2016 Bernie Sanders taught us that there is no such thing as a people’s candidate or a people’s party that takes corporate and billionaire money. You cannot serve the oligarchs and working people at the same time.
If we are ever to reverse our country’s slide into authoritarianism, if we are ever to confront the roiling climate crisis, if we are ever to guarantee health care and education for all in a more just nation, if we are ever to win this political revolution — these are the kinds of choices that we must free ourselves from with a new genuinely progressive party. The majority of Americans have wised up to the scam the corporate parties are running on us and are calling for that major new party.
To succeed we will need the wisdom and the courage to let go of the familiar, the comfortable, and to listen to the poor, the young, and the working people who are crying out for a new beginning.
Founder and National Director
Movement for a People’s Party