While Democrats marinated in the unverifiable news of President-elect Donald Trump’s “golden shower” dossier, Senators Amy Klobuchar and Bernie Sanders put forward an amendment, which called for the establishment of a “deficit-neutral reserve fund” to “lower prescription drug prices for Americans by importing drugs from Canada. It was rejected, 52 to 46, even though Trump favors renegotiating drug prices and said pharmaceutical companies are “getting away with murder.”
Thirteen Democratic Senators voted against the amendment, an early sign of what’s to come. Their votes ensured the amendment failed.
If history is any indication, having even an atom’s worth of faith that the Democratic Party establishment will fight to give struggling Americans the slightest reprieve, as they fight for access to affordable medicine, is useless.
In light of a Republican stranglehold on both the House and Senate, there is no reason this amendment should not have passed with unanimous support from Democrats.
New Jersey Senator Cory Booker, one of the more notable Democrats who voted against the Klobuchar amendment, believes he will lead the “resistance” to Trump. He tweeted “like Picard did The Borg, I will resist the things [Trump] does that will hurt [New Jersey] and America. #ResistanceIsNotFutile.”
The very idea that Booker will be part of any Democratic-led “resistance” that claims to be poised to combat an administration made up of villainous stock characters is confounding.
As Republicans worked to destroy what little health care coverage exists for citizens, Maria Cantwell, a U.S. Democratic senator from Washington, joined other Democrats during the roll call to denounce the GOP for “stealing healthcare from Americans.” Despite all of her stern condemnations, Cantwell voted against the Klobuchar amendment.
Feeble attempts to delegitimize Trump—from mocking his name to turning him into nothing more than a cartoonish adversary—failed liberals. These out of touch maneuvers cost them politically.
In light of Clinton’s devastating loss, there have been numerous attempts at formulating a response. They include sharing self-help guides and checklists. “The Resistance Guide,” a self-proclaimed resource aimed at helping “members of #TheResistance organize and mobilize,” is one of them. The guide currently has a list of campaigns aimed at isolating Trump and his supporters but virtually nothing on confronting his political ideology.
Another goal of “the resistance” is to find ways to scheme for power so as to elect Democrats. And yet, for Democrats, Trump’s administration is merely a blemish they must excise, not evidence of deep-rooted, standardized failings that they have contributed to.
As of yet, there is no concrete path of “resistance” laid out by Democratic Party operatives to combat the destruction of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), outside of the usual pontificating. There has been no call, for example, to build a coalition of advocates made up of organizations and activists already working in the service of those in need of health care coverage, like Single Payer Now, the American Medical Student Association, and Physicians for A National Health Program.
While Hillary Clinton will attend the Trump inauguration, prominent Clinton strategist David Brock will be gathering a group of Democrat donors for three days of closed-door-meetings that are part of his new project: Democracy Matters.
With Democracy Matters, Brock aims to create a political apparatus that will emulate the reach and influence of the Koch Brothers empire in order to combat Donald Trump.
Those who plan to attend include Republicans Bill Weld and Richard Painter. Weld helped former President George W. Bush win re-election. Painter served as head White House ethics lawyer for the Bush administration. Both supported Hillary Clinton.
This is the face of what has been referred to as anti-Trump “resistance”—a coalition of gutless legislators, and their supporters, who are determined to preserve a system that has invariably hurt the most in need.
If Democrats are going to fold their hands and leave those unable to face the hurdles imposed by insurance companies, then what purpose do they serve if not their own interests?
The perpetual defeatism expressed by the Democratic Party has already had its consequences, and now, for many citizens, these new failures will mean they will see more of a direct impact on their quality of life.
Figures like failed Clinton surrogate Neera Tanden and melodramatic jester Keith Olbermann bellow about the failures of the Republican Party and Trump while calling themselves “the resistance.” Olbermann even has a video series for GQ called “The Resistance,” where he has a complete meltdown during each episode, screaming at viewers—until he’s nearly breathless—about the Russians in the attic. Nothing about what this “resistance” entails is defined. Primarily, viewers are treated to expressions of unbridled nationalism.
Failed Clinton surrogates like Bakari Sellers, who is a pundit for CNN, spend time mocking people, such as Cornel West, for challenging Obama and fighting to expand the politics of the possible.
Last July, those clamoring to “resist” Trump’s administration actively participated in the Democratic Party’s Platform Drafting Committee and ensured an amendment proposal to include single-payer healthcare in the official party platform was blocked. The failure to support what is a basic fundamental right—the right to healthcare—is part and parcel of the Democratic establishment’s deficiency.
Those who are unwilling to fight on behalf of the public are in no position to call themselves “the resistance.”