By Robert A. Vella
In 1968, disagreement over the Vietnam War opened a huge chasm in the Democratic Party which wasn’t corrected until 1992. Long-dormant fault lines between establishment liberals and populist progressives had been exposed by the party’s authoritarian practices. In July 2013, I warned that it would happen again:
And, here’s where future elections could get problematic for the Democratic Party. Recent revelations about the Obama Administration’s secret surveillance operations (i.e. NSA), their clandestine investigation of journalists (i.e. Associated Press), their persecution of whistleblowers, leakers, and sources, and their continued military involvements on foreign lands (e.g. Syria), are eerily similar to the authoritarianism of the Vietnam War era. As before, this has the potential to alienate the younger, progressive, and civil libertarian wing of the party. If they choose not to vote, the Democratic Party will have shot itself in the foot once again.
Earlier this month, it did happen again as I had forecasted in October:
By torpedoing two of their strongest efforts to expand the electorate, Democrats seem to be trying not to lose rather than trying to actually win this election. I believe they have miscalculated once again, since that strategy is not one designed to inspire people.
Now, after the debacle of the 2014 midterm elections, the reopening of the great Democratic Party divide is official as its neoliberal establishment balks at reformist pressures coming from its progressive base.
From Daily Kos – Some Democrats Have No Idea Why Elizabeth Warren Was promoted To Leadership:
WASHINGTON — Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) got a promotion on Thursday. She now has a seat at the Senate Democratic leadership table and, in a role created just for her, she will serve as a policy adviser and voice for progressives.
Her colleagues have no idea why this is happening.
From Daily Kos – Warren to Oppose Obama Pick for Treasury Undersecretary:
Sen. Elizabeth Warren plans to oppose President Barack Obama’s nomination of Antonio Weiss, a Wall Street investment banker, to be Treasury Undersecretary for Domestic Finance, another sharp-elbowed move by the progressive movement’s most prominent leader.
From Daily Kos – New DSCC chair Jon Tester doesn’t like or think like his party, and that could be a problem:
Montana Sen. Jon Tester is a testament to the pragmatism that infuses the netroots—a conservative Democrat who was eminently electable in light-Red Montana. Today, however, he was chosen for a task broader than his corner of America—heading up the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.
His is a homogenous state, with 90 percent of its population white. American Indians, at 6.5 percent, are the largest (and pretty much only) non-white group. His is not a profile that matches that of the Democratic Party, and he’s shown no ability to understand what drives the new Democratic (and American) electorate.
This could get really ugly in the lead-up to the 2016 presidential election. A divided Democratic Party has no chance for success because it won’t be able to drive-up voter turnout. Unfortunately, the party establishment will likely resist populist pressures at all costs… just as it did in 1968. For the consummate neoliberal Hillary Clinton, don’t be surprised if she reads the writing on the wall and decides not to run. You read it here first.
I do believe you’re right about Hilary as you’ve been for some time now. There are very dark times ahead.
Sure wish I was wrong…
Me too, but I don’t think so.
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