What Should Democrats Look for in a Candidate?

While it is likely to come as a surprise to those who explain November 2016 by referencing memes, conspiracies, and barely submerged racism and sexism in America’s heartland, people actually vote for candidates whom they believe will make their lives better. Not all voters and not all the time but most and most it. Do people dope things out wrong? Sure. With the help of both right-wing and mainstream media, lots of times. Ronald Reagan was awful for our nation. W too. Trump is a proto-fascist.

But when Hillary said Medicare-for-all would “never ever happen,” Trump was telling hard-pressed people that he would get them health care (he lied). When Obama trumpeted the TPP that Hillary had previously extolled, Trump promised to pull out of the lousy trade deals that have cost us millions of jobs and have kept wages at starvation levels for many. He has done this to a degree but has mostly pursued “gush up” economics. Trump championed a “big beautiful” wall to keep out individuals whom giant corporations use as yet another tool to keep wages low here.

Trump insisted to families who have lost loved ones in the Middle East in endless self-destructive wars that he had opposed W’s (and Hillary’s) War on Iraq. Contrariwise, Hillary was boasting of her friendship with Cambodia bomber Henry Kissinger and calling for a no-fly-zone over Syria – basically war with Russia.

So if you want Democrats to win, you should be insisting on a candidate who will 1) impose tariffs to incentivize job creation here, 2) bring troops home from the Middle East, 3) raise taxes on the wealthy, 4) fight for Medicare-for-all and economic justice generally. White, black, brown, Asian, woman, trans, man, charismatic, boring, none of that matters nearly as much as the correct policies propounded by a truly credible candidate.

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