09 June 2010

Have you given up on Democrats yet?

Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln survived a primary challenge yesterday from the state's Lt. Gov. Bill Halter. Organized labor and other progressive groups had been backing Halter against Lincoln, a staunch, business-friendly Blue Dog and, when it appeared she was in jeopardy, the establishment Democrats showed up in force to bail her out, even though polls had given Halter a better chance of winning the seat in November. People say Democrats don't have principles. Nothing could be further from the truth. Business Democrats have such strong principles, in fact, that they would rather lose elections than betray them. There is nothing new under the sun in that department, as Upton Sinclair will tell you.

Gabriel Winant sums it up nicely:
In other words, elite Democrats had a real choice, and they decided to stand with the Chamber of Commerce and treat the unions like the misbehaving hired help. They ran the same campaign that conservative Southern Democrats have been running for the better part of a century to keep labor out of the South, and it worked.

The direction we're headed in, judging by that White House official, is for Democrats to show the door to working-class voters. For years, Democratic leaders have desperately wanted theirs to be the party of upper-middle-class suburban professionals. And if Blanche Lincoln loses in November to her Republican challenger, as she probably will, all we'll be able to say is that Democrats got their wish: They wrote off working people, and working people wrote them off too.
The message could hardly be clearer. Democrats would rather be the minority party than leave their corporate masters at the mercy of the grubby hands of the working class. Stop wasting energy and resources believing they will someday change if you ask nicely enough.