Liberals need to support the right candidates to win


With all that's come out concerning contacts between Trump's people and Russians, there is still no evidence Russia had anything to do with the president's victory over Hillary Clinton. But the United States has a long history of interfering in other countries' elections as well as supporting coups and using its armed forces to overthrow governments.

If you want to read about just some of our election interference, including President Bill Clinton’s effective efforts to get Russian president Boris Yeltsin re-elected in 1996, check out Gary Leupp’s Dec. 17, 2016 story that appeared in CounterPunch and Dissident Voice, but not in any mainstream publication.

Candidate Hillary Clinton vowed to implement policies similar to her husband’s. This included welfare “reform” that reformed many people into homelessness, a crime bill that resulted in an increase in the imprisonment of low-level, non-violent criminals whose skin was darker than her’s, and less in those she branded “super predators,” the signing of NAFTA, which increased the exporting of jobs and the reopening of tax loopholes that were closed by the 1986 Reagan tax reform.

This included eliminating the minimum corporate tax and reducing the capital gains tax back to 20 percent. To make matters worse, unlike her husband, she’s a warmonger.

Her primary opponent, Bernie Sanders, advocated single-payer health insurance, a $15 an hour minimum wage, free college, forgiveness of student loan debt, and the wealthy paying their fair share of taxes. Clinton did not. The Democratic leadership did their best to push Clinton and block Sanders.

We know now, thanks to Michael Wolff’s book, what I already believed. Trump ran such an incompetent campaign because he wanted to lose. What Trump didn’t realize is that throwing an election to Clinton is like a baseball team in 1962 trying to throw a game to the Mets.

Yes, Trump got a minority of the vote. Though Clinton got more, she still got less than half with 48 percent. Add the fact that many people voted for Trump as an anti-Clinton vote, and many voted for Clinton out of fear of Trump, those who truly supported either candidate was a smaller group. 

Clinton’s husband won with 43 percent and 49 percent of the vote in 1992 and 1996 respectively. But his wife did not have a Ross Perot-type candidate in the race to take votes away from the Republican candidate.

Have the Democrats learned anything from this? They had a chance to gain a seat from Kansas in the House of Representatives in an April 2017 special election. But because James Thompson was a Bernie Sanders-type candidate, the state Democratic Party turned down his request for $20,000. They gave him only $3,000. He lost by a little more than six percentage points.

The candidates Democrats have been pushing include Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who’s record includes using the threat of layoffs to extort poverty wage state workers to accept a three-year wage freeze, and opposing the legalization of marijuana.  

Also being pushed is the alleged progressive, Mayor Bill de Blasio. He thinks progressive politics means giving all union-represented city workers real money pay cuts.

In 2016, I voted for the Green Party’s presidential candidate, Dr. Jill Stein, in the general election. 

Though she only got 1 percent of the vote, Clinton had the gall to blame Stein for her loss.

To fight Trump’s policies by taking back Congress in 2018 and the presidency in 2020, the Democrats must give us good candidates. That means not allowing Wall Street or their lackeys in the Democratic Party to have veto power over who can be nominated.

It also means so-called liberals have to start supporting good candidates. The Bronx is supposed to be liberal, but Clinton got 70 percent of the primary vote in this borough, while Sanders got only 30 percent.

Rigged primaries and a local editor not printing pro-Stein letters for dubious reasons did not produce a Clinton victory. Run good candidates and you won’t have to wonder how awful Republicans are elected.

Richard Warren,