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Many Progressives will Sit this Election Out

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Will Progressives Sit the 2010 Elections ou

Will Progressives Sit the 2010 Elections out?

The progressive movement that propelled Barack Obama to the Presidency has very little reason to come out to vote for the Democrats this fall. If Republicans make gains in the House and Senate, it is not because they offer a better plan for America, it is because the progressive Democratic electorate have been demoralized by the decidedly un-progressive agenda of the Democratically led Congress and White House.

In the Florida primaries held yesterday, Republican turnout far exceeded Democratic turnout (Dems 909,000, Reps 1,250,000) despite more Democrats being registered in the state of Florida.

This result was entirely predicable based on the Obama administration's abandonment of their progressive base. While the war in Iraq rages on as a privatized military operation, and the war in Afghanistan is escalated even further (despite little indication that our allies in Pakistan have our best interests at heart) progressives feel that the Obama administration has not reined in the military special interests that dominate Washington.

The Mitt Romney style health insurance reform legislation strikes most progressives as far too friendly to the private health insurance industry, and far too unfriendly to health care patients. Without some type of not-for-profit health insurance option, the entire endeavor seems like a giveaway to the for-profit insurers.

The banking reform legislation recently passed by Congress also seems far too corporate friendly to many progressives, and downright useless to others due to the lack of any Glass-Steagall like provisions.

The lack of any accountability that former Bush administration officials have been held to further exacerbates the problem for incumbent Democrats.

The list of progressive grievances goes on.

Progressives who were emailed on a daily basis for their opinions and cash during the Obama candidacy have had a deaf ear turned to them by the Obama administration.

Indeed, I can think of almost no reason to go to the polls in November to ask for more of the same treatment by the Democrats. It is not that I don't understand that Washington is a very conservative place with very powerful anti-progressive influences; I have lived in the DC area for 28 years. It is that I expected Democrats to do what they promised, even if it meant a tough fight, and conservative backlash. They were going to get conservative backlash regardless of their agenda. What we got instead was constant compromising with the Republicans even before any negotiations began. What we got was a very lobbyist-centered administration that did not bring us the change that they had promised during the election. At this point the Obama administration and the Democrats have allowed the framing of the public debate to shift so far to the right that progressives aren't even on the radar screen anymore.

So don't expect the abandoned base of the Democratic Party to flock to the polls this fall and demand more of the same. We voted for change in 2008, not the status quo.

The Obama administration is going to learn a difficult political lesson in the fall; the lesson that you don't abandon your base if you want to have the support needed to pass legislation or the support needed to get reelected. Or perhaps they actually would prefer a Republican led Congress, because then they will have a plausible excuse for their lack of a progressive agenda.

 

http://www.n-acetylaspartate.com

John R. Moffett PhD is a research neuroscientist in the Washington, DC area. Dr. Moffett's main area of research focuses on the brain metabolite N-acetylaspartate, and an associated genetic disorder known as Canavan disease.


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... when Progressives think there is no reason to ... by Steven Leser on Wednesday, Aug 25, 2010 at 10:14:48 PM
Who are "enabling the victories of Republican legi... by Kevin Gosztola on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 10:46:08 AM
but not all of them and those who haven't ought to... by Michael Shaw on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 2:16:51 PM
We're only 10 years passed when people like you we... by Steven Leser on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 5:58:43 PM
We're likely reading different books on American ... by Kevin Gosztola on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 7:54:28 PM
there. Actually, you needn't even ask. I have a st... by Steven Leser on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 8:36:01 PM
Monday -- We each post our initial posts.Tuesday -... by Kevin Gosztola on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 10:28:19 PM
Best wishes with your move, Steven. I'll be in Br... by Dakotahgeo on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 10:53:15 AM
But I still believe progressives are smart enough ... by Michael Shaw on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 12:53:24 PM
I'll go rollerblading.Why waste my time and get a ... by Daniel Geery on Wednesday, Aug 25, 2010 at 10:16:28 PM
and totally respect his depth of thinking. But I s... by Daniel Geery on Wednesday, Aug 25, 2010 at 10:23:18 PM
For too many people the choices are a Blue Dog Dem... by phidipidese on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 2:05:31 AM
I'm not a Progressive, and have little idea of wha... by phidipidese on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 2:24:03 AM
we should expect a lack of participation by progre... by Michael Shaw on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 1:12:32 PM
He simply brought his predecessor's war spending o... by John Sanchez Jr. on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 6:53:10 AM
Obama requested$708.2 billion defense budget for f... by phidipidese on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 1:30:39 AM
allowing one's citizenship to lapse. Too bad. I at... by John Sanchez Jr. on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 2:07:19 AM
Progressives rather naively thought they elected O... by Marika on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 3:47:57 AM
After a while of this onslaught from OpEdNews, one... by ssg13565 on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 10:36:37 AM
As a ringleader behind this plot, let me say the l... by Kevin Gosztola on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 11:00:45 AM
That's what the comment section is designed to all... by WML on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 4:56:39 PM
Now, go back to the anuses of the Democrats you re... by Rob Kall on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 9:44:18 AM
Will someone give me a logical reasonif we are dis... by Charley Barcelo on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 10:38:47 AM
Good thinking, Charley! Look what the Republicans ... by Tony Wicher on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 3:37:49 PM
... if all you do is give away the store!Excellent... by Nikk Katzman on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 11:12:20 AM
If you refrain from voting, you will simply join t... by Karen Sandness on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 11:15:33 AM
Just for fun and because I am an independent in Ar... by Marlene Brown on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 10:46:35 PM
I'm going to vote, its important to let them know ... by Pavlov's Dog on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 11:23:04 AM
Back in the day when Republicans were the business... by Philip Pease on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 11:26:04 AM
I used to find it amusing that intelligent people ... by Emily Billings on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 11:26:43 AM
This is all a lot more griping and so repetitious.... by Gustav Wynn on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 12:03:25 PM
yes!!! We get what we ask for. We get what we vot... by Dakotahgeo on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 12:31:04 PM
If your kids are young enough, they know what they... by John Sanchez Jr. on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 12:36:25 PM
If you don't stop spreading the myth, it will then... by Freddie Venezia on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 12:44:03 PM
Freddie, John Moffet cited voting numbers. There a... by Rob Kall on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 10:04:56 AM
except, possibly, appoint Elizabeth Warren. Many w... by Helen on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 10:32:43 AM
In January 2013 when Republicans have bare majorit... by John Sanchez Jr. on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 2:41:03 PM
are two different ball games. Midyear primaries ra... by Michael Shaw on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 12:45:58 PM
We can blame the Democratic Party to some degree f... by Tony Wicher on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 3:58:33 PM
the problem is the hierarchy in the democratic par... by Michael Shaw on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 4:46:50 PM
is good political advice. How to recognize a base ... by Margaret Bassett on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 12:46:02 PM
Obama should certainly take this into consideratio... by Michael Shaw on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 1:28:59 PM
...before it gets better. There is not enough of a... by Adam Smith on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 12:59:43 PM
Look, I'm very much a "leftie" and I am very disap... by Tony Wicher on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 2:54:22 PM
I WILL definitely vote, butfor an alternative cand... by Marta Barbosa on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 3:40:27 PM
The Dems have to lose their shirts this November s... by daveys on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 5:40:37 PM
it certainly did under Reagan, Bush 41, and Bush 4... by John Sanchez Jr. on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 6:01:17 PM
I thought I'd post the following for everyone's co... by boomerang on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 6:09:32 PM
I understand fully the different sides of this a... by John R Moffett on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 6:24:37 PM
all the heart-felt patriotic 'my vote matters' opi... by hourglass on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 8:46:31 PM
and begin to wonder which fervent Democrats qualif... by Margaret Bassett on Thursday, Aug 26, 2010 at 9:23:40 PM
I think we should not fall for the blame game, "we... by Marika on Saturday, Aug 28, 2010 at 1:20:50 PM
IF OUR VOTES COUNTED, IT MIGHT BE WAY TO VOTE THE ... by MARGARET BASET on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 12:34:47 AM
So, Obama didn't or couldn't (depending on perspec... by Doc "Old Codger" McCoy on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 1:18:50 AM
well, codge, i hate to be the one to tell, but you... by hourglass on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 2:28:34 AM
What you are advocating is acquiescence to the des... by John Sanchez Jr. on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 7:39:00 AM
Dems need to be fearful lest republi-cons take pow... by phidipidese on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 1:56:27 AM
Progressives, like conservatives have absolutely n... by Matthew Peters on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 3:32:13 AM
In an earlier comment, Charley Barcelo asked an ex... by Perry Logan on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 1:00:18 PM
In a situation more serious than when FDR was elec... by Marika on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 5:02:52 PM
Nearly 60 comments. You woke up the class, Undoubt... by Margaret Bassett on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 2:00:32 PM
I will try to keep this topic alive, because I con... by John R Moffett on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 4:35:47 PM
I mean even though I don't need to be drug tested ... by Miriam Callaghan on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 4:18:16 PM
The republicans are going to continue getting loud... by Adam Smith on Friday, Aug 27, 2010 at 5:16:59 PM
Traditionally a time for Democrats to stand up for... by Margaret Bassett on Saturday, Aug 28, 2010 at 1:00:08 AM
Let's address your arguments on their own merits. ... by Jeffrey Rock on Saturday, Aug 28, 2010 at 9:51:04 AM
...and we have heard them all before. And what do ... by Jeffrey Rock on Saturday, Aug 28, 2010 at 9:59:34 AM
Whatsa matta, Jeff?? Get up on the wrong side of ... by Dak on Saturday, Aug 28, 2010 at 11:00:09 AM
Are there any parts of the country where a concent... by John Jonik on Saturday, Aug 28, 2010 at 5:30:01 PM