Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 44 Share on Twitter Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
OpEdNews Op Eds   

Coming Sooner or Later: Elizabeth Warren's Mondale Moment

By       (Page 1 of 2 pages)   50 comments
Follow Me on Twitter     Message Thomas Knapp

Announcement Day - Lawrence%2C MA - 47108769091 %281%29.
Announcement Day - Lawrence%2C MA - 47108769091 %281%29.
(Image by (From Wikimedia) Elizabeth Warren, Author: Elizabeth Warren)
  Details   Source   DMCA

"Let's tell the truth," said Walter Mondale as he accepted the Democratic Party's 1984 presidential nomination. "It must be done, it must be done. Mr. Reagan will raise taxes, and so will I. He won't tell you. I just did."

That comment looms large in popular memory as the cause of Mondale's crushing defeat that November. Of 50 states, he carried only one, his home state of Minnesota, polling only 40.6% of votes nationwide to Ronald Reagan's 58.8%.

More than three decades later, Democratic presidential candidates continue to cower in fear of another "Mondale Moment." They tiptoe around tax issues, generally promising to raise taxes only on "the rich" and sometimes even mulling tax cuts for important voter blocs (usually a vaguely defined "middle class").

US Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has spent the last few weeks running from her own Mondale Moment, refusing to answer the straight-up question from debate moderators and interviewers:

"Would funding your Medicare For All proposal require a middle class tax increase?"

She bobs. She weaves. She clinches. She tries to change the subject. There's seemingly nothing she won't do to avoid giving a straight answer.

Why? Because the only plausible straight answer is "yes."

This is not an "anti-Medicare-For-All" column. I'm not a fan of the proposal for various reasons, but it is obviously on offer from two of the Democratic Party's three presidential front-runners. Over the next 13 months, Democratic primary voters will be, and the American electorate may be, asked to accept or reject it.

Since it IS on the table, the candidates supporting and opposing it owe those voters clear explanations of what it entails not just in terms of benefits, but costs.

According to the Urban Institute (generally regarded as a moderately "left"-leaning think tank) what it entails is an increase in federal government spending of $32 trillion over ten years.

That's an average of $3.2 trillion per year. In 2018, the federal government's total revenues came to $3.3 trillion.

So what we're talking about here is doubling the federal budget -- which means either doubling tax revenues or quintupling government borrowing.

There aren't enough "rich" people to cover that tab, even if Warren's other plans didn't already tap them as a significant revenue source.

Therefore, middle class and working class Americans are going to have to pay higher taxes if Medicare For All is going to happen.

Warren claims that those middle and working class Americans are going to save money anyway. Her logic is obvious: She believes that Americans' healthcare bills will go down more than their taxes go up.

Next Page  1  |  2

(Note: You can view every article as one long page if you sign up as an Advocate Member, or higher).

Must Read 1   Funny 1   Interesting 1  
Rate It | View Ratings

Thomas Knapp Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Thomas L. Knapp is director and senior news analyst at the William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism ( He lives and works in north central Florida.

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Follow Me on Twitter     Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEd News Newsletter
   (Opens new browser window)

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

2020: I'm So Sick of Superlatives

America Doesn't Have Presidential Debates, But It Should

Hypocrisy Alert: Republicans Agreed with Ocasio-Cortez Until About One Minute Ago

Chickenhawk Donald: A Complete and Total Disgrace

Finally, Evidence of Russian Election Meddling ... Oh, Wait

The Nunes Memo Only Partially "Vindicates" Trump, But it Fully Indicts the FBI and the FISA Court

To View Comments or Join the Conversation:

Tell A Friend