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Democrats Should "Take On the Swamp" and Mean It

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Thom Hartmann
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Reprinted from hartmannreport.com

If the Democratic Party wants to win big this fall and in 2024, their best bet is to oppose corruption in all its forms. And then, unlike the Trumpy Republicans, to walk the talk

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Russian presidential candidate Alexi Navalny is rotting in a Russian gulag because he picked up the most powerful weapon a candidate can wave against an entrenched political opponent: "Corruption."

Democrats need to learn from his effort, and Republicans are handing them all the ammunition they'll need for this fall.

When they make a clear and convincing case about the corruption of their opponents - like Navalny did against Putin in Russia - politicians claiming to fight corruption always win (unless they're poisoned and then thrown in prison).

Both Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil and Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Ukraine ran on anti-corruption platforms and won (only one was serious about the issue). There's no more powerful tool in a politicians toolbox.

Bolsonaro, during his first election, laid it out in terms most people agree with:

"The evils and harms of corruption affect the population in every way. This is what we want to stop. A corrupt government stimulates crime in all areas."

But, as The Washington Post points out, "Now, he'll have to find another slogan."

Donald Trump also ran against corruption in 2016 and it was his most powerful sales pitch.

Louise and I lived in Washington, DC at the time of the election and knew, socially, quite a few Trump voters, most of them active duty or retired military.

More than half of them were willing to vote for either Trump or Bernie Sanders: their issue was that our government had grown so corrupt that politics in DC needed a strong and incorruptible president who'd shake things up and clean house.

"Trump's too rich to be bought," they'd tell us, sometimes adding a variation on, "And Bernie doesn't care about getting rich so he can't be bought, either."

This phenomenon is completely independent of party.

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Thom Hartmann is a Project Censored Award-winning New York Times best-selling author, and host of a nationally syndicated daily progressive talk program on the Air America Radio Network, live noon-3 PM ET. www.thomhartmann.com His most recent books are "The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight," "Unequal Protection: The Rise of Corporate Dominance and the Theft of Human Rights," "We The People," "What Would Jefferson Do?," "Screwed: The Undeclared War Against the Middle (more...)

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