Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Populist Agenda Is An Electable Agenda

Terrance Heath

● 53 percent support the government paying students’ tuition for community college.
● 71 percent support debt-free college at all public universities.
● 78 percent believe the government should limit greenhouse emissions from businesses.

● 61 percent believe that in today’s economy, just a few people at the top have the chance to get ahead.
● 57 percent say the government should do more to reduce the gap between the rich and the poor.
● 65 percent believe income inequality is a problem that needs to be addressed now.

Money in Politics
● 84 percent think money has too much influence in elections today.
● 81 percent would support getting rid of secret money in our political system by requiring full disclosure and transparency of all political money.
● 75 percent would support preventing the wealthy and big corporations from spending unlimited amounts of money on elections.

Social Security and Medicare
● 59 percent support the government offering a health care plan similar to Medicare to compete with the private market.
● 71 percent support giving all Americans the choice of buying health insurance through Medicare or private insurers.
● 62 percent of voters in Senate battleground states support increasing Social Security benefits.

● 62 percent say the rich pay too little in taxes.
● 68 percent are in favor of increasing taxes on those making more than $1 million a year.
● 74 percent support ending tax loopholes for corporations that ship jobs overseas.
● 75 percent support fair trade standards that protect workers, the environment, and jobs.
● 55 percent oppose giving the president exclusive authority to negotiate trade deals that would only allow Congress to vote yes or no, but not change.

Wages and Workers
● 59 percent support a minimum guaranteed income.
● 84 percent support making sure working women earn equal pay, and opening up opportunities to women at all levels.
● 66 percent support making jobs pay enough to live on by defending the right of workers to bargain for better wages and benefits, and increasing the national minimum wage.

Wall Street
● 66 percent support breaking up big banks that are “too big to fail.”
● 55 percent support a financial transactions tax.

These are just some of the issues on which a growing number of Americans agree with Bernie Sanders.

Pundits and commentators love to put Sanders and Trump in the same category: Candidates Who Make Their Party Establishment Nervous. The difference is that Trump’s appeal is to the basest of the GOP base. Sanders’ populist message crosses partisan lines, and appeals to Americans who know that the economic and political system has been rigged against them. They want an economy of equal opportunity and shared prosperity, where good jobs with fair wages are available to anyone who wants one. More and more of them are demanding that their elected leaders act on it, and that their candidates support it.

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