As we’ve come to expect, Kate strips away the fluff and goes straight to the bone of just why this particular example of Democrats throwing their voters under the bus may have been the final straw.
Suddenly, for a host of different reasons, progressives are sending the message that we will not support these people if they keep breaking their promises and acting against our interests.
It’s an exciting moment, and there’s a chance to make a real difference if this latest swell of righteous indignation doesn’t lead directly to the same old shit: Some of us panic about losing a Democratic majority and start hollering at others to quit being so picky and oversensitive about our “single issues” and take one for the team. (Again. Still. Always.) If we can work together as a bona fide progressive movement, rather than a bunch of competing groups who will all ultimately settle for holding our noses and blocking the worst Republicans, we might actually force the Democrats to give us more than empty shout-outs on the campaign trail. But if some of us will sacrifice gay rights for a chance at advancing our own agendas, and others will sacrifice reproductive rights for a chance at advancing theirs, and a ludicrous number of self-identified progressives will sacrifice pretty much everything they claim to believe in, just because the words “Democratic majority” sound so much better than the alternative, then nothing will change.
So the wise, objective, pragmatic mansplainers can go ahead and tell us little ladies How This All Works one more time, but now we’re telling you: We’ve not only heard it, we’ve tried it. We’ve tried electing “moderate” Democrats who would be obvious conservatives in any era marked less by far-right lunacy. We’ve tried compromising our values in hopes of taking baby steps forward. We’ve tried sacrificing the rights of women and every minority group under the sun, so as not to look unreasonable or oversensitive to those who resent having to share this country at all with people they find undesirable. And we’ve seen where it leads: “We choose to play nice, our party trades on our freedoms. We choose to object, our party resents and blames us for failure.”
Really, when those are the options, there’s only one logical conclusion: This is not our party. We’ve known that for too long, and yet the Democrats have known too well that they could bank on our money and our votes as long as the GOP remained even more not our party. But something’s changed. Sixty-four Democrats voted to block women’s access to legal medical services. That may not be quite as repulsive as some Republican shenanigans, but the difference is only one of degree. If the point of women voting for “moderate” Democrats is to avoid a majority that’s actively hostile to women, then those who voted for the Stupak-Pitts amendment just proved that there’s no point at all.
Read, as they say, the whole thing.