The ideal 2020 Democratic Party candidate needs to have three positive attributes: Their personal background story, their competency to lead as President, and their ability to win the election. The best candidate who matches these criteria is Elizabeth Warren.
Starting in a middle-class family in Oklahoma seems like an odd beginning for a future Harvard Law professor, but part of Elizabeth Warren’s appeal is her personal story. In her stump speech, she tells us of the financial troubles her family endured and her experiences balancing childcare as a working mom. She explains that her career path is simply not feasible for others today, and that’s what motivates her to run for President. As a “prairie populist,” she presents her biography in a folksy and relatable message that resonates with many voters. The possible conclusion of this story by becoming the first female U.S. President is an additional positive factor, especially after Hillary Clinton’s surprise loss in 2016.
Elizabeth Warren’s reputation as a policy wonk is confirmed by the sheer output of proposals by her campaign, including battling climate change, stopping the opioid crisis, taxing the largest corporations, canceling student debt, and providing universal child care. The popularity and scope of these proposals have risen to the point that “I’ve got a plan for that” has turned into an unofficial slogan for her. Her overall theme is that our government works well for the wealthy, but not the working class of this country. To change this, big structural change is needed. This clear message has helped fuel her rise in the polls and made her an effective voice in the debates.
Barack Obama and Donald Trump, despite their differences on nearly everything, have one major thing in common about their wins: Both created grassroots political movements that challenged the establishment. It’s not enough to not be named Donald Trump, as Hillary Clinton found out in 2016. Instead, the next nominee needs to build a political movement from the volunteer grassroots up, not from the national party down. Elizabeth Warren’s campaign, from her refusal to accept big-donor contributions to her messaging against corporations, is slowly being built by the ordinary people of this country.
These people understand the bad deal they have been given and recognize that it takes one of their own who has lived their struggles and speaks their concerns to lead us toward a better future. Elizabeth Warren has the right character to hold the job, the detailed plans to positively transform our country, and the energetic movement to win in 2020.
This month Eric is recommending "Happiness Is a Choice You Make: Lessons from a Year Among the Oldest Old," by John Leland.
We're all people who are getting older. This book is full of firsthand accounts from those who are the oldest old among us. It is an open-hearted, unvarnished look at life after 85. This look into the future can't help but put more emphasis on the present moment we are all living. This powerful look forward forces us to examine with clear eyes on all that life offers right now. I highly recommend this book.
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- Rex Richardson, Long Beach Vice Mayor, District 9