Teresa Jenkins, Vice Chair, Charlotte County Democratic Party
The president has not been exonerated. There was no collusion but plenty of corruption as evidenced by the number of deviants close to the president who now face jail time. The Mueller report showed us how a demagogue can degrade key norms, which fall just short of actual chargeable crimes.
The Mueller report and what we’ve witnessed over the past two years tells us that we need to recognize the conditions which allowed this demagogue to reach the White House. If we don’t pay attention to the causes, we may find another figure like him in the future or he might win re-election. Democrats need to stop hoping investigations will get rid of him.
Instead Democrats and progressives need to remember that it was bread-and-butter issues not collusion that allowed Democrats to win control of the House of Representatives in 2018. Confront the president’s wrongdoings, but no campaign for any office should be about him. Everyday we must remind others what we stand for — the issues, not the president’s personality. That is the best path to defeat him and address polarization.
Pocketbook issues are egregious under this administration. America’s expenditures on families are currently a third of the advanced-country average, putting us on par with Turkey and Mexico. People are working full time but living in poverty, and young people for the first time in history are making less than their parents.
Dishonest promises to address these concerns are the reason this man was able to ascend to the presidency. A segment of the population felt abandoned and that led to resentment. Resentment fueled polarization. Economic inequality, decreased job security, longer working hours — all of these concerns can be addressed by the Democratic Party because it stands for social policies that benefit everyone.
These social policies have the potential to reduce the economic inequality that fuels resentment and polarization. Our democracy depends on it.