The Democrats aren’t a left-wing party — they just play one on TV

The Democrats aren’t a left-wing party — they just play one on TV
Debate stage Wednesday (Image: YouTube screen grab)

[Ed. – The title is correct, but the conclusion in the article is wrong.]

The Democrats on your television are more moderate than they appear.

On the debate stage last week, America’s center-left party sounded like a European one (only with 60 percent less racism). Almost all of the Democrats’ 2020 candidates lamented concentrated capital, celebrated labor unions, and vowed to insulate Americans from the slings and arrows of outrageous market failures through the expansion of social democratic institutions. On health care, the middle-ground position was a public option strong enough to drive private insurers out of business. On higher education, it was free public college for all children from working-class families. On wages, it was raising taxes on the wealthy to expand paycheck subsidies for working people.

And yet: If you turn your gaze from the Democrats on the debate stage to the ones actually governing in Congress, you’ll see a party fit for David Brooks. Hours before Team Blue’s 2020 hopefuls endorsed decriminalizing illegal entry, its House caucus approved $4.5 billion in new funding for the border crisis — without imposing strict standards on how that money can be spent.

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