Wednesday, November 5, 2014
During the past few months, I was increasingly upset by the way Democratic candidates were running away from the President and his record. President Obama has a record to be proud of—-principally passage of the Affordable Car Act. See Paul Krugman’s assessment of the Obama presidency here
I was stunned that Alison Lundergran Grimes(Democratic candidate for the senate in Kentucky) refused to say whether or not she had voted for Obama. When talking to my husband about this, I said,”What kind of Democrat is she?” His response:'What kind of person is she?”
The political pundits are all giving their reasons for the Democratic defeat, but the cowardice of Democratic candidates, their refusal to stand by the President has got to be way up there among them.
For me, the big lesson of 2014 is that we’ve got to make voting easier if we are to get more people to participate. When I was teaching at the Community College of Philadelphia in 2008, a group of women in my Women’s Studies class who worked at the same hospital had an elaborate scheme to cover each other at work so they could vote for President Obama. They lived in one neighborhood, worked in another neighborhood and took CCP classes in a third neighborhood. So getting to work, school, picking up their children from school and finding time to vote was a real challenge. They were willing to do this to vote for President Obama, but I doubt if they would make these heroic efforts in the mid-terms.
We must make voting easier to enable working people to participate and to elect officials committed to addressing widening income inequality, the major issue affecting working families.