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hay rick

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Member since: Thu Jan 31, 2008, 10:08 PM
Number of posts: 5,389

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I voted for Joe Biden today.

I live in Florida and received my vote by mail ballot 3 weeks ago. I sat on it waiting for Super Tuesday. This year, my first choice was Jay Inslee because I believe that climate change is the most important issue confronting us. After he dropped out, I switched to supporting Tom Steyer, again because he was the most militant candidate on the climate crisis. Then Steyer dropped out and I switched to Elizabeth Warren.

I like Joe. I think he's a good man. He's been around for a long time. Judging a good man by his worst moments is a sport I will leave to others. My concern about Joe lies in the future and that he views his mandate as a return to "normal." The normal we came from recently includes Citizens United, packed courts, unconstrained monopolies, a bloated military, unchecked discrimination, over-priced for-profit healthcare, and under-regulated pollution. The old normal includes the passive acknowledgment that we are subject to the ongoing looting of our treasure and well-being by a parasitic oligarchy.

Four years ago I organized events for Bernie Sanders. He is still the candidate that best reflects my beliefs on most issues, but I can't support him now. Why? Bernie is the same and I am mostly the same as four years ago. What isn't the same is the American public. Americans have been conditioned by 4 years of abuse. They are afraid. They are not reaching out for their hopes and dreams. They are retreating into their shells and defending themselves against their fears. They are afraid to fight for universal healthcare coverage. They are afraid to fight for a candidate who wants to protect and extend FDR's legacy but calls himself a "democratic socialist." They are afraid we will lose what remains of self-rule and our democracy.

I have been managing our local Democratic party office for the last couple of years and am committed to continuing in that role through this election. I go to the office almost every day, including weekends. We make our office available to volunteer groups on a non-preferential, scheduled basis. Only two campaigns have taken advantage of our facilities during this cycle- Warren's and Sanders'. The Warren group has been around for months- mostly strong, informed and committed women. The Sanders group has been around for several weeks. They are the young, bright, idealistic people that never come to our office otherwise. Buttegieg supporters finally came around- two days before he dropped out. They never did schedule an event.

And then there are the Biden supporters. Actually there aren't. Not a single one has come around and said they would help form and lead a group of volunteers working for his campaign. They seem content to wait for the arrival of paid staff. I am reminded of the Clinton/Kaine campaign in 2016. Field organizers from Hillary's campaign used our office as a base of operations. The Bernie volunteers that I worked with in 2015 disappeared before the Democratic convention. I hope that the majority of Warren and Sanders activists will join the fight against our common enemy when Joe is nominated- but I'm not counting on it. The Hillary supporters that provided the bulk of our volunteers last time were older and spent as much time fretting about Trump as they spent making phone calls. Working at the office in 2016 was like going to a funeral every day. I am dreading the next 8 months.
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