Saturday, October 17, 2015

Democrats Ready to Dump Debbie Dictator


-by Dorothy Reik

Debbie Wasserman Schultz has gotten away with so much that she thought she was invincible. As a Florida state senator she drew herself a congressional seat in southeastern Broward County and the northern Biscayne Bay shoreland of Miami Dade. This is how the D+18 FL-20 was described by non-partisan Almanac of American Politics: "Precinct by precinct, it's computer generated borders are drawn to include heavily Democratic and Jewish areas; while its large gay and lesbian community, Wilton Manors, trails only Provincetown, Massachusetts and Guerneville, California in its proportion of same-sex households." She drew herself a district she could never lose in. And from the gerrymandered South Florida district, she handed down endorsements, supported Republicans and ran roughshod over the grassroots of the Democratic Party, all the while protected by Rahm Emanuel who began his tenure as Obama’s Chief of Staff by firing Howard Dean, the architect of the 50 state solution and installing Wasserman-Shultz who promptly dismantled it.

The plan was straight out of the DLC-- back only Democrats who would go along with Wall Street’s demands and forget Main Street-- raise that big money; never mind the 99%. But they forgot one little detail-- they also needed votes. The hemorrhaging started in 2010 and has continued throughout Obama’s presidency making it almost impossible to get the bills paid let alone do anything to help the hapless citizens. But no matter-- Wasserman Schultz had her fiefdom and who would dare to challenge her? The plan kept Democratic voters away in droves during the critical redistricting election of 2010 allowing the Republicans to gerrymander their way into control of the House while losing the total vote by over a million votes-- but never mind, Debbie’s seat was safe!

So who would dare challenge her majesty? A little known back bencher from Hawaii of all places-- Tulsi Gabbard-- who happened to be one of the vice chairs of the Democratic National Committee! She had been "disinvited" to the first of only six presidential debates scheduled by Debbie Dictator for daring to go on TV and complain about how few debates had been scheduled and that four of the measly six debates were to take place on weekends when no one would be watching. Was Wasserman Schultz trying to help her friend Hillary? So it would seem. Wall Street Hillary vs Main Street Bernie-- which candidate would Debbie Dictator support? Not the people choice! Debbie goes with the punditocracy and their media puppet masters who are scared to death of a Bernie presidency.

So let the pile on begin. R.K. Ryback, next out of the gate, appeared on Meet the Press’ weekday edition yesterday to back up his fellow vice-chair after telling Bloomberg News that he questioned whether Wasserman Schultz has "the leadership skills to get us through the election." Asked if he was calling on her to resign he answered that he was "coming really close." Seems Little Debbie lied when she said she had consulted her vice chairs about her debate plans. She had not. And that may finally be her undoing. Although she is adamant that she will never retire voluntarily.

A major West Coast Bernie supporter, author and progressive former congressional candidate Marianne Williamson, has also been raising the tricky issue of why Lawrence Lessig has been banned from the Democratic debates. Earlier today, she told us that "Debbie Wasserman Schulz not allowing Lawrence Lessig into the Democratic debates-- while she does allow Chafee and Webb, who've raised virtually no dollars compared to Lessig's million-plus-- is outrageous. Lawrence is out there campaigning and talking about his ideas. Is Jim Webb? We should all be crying 'Foul!' at the top of our lungs."

As the controversies heat up and Democrats start paying attention, they will find out that in Florida the DNC under Wasserman Schultz has been pushing Republican-lite Democrat Patrick Murphy over the voters’ favorite, progressive icon Alan Grayson. In Illinois, the Wasseman Schultz DNC has endorsed moderate Tammy Duckworth over progressive Andrea Zopp; in Ohio Ted Strickland, the NRA’s favorite son, is endorsed over P.G. Sittenfeld, another progressive. Keep that Wall Street money rolling in. Even in California Debbie Dictator teamed up with Emily’s list to endorse an opponent to Lou Vince, yet another progressive favorite. That is not going well at all.

Howard Dean's brother, Jim Dean, chairman of Democracy For America, is urging his members to petition Wasserman Schultz to clean up her act. After the debate, he wrote to this this week that "no one was more excited about the Democratic candidates' performances than the chair of the Democratic National Committee, Debbie Wasserman Schultz. In a statement released after the debate, she bragged:

"In just two and a half hours of debate, our Democratic candidates covered more serious topics and bold ideas than the GOP candidates could muster in nearly 10 hours of debate. By a long shot. The contrast between each party's candidates, values and policies was demonstrated in stark terms..."
His strategy is to get her to reform her ways, not necessarily retire. Who knows-- it may work.
Wasserman Schultz is exactly right-- Tuesday's debate showed America that our top tier Democratic candidates are intelligent, ready to lead and full of great ideas that would make this country a better place for working families. So you would think that Democratic leadership would want people to pay more attention to our strong field of candidates and their great ideas, not less.

Yet despite significant pushback from Democratic voters, the major campaigns and even some of her own vice chairs, Debbie Wasserman Schultz is still refusing to lift the "exclusivity rule" that forbids the Democratic candidates from participating in additional debates. That's unacceptable.

We're proud of our candidates and their progressive values. It's time to stop hiding them: Tell Debbie Wasserman Schultz and the DNC to drop the "exclusivity rule" and allow more Democratic presidential debates!

For weeks, voters have been bombarded week in and week out with the mud-slinging and racist, sexist antics of the GOP field-- with no clear Democratic alternative in sight. The result has been a laser focus by the press on issues that matter to the far-right, like restricting abortion and punishing immigrants. We need that to change.

By refusing to let our candidates participate in press-worthy debates, the DNC is making it harder for the electorate to learn about Democratic priorities-- and that could come back to bite us up and down the ticket next November.

Tuesday night's debate drew more than 15.3 million viewers-- it was the most watched Democratic primary debate in history. That number alone should prove that there is a clear hunger in this country for something different and more substantiative than the circus act the Republicans have been offering.

As Wasserman Schultz herself acknowledged, our candidates are ready, willing and able to give voters the type of serious policy discussion they're looking for-- and to draw the sharpest contrast possible with the out-of-control GOP. The only thing standing in their way right now is the DNC itself.
Or, better yet... perhaps we are about to witness the dethroning of Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and not a moment too soon. There are progressives to elect, legislation to pass, wars to end, wages to raise and roads and bridges to build. We need real Democrats in office. A new New Deal. A cleaning up and reining in of a Wall Street given a pass by the Obama administration. The time has come to say good-bye to Debbie Wasserman-Schultz.

Dorothy Reik has been an occasional DWT commenter. She is president of Progressive Democrats of the Santa Monica Mountains and an at-large board member of the California Democratic Party's Progressive Caucus-- as well as a 1964 Phi Beta Kappa CCNY Magna Cum Laude graduate.

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At 1:27 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

It's time to move on from Wasserman. She is ineffective and we are losing! We have lost both houses in congress, state governorships and legislatures and losing in local contests around the country. Gerrymandering has rendered the GOP almost invincible in many areas and they continue to steamroll the country. We need new leadership - someone with vision and the ability to build coalitions and get something done. Wasserman has become a liability and needs to go. Personally, I think she is in love with her own persona and it's become about 'her' rather than us.

At 8:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

When Wasserman alone makes the decision to only have 4 debates before primary voting starts, she is a dictator; the Committee should vote, which is the democratic way. Debbie Dictator must resign; I vote for Gabbard to take over; Gabbard knows what she is talking about! Washerman doesn't have a clue what she is talking about!

At 9:58 AM, Blogger Twelve Months Of Gardening said...

Dethrone Wasserman....I mean really, who gave her the throne?

At 10:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

voice of reason

Dump Wasserman...she is an impediment to true demoncracy

At 10:05 AM, Blogger DownWithTyranny said...

Obama. The next Democratic president will pick her successor-- or decide to keep her. If Hillary wins, we can count on someone as bad or even worse. If Bernie wins... the world changes.

At 1:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, dump Wasserman Shultz! This woman's actions has me convinced Bernie is the only one to vote for. If I have to Bernie will be my write in candidate.


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