Don’t get me wrong, I thought Bernie gave a great speech last night and hit many of the right notes, but I wish he had said more about what it is really going to take to make “the revolution happen.”
It seems to me that our opponent doesn’t even know what office he is running for. He mistakenly thinks he is running for emperor rather than President of the United States. The office of president has limited constitutional powers, the president can’t just “fix everything” all alone. Donald Trump can’t, I can’t, nobody can.
I ran for President to highlight the need for change, but understanding that even as President I couldn’t make those changes happen by myself. That’s not how the presidency works.
If you want a $15 an hour minimum wage, congress must pass it. We need 60 senators and 225 representatives to pass that legislation. Of course we also need a president who will sign it. I am sure that Hilary will do so. All the presidential leadership in the world would not get such a bill through our current congress. Yes, we need a progressive President, but we need a progressive congress even more.
In the same way, if you want an Apollo Project for renewable energy, we need a progressive congress. If you want funding for rebuilding our infrastructure, we need a progressive congress. Yes, we need a president who will sign those bills, but we need a congress that get those bills to the president’s desk. It is more important that we get Russ Feingold and many more like him in the Senate than we have Bernie in the White House.
If you want increased college funding, we need a progressive congress. If you want more support for public colleges so they can have affordable tuitions than you need more than a progressive congress. You need progressive state legislatures and governors. If you want to overturn Citizen’s United you need 38 progressive state legislatures and governors.
While I appreciate the confidence you put in me with “Bernie or Bust,” it is just not true. The revolution is not focused on the White House, it can’t be. You have to have this level of enthusiasm and passion for every election. Presidential, congressional, state and local. You have to get out and vote — every single time. You have to organize — for every election. If you don’t like your choice of candidates — run yourself. Every election, every vote. If the system is rigged, we have to get in there at every level and unrig it as best we can.
Finally, let me say that will the President is limited in power, this is an extraordinarily important election. There may be as many as four vacancies on the Supreme Court in the next 4 years. International relations seem to be at a critical point. Dealing with gun violence and terrorism within Constitutional bounds will continue to be a huge issue. And perhaps even dealing with decisions about war and peace. In all of these issues, I trust Hilary Clinton to make decisions that are keeping with American and progressive values. I will be doing everything I can to not only see that Hilary is elected, but that we take back the House and the Senate and I hope that all of you will join me in those efforts.
Get out and support the revolution vote as “Bernie-like” as possible at every level, up and down the ballot!