Why All Progressives Must Vote For Hillary

 

Why All Progressives Must Vote For Hillary

I continue to hear from many people who call themselves progressives or liberals, but tell me they won’t vote for Hillary Clinton in the upcoming election.

With due respect, I believe they’re wrong.

Herewith, their three major arguments and my responses.

Some claim she’s no better than Donald Trump. “He’s bad, but she’s just as bad,” they say.

I’m sorry, but anyone who equates Trump with Clinton hasn’t been paying attention.

Donald Trump is a dangerous, bigoted, misogynistic, narcissistic megalomaniac with fascist tendencies. If elected president he could wreak irreparable damage on America and the world.


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Hillary isn’t perfect but she’s able and experienced. I’ve known her for almost fifty years and worked with her closely in her husband’s administration. She will make a good president.

There is simply no comparison.

Others claim that even if she’s better than Trump, she’s still corrupt, and they won’t vote for the “lesser of two evils.”

But even if you see Hillary Clinton as the “lesser of two evils,” the greater of two evils in this case is seriously evil.

It’s frequently the case in a democracy that one votes for someone who’s less than perfect when the alternative is someone who’s far worse. That’s the way our “winner-take-all” democracy is organized. It’s why we end up with two parties.

It’s also why voting for a third-party candidate typically harms the candidate closest in values or ideology to that third-party candidate (remember the election of 2000?).

Voting for someone who doesn’t meet your ideals when the alternative is someone who falls much further from those ideals doesn’t mean you’ve sold out or compromised your principles. You’re just being realistic and practical.

Realism and practicality are critically important now.

The third argument I’m getting is from people who are angry with the Democratic Party for tilting the primaries against Bernie Sanders.

They cite the superdelegates, the primaries closed to independents, and the well-documented biases of Democratic National Committee chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz in favor of Hillary and against Bernie (memorialized in leaked memos).

“Why should I reward the Democratic Party for its corruption?” they ask.

I supported Bernie Sanders in the primaries and share people’s frustration with the Democratic Party. I also sympathize with their feeling that a vote for Hillary Clinton would somehow exonerate the Party for the perceived unfairness of its primaries.

But anything disgruntled Democrats may do that increases the odds of a Trump presidency – say, making a “protest” vote for a third-party candidate, or not voting at all – doesn’t just penalize the Democratic Party. It also jeopardizes our future, and that of our children and their children.

All of us must continue to work hard for a political system and an economy responsive to the needs of ordinary Americans. The movement Bernie Sanders energized must not and will not end.

But Donald Trump, were he to become president, would set back that cause for decades.

There are only a few weeks until Election Day. My request to those of you who still don’t want to vote for Hillary Clinton: Please reconsider. It is no exaggeration to say the fate of the nation and the world are at stake.

About the Author

Robert ReichROBERT B. REICH, Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley, was Secretary of Labor in the Clinton administration. Time Magazine named him one of the ten most effective cabinet secretaries of the last century. He has written thirteen books, including the best sellers “Aftershock" and “The Work of Nations." His latest, "Beyond Outrage," is now out in paperback. He is also a founding editor of the American Prospect magazine and chairman of Common Cause.

Books by Robert Reich

Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few -- by Robert B. Reich

0345806220America was once celebrated for and defined by its large and prosperous middle class. Now, this middle class is shrinking, a new oligarchy is rising, and the country faces its greatest wealth disparity in eighty years. Why is the economic system that made America strong suddenly failing us, and how can it be fixed?

Click here for more info or to order this book on Amazon.

 

Beyond Outrage: What has gone wrong with our economy and our democracy, and how to fix it -- by Robert B. Reich

Beyond OutrageIn this timely book, Robert B. Reich argues that nothing good happens in Washington unless citizens are energized and organized to make sure Washington acts in the public good. The first step is to see the big picture. Beyond Outrage connects the dots, showing why the increasing share of income and wealth going to the top has hobbled jobs and growth for everyone else, undermining our democracy; caused Americans to become increasingly cynical about public life; and turned many Americans against one another. He also explains why the proposals of the “regressive right” are dead wrong and provides a clear roadmap of what must be done instead. Here’s a plan for action for everyone who cares about the future of America.

Click here for more info or to order this book on Amazon.

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