Lately I’ve been reading some articles criticizing some of the Democratic presidential candidates for pushing for progressive policies for fear of losing moderate voters to Trump. This is really exasperating to me. Isn’t the whole point of the freedom of speech so that we could debate political ideas? Progressives should be allowed to press their case to try to convince moderates and the wider public of the strength of their policies, as centrists and conservatives are allowed to.
As someone who thinks the political center of this country is way too far to the Right, I’m glad that candidates like Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders are pushing the political dialogue leftward. Allow them to debate more moderate candidates like Michael Bennett and John Hickenlooper so we can hear the strengths and weaknesses of both progressive and moderate proposals. The debate between progressives and moderates is the sign of a healthy Democratic Party. This is in sharp contrast to the cult of personality infecting the Republican Party, where Donald Trump levels personal attacks against any Republican who disagrees with him and any debate on ideas within the Republican Party is suppressed.
Here is a PBS News Hour video about the debate between Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders over their differing health care plans. Biden wants to fix the flaws in Obamacare and add a public option while Sanders wants to eliminate private insurance and replace it with a Medicare-for-all system. Democrats get to hear the strengths and weaknesses of each approach in a vigorous debate of ideas. This is what a democracy should look like. The diversity of ideas and approaches among the Democratic candidates is a strength we should applaud.