Donald Trump’s primary enablers, the corporate Democrats, may be poised to blow it again in upcoming elections in Virginia on Nov. 7 and Alabama on Dec. 12.
Both races are critical to stopping the Trump onslaught, and if the Democrats don’t act, the GOP could steal them. Independent election protection activists are working to reach the candidates and state parties. Their success or failure in preventing the theft of these two key elections will say much about the American future.
The Virginia governorship will be a key pivot in upcoming battles over gerrymandering. The far-right candidate, Ed Gilllespie, who now is running about even with Democrat Ralph Northam, could conspire with a GOP-controlled legislature to rig districts for the next decade.
In Alabama, a U.S. Senate victory for Roy Moore—a former judge with a history of racism, sexism and homophobia—would super-charge fascist theorist Steve Bannon’s ongoing putsch. Polls show Moore running even with Democrat Doug Jones for Jeff Sessions’ vacated seat.
In both states aggressive campaigns to disenfranchise voters of color could make the difference. The presence of easy-to-hack electronic voting machines also demand intense scrutiny from an active, engaged Democratic Party.
But the charisma-free trio of Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi and Tom Perez appear incapable of opposing the Trump lunacy.
A new report, entitled “Autopsy: The Democratic Party in Crisis” by media critic Norman Solomon and other progressive activists, explains what killed the Democratic Party and makes clear that the corporate Democrats in the Senate, House and party prefer Trump running wild in the White House over the social democrats represented by the nation’s most popular politician, Bernie Sanders.
The social democrats are the 30 million or more Americans who supported Sanders in last year’s primaries. They are the sole grass-roots force preventing a total Trump fascist coup.
But the Perez-led Democratic National Committee has purged Sandernista social democrats across the board. The party machinery is now in the hands of corporatists with no connection to the grassroots activists who were once the soul of the party and embody its only chance to get back in power.
The Clinton corporatists long ago sold the party infrastructure to Goldman Sachs. As wealthy militarists, they stripped the DNC of any meaningful connection to the aggrieved grassroots of the dying American working and middle classes. Their core commitments are far closer to those of Donald Trump than they are to Bernie Sanders. They are far more comfortable with Trump in the White House than they would be with Sanders or someone else truly committed to social democracy.
They are also more than willing to let the GOP steal elections, since the Democrats have effectively won every presidential election since 1992.
But in 2000, Al Gore let Florida Gov. Jeb Bush steal the presidency for his brother George W. In an election allegedly decided by 537 votes, Gov. Bush stripped more than 90,000 primarily black and Hispanic voters from the registration rolls. He then flipped some 20,000 digital ballots from electronic machines in Volusia, Fla., and other counties at critical moments in the election night vote count.
Gore did seek a recount in four counties. But when the U.S. Supreme Court voted 5–4 to stop it, he conceded. Gore won the nationwide popular vote by more than half a million. He eventually won a recount in Florida. But despite his hundreds of millions in personal wealth, he’s never done anything to fight the corruption of our electoral system. Instead he’s joined the corporate chorus blaming Ralph Nader for daring to run a campaign that had zero impact on Gov. Bush’s theft of the 2000 election.
In Ohio in 2004 John Kerry was the rightful winner of an election stripped and flipped by Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell, who now sits on Trump’s Jim Crow Presidential Commission on Election Integrity to institutionalize election theft on a nationwide basis. Despite his personal millions, Kerry has never lifted a finger to make sure such a theft never happens again.
With Barack Obama, the grassroots rose up to put him in the White House. But the party shunned them once in office, and sat silent while the GOP took a thousand federal, state and local offices, many of them through illegal registration stripping and electronic vote flipping.
In 2016, Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by some three million votes. She won the exit polls in Florida, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, more than enough to claim the presidency. Despite her immense personal wealth (or maybe because of it), she’s said nothing about any of that. Instead, she’s blamed her failures on James Comey, Vladimir Putin and Bernie Sanders.
Now the Democrats, having purged the Sanders/activist wing from the DNC, continue to lose elections under dubious circumstances. They threw in a winnable Georgia congressional race without a single challenge to obvious stripping of the voter rolls and serious inconsistencies in the electronic vote count. As with Gore, Kerry and Clinton, the corporate Democrats conceded without a whimper.
In Virginia and Alabama, the Jim Crow GOP is working to disenfranchise every likely Democrat.
But a new generation of voting machines will provide ballot images that could be scrutinized. Thus far, the corporate Democrats have no legal team in place to protect the registration rolls or examine the electronic vote count.
The national party, of course, claims to have no money. Bernie Sanders was able to raise millions with small donations. The social democrats might do it again if there was a party worth supporting.
But the corporations that bought the Clintons now have Trump in the White House. They don’t need the DNC. And having purged the grassroots activists, the corporate Dems can’t raise the kind of funds that Bernie did.
If the Democrats somehow win in both Virginia and Alabama, the Trump rush to total power could be impacted.
That’s why each and every GOP disenfranchisement must be challenged. A well-organized, heavily funded legal team must scrutinize the electronic ballots after the inevitable GOP theft.
And both Democratic candidates must refuse to concede until every vote is counted and recounted.
The brain-dead corporate DNC shows no willingness to do anything like that. So Schumer, Pelosi and Perez need to stand down, and let independent election protection activists do their work.
Until they do, Donald Trump will once again run wild, with no effective opposition, leaving the GOP free to steal every election for the foreseeable future—with potentially apocalyptic consequences.
Harvey Wassserman is a lifelong activist who speaks, writes and organizes widely on energy, the environment, election protection, social justice, grass-roots politics and natural healing, personal and planetary. He hosts “California Solartopia” at KPFK-Pacifica and “Green Power & Wellness” at prn.fm. He edits nukefree.org, solartopia.org and has taught history, diversity and ecology studies at numerous colleges. With Pete Seeger and David Bernz, he co-wrote the Grammy-winning “Solartopia Song.”