Republicans are beginning their 2020 messaging early with campaign attacks that paint all Democrats as socialists. They plan to demonize Democrats as crazy leftists out to destroy America. They have focused on the Green New Deal (GND) resolution sponsored by Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ed Markey as evidence that all Democrats have suddenly gone socialist. The GOP is quickly developing their 2020 national playbook theme that all Democrats have abruptly lost their minds and have shape-shifted into Marxists.
The truth is the GND is simply a very bold roadmap pointing toward aggressively addressing climate change while simultaneously promoting social justice and healthcare reform. There is no proposed legislation associated with the GND but that hasn’t stopped Republicans from attacking and exaggerating this progressive agenda as an end of the world threat.
Senate leader Mitch McConnell is calling for a vote on GND even though it is simply a visionary non-binding plan to quickly transition to renewable energy. McConnell’s planned vote is a stunt since they have refused to have any serious debate about addressing climate change. Prior to that phony vote, you’re likely to hear Republicans make wild accusations that the GND is a socialist takeover of America. Using fear and fake news is now an essential tool in the GOP’s campaign of demonization of all their opponents.
President Trump used his State of the Union speech to echo the propaganda theme that Democrats are socialists.
“Here, in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country. America was founded on liberty and independence — and not government coercion, domination and control. We are born free, and we will stay free. Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country,” said Trump.
The Republican message machine is extremely effective in getting simple bumper sticker attacks immediately adopted by all their supporters. Their political action groups, party leaders and allies have quickly adopted the national socialist theme.
“Socialism is the greatest vulnerability by far that the House Democrats have,” Representative Tom Emmer of Minnesota, the chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, said. He told his team to spotlight “all the extreme wild ideas” that Democrats espouse, “on a daily basis, on an hourly basis if it’s available.”
Sean Hannity, the Fox News commentator, called GND “a form of insanity.”
The Republican National Committee issued a briefing paper headlined “The Democrats’ Burgeoning Love Affair With Socialism.”
The Congressional Leadership Fund, a political action committee affiliated with House Republican leaders, has already begun running digital ads attacking the GND as a radical assault on the American economy. The ads link the GND with less freedom and higher taxes.
The last several years Representative Nancy Pelosi has been the poster child for Republican attacks. The new target for their vicious smears is freshman Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY).
Zach Hunter, a spokesman for the GOP Congressional Leadership Fund admitted the ads vilifying Cortez are the first of a national campaign to demonize Democrats.
Democrats are responding to these ugly attacks with measured, common sense explanations.
Representative Cheri Bustos of Illinois, chairwoman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, responded to the attacks by saying, “We have an agenda to help families, and we have ideas … Washington Republicans are set back now, and all they’re playing on is exaggerations and fear.”
“We are not going to abandon socialist policies like Social Security — or is that ‘socialist security,’ is that what they call it?” Senator Richard J. Durbin of Illinois.
Several announced and potential presidential candidates have endorsed the concept of the GND. They recognize the GND is bold framework to move away from fossil fuels and replace them with renewables while simultaneously addressing much of the current economic disparity in the American economy.
Sen. Kamala Harris co-sponsored the GND resolution, which she touted as a “bold plan” to address an “existential threat to our nation.”
Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke has expressed support for the “concept” of a GND.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren signed on as a co-sponsor of the GND and said she supported the “idea” of such a proposal. “Climate change is real, it threatens all of us, and we have no time to waste to address it head-on.”
Sen. Cory Booker, another Senate co-sponsor of the GND, said, “I believe that America should lead, and it should lead boldly,” calling the GND a “bold idea” for the environment and the economy.
The GND is the beginning of a conversation about a grand blueprint to transition America’s energy and economy to address the coming climate crisis. Republicans are attempting to kill that conversation before it begins because they have no plan. Don’t believe their scare tactics about GND, socialism or Democrats.
by Rick Smith