AT LAST night’s second round of Democratic debates, Pete Buttigieg came out as a voice of reason and clarity as the other Democrats argued amongst each other.
“If we embrace a far-left agenda, they’re going to say we’re a bunch of crazy socialists. If we embrace a conservative agenda, they’re going to say we’re a bunch of crazy socialists. So let’s just stand up for the right policy, go up there, and defend it.”
…After a lengthy section in which the assembled candidates debated different health care plans that have no chance of passing given the composition of the US Senate and then debated decriminalizing unauthorized border crossings, which they also don’t have the votes to do, and then debated a series of gun control ideas that would swiftly fall to a filibuster and, even if they didn’t, would plausibly be overturned by the Supreme Court’s conservative majority.
That’s when Buttigieg spoke up:
[This is] the conversation that we have been having for the last 20 years. Of course, we need to get money out of politics, but when I propose the actual structural democratic reforms that might make a difference — end the Electoral College, amend the Constitution if necessary to clear up Citizens United, have DC actually be a state, and depoliticize the Supreme Court with structural reform — people look at me funny, as if this country was incapable of structural reform.
This is a country that once changed its Constitution so you couldn’t drink and changed it back because we changed our minds, and you’re telling me we can’t reform our democracy in our time. We have to or we will be having the same argument 20 years from now.
Klein continued: “What’s different about Buttigieg is his insistence that he would prioritize political reforms over policy wins. “This is the difference between somebody who’s thinking about 2024 versus somebody who’s thinking about 2054,” he said. “To me, yes, it’s worth it because we’re talking about setting the terms of the debate as they will play out for the rest of my life.”