Arguing that only a positive and truly transformative economic agenda will be sufficient to overcome the Republican congressional majority and President Donald Trump, scores of progressive leaders this week endorsed a bold 11-point platform that calls for Medicare for All, tough Wall Street regulation, and a ban on corporate money in elections.
"If the Democrats don't start talking about a fundamental restructuring of the economy, either they will lose, or when they win, they will fail."
—Roger Hickey, Campaign for America's Future
"We will resist Trump. But resistance is not enough," reads the introduction to the platform, unveiled by Campaign for America's Future (CAF). "We therefore pledge that: We will fight for good jobs, sustainable prosperity, and economic justice. We will work to build a movement that can make that agenda a reality."
In introducing the ambitious platform—which has already earned the backing of more than 70 prominent progressives, including author Naomi Klein and Our Revolution president Nina Turner—CAF is looking to chart a path that reaches far beyond the centrist and incrementalist approach favored by the current Democratic leadership.
"The elites have failed us," the platform reads. "We need a political movement that fights to take back our government from those who have corrupted and subverted it."
Roger Hickey, co-director of CAF and one of the architects of the platform, said in an interview with the Huffington Post that this objective cannot be achieved by those who are merely anti-Trump.
"There's a large number of people who think all we need to do is oppose Trump, who think all we need to do is find an attractive candidate who runs on the platform of 'I'm not Trump,'" Hickey noted. "If the Democrats don't start talking about a fundamental restructuring of the economy, either they will lose, or when they win, they will fail."
Here are the 11 planks of the agenda, which supporters believe can both turn out the Democratic base and win over millions of non-voters:
- Jobs for All—Created by Rebuilding America
- Invest in a Green Economy
- Empower Workers to Reduce Inequality
- Opportunity and Justice for All—With Focus on Communities Harmed by Racism
- Guarantee Women's Economic Equality
- High-Quality Public Education—Pre-K to University
- Medicare for All—and Shared Economic Security
- Make Corporations and Wealthy Pay Their Fair Share
- A Global Economic Strategy for Working People
- Close Wall Street's Casino
- Rescue Democracy from the Special Interests
"We need to fight to make government an instrument of the common good, not the special interests," the platform concludes. "That requires a powerful, unified movement for economic justice that will take back our democracy."