What happens on election day will determine the road to advance a progressive agenda. Job number one in continuing the battle for Our Revoluition sparked by Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign is to soundly defeat Trump and the racism and misogyny he drags with him.
How to best move the agenda starting November 9th, the day after the election, was discussed last week in Connecticut at a special meeting of Bernie Sanders’ supporters with national radio commentator and writer Jim Hightower.
Hightower had traveled from Texas to Connecticut to visit with union members from the UAW and SEIU and get them charged up to work for local progressive candidates during the last three weeks of the election season.
He met with state Bernie Sanders supporters at the Teamster Local in South Windsor.
Jim Hightower was a national surrogate for Sanders during the Democratic primary campaign, and he is currently on the board of “Our Revolution,” the group spun off by Sanders to continue organizing. These diehard supporters, young and old, were anxious to hear about Bernie’s new organization.
The agenda of Our Revolution consists of many of the items fought for by the Sanders platform team at the Democratic National Convention. Hightower was an instrumental part of that team.
The Democratic platform passed at the convention is considered the most progressive Democratic platform ever. It includes stopping bad trade deals like the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) and fighting for income equality, affordable higher education, a cleaner, healthier planet and much more.
The plan of Our Revolution is to have a 50-state network. Each state will have the autonomy to operate “within the framework of Bernie’s ideals and Bernie’s issues.”
Hightower started off by reminding us that “presidential elections end on Election Day, revolutions don’t. Noting that many young people have been turned off by the major parties, he assured them that the group will be an independent political force with no official ties to any party. “We want a thousand flowers bloomin’ out there,” Hightower said.
He also reiterated that Our Revolution will not be accepting corporate money. Like Sanders himself they will be counting on small donor contributions.
Hightower spoke for about 15 minutes followed by a question and answer period. The attendees asked thoughtful questions on funding, structure, etc. Hightower noted that they will continue to be active inside the Democratic Party, and suggested that people consider creating change from within, citing a midwest State Democrat Committee where Sanders supporters recently won the majority.
“The goal is simply to transform America,” he said. “It’s not enough to be “PRO-gressive” anymore; we need to be A-ggressive. We’re going to be an independent political force.”