“Socialism is no longer a dirty word in the U.S.”
Democratic socialists Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) are on a mission to debunk doubters and conclusively show that a bold progressive agenda can spark enthusiasm and win elections in the Midwest.
Helping to prove their case, organizers were forced to relocate one of the pair’s joint rallies in Kansas on Friday afternoon after ticket sign-ups—as often happened during Sanders’ 2016 presidential run—rapidly exceeded venue capacity.
With a heartily-despised Donald Trump in the White House and with rightwing Republicans now dominating Congress and the Supreme Court, many newly-energized leftwing voters will probably close ranks with mainstream Democrats in an all-out Democratic Party effort to drive the Right from power. At the same time, there is a comparable recognition among establishment Democrats that, unless they welcome the growing number of democratic socialists into their ranks, they have little chance of winning elections. This might well explain why so many leading Democratic politicians have now turned to backing the staples of the Sanders campaign, such as Medicare for all, free public college education, and curbs on corporate power. It might also explain why the Democratic National Committee is busy cutting back the establishment-controlled superdelegate system for choosing a presidential candidate.
In an interview on “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” Thursday night, Ocasio-Cortez—who is one of DSA’s 42,000 members—was given a chance to explain the core principles of democratic socialism to an audience of millions.