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Dems Spar over Party’s Target: It’s Not Russia, It’s Wall Street

June 26, 2017 (EIRNS)—The Democrats’ complete lack of economic program and the scapegoating of Russia are being blamed for their failure to win even one of the four special elections created by Trump cabinet postings. This has led to some useful soul-searching by Party loyalists and "outsiders." The most insightful critics are targeting the DNC directly.

Perhaps it was Bernie Sanders who first pierced the dam, in the wake of the surprise upset victory of Jeremy Corbyn in the UK —something he had a hand in. Writing in a June 13 editorial in the New York Times, "How the Democrats Can Stop Losing Elections," Sanders said that instead of just complaining about Trump,

"The Democrats must develop an agenda that speaks to the pain of tens of millions of families who are working longer hours for lower wages and to the young people who, unless we turn the economy around, will have a lower standard of living than their parents."

This morning, The Intercept published an interview with longtime Democratic activist Ralph Nader, who shared the same sentiment. Asked to give a chronology of Democratic decline, Nader volunteered to give eight "millstones that are milestones," beginning all the way back in 1979 when Democrats began looking for "corporate" sources of money to replace declining income from labor. "Increasingly they began to judge their challenge to Republicans by how much money they raised," he said. "You talk to [Marcy] Kaptur from Cleveland, she says,

"We go into the Democratic caucus in the House, we go in talking money, we stay talking money, and we go out with our quotas for money.’"

Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy was on MSNBC’s Morning Joe, Monday, warning that all the "Russia" talk was a "distraction" from the economic message.

"The Democrats have to be hyper-focused on an economic message that tells people that the Republican Party is all about economic growth for millionaires and billionaires. And the Democratic Party is about economic growth for everybody. And I think [Washington Post reporter] Robert Costa is right. The fact that we had spent so much time talking about Russia has, you know, has been a distraction from what should be the clear contrast between Democrats and the Trump agenda, which is on economics."

This sentiment was amplified by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who said that the Democrats were "doomed" if they didn’t make changes at the top. "The Democratic establishment has vortexed the party’s narrative energy into hysteria about Russia," he wrote on TwitLonger (an extension of Twitter).

"It is starkly obvious that were it not for this hysteria, insurgent narratives of the type promoted by Bernie Sanders would rapidly dominate the party’s base and its relationship with the public. Without the, ’We didn’t lose—Russia won’ narrative the party’s elite and those who exist under its patronage would be purged for being electorally incompetent and ideologically passé ... The Trump-Russia collusion narrative is a political dead end."