News In 5 Minutes

News When You Want It

SHOCK: CBS Presses Dems on Dropping Socialism, Being Moderate



In a truly surprising move during Sunday’s Face the Nation, CBS host Margaret Brennan pressed Democrats Congressman Cedric Richmond (LA) and Senator Joe Manchin (WV) on how the embrace of socialism by their party hurt them in down-ballot races in the 2020 election. Brennan even wrapped up the Manchin interview with a question about Democrats shifting to more “moderate” politics.

Just as she was about to finish her interview with Rep. Richmond, Brennan sprung her first question about the Democratic Party and socialism, citing comments from Biden campaign surrogate Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC). “Your colleague whip Clyburn, on Fox, said recently ‘defund the police and Medicare for all and socialism were albatrosses around our necks.’ He was talking about this last election.”

“Do you agree that these messages that may actually have energized some progressive voters, some young voters, have ultimately hurt your party? Is there a reckoning that needs to happen among Democrats,” she wanted to know. In his response, Richmond seemed to suggest that Democrats should do a better job of keeping their true intentions hidden from the public and then pushing the radical stuff after getting elected.

After the commercial break, Brennan picked up right where she left off, questioning Manchin on Richmond’s response (Click “expand”):

BRENNAN: I wonder if you agree with your Democratic colleague, Congressman Richmond, who said, “This is a wake-up call to Senators,” this election, “that this is a different day.” Do you agree? And what should the President-Elect’s first order of business be?

SEN. JOE MANCHIN (D-WV): Basically Joe Biden has said he will be a president of all of us, and that’s exactly what he has to do, bring us all together; bringing Democrats and Republicans together, because it is a wakeup call to all of us.

(…)

And I think Jim Clyburn said it best. That was an albatross around us, basically labeling every Democratic as a socialist or supporting socialism. That’s not who we are. That’s not who I am. It’s not how we were raised. And it hurt a lot of good Democrats in rural America.

 

 

With Brennan suggesting President Trump only appealed up uneducated white people, Brennan noted: “80 percent of the workforce in your state lacks a four-year college degree” and “it went ruby red for President Trump. Why didn’t the Democratic Party’s message breakthrough?”

Manchin explained that West Virginia went for Trump because the radical wing of his party had scared the people of his state (Click “expand”):

So, they voted in record numbers. They went from being mad to being scared in 2020. They were scared of this socialism that was thrown out there by the radical part of the so-called left that was throwing all of this out; that basically scared the bejeezus out of people. And that hung on, hung on strongly, and it’s not who we are. It is not who we are and it’s not what we’re about. And I have fought against that. Joe Biden has fought against that.

We’re not for new green deal, we’re not for all the things that he’s talked about, Medicare for all. We can’t even pay for Medicare for some. We’ve got to take care of a lot of things.

“I understand who you say Democrats are but obviously there isn’t a lot of agreement at this point within the party,” Brennan countered. She followed up by citing comments of Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) about how, “This election shows conservative principles are on the ascendency. Americans don’t want to get rid of coal or gas. They don’t want Medicare for all.”

Adding: “You just said that the green new deal is not something a lot of people want. There’s a whole lot of fracking, I understand, in West Virginia and a whole lot of coal, but did the President-Elect’s energy message hurt him? Is that also what you’re saying? It’s not just socialism but it’s what Joe Biden said?”

For her final question to Manchin, she noted that Republicans continuing to hold the Senate meant it would be difficult for Biden “to repeal, for example, the Trump tax cuts” and “repeal liability protections for gun manufacturers.” She then shocking pressed him on whether “the message from this election that Democrats need to be moderate?”

Manchin being an outlier in his party made it easy for him to agree with the notion, but urging the party in power to be moderate was a criticism usually reserved for Republican presidents. Only time will tell if this grilling will continue.

The transcript is below, click “expand” to read:

CBS’s Face the Nation
November 8, 2020
10:42:59 a.m. Eastern

(…)

MARGARET BRENNAN: I understand Democrats remain in the majority, but you did lose seats as a party in the House. Do you think there needs to be a change in leadership?

REP. CEDRIC RICHMOND (D-LA): No, I don’t.

BRENNAN: You continue to support Nancy Pelosi then?

RICHMOND: I do.

BRENNAN: Your colleague whip Clyburn, on Fox, said recently “defund the police and Medicare for all and socialism were albatrosses around our necks.” He was talking about this last election. Do you agree that these messages that may actually have energized some progressive voters, some young voters, have ultimately hurt your party? Is there a reckoning that needs to happen among Democrats?

RICHMOND: Well, I certainly think there should be a conversation. Now look, our progressive wing of the party is important to our party. But I think what whip Clyburn was trying to say that no matter how progressive your ideals and values are and what you want to do, and how bold plans are, if we don’t win, if we don’t keep the majority of the House, you cannot implement any of those plans.

So, you can’t govern if you can’t win. And so, I think our party has to make sure we have a solid playbook of what we want to do, how we want to help the American people. But when we lose, and if we lose the House of Representatives, then we will be in the minority and we won’t pass a bill for at least two years. And I think that his point is we to make sure we win first and govern second. So, when we govern, we’ll govern with our values. But when we can’t pass legislation, we shouldn’t be out there talking about it.

And some titles hurt. Defunding the police is a title that hurts Democrats. Especially when the fact of the matter is nobody is calling for defunding the police. We’re calling for reinventing how we police communities in this country, how we do criminal justice.

So, I think that basically what the whip is saying, and I agree with, is words have consequences. And in this election those words cost us some Democratic numbers.

(…)

10:46:20 a.m. Eastern

BRENNAN: I wonder if you agree with your Democratic colleague, Congressman Richmond, who said,
“this is a wakeup call to Senators,” this election, “that this is a different day.” Do you agree? And what should the President-Elect’s first order of business be?

SEN. JOE MANCHIN (D-WV): Basically Joe Biden has said he will be a president of all of us, and that’s exactly what he has to do, bring us all together; bringing Democrats and Republicans together, because it is a wakeup call to all of us.

The country is more divided now more than any time in our history, or basically any time since the Civil War, as far as I can see. And we don’t want to go back to those days. So, we have to come together.

Joe Biden got elected in a very, very contested primary. And all of the nuances that were thrown on the Democratic Party is not who we are. He was not for any of the stuff. And I think Jim Clyburn said it best. That was an albatross around us, basically labeling every Democratic as a socialist or supporting socialism. That’s not who we are. That’s not who I am. It’s not how we were raised. And it hurt a lot of good Democrats in rural America. Montana, for one, other places around the country.

BRENNAN: Well, President Trump says he’s fighting for the forgotten men and women, and he seems to define that as non-college-educated whites. 80 percent of the work force in your state lacks a four-year college degree. It went ruby red for President Trump. Why didn’t the Democratic Party’s message breakthrough?

MANCHIN: Well, it wasn’t a good message. I mean, we let them tag us before basically we could remind the people who we are. But we can have a good message. I’ll be very honest with you, Margaret.

Here’s the thing: Four years ago in rural America, and America in general, voted for Donald Trump. Because Democrats were mad, independents were mad, they thought that they had been left behind. And I always said this, West Virginians have felt like they were returning Vietnam veterans. We did everything this country asked and we were left behind. There was no pathway forward.

So, they voted in record numbers. They went from being mad to being scared in 2020. They were scared of this socialism that was thrown out there by the radical part of the so-called left that was throwing all of this out; that basically scared the beejeezus out of people. And that hung on, hung on strongly, and it’s not who we are. It is not who we are and it’s not what we’re about. And I have fought against that. Joe Biden has fought against that.

We’re not for new green deal, we’re not for all the things that he’s talked about, Medicare for all. We can’t even pay for Medicare for some. We’ve got to take care of a lot of things.

BRENNAN: Well, I want to ask you about that. Because there – I understand who you say Democrats are but obviously there isn’t a lot of agreement at this point within the party.

Your Republican colleague Mitt Romney said, “This election shows conservative principles are on the ascendency. Americans don’t want to get rid of coal or gas. They don’t want Medicare for all.” You just said that the green new deal is not something a lot of people want. There’s a whole lot of fracking, I understand, in West Virginia and a whole lot of coal, [laughter] but did the President-Elect’s energy message hurt him? Is that also what you’re saying? It’s not just socialism but it’s what Joe Biden said?

MANCHIN: What Joe Biden said and what Joe Biden’s bill is — the Biden energy plan – and we’re working with that – Is that it’s going to be an all-inclusive. You need all the energy.

First and foremost, you must be energy independent. To have the most powerful nation on Earth, we can’t be dependent on foreign – on any foreigners — on any foreign countries for energy sources. So that means we’re going to use coal and we’re going to us gas and we’re going to use oil, and we’re going to be able to use our renewables and be able to develop the fuels of the future. But we’re going to do it in the cleanest fashion.

I believe in innovation, not elimination. And we’ve talked about this. And what was said what we’re going to do is two different things.

And it did come across wrong and it was very difficult. But that didn’t help at all. But I can tell you Joe Biden is not against fracking. Fracking can be done. And we do it every day in West Virginia and do it in the safest manner. We capture the methane. We don’t let it escape into the air. And all these things can be done better.

BRENNAN: I want to ask you what can actually get through. Because it seems in early reporting, the Biden camp will have to rely on a lot of executive orders, particularly if the Republicans hold on to the Senate, as it appears poised to do. That would hard for him to repeal, for example, the Trump tax cuts. That would make it hard for him to repeal liability protections for gun manufacturers. I mean, is the message from this election that Democrats need to be moderate?

MANCHIN: Oh, I’ve always been moderate. I would encourage all Democrats to be moderate. Find the middle, if you can. We’re not going to be able to govern from the extremes or the fringes, never have been.

But when you’re talking about the things you are, fiscal responsibility wasn’t even spoken about in this election. Not any side. And Republicans, we piled on more debt in four years – in the last four years – more debt at a faster rate than any time since World War II. Someone should be concerned about that.

So, I believe – I always said I’m fiscally responsible and socially compassionate. I believe most Americans are. My moderate Republican friends and the moderate Democrats. We’ve got to govern from that middle, that moderate middle.

Joe Biden has always been there. He knows how to work across the aisle. He’ll reach out first and make this Senate work, give it every chance he can. And I can assure you there are my Republican friends that are concerned about this run-away debt. They want to make sure we’re able to do it in a fiscally responsible way. So, you’ll be surprised there will be more crossing over, wanting to work in a more moderate Senate. I really believe that.

BRENNAN: Alright, we’ll see if that happens. Thank you very much, Senator Manchin.



Source link