For some Reason the Public Thinks Politicians Side with Corporations

For some reason, the public thinks politicians side with corporations.  Imagine that.  And they’re looking for politicians who do not.

The LA Times reports on focus groups with voters, seeing what they think today, in These voters in Arizona are fed up with Democrats, Republicans and, most of all, Trump,

More than two dozen voters gathered in Phoenix this week delivered a bipartisan broadside against President Trump, Republicans and Democrats, dismissing the political class as serving its wealthy benefactors and abandoning everyday Americans.

“… The questions largely revolved around views of Trump and Republican efforts to pass healthcare and tax reform measures.  Yet in the process, participants voiced strikingly little support for Democrats nor any enthusiasm about using their vote to cast out Republicans next year.

“Democrats are doing something badly wrong,” said one Democratic-leaning voter, saying the party “should have done a better job” last year.  “Democrats are flailing.”

“I think the government is totally corrupt,” said an independent voter who leaned toward Democrats in elections but disparaged both sides.

Republicans see Trump and Republicans siding with corporations.  Imagine that.

Asked whether Trump sided with regular people or big corporations, nine of 10 in the Republican group said he sided with corporations.  All 10 said Republicans in Congress sided with corporations.  Two said Democrats sided with ordinary people.  Sentiments were not dramatically different in other groups.

“They’re all the same; they’re all puppets,” said one Trump voter.

People saw government bailing out Wall Street and corporations instead of We the People, and aren’t happy,

People in Arizona and Ohio, all these other groups in other places in the country, thought after the crash that Wall Street and big corporations were made whole again, and they were left behind,” said Patrick McHugh, the executive director of Priorities, who observed the focus groups.

“Trump made a lot of promises to address those issues.  He’s now president….He’s now responsible for fulfilling those promises.”

So people somehow sense that government sides with corporations.  People might be uninformed and misinformed, but they by and large aren’t stupid.  They can see what’s going on and want something done about it.

Apart from the obvious racism, Trump campaigned on an economic message.  There were people who will tell you they “took a chance” and supported Trump because he promised to “drain the swamp” of corruption in government.  He said he was already wealthy so he wouldn’t take bribes. He got a lot of votes from people who were fed up.

If there was a consistent criticism of Hillary Clinton it was that she was beholden to corporations, especially Wall Street, and that her paid speeches and supposed support for TPP proved it.

Lots of people supported Bernie Sanders because he obviously was not in the pocket of corporations.

Many Green voters are Greens instead of Democrats because they believe the party has sold out to corporate interests.

I wonder if there is a lesson from this?

Editor’s Note: This essay originally appeared at Campaign for America’s Future (CAF) at their Blog for OurFuture.  It also appeared on August 8, 2017 on Seeing the Forest, a website featuring commentary by Dave Johnson, frequent public speaker and talk-radio guest and a leading participant in the progressive blogging community.  It was reproduced here with the consent of Mr. Johnson.

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