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What If Jon Ossoff Campaigned On Message For Medicare For All?

What If Jon Ossoff Campaigned On Message For Medicare For All?

Kevin Gosztola

When Jon Ossoff launched his campaign for the Georgia congressional seat formerly held by Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, Democrats mobilized to bolster his candidacy because they believed he could win. Yet, Ossoff’s failure to beat Republican Karen Handel has not produced the kind of reflection that should follow the outcome that occurred in one of the most expensive congressional races in history.


Too bad there wasn’t a Green Party candidate supporting universal healthcare in the District. Hold on, there was! Got about .01% of the vote. The Democrats in fact did damn well in Georgia 6th. They did even better, considering the lack of attention, in South Carolina 5. Thumping ones chest about a Bernie supporter winning a school board seat somewhere is childish.

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Ossoff never really had a message to speak of other than TRUMP=BAD. He had a chance to bring up issues that may have threatened the ‘good life’ living of the voters in the GA 6th - but he chose not to. Like HRC, he never really seemed to believe in anything other than getting elected.

The battle is coming soon (already started actually) to either embrace Bernie and his message or stay the present course of failure, neolib view of Obama/Clinton.


I think Bernie was stuck with staying the course. Maybe I’m projecting a bit but after reading the NYT’s story and reading what I could on The Clinton Foundation money dealings with the Russians (she was so ahead of her times), I thought maybe it would all blow up in her face. And then Bernie, sitting on the bench, would hopefully become the nominee. I think that’s why he stuck around.

But something tells me it’s all going to come to just that, a viable 3rd party, the flip side of the Tea Party’s politics. The ‘D’ Party will NOT let Bernie into the Big Tent b/c he’s way too ‘radical’ for the status quo power structure. They’re protecting their turf and that’s all that matters to them. It’s no longer about the rest of us - b/c we’ll get in line as we have not alternative. Sound familiar?

But I think a 3rd party is the only option left. I have two Millennial sons and they get it. And so do their friends. The main obstacles for 3rd parties has always been message and generating $$$. Those are no longer problems. If a Sanders’ 3rd party was half as successful as the TP, they would have more power then they ever sought possible. It’s all about trading votes and controlling legislation. TP is the perfect model. We don’t have to own the WH when a handful of block votes will do.


The headline is an attempt to provoke discussion around the exact point you raise, which is that Ossoff was another neoliberal Democrat siphoning off progressive energy that could have gone into issues-based struggles or toward a candidate that had some level of politics that offered voters a real alternative.

It worked because I got you to react. You think it is stupid because it is a given that Ossoff is a neoliberal - to you. However, do you think everyone thinks that? Especially those who read this website?

I don’t know. I’m not sure everyone consuming progressive media thinks Ossoff was a straight-up Democratic neoliberal. And that is why I made an attempt to provoke discussion after he lost. To some extent, I’ve had some success.


We so need to get away from focusing on Trump being bad or mean. Also need to stop pushing hysteria and conspiracy-laden arguments about Trump and Putin being in cahoots. It’s well past time to focus on the issues.


I watched one of his debates with his opponent. At the end of the debate, they asked for the candidates single most important issue - Ossoff’s was “cutting waste in government”. I thought - there goes the race! Would have been the perfect time for Medicare for All or something - anything that would grab votes, unlike “cutting waste”. He gave it away. (the race)


Flipping Georgia isn’t impossible, but it will mean encouraging older baby boomers to support it, and telling them there are no death panels. Remember after 2007, the industry has been telling everyone there’s death panels.

Democrats “searching” for an effective brand! It is called the influence of the power brokers of the Democratic Party, that of course follow the corporate cash.

It aint very complicated to figure out at this point.

Republican Party moves even further to the right in the corporate subservience end game leading to Corporate Governance, and guess what?

Take a wild guess!

If you guessed that the corporate servicing power center of the Democratic Party will be following suit, then you would be right.

The insufferable prick Joe Lieberman’s group No Labels is a redo of the DLC, and embodies that very endeavor.

Wrapping out and out corporate subservience in the same old packaging of “centrism”, “pragmatism”, and “bipartisanship”, and “finding common ground to make Congress work again for the people” and other such sloganeering to distract from what is really happening.

We “the people” are fucked, unless of course you are part of the club doing the fucking.

Pardon my language.


If you don’t have anything to run on because you don’t stand for anything—you need to run a negative campaign-----from what I understand Ossoff didn’t go after Trump.I would at least showed Trump having a good time with the Russian diplomats in the oval Office-and telling them that he fixed this guy Comey. Do remember Comey was a republican and a law enforcement officer.

But they should have picked someone from the district who had a connection to local issues-and yes the democrats need to explain what they support.If this candidate supported getting corporate money out of politics-that would be a game changer.

I understood your headline very well. We have 2 Democratic Senators here in NM; 2 of our 3 Representatives are Democrats. Not one of them has promoted Medicare for All. Michelle Lujan-Grisham will leave as Representative and run to replace Gov. Susanna Martinez. She may think it will be easy, but if she doesn’t start spouting some Progressive values, she may be in for a shock. The Trump bashing is very old; we all know how bad he is. Let the investigations continue, concentrate on a platform that helps all of our issues.


“… shut up, be a good Democrat and don’t stand for anything that might upset corporate donors.” Or make H Clinton look bad. That DNC cash was to parrot Hillary, nothing else.

Had Ossoff done the opposite and “stood with the people” he would have made Hillary look bad, if he had championed Medicare for All he would have made Obama look bad. No siree, them $$$s came w/strings attached.

Looks like there’s a move for Pelosi to get the boot: “Now the New York Times rounds up grumbling among House Democrats who think it’s time for a change in leadership. One quote that’s resounding: “Our brand is worse than Trump,” says Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio, who tried unsuccessfully to unseat Pelosi as party leader last fall.”


This is the struggle. Movements have to put forward people who can take stands that are on the side of the people. Electoral politics must become an extension of movement building. The two complement each other. And when there are candidates like an Ossoff pushed by the establishment, the progressive left has to form a bloc that stands in solidarity and doesn’t give millions with no strings attached.


The Green party did not have a candidate in the Georgia 6 special election. Of the 18 candidates that ran in the April Jungle Primary, 5 were registered as Democrats, 11 were registered as Republicans, and 2 were listed as independent (one from the Constitution party and the other from the “Tech party”). The top two faced off in the runoff that just concluded. No Green Party candidate in the bunch.


I hope somebody runs against Heinrich in the primary. He lost my support when he voted against drug importation.


More than anything else, this shows that the DNC leadership hasn’t learned a thing. I will not be supporting any more lame candidates.


DraftBernie.org The People’s Party


Love that Lorna! Thanks - made my day.


I tend to doubt the thesis of this article (in this particular election), simply because polls show clearly that 85% of Republican voters back Trump(doesn’t)Care. Maybe in this particular swath of Georgia it’s different, but I won’t believe that without evidence.

If we should ever happen to be on the same barricade organizing something I will always have your back. At least I can guarantee that.

How righteous of you. Well, you should have my back. If I’m guessing correctly, you’re from the generation that is responsible for much of this colossal mess.

I’ll have to spend the rest of my life with others in my generation trying to unfuck the world to get to a status quo, which is at least tenable for humanity to keep existing on this planet. (Of course, there will still be much systemic oppression to address after that.)

So you’ll understand why I don’t take kindly to people who spout off wisdom with such an air of sanctimony. We have to struggle with people and convince them to no longer be passive opponents or neutral when it comes to pervasive injustice as well as environmental degradation.

Maybe you’re ready to check out, but remember, some of us are in the process of just checking in. Some of us also checked in a short while ago, and we’ve come to realize we have to hunker down for the long haul or else we’re definitely doomed.