Jay Stamper: A Conservative Democrat?
Most people would consider me a progressive Democrat. After all, I support expanding Social Security, raising the minimum wage and implementing single-payer Medicare for all. And I’m pro-choice, pro-marriage equality and believe that global warming and evolution are real.
So, how could anyone suggest that I’m actually conservative? Well, the shocking truth is that on a whole host of some of the most important issues we face, I’m arguably more “conservative” than Lindsey Graham. And I’m not going to let Republican voters forget it.
First, let’s take a step back and give Graham his due. He does want to destroy the social safety net and leave millions of Americans without access to healthcare. On those issues and others, I’ll never hold a candle to Graham in the conservative department.
But on other issues, I do hold a candle. And on those issues, I’m going to hold Graham accountable for selling South Carolinians a counterfeit conservatism that bears little resemblance to the real thing. And I’m going to reach out to Republican voters, who are routinely tricked into voting against their economic self-interest in the name of this faux conservatism.
I’m going to ask them:
· What’s conservative about spending $1.4 trillion on foreign engagements and overseas nation building and putting it on a credit card? That’s not fiscal conservatism.
· What’s conservative about government giving billions in corporate welfare to big corporations – and making individuals and small businesses pick up the tab? That’s not free-market conservatism.
· What’s conservative about telling people what they can and can’t do with their own bodies or who they can and cannot marry? That’s not limited government conservatism.
· What’s conservative about treating the bill of rights as an inconvenience? That’s not constitutional conservatism.
Now, I don’t expect enthusiastic support from conservative Republicans – we disagree on too much. But this “liberaltarian” is going to work hard to earn their reluctant and grudging support.
Jay Stamper is a Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Lindsey Graham (RINO-S.C.).