In brief:

  1. I hoped Jon Ossoff would win. While I disagree with him on a number of key issues, he would have been a vote for many important Democratic priorities.
  2. I think there is very little to like or admire in Karen Handel or her platform. Hijacking the country’s largest and most visible cancer charity in order to further her radical personal agenda doesn’t bode well for her potential as a legislator. Her inability to do anything other than name-calling during this campaign doesn’t say much about her vision.
  3. Even if Ossoff had won, the task ahead of us in the 16th District would have remained the same.

Our biggest foe as Democrats isn’t the Republican Party – it’s absenteeism. Our biggest challenge isn’t getting people to vote Democratic rather than Republican; it’s getting people to vote Democratic rather than not voting at all.

Generic platitudes about “streamlining government” will not get people invested in the Democratic Party. Continuing to normalize the Bush tax cuts, which put even more pain and suffering on working families in order to close deficits which were run up by the wealthiest supporters of the political establishment, will not get people invested in the Democratic Party.

What will get people invested in the Democratic Party is articulating a clear picture about the kind of world that we want to live in, and offer a concise and accessible plan for how we’re going to get there.

Here’s what I believe:

I believe that investing in the middle class and working families is both the morally right thing to do and the only way to restore the American Dream.

I believe that the genetic lottery of your health should have nothing to do with what you achieve in life. Everyone should have access to affordable healthcare. The most cost-effective way to guarantee affordable healthcare is through a universal, single-payer system, such as “Medicare-for-All.”

I believe that the leaders of our biggest banks and investment funds should be held to the same standard as working people. Ordinary people who are investing for their kids’ educations and their own retirement can’t be left holding the bag for toxic assets invented by the wealthiest people in the world.

I believe that small businesses have to be at the center of any program to create jobs. We can’t keep letting family-owned businesses find themselves at an impossible disadvantage against big corporations. We need to enforce anti-trust provisions in order to put more money back in the pockets of the middle class.

I believe that we need to preserve the natural environment. As a rural district, a clean environment and stable climate is our greatest economic resource. And in the wider context, a clean environment and stable climate are the only way to safeguard our entire planet.

I believe that the Democratic Party is at its best when it is the party of families and working people.

Defending working families requires a concrete, visible commitment to good jobs, accessible education, and affordable healthcare. It requires a commitment to enforcing the rules fairly and consistently no matter who someone is and how much money they make.

We need to make investments in people. And we can pay for those investments by making everyone – whether you’re making $20,000 a year or $2 million a year – play by the same rules and be held to the same standard.

When Democrats make a clear commitment to working people, we win. It’ll be hard, but it’s not complicated.

And I would be telling you the exact same thing even if Jon Ossoff had won last night. -n