Clinton’s sole leftward economic conversion was on trade. Early in the campaign, Clinton told a reporter she opposed the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which she had helped craft during her tenure at the State Department. This was real movement, but it probably won’t matter. President Barack Obama and congressional Republicans had the votes to pass TPP last year. It’s just a question of when House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) decides to bring it to the floor (hint: lame-duck session).In the months since this reversal, Clinton has attacked single-payer health care and repeatedly defended her paid speeches to Goldman Sachs by invoking the logic of Citizens United. On Wall Street reform, she has maintained her original position of implementing Dodd-Frank (with a few new disclosures). Her top economist supporters have dismissed the too-big-to-fail banking problem as unimportant. When the Sanders campaign touted research from a liberal academic, Clinton’s economic braintrust smeared him without even reading his analysis.

Sanders gave Clinton a run for her money in a race where the entire party leadership had lined up to support her. He has pushed a nationwide deficit of more than 50 percentage points into a close race. And he has done it without taking corporate money.

That is the core achievement of the Sanders insurgency, and it is much more significant than making Clinton apologize for welfare reform. For decades, centrist Democrats have insisted that they cannot compete with Republicans if they do not court donations from corporate elites. Corporate-friendly Democrats routinely justify terrible votes on awful policy by pointing to fundraising. That excuse is now dead. Sanders killed it.

Sanders has demonstrated that it is in fact possible to run for president as a progressive and still wage a credible national campaign without relying on financial support from the super-rich.

That bald fact should change the way Democrats conduct policymaking. It should make members of Congress wary of future challenges from economic progressives. Clinton is politically savvy. Like most centrist Democrats, she has been acutely sensitive to the concerns of the donor class throughout her political career. The Sanders candidacy should convince her to be just as attentive to the kitchen-table concerns of Americans in the bottom 90 percent.

Some of Clinton’s supporters, including liberal economist Brad DeLong, argue that Clinton should consolidate the party’s base by lying to Sanders backers until the election, and then “gleefully trash” them after victory in November.

 

Source – HuffPost – Zach Carter: No, Bernie Sanders Has Not Pushed Hillary Clinton To The Left

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