The Reformicons

Thomas B. Edsall has an interesting piece in the New York Times on the “Republican Discovery of the Poor,” the embrace of economic populism, and the promotion of reforms, including changes to the tax code. Edsall understands the potential challenge to Democrats as Republicans “plan to bring the fight to the Democrats on their own turf.”

None of this is good news for Hillary Clinton. As Edsall concludes:

The obligation to counter the Republicans falls on Hillary Clinton. Her supporters are aware that she must navigate between the party’s competing constituencies while simultaneously demonstrating that she is not beholden to the Democratic special interest group network. If the 2016 election becomes a Clinton-Bush contest (or Clinton versus someone else who is committed to reformicon principles), its outcome will be determined by the ability of each candidate to surmount the same hurdle, but from opposite directions. How do you speak for the economically insecure without offending the very secure?

Edsall may not fully appreciate the longstanding disdain for corporate welfare and tax expenditures among libertarian elements of the GOP. What he presents as strategic calculations on the part of some Republicans may be more correctly understood as a longstanding commitment among some factions of the GOP. Whether this will constitute a threat to the Democratic candidate will depend on whether the reformist elements can survive the primaries.

One thought on “The Reformicons

  1. The main problem is the voting Political Class ie.government employees,retired government employees and the vast “entitlement” or more to the point net tax recipient “transfer class” that produce little of value into the market yet receives the fruits of the labor of the Economic Class that creates the wealth in the market that is being taxed. Or as H L Mencken once stated “there are those that work for a living and those that vote for a living.” With that said,the “special interests” ie. banks,corporate interests,the military industrial complex etc. do play a role in the equation. Politicians have to walk a fine line between these 2 entities in order to gain access to the levers of power. Thus politicians such as Hillary Clinton have been made rich by being bought off by the “special interests” that control most of the politicians in Washington. But,at the same time,by catering to the entitlement seeking Political Class by taxing the voting minority productive Economic Class can attain the power that a Hillary Clinton desires. As an aside, I always wondered how America’s economic and political history would have differed if,written into our Constitution,there were provisions that would not allow “entitlement” recipients on any level or for that matter government employees,retired or currently employed,to vote in Federal elections. One can only dream.

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