By Deepak Bhargava, executive director of the Campaign for Community Change
Last night’s election changed the political dynamic in Washington with the Republican Party taking control of the U.S. House of Representatives, but not the U.S. Senate. Deepak Bhargava, executive director of the Campaign for Community Change, released the following statement:
“What a difference two years makes. In stark contrast to the platform of hope and change that swept President Obama into office in 2008, the big corporate empire fought back, riding a wave of anger and economic dissatisfaction. In the process, big corporate interests spent billions vilifying President Obama and Democrats over health care reform, energy reform and fi nancial reform—all major legislative accomplishments that will fundamentally change the lives of all Americans, particularly communities of color. The empire topped it off (with the help of a conservative Supreme Court ruling) with a record infusion of money into the election designed to end change and preserve the status quo.
“Today, Republicans are reaping the rewards of a cynical and immoral strategy: obstruct President Obama from succeeding and then blame him for Washington’s failure. In the end, voters punished the current party in power for the economic problems created by the previous President and a generation of misplaced economic values. This is evident in exit polling showing 64 percent of voters actually blamed Wall Street or former President Bush for our current economic mess.
“Americans did not endorse a conservative Republican agenda. Democrats retained the U.S. Senate and Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid, a symbol of much of what the Democrats accomplished in the last two years and who embraced President Obama and the entire hope and change agenda, won re-election with the decisive support of Latinos (an almost unheard of 90 percent).
“With the Republican Party taking control of the House, there is a significant threat to repeal health care reform. Such an action would exacerbate the problems of lower health quality and health care disparities that African Americans experience. Additionally, legislation to create jobs in the communities hardest hit by the economic collapse will face significant road blocks under a House of Representatives led by Rep. John Boehner. Going forward progressives must articulate a clear choice, people or profit, Wall Street or Main Street, and engage and mobilize our communities and new people to counterweight the political clout of the moneyed and powerful corporate interest who’ve bought their way back in charge.”