Joseph Methner, Guest Writer
In a time in our country when politics seems to be as polarized as ever, there is one clear path that has proven to stand true throughout the years. Progressive politics is the way of the future of the United States. Progressive politics already have a large foothold in the makeup of our government’s policies, even more than many people care to realize. The two biggest progressive names in the 2020 presidential race are Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. These candidates have clearly led the progressive movement, though other candidates such as Andrew Yang with his Freedom Dividend and Jay Inslee with his climate change policies have run on progressive policy platforms as well. While some people may argue that these candidates’ policies are far too radical for our country, the numbers don’t speak to that statement.
For example, take the wealth tax proposed by both Senator Sanders and Senator Warren. According to a Hill-HarrisX survey, 74% percent of registered voters support a 2% tax on people with assets over $50 million and a 3% percent tax on people with assets over $1 billion dollars. If you listen to many conservative or even moderate pundits, you may find these numbers hard to believe, but it is in fact a majority opinion in our current political state. The same can be said about an assault weapons ban, with two thirds of the country supporting such a ban. These policies have been proposed and fought for by progressive politicians all across the country and the numbers simply back them up.
Looking back through history the numbers game can be played with many progressive policies. There was a time when the Social Security program proposed by President Franklin Roosevelt was far too radical and could never be implemented. Now we live in a country where Social Security has become an expectation and a program that almost the entire country supports. The same can be said of Medicare and Medicaid. These programs were frowned upon by conservatives back when they were established in 1966, but have become a normal part of our society. As time moves on, progressive policies are almost always consistently becoming more accepted. These are some of the only policies that have stood the test of time.
As the 2020 elections are coming ever so closer, less than one year away, it’s time for Americans to get ready and vote. While these progressive ideals are widely accepted by many Americans, a major reason they have not been enacted is voter turnout. Young people especially have a low turnout, but this can be said for the majority of America’s voting eligible citizens. If voter turnout increases the chances of these policies being enacted become greater and greater. The presidential election is not the only election to vote progressive in either. There are many progressive candidates running in local elections across the nation where just as big of an impact can be made. The time for progressive politics is now and it’s on us to make it happen.