The swearing in of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States signified that not only the will of the people was heard, but that democracy prevailed.
Through our victory, Democrats now have a platform to undo all of Trump’s failures, protect democracy and fulfill their promises to voters who have been disenfranchised and hit hard by the pandemic. Yet, several obstacles including Republicans refusing to pass legislation, Republican dominance of redistricting efforts, and a growing Senate and Electoral College bias toward red states, are what Democrats must face in order to enact change.
From The New York Times:
Democracy is worth fighting for, not least because it’s the fight that will decide all the others. “One of the things a Trump administration has shown is that democracy is inextricably linked to the things that matter to Americans,” Rhodes said. “The rules are not separate from the issues. If you want effective Covid response, if you want robust gun violence prevention, if you want a strong economy, then you need a true American democracy.”
Biden has an extraordinary opportunity to change the relationship between the people and their government. If he succeeds, he will not only deprive authoritarian populists like Trump of energy, he will give Democrats a chance to win over voters who’ve lost faith in them, and he will give voice to millions more that the American political system has silenced. “The best thing we can do right now to reduce levels of anger and frustration on both sides of the aisle is to give people the things they need to live better lives,” said Lerman.
In other words, what Democrats need to do is simple: Just help people, and do it fast.
Democrats produce a wealth of legislation and ideas that could improve people’s lives and strengthen our democracy, yet none of these bills will pass a Senate in which Senate Republicans abuse the 60-vote threshold. Democrats must look into reforming or eliminating the filibuster in order to get more meaningful legislation through.
Democrats must spearhead policies that are clear, tangible and are directly improving their constituents day-to-day lives. The people experience policy and will only ever see change when it’s happening in their communities, schools and during their doctor visits.
Revitalizing the John Lewis Voting Rights Act would be the first step in Democrats ensuring that every American’s right to vote is secured and are protected against racial discrimination.
No longer can Democrats leave their promises to their constituents in the hands of Republicans who continue to ignore the needs of the American people. The Biden-Harris administration marks an opportunity for Democrats to lay claim to their power and ensure that policies are passed in order to help the people who have been long forgotten by the previous administration.
These next two years gives Democrats a chance to strengthen democracy, address the white supremacist system that has emboldened insurrectionists and traitors like Trump, and fight for a just recovery that puts us all on sounder ground for the future.
As Ezra Klein puts it, “Democrats need to reimagine their role. They cannot merely defend the political system”.
They must rebuild it and remain committed to fulfilling their promises to voters in order to prevent another occurrence of Trumpism.