The U.S. public learned one thing during the recent two-day fiasco that took place in Miami: All of the Democratic candidates who have a remote shot at getting the “nod” promote a far-left agenda and seek to turn the United States into a socialist nation.
Given what we learned during the “debate,” one major question comes to mind: Do the Democratic-leaning voters dislike President Donald Trump enough to destroy the country? While U.S. voters will inevitably answer this question in 2020, the results of recent polls should compel Republicans and the president to focus their efforts on specifically explaining the dangers of socialism to the U.S. public.
There is no doubt that socialism ruled the day during the Democratic primary debate. A recent article in The Federalist provided a good analysis of how some of the so-called “moderate” candidates even espoused far-left ideas. Some of the dangerous ideas lauded included “Medicare for All,” free health care, the “Green New Deal,” a ban on firearms, open borders, and free college. Based on these policy ideas, the Democrats have all but assured their socialist ways.
At first glance, this would appear to help the president and Republicans, who promote a capitalist system. However, according to a recent article in The Guardian:
“Forty percent of Americans would rather live in a socialist country than a capitalist one, with a majority of younger women having this preference, according to a new poll. … However, the poll showed a gender divide when it comes to U.S. attitudes to socialism. Although 55 percent of women in the 18–54 age group said they would prefer living in a socialist country, ‘a majority of men prefer to live in a capitalist country.’”
While the results of this poll are somewhat concerning (and astonishing), there is a great deal of confusion among people as to what socialism really means. For example, in one poll, 20 percent of registered voters said that they were unsure of what socialism was.
According to The Guardian, referencing a survey from Axios on HBO, “respondents had varying views on what comprised a socialist political system. Seventy-six percent of respondents agreed that universal health care was a hallmark of socialism. Seventy-two percent agreed that tuition-free education was also a characteristic of socialism, and 68 percent thought a living wage was part of a socialist system.
“Large numbers of respondents also agreed that socialism was linked to several unfavorable political characteristics. Fifty-seven percent agreed that ‘state-controlled media and communication’ were among the things constituting socialism, and 49 percent agreed it was a ‘system dependent on dictatorship.’”
Based on the results of these polls, one conclusion is glaringly obvious. Republicans must focus their energy on explaining the meaning and dangers of socialism.
For example, according to talk radio host Mark Levin, socialism, in a general sense, spreads poverty through redistribution. In a socialist society, the state is the master and decisions are made by a few people who aren’t concerned with the rights of the individual but on the equality of distribution. With socialism, the government controls the system and people are kept at similar economic levels by way of such things as redistribution and heavily taxing those who choose to work hard and succeed. Therefore, in a socialist society, there is very little incentive for people to work hard to succeed because they don’t personally prosper or benefit from their hard work.
While Levin provides a good overall synopsis of socialism, Republicans must explain why some of the specific ideas proposed by most of the leading Democratic candidates are dangerous, unrealistic, and unsustainable. In doing so, Republicans (and the president, specifically) must also explain how their party’s policies will help those in the lower and middle class, and why they are preferable to the socialist policies presented by their Democratic challengers.
Republicans can’t rely on general rebuttals (i.e., socialism is dangerous and must be rejected). Rather, they must be specific so that the voters understand.
The 2020 election is shaping up to be a battle between freedom and socialism. As some polls have clearly shown, many Americans don’t have a clear understanding of what socialism really means. Republicans and the president have a golden opportunity to clearly and specifically explain this system and its many dangers to U.S. voters.
If they can successfully do so, the president’s path to a second term could be much easier.
Elad Hakim is a writer, commentator, and attorney. His articles have been published in The Washington Examiner, The Daily Caller, The Federalist, The Western Journal, American Thinker, and other online publications.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.