Leftist personality Jimmy Dore lit up Twitter over the weekend by calling on Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and other progressives to withhold their support for Pelosi unless she agrees to hold a vote on Medicare For All. This sparked intense debates about strategy and goals among Lefitsts on Twitter – which is exactly what needed to happen. Whether you agree with Dore or not, these are the conversations that we have to start having, as Ring of Fire’s Farron Cousins explains.


*This transcript was generated by a third-party transcription software company, so please excuse any typos.

So over the weekend on Twitter, um, there was a bit of division, I guess you would say, uh, of those of us on the left here. And here’s what happened. Uh, the whole thing started when, uh, Jimmy Dore called out representative Alexandria, Ocasio, Cortez, saying that she needs to use her political capital to force a vote on Medicare for all on the house floor. So that we, the people, even though we know this thing is going to fail so that we can see who’s real about it, because it is one thing to, co-sponsor a piece of legislation. We have seen plenty of people, co-sponsor legislation that they know is going to fail, but they wanted to get their name on it so that, Hey, look at me, I did the thing. And so DOR said, Hey, AOC, you’ve got political capital. Use it to bring this thing to him vote.

Um, so we can see who’s the real deal. Now she responded, but not directly to Jimmy Dore. She responded to other people, uh, Justin Jackson, uh, with the NFL chargers, uh, in, uh, chargers, the chargers, the NFL team, uh, was one of the people she responded to. They kind of went back and forth a little bit. She explained her position. Um, but she did overall. She got, you know, fairly regularly attacked by the people on the left, the people that are her biggest fans, uh, because she was unwilling to do this. And as she said, this is a lot of political expense here. A lot of capital to expand on something that we know is designed to fail. What’s the actual point of it. Uh, she went obviously further in depth in that door, went in more in depth than I’m going to go here because we don’t have time to sit here and flesh out every single thing they said, I’m giving you the nutshell version here.

Um, so Sunday morning I wake up and this stuff’s kind of going crazy a little bit more. Um, you know, you’ve got door on one side, you’ve got the others on the left, on the other. There’s plenty of leftists on door’s side. Uh, I believe Kolinsky is over here on this side. You’ve got Ben Dixon. You got Greg harden. You’ve got other folks, Alex Lawson, all of whom. Good, good friends of us here at ring of fire. And here I am. I see the merit to what door has to say and what door is calling for. But at the same time, I also see the futility of it. And I do have to wonder, is it worth it AOC as somebody who does not have a lot of political capital in DC? Oh, she has a lot of clout from coast to coast. Everybody knows who she is, but popularity, fame does not equal leverage in Washington. See, you know, she she’s finishing her freshman term. Hadn’t even been there two, four years yet. She doesn’t have a whole lot of power or authority over what can happen. And the little bit that she has, shouldn’t be spent bringing a symbolic bill for a vote that’s designed to fail. And here’s why I’ll get to her political capital and what she could be using it for in just a moment. But think about it this way.

If everybody knows, this is purely symbolic, that this thing is not going to pass. We’re just trying to see who’s a good guy and who’s a bad guy. Wouldn’t they all just vote for it. Anyway. It’d be like, Oh, see, I’m a good guy. And even if they vote against it two years from now, when they’re facing election again, and they’re asked by voters, if they even remember, they’re going to be asked like, well, you voted against this and they could say, well, one, it was designed to fail. We knew it was a ruse. It was a waste of time. We didn’t want to do that. Or two, they could say, well, my position on the issue has evolved since Then. Either way they win. They dismiss those criticisms and those accusations, which is exactly what this is designed to provoke. And then it was all for nothing. At that point, it was all for nothing at that point. And plus all of that hinges on what I said to begin with. If people even remember, look, I’m a remember, cause it’s my job. Door’s gonna remember Ben. Dixon’s going to remember. We’re all going to remember the people who follow me on Twitter are going to remember. But if you’re not one of their constituents, if you’re not in their district, then what does that matter? You don’t get to do anything about it. I live in Matt Gates district. I don’t get to vote for AOC or vote against her. I don’t get to vote for Nancy. Pelosi’s next primary Challenger.

I got to vote for whoever it is we find from the democratic party to lose to Matt Gates. This is an incredibly red area. Democrats don’t stand a chance. I’m sorry. I hate it. So that’s my take on it is first of all, it’s not going to have the intended consequences that people like Jimmy Dore think it will. And that’s the whole point though. Like if you think it’s going to do X, but it’s actually not going to do X then from the beginning, the whole plan is indeed flawed. Look, I applaud him for actually, you know, saying, here’s an idea. Here is a plan. Here’s something you need to do. We need more of that. We, we truly do. I appreciate AOC coming out and responding to the people and talking to them and explaining it to them. I think she’s great. At the same time, I don’t have any heroes in DC. I’m not putting all my stock in any lawmaker at all. There are people I like, but there are not people that I idolize. And I think that’s what we all need to be on. That’s the page. All of us need to be on stop making heroes of these people. They’re human beings like you and me, they can do good. They can do bad. Sometimes they do things we want. Lot of times they do things we don’t want, but that’s where we should all be. Stop idolizing these individuals because you will be let down by every single one of them. Don’t idolize us in the liberal media, either the progressive media, because we’re going to let you down. I got crapped on, on Twitter too, for, for saying my point, which wasn’t I wasn’t attacking anybody. I see the validity of what doors trying to do.

I also see the futility of it. AOC would be better served to use what little political capital she has to get a better committee assignment. She would be better used saving up that political capital, building it, and then going forward with the Medicare for all vote. Now here’s the other thing, folks. And this is, you know, just kind of addition, Medicare for all is not as popular as it was six months ago. It wasn’t as popular six months ago as it was a year ago, the polls are shifting, unfortunately in the other direction, in the latest round of polling available on this issue from October from the Kaiser family foundation, most Democrats now would rather see the ACA affordable care act expanded upon, not replaced with a Medicare for all plan On The issue of Medicare for all. We’re back to square one in the middle of a pandemic. We’re back to square one on giving everybody in this country, health That’s nuts. That’s what the media does. That’s what the corporate parties do. They made that happen by spreading all of this misinformation about Medicare for all. So before we bring anything to a floor vote, we’ve got to go back out and convince the public that this is the best plan. So yeah, We’re back to square one. That’s another reason why a floor vote right now is not a good idea because even if you bring it to a floor, vote a floor vote, that’s designed to fail. And then it fails the public who already isn’t liking this thing anymore.

Looks at that and say, Oh, it failed. I guess. Yeah. I mean, that’s probably not a good plan then. So it’s going to further taint the idea of Medicare for all in their eyes. Maybe I’m wrong, maybe, but Seen a lot of this over 16 years of being in this business. Yes, She has a little bit of political capital and she needs to use it so that she can further other issues that she has a chance of succeeding with. Unfortunately right now, Medicare for all is not one of those. And if she does force this vote, at what point does it become the boy who cried Wolf, you know, saying, Hey, let’s vote on this thing. Oh, it failed. Hey, come on, come sponsor. My thing, why all you do is bring up symbolic bills that are designed to fail. While am I going to work with you? And then she doesn’t get anything accomplished. There’s good ways to go about this. There’s bad ways to go about this. I just don’t think this particular idea is a great one. I think it sounds good on paper. Sounds good in your head, but then once you really start, it sounds good in a tweet.

But once you really start to flesh it out, you start to realize like, wait a minute, maybe this isn’t the best way to do it, but you don’t have that much rational discourse on Twitter. It’s I’m right. And you’re an idiot. That’s what everybody says. I’ve actually been having some good conversations with people. Who’ve disagreed with me. And we sit there and we’re talking about our reasoning, you know, mature early and rationally. And, and I see their points that they’re seeing my points. And so that’s one of the main reasons I wanted to make this today. Not to, to, you know, crap on anybody or personally attack anybody. It’s not what I’m doing and here at all. Okay. I’m not trying to start any feuds that I don’t feel like fighting. I’m getting older. I don’t feel like fighting with you people anymore. All I’m saying is that this idea is an idea. And maybe we use it instead of actually putting that idea in action. Let’s use that as a springboard. Let’s all start talking now about other ideas. If you don’t like doors, then offer something else. Instead. Maybe that’s the goal of all of this. Maybe that’s what we all need to focus on more. You know, let’s maybe not spend as much time trying to say that Trump and his kids are idiots or that, Hey, look what Dave Rubin did today. Maybe focus more on ideas. That’s something, all of us are severely lacking on myself, included DOR, put out an idea. Some people agreed, some people disagreed, but it opened discourse into what should be the course of action. And that’s actually a pretty good thing.

Farron Cousins is the executive editor of The Trial Lawyer magazine and a contributing writer at DeSmogBlog.com. He is the co-host / guest host for Ring of Fire Radio. His writings have appeared on Alternet, Truthout, and The Huffington Post. Farron received his bachelor's degree in Political Science from the University of West Florida in 2005 and became a member of American MENSA in 2009. Follow him on Twitter @farronbalanced