Bernie Bros, MAGA Disciples could form unlikely coalition

Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author.

Question of the Day: “What three positions do supporters of Senator Bernie Sanders and former President Donald Trump share?”

1- Distaste for endless wars

2- Shipping American jobs overseas

3- Corruption in government

The past weekend marked the beginning of what could be a wildly contested Republican primary. Donald Trump may receive a challenge for the nomination. The question becomes, “from whom?”

Pundits enjoy pitting Trump against Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. On paper, the popular DeSantis looks to be a formidable challenger. He is young (44 years old), a notable conservative with the right pedigree, coming from a must-win state that is trending decidedly red. Unanswered is the looming question: “What if DeSantis declines to run in 2024?”

I have broached the subject with hundreds of Florida Republicans over the past twelve months. Universally, their answer came back loud and clear: “But we need him here!”

A 19-point victory over Charlie Crist this past November reflected DeSantis’ report card. It’s hard to believe that he defeated then-Tallahassee Major Andrew Gillum by less than 1% in 2018! Four years later, Gillum’s legacy will be remembered as one that included corruption, drugs, and eventual indictment. Meanwhile, DeSantis has taken the 2020 election results as a mandate and is well on his way to establishing a national conservative standard.

Wouldn’t this alone qualify DeSantis for the 2024 nomination? Perhaps. Yet a powerful argument can be made for waiting until 2028.

Donald Trump is going all out for the chance to finish what he started. Some call it a “revenge tour.” In the former president’s mind, he successfully fought a three-front war while in office. Opposition from the other party was a given. That the corporate media was firmly in the other party’s camp was expected. The establishment wing of his own party deceived and discredited him. A nearly impossible landscape resulted.

This adversity has made Trump stronger and more determined than ever. DeSantis is a smart man. He either finishes his second gubernatorial term, builds his organization, and secures his funding, or accepts Trump’s invitation to be his running mate in 2024.

DeSantis is currently leading all polls as Trump’s best possible VP choice. Either way, he should be the nominee in 2028. A brass knuckles brawl with Trump in 2024 benefits nobody save Democrats and anti-Trump Republicans. His endorsement would unify the party, effectively slamming the door on any other suitors.

Meanwhile, Democrats have their own quandary.

President Joe Biden will be 82 years of age in 2024. At this moment, he plans to run for re-election. Polls collectively indicate that the majority of Democrats would prefer another option. Smart money suggests that if Biden is the nominee, Kamala Harris will be dropped from the ticket.

Absent from the discussion is Bernie Sanders. The vast majority of Sanders supporters believe that the Dominion voting machines were used to secure the 2016 nomination for Hillary Clinton. They continue to question the Democratic National Committee’s handling of the 2020 nomination.

In short, we have more than a little resentment. Would it be enough to form a coalition with Trump supporters? If California Gov. Gavin Newsom is Harris’ replacement, it’s a signal that Dems fear such a marriage!

Trump’s “Make America Great Again” movement is not racist, as the corporate media accuses. MAGA members are largely composed of blue-collar, formerly independent voters, Libertarians, Populists, and people of faith, not necessarily Christian. The rift between Trump and Evangelicals is a misnomer. In actuality, the “Big Church” is nothing more than old Neo-Cons such as Robert Jeffress and Pat Robertson, traditional Bush supporters, conforming to the globalist narrative.

“Bernie Bros” are younger, mostly agnostic, and generally idealistic. The majority are self-proclaimed Socialists. Their overall view of the world can be described as “mutable.” Their hot buttons are universal health care and a “livable minimum wage.” Populism and Libertarianism do not frighten them.

Negotiating deals is Trump’s forte. A plan to provide “Medicaid for all” would win unmeasurable concessions from Sanders supporters. It would also win the majority of support from his base. Funding for “Medicaid for all” could come from these measures:

1- Offshore Personnel Tax (OPT) tax imposed on U.S. corporations which choose to ship American jobs abroad. For example: If an American company’s union scale paid $11.60 per hour to stateside workers and $2.60 per hour to workers in India and the Philippines, the difference between the Far-East wage would be paid in the form of an OPT tax. Industries would include pharmaceutical, information technology, financial services and debt recovery.

2- Eliminate all funding for overseas adventures, starting with Ukraine. American troops stationed abroad would be brought home.

3- Impose 1/4 of one cent national sales tax used to set up national catastrophic health insurance pool.

 

While opponents would warn that an OPT tax would be inflationary, they would acknowledge that more money would be brought into the federal coffers. They would talk of lost jobs in the defense sector, but grudgingly admit that few people and companies actually benefit from this spending.

There would be skeptics. “Private sector orientation” would be the watchword. In creating a catastrophic pool, the overall premium cost would be reduced. Instead of government management, each citizen would receive a voucher that could be used only for health insurance premiums. The “Bernie Bros” would see it as a major victory.

This compromise would result in additional savings!

1- Completion of the border wall

2- Adopting English as the official language

3- Paper ballots only, same-day voting, photo and signature verification required. No ballot harvesting. No drop-off voting. No mail-in voting unless the voter was deployed in service of their country or the ballot was accompanied by doctor’s excuse.

4- Adoption of a merit-based immigration system.

5- Former politicians would be disallowed from holding lobbyist positions.

6- Renewed energy exploration on public lands with regulations reduction

The OPT tax would be vehemently opposed by Neo-Cons. Establishment Democrats would share their skepticism. Both would oppose withholding funds from the war in Ukraine.

The distraction of implementing a health insurance plan for all would serve as a smoke screen for Trump administration objectives:

  • Reforming of the “three-letter” agencies.
  • Making  academia open to multiple points of view.
  • Returning public school control to parents and teachers
  • Nonrenewal and subsequent reassignment of broadcast media and network licenses.

 

Sanders would never endorse Donald Trump. Yet he might decline to endorse Joe Biden.

Possibly a deal clincher would be Tulsi Gabbard as Trump’s running mate. True, the former Congresswoman from Hawaii voted to impeach Trump. Her recent departure from the Democrats coupled with her acid frontal attacks upon them hint that she would be his ideal “hatchet lady.”

And MAGA members could forgive Gabbard for the impeachment vote.

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