Meet Senator Brian Schatz Who Is Rallying White House Hopefuls Around A Series Of Proposals In A Bid To Avoid The ’Toxic Debate’ That Plagued The Democratic Party In 2016.
Brian Schatz heads to a meeting on Capitol Hill with Democratic Senate colleagues Chris Murphy and Cory Booker on June 20, 2017. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call,Inc.
Brian Schatz is not interested in running for President of the United states. He wants to remain in the Senate. His interest is in keeping the Democratic Party strongly united. He self describes as a climate hawk and a uniter, and so far at this stage of the campaigns (very early yet) Democratic competitors have held back from attacking one another, which he says makes for better campaigning, especially if they leave personal complaints aside. I agree, and believe that the Right Wing will have enough semi - real and made up personal complaints to keep their base hateful and happy.
Senator Schatz believes that so far, all the Democratic candidates believe in the basic policy changes needed: Affordable college, climate action, getting the economy back on track, which holds people together better than “personality based politics." His intention is to keep the debates and the over all conversation around the campaigns, focused on policy no matter what personal insults the Trump campaign uses to ridicule and degrade.
Whatever happens in the debates, whoever each Democrat, Independent and break away Republican decided to support or who the final vote goes to, I hope this election will see voters coming together and voting in larger numbers than ever before for the Democrat who wins the Primaries. Our country must be saved from Trump/Pence and the authoritarianism that they stand for. It would seem that Senator Schatz thinks so too.
Brian Schatz is no household name. But he's already positioning himself as an influential figure in the 2020 presidential race — someone who can unite the party around a shared agenda even if the primary inevitably turns ugly.
Schatz, the senior senator from Hawaii, says he is eager to help Democrats avoid “that whole stupid, unproductive, toxic debate” of 2016, when voters were seemingly forced to choose between Bernie Sanders’ bold-but-vague proposals and Hillary Clinton’s detailed-but-modest legislative prescriptions.To do so, he’s been consulting with many of his Democratic colleagues running for president, often serving as an informal sounding board for their big ideas. Schatz has also penned his own series of proposals — on health care, climate change and economic inequality — to provide Democrats with a ready-made agenda should they take power in 2020.
And Schatz’s plans are gaining traction with Senate Democrats pursuing the White House.
Sens. Kamala Harris (D-Calif), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) have all signed on to his proposals to reduce college debt and create a public health insurance option for states. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) has also endorsed the public option bill; Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) supported it in the previous Congress.
“The last presidential election cycle demonstrated to us that voters are interested in policies, but it’s a challenge,” Schatz said in an interview in his Capitol office. “They don’t believe that we’re going to do anything about the things that we talk about. And so I’m just trying to put a little meat on the bones so that we have something to do.”
Schatz says he doesn’t pressure his colleagues running for president to co-sponsor his plans and is just trying to do his job as a legislator. But after more than six years in the Senate, Schatz has developed a reputation as someone who gets both the policy and politics of an issue, and as a potential future leader in the caucus.
Schatz, a liberal 46-year old, represents a younger generation for the Democratic Party. He takes to Twitter to attack Trump as well as make the occasional pop culture reference.
Schatz said he thinks climate change will help drive younger voters to the polls in 2020, unlike in 2016.
Hillary Clinton was right on the issue, Schatz said, but she “never once made a sort of clarion call to the younger generation saying, ‘This is our moment, we have to take this opportunity to lead internationally.”
“In the end, everybody’s for making college affordable, everybody’s for climate action, everybody’s for trying to get economic equality addressed,” Schatz said. “And so that binds you I think more deeply than this sort of personality-based politics.”
This essay was edited for length. Politco has the full story.