The social media hammer that dropped on Booker came down fast and came down hard; very rarely will you see such immense public outrage about the vote of a single particular Senator on a single piece of legislation. Alternative media outlets were quick to follow the zeitgeist, fanning the flames and debunking Booker’s pathetic defenses of his actions, and the typical establishment damage control mechanisms were powerless to stop any of this. It all happened right there online for everyone to see. It’s still going on. The article you are currently reading is just one tiny spark in a massive inferno of rage that will never forget and will never forgive.
Booker knows this. Every Democrat on Capitol Hill knows this. Every politician and pundit within the liberal establishment knows this, whether they admit it or not. Politicians of the Democratic party are being scrutinized far more meticulously than any of them have ever experienced in their entire careers, and the ones who thought they could keep getting away with openly selling the 99 percent down the river for corporatist interests have now had those illusions shattered after seeing Booker’s name dragged through the mud by that very 99 percent.
This changes everything. The political force that nearly thrust an outsider progressive into the White House despite every dirty trick in the book being used to sabotage him by the political establishment is still only just beginning to get a feel for its own strength. The Wall Street Democrats who are still reeling from the way their tried-and-true formula failed to work as it should are now realizing that the progressive base of their party can no longer be appeased by a little lip service to social justice and a cute sound bite criticizing Jeff Sessions. They are most definitely going to have to start walking the walk. If they do not, they will be destroyed.
What we were doing was not working. What we were doing saw the decimation of the Democratic party throughout eight years of the continuation and expansion of all of the Bush administration’s most toxic policies and an attempt to install a corporate crony war hawk into the White House who wanted to drag us into wars with both Syria and Russia. Thank god these lunatics are finally getting their fingers ripped from the steering wheel by force. Thank god the 99 percent are finally waking up to their own power.
Previously, via The Intercept:
A second amendment Wednesday, authored by Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden, would have allowed importation pending a safety certification, just like the previous laws passed on the subject. It also failed. Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., used that amendment to claim on Twitter that he voted “to lower drug prices through importation from Canada,” and Booker referred to the Wyden amendment in his statement as well. This is a well-worn tactic from opponents of importation to mislead their constituents, as they know such certification will never occur.
The safety excuse is mostly a chimera, as most of the drugs that would be imported from Canada were originally manufactured in the United States; they’re just cheaper there, because the Canadian government uses a review board and price negotiation to make drugs more affordable.
“My first response to that is show me the dead Canadians. Where are the dead Canadians?” former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, a Republican, once asked during his own push to allow for importation.
Booker and some of his Democratic colleagues who opposed the Sanders amendment are longtime friends of the drug industry. As MapLight data shows, Booker has received more pharmaceutical manufacturing cash over the past six years than any other Democratic senator: $267,338. In addition, significant numbers of pharmaceutical and biotech firms reside in Booker’s home state of New Jersey. Other Democrats receiving six-figure donations from the industry, like Casey, Patty Murray, and Michael Bennet, opposed the amendment.