Over the weekend, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, who positions himself as somewhat of a "centrist" within the increasingly far-left Democratic Party, spoke at the California Democratic Party convention. In the speech, Hickenlooper, who opposes such massive government intervention programs as "Medicare for All" and the "Green New Deal," decided to take a very, very brave stance — at least as far as 2020 Democratic nomination candidates are concerned. Hickenlooper went so far as to ... wait for it ... come out in opposition to socialism.
And yet, amazingly, the California Democratic Party convention attendees had the audacity to boo Hickenlooper for his very, very brave stance against the most immoral and destructive economic worldview ever known to man.
While speaking at the California Democratic Party convention, Hickenlooper told the San Francisco crowd that if Democrats want to defeat President Donald Trump in 2020, they will need traditional Democratic values in their corner — not socialism.
"If we want to beat Donald Trump and achieve big progressive goals, socialism is not the answer," Hickenlooper said.
The denunciation was met with immediate blowback, including a sea of boos lasting more than 30 seconds.
After the speech, Hickenlooper elaborated to The Hill:
"If we don't draw a clear distinction between Democrats and our candidates and socialism, the Republicans will paint us into a corner that we can't get out of. Massive government expansions may not be strictly speaking socialism, but trust me Republicans will make it seem like socialism. In places like Ohio and Michigan and North Carolina and Wisconsin, places we have to win to beat Trump, we'll be starting out ten yards behind."
Hickenlooper further elaborated on his opposition to massive governmental intervention in the economy in an interview yesterday with The Washington Post:
"['Medicare for All' and the 'Green New Deal'] are the kinds of things that Republicans will try to turn into ‘socialism.’ They're going to call it ‘socialism,’ and they're going to say this is taking away the freedom and independence of the individual," he added. "They're going to try and twist it in every way they can because that's about the only card they're left holding as long as they're still supporting Trump."
Alas, Democratic Party activists in the year 2019 apparently consider such talk to be anathema. What a time to be alive!
Hickenlooper barely registers in current 2020 Democratic presidential nomination polling and ranks extraordinarily low at election prediction market website PredictIt.org.
As the case may be, the California Democratic Party convention is probably reflective of the Party's broader electorate. A Gallup poll in August 2018 amazingly showed that there are more Democrats who support socialism than there are Democrats who support capitalism:
For the first time in Gallup's measurement over the past decade, Democrats have a more positive image of socialism than they do of capitalism. Attitudes toward socialism among Democrats have not changed materially since 2010, with 57% today having a positive view. The major change among Democrats has been a less upbeat attitude toward capitalism, dropping to 47% positive this year — lower than in any of the three previous measures.