Left Wing Debate: Should We Count on Clinton?

Ruth Kristensen, Staff Writer

Arman Ebrahimi Round Table Guest
Arman Ebrahimi
Round Table Guest
Maria Beradino Round Table Guest
Maria Beradino
Round Table Guest

Junior Marina Beradino: I am a Democrat and I support the DNC. I am also a supporter of Hillary Clinton’s campaign for presidency.
Senior Arman Ebrahimi: I’m a member of the International Marxist Tendency. Socialist, Marxist, communist, all of those labels I would use for myself. I will probably vote for a third party candidate like Jill Stein (Green party presidential candidate). I do not support Hillary Clinton.
Kristensen: What makes Hillary Clinton qualified or unqualified for presidency?
Beradino: She has a lot of political experience, first off. I mean, she has been a senator, she was the first lady, and she was secretary of state. I believe she has a lot of ideas and views that are going to be beneficial for our country.
Ebrahimi: I would say Hillary Clinton is not qualified to be the president. If you look at her record, she has lots of experience in government but I don’t it’s the right kind of experience. I think the policies that she has put forward and promoted have been bad policies for working class people across the world. I think if you look at her record, she has promoted lots of wars, from the invasions of Libya, to Iraq, to Afghanistan. With her state department she has helped overthrow the democratically elected government of Honduras. She has helped lower the minimum wage of Haiti.
Beradino: Well, then who would be a better fit for president this year?
Ebrahimi: I would probably vote as a protest vote against both of the establishment party candidates. I don’t have a specific person that I would vote for, probably some left-independent person. I don’t think any third party would win against Clinton or Trump. But I don’t think voting for Clinton would positively benefit working people.
Beradino: I disagree with that. With this election you have two candidates, and you pretty much have to choose between Trump or Clinton. I personally believe that Trump is not fit to be the president, and Hillary is. Maybe she has a controversial past, but I think at this point, Hillary will much better benefit our country than Trump will. And she has many ideas that she has put forth that I believe she will hold strong on and stay with when she is elected.
Ebrahimi: I think that whoever wins, there is going to be an economic crisis within the next two or three years. What I think Hillary Clinton will do, and Donald Trump will probably do the same thing, is bail out the banks. And that is not a policy that helps working class people. And as for the threat of Trump, I think that voting for the lesser evil between two evils is not a good policy. I think that ultimately, it leads to the victory of the greater evil. People voted twice for Obama, now we have the rise of Trump. People in the nineties, they voted for Bill Clinton, then you had Bush after that. The two party system, just because you vote Democrat, doesn’t mean the Republican party will be finished once and for all. And I’m not looking to have a Republican president ever again, or a Democrat for that matter.
Kristensen: Which of Hillary’s issues do you align most with, and which do you not align on?
Beradino: Again, as I mentioned earlier, I do align with her ideas to raise minimum wage, because that’s something that’s really important to me. Also, I agree in making college more affordable for students. I do not align with some of the things she has said in the past. [Like when she was] not really working for the middle-man, because that’s something that I value, working for our workingclass, and not just giving a lift to the top people. I feel like, yes sometimes she has flip-flopped in her past, like almost any other politician, but right now I do support most of the platforms she is pushing forward.
Ebrahimi: I mean, I would support maybe some things such as raising the minimum wage. Does she stand for paid parental leave?
Beradino: Yes.
Ebrahimi: I support that [paid parental leave]. What I think would be a better way of attaining these things would be through mass movements, and I think [they] are the main way in which you get things done. If we really want to get things done, we have to have the grassroots. We have to have actually working class people involved instead of relying on capitalist presidents like Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump to promote these nicer policies for us. I think that if you look at Hillary’s past and present, she is still very much embedded with the interest in wall street.
Kristensen: Why do you think so many left wingers are having a hard time supporting Hillary Clinton?
Ebrahimi: I think it’s because she represents the interests of wall street and does not necessarily represent the interests of the working class people. Because she has advocated war so many times, and will probably [instigate] war if we elect her as the president of the United States of America.
Beradino: I feel like there are a lot of left wingers who definitely associated themselves with Bernie [Sanders]. He was super progressive and he was definitely going to fight for the little man. But seeing Hillary compared to Bernie, people may have felt like she was more conservative and wasn’t as progressive. So, I feel like it’s kind of a struggle to switch from being so pro-Bernie and then going on to Hillary. That was something I struggled with. I was very pro-bernie, but now I have switched over because I definitely supported her over other candidates. I think that is definitely a bigger issue for most.
Kristensen: What is your opinion on Hillary’s choice of senator Tim Kaine as her vice president?
Ebrahimi: I think that Tim Kaine, like Hillary Clinton, will not represent working class people. He is an establishment Democrat, he admits it. He admits that he is quote unquote boring. When it comes down to it, he is going to support whatever Hillary does with the major policies.
Beradino: I feel she chose Tim Kaine because she needed somebody safe. She really wasn’t taking a risk. I feel like if she had chosen a minority it would have been a little bit more beneficial for her campaign, but that’s just my opinion.
Kristensen: How do you think Hillary Clinton’s campaign has benefitted or struggled under the attention from the media?
Beradino: The media lives and thrives off of headlines. It’s like Hillary Clinton is going to die because she is a little bit sick, or that Hillary Clinton is headed to jail because of the whole email scandal. All these headlines are blown up and sometimes are put out of proportion, and people begin to think these things are actually true. But at the same time, there are definitely things that other candidates do that make her seem better in the media.
Ebrahimi: I mean the media loves people like Donald Trump, he’s already embedded in pop culture. He’s very bombastic and loves to tell lies. But the media, I feel like right now, has turned more into the favor of Hillary Clinton. Donald Trump has basically alienated a lot of establishment Republicans and they are looking for a much safer solution like Hillary Clinton. However, she’s also benefitted much more than other third party candidates like Jill Stein and Mimi Soltysik(Socialist party presidential candidate), because the media isn’t really interested in those people.