President Donald Trump is a "punctuation of everything that's bad and the hyper partisan politics that are tearing us apart," declared Rep. John K. Delaney (D-MD), the first announced Democratic candidate for President in 2020, speaking to a fundraising dinner sponsored by the Horry County Democratic Party in Myrtle Beach, SC last night.
"Our party needs to lead on bringing our country together," declared Delaney. "The person in the White House has given us an opportunity. We must bring our country together on the things on which we can agree. If we don't do this, the U.S. will be a country of birthright, not opportunity."
Delaney added, "At the end of the day, most Americans care about their jobs, their pay and opportunities for their kids. We need a president who cares about these issues, and I think I'm the person to do that."
The congressman cautioned that technology will "disrupt the lives of so many of our citizens, and we're not doing anything about it. What's at risk," he said, "is the American dream. We need a president who recognizes people left behind and invests in these people."
An investment of $1 trillion in U.S. communities, including infrastructure, is needed, said Delaney, declaring, "We need to get capital flowing, The next president needs to think about the future."
Delaney called for a "social contract" that includes a focus on education, providing free pre-school and community college for all Americans. Health care coverage should not be linked to employment, but provided to every American, he said, adding, "I believe that is a basic right." Retirement benefits, Delaney said, should be portable and follow individuals as they change jobs.
"We are the wealthiest country in the world, surely we can afford health care," he said, noting that Democrats are working to defeat legislation sponsored by Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC) and others "that would take health care away from 20 million people."
But to accomplish these things, Delaney stressed, "we have to return respect to the privilege of public service and return civility to public discourse."
President Trump, said Delaney, was elected because many Democrats did not vote and because many Democrats and independents believed "he cared about what they cared about." The Democratic party can win by bringing people together, he asserted.
"We have to restore people's faith in their government and if we do that, they will have faith in themselves," Delaney said. "And as we all know, faith is all we have."