Giridharadas: Biden Relief Bill Shows ‘Not Just New Policies, But New Thinking’ | The Last Word

Lawrence O’Donnell talks to Anand Giridharadas about how the coronavirus relief bill, with its historic investment in the poorest Americans, shows how Democrats have shifted to the left on government spending. Aired on 03/12/2021.
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Drawing upon his experience as a former chief of staff on the Senate Finance Committee and as an Emmy-winning executive producer and writer of "The West Wing," Lawrence O'Donnell examines the compelling and impactful political stories of the day. O'Donnell convenes diverse panels of guests, including a variety of politicians and cultural voices, to offer unique viewpoints and perspective. In his signature style, O'Donnell highlights the latest news developments and offers his take on the political stories driving the national conversation.

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Giridharadas: Biden Relief Bill Shows ‘Not Just New Policies, But New Thinking’ | The Last Word


  1. Forget politics, as you’ve come to see it, as a contest between Republicans and Democrats. The real struggle is democracy versus oligarchy.

    1. @Ellie B. Ok I’m back. I’ll probably have to split this into a couple posts. You mentioned negotiation skills at one point above, so that’s a good jumping off point I think. Part of my whole message here these last few days has been that I don’t want to see you as the “other” right now at all, so treating this like a negotiation seems wrong to me. But if we want to think about it like that, then we need to understand what we want.

      I mostly already said what I wanted up above. It boils down to three things. I want to deal decisively with the rest of Trump’s fascist movement while he’s stuck in Florida and can’t use social media anymore — this is a golden opportunity for that — and in terms of big picture policy stuff, my absolute top key issues are climate change and wealth inequality. When I read your posts, as far as I can tell, you and I are basically on the exact same page in terms of what we want for America. I’m not seeing anything I really disagree with. The place I feel like we’re getting hung up is on the Democratic party and the primary structure. Personally, I do tend to think Bernie got a raw deal in 2016. I didn’t see the same thing at all in 2020, so this may be a moot point now, but in 2016 it did seem there might have been a “finger on the scale” from some folks in the Dem leadership. But then again, in all fairness, we have to recognize that the source of much of that material was part of a sophisticated attack on our country from a hostile foreign superpower, so I take it with a grain of salt to a certain extent and I definitely resist the temptation to allow THEM to set our agenda for us. I’m also not sure it had a decisive impact in the primary race, but I do understand what you mean and I understand your frustration with it. But it’s not up to me to apologize for them or even try to explain what they did — because whatever they did has nothing to do with me nor anyone you’re likely to encounter on social media. I voted for Bernie myself in my 2016 primary and would’ve been EXTREMELY happy with him as our president, but as soon as the process moved on to Hillary, I did too, because I calculated that she stood by far the best chance of defeating my adversary. It was an easy choice to back her over Trump. As a strategic matter, how we got to that point became irrelevant to me the moment it was clear she was the nominee. It’s kind of like in chess, if you realize at a certain point you’re stuck in a bad spot, you don’t immediately flip over the board and say “let’s play checkers.” You say, “Ok, what am I going to do from this point forward to salvage this game and win it.”

    2. @CommaCam I would’ve voted for Hillary, because any neo-liberal is better than a fascist. I only voted Green because I knew my state is superblue (Cali) and will go to her anyway and I wanted Green to get government funding (that happens if they get 15% of the national vote, which is a long shot, but hey, stranger things have happened). I still would’ve said a Satanic prayer over the ballot because Hillary is the worst Democrat to walk this planet. Oh and remember what happened in 2020 with the Iowa primary? The voting app they used was partly owned by a major donor to Hillary’s campaign and had ties to Buttigieg’s campaign and suddenly had some VERRRY odd technical malfunctions, and even though Bernie got the majority vote, Tom F@&)&FACE Perez (head of DNC) declared Iowa for Buttigieg in the name of— YA GUESSED IT- unity. Oh and remember when that TV station accidentally broadcast the results as Buttigieg winning THE DAY BEFORE THE ACTUAL PRIMARY? Buttigieg, who is Biden’s #1 protegee, and had campaign donations from NUMEROUS military weapons manufacturers? Dems are NOT defenders of democracy and they’re NOT pro-peace. How about the odd $1 mill deposit to Warren’s account right before she came out to baselessly accuse Bernie- OF ALL PEOPLE- of sexism? And then CNN reported it AS FACT from “inside sources” which NEVER MATERIALIZED? You know, the Warren who LIED about being Native American, which promoted STRONG rebuke from multiple Native Chiefs, including Cherokee? The Warren who LIED that she was fired while pregnant and that was proven FALSE? Dems are LIARS. And don’t get me started on Biden’s “I got arrested at a Nelson Mandela march.” How about CNN reporting rumors started by Hillary that Tulsi Gabbard, who wants to WITHDRAW FROM ALL WARS and supported Bernie, was “getting help from the Russians”? They BASELESSLY ACCUSED an HONORABLE SENATOR, who is also A BELOVED NATIONAL GUARD MAJOR, and also a FORMER VICE CHAIR OF DNC of collusion with Russians AND RUINED HER REPUTATION AND CAREER!?. Just like Dems accused Jill Stein of Russian collusion, And EVEN BERNIE RIGHT BEFORE HIS 2020 ARIZONA PRIMARY? you WONDER why Republicans don’t trust liberal media or Trump’s Russian collusion Impeachment or even voting? Well, THIS IS WHY. And the fact that you, a Bernie voter, don’t even know ANY of this is what makes us CONCERNED. Working against Trump’s fascism ISNT mutually exclusive with FIXING your own party. I’m just warning you that if DNC doesn’t get fixed, Progressives are gonna split off, even at the cost of a couple cycles of losing elections. This isn’t threat (I’ll keep voting Green and Blue downballot cause I’m Cali), it’s Legit a call for help cause that’s the talk in my circles. According to ALL polls, Biden was gonna lose in a landslide even as late as June, and only police brutality and Covid saved his campaign Dems still haven’t learned from 2016 nor 2020. If they run Kamala, 2024 is gonna be a Republican win.

    3. @Ellie B. Thank you for reading and replying. I wish you the best, Ellie. I really do. We want the same things.

      Please do not split the left.

  2. Biden save America with this bill and might just return America to some normalcy….soon. The step is just the beginning…
    Democrats and its constituents will need to keep battling the most corrupted party in this moment in time. Help Biden to help you!

  3. Finally a president is recognizing the needs of low-income families instead of vilifying them so Republican voters can nurture their sense of white superiority.

    1. @Brian Pulliam billions of tax payer $$ wasted on investigations and the attempts at impeachment because of emotions.

    2. @Irsh Mc Over 500,000 our dead because of this awful disease and if Trump had done his job we wouldnt have had that many Trump is a disgrace and so our you for following him

  4. Finally, a President who acts like a President. The era has definitely ended for the complainer-in-chief who wants to get the credit for something that he didn’t do.

    Sanity has definitely returned in Washington.

    1. @Guy M

      “Ground breaking relief bill” hahah, gtdo. These people need to go get jobs, how about that?

    2. @Junie Jake COVID … haha. Job losses … haha. Vaccinations … haha. Economic relief … haha. OMG, the death and suffering is hysterical.

    3. @Buffalo Bob typical Republican BS. Start a rumor then repeat it enough times to mke it a truth. Neve mind the multiple times Trump slurred his speaches, misspoke, misspelled, and said batdhit crazy things lets pretend Biden has an issue.

  5. True bipartisan action. Not the GOP. The ones who matter. 75% of Americans. That bipartisan thinking.

  6. Finally a president who looks his mistakes and past choices in the eye, takes ownership of the outcome, and doesn’t just make apology videos then carry on on the same track. I didn’t expect much from Biden. I certainly didn’t expect to have a leader who put an end to having to be against things and instead opened many many doors to the opportunities to be FOR things

    1. …and he’s early in his presidency, too. I can’t wait to see all the positive change. President Biden ~integrity, values & morals

  7. I sure hope that this admin evolves towards more and more progressive politics as time goes on. I hope those that can, continue to push this admin in that direction. We can’t afford another minute of favoritism for rich/corporate America. Not environmentally, economically, socially nor emotionally.

    1. Joe seems to be fed up with the handwringing over debt by Republicans who spend like crazy when they are in office.

    1. @Irsh Mc Yes Lincoln was a Republican, and no the current Republicans are not the same party of Lincoln. In fact the Democratd and Republicans basicly switched names around a hundred yeaes ago.

    2. @Jim Yarbrough this is what exactly what I’m talking about. First someone said Republicans have always been the same. I said lincoln was rep no everyone’s changing it up saying well now its different. You guys constantly change your stories you sound like kids who cant decide.

    3. @Jim Yarbrough truth is you guys will absolutely anything you think in your mind will justify your opinion. So as much as you say it or cry at night about it doesn’t make it true.

    1. I think we all short changed him to some degree. And I think that’s something he anticipated and noused to his advantage. Under promise, keep your head down, do the work, over deliver. Trump and company have a vacuum where their risk assessment (and really ANY skills at all because running your mouth is not a skill by any stretch of the imagination) should be. Whereas Biden and the people he has surrounded himself with know how to read a room, plan accordingly, and execute said plan. Not gonna lie, I like his style.

    2. It’s exactly as I predicted, he won’t deliver on ANY progress issues.

      He’s a neoliberal paper boy.

      Why not give the people universal healthcare!?

      Don’t tell me the lie of “we can’t pay for it!” 😂

    3. @Anders Eckstrand He never promised universal Healthcare. Hr did talk about improving the Obama care. I hope they add a low cost goverment run option.

  8. Let’s enjoy this while it lasts. This Nation has a history of electing Democrats to come and clean up the mess a Republican President left behind then when the Nation gets back to were it needs to get in terms of a better economy of no wars, of peace and harmony between the people of the Nation in comes an elected Republican and we are back to square one.

  9. It might seem like Biden is doing too much for the unfortunate. However it really is in the direction of levelling the playing field for the unfortunate. The other party did not bother to work for the people for the last four years. Now Biden is clearly working for all the tax payers irrespective of the party.

  10. Americans have finally realized how much of a difference we can make when we come together and vote for what we want. This is a new beginning. Let’s continue from now on.

  11. The quotation:
    “History says don’t hope/ On this side of the grave./ But then, once in a lifetime/ The longed for tidal wave
    Of justice can rise up/ And hope and history rhyme.”

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