|IDP Hall of Fame Celebration
|Thank you, Thank you so much.
Thank you to the Iowa Democratic Party. It's an honor to be with you
here today, and I want to talk to you about something that I know is
very important to all of us. And that is how are we going to beat
Donald Trump in 2020.
Now, a lot of people here think what we need to find somebody tough enough, who's tough enough to beat Donald Trump? But I, I want you to know my deep feeling that if you think that our job is simply to find someone tough enough to beat Donald Trump, you are naive about the nature of the opponent.
Something deeper, something far more dangerous is going on here than traditional political toughness even knows how to handle. Donald Trump has touched people in a very, very fearful place. And only one thing can cast out that fear. It's not money. It's not just strategy. It's not just anger, and it's not just mobilizing our base. It is love. Last time, we won with hope, This time, we will win with love. And ultimately, we will only win If we touch enough people's hearts.
I know something about harnessing the emotions of large groups of people. Like everyone else here I'm appalled by how the President has done that. But unlike many people here, I know something about how he has done it. Donald Trump has built a career harnessing fear. And I have built a career inspiring love.
Trump has spoken—Trump has spoken to a very dark and primal place within the human psyche, a place of fear that becomes like an emotional knot in people's brains. And this knot cannot be unraveled by mere intellect, or rationalic argument for I assure you, the part of the brain that rationally analyzes an issue is not the part of the brain that decides who to vote for. That emotional knot can only be unraveled through the power of an equally primal place within the psyche. The only way to defeat a big lie is through the power of a big truth.
Ladies and gentlemen, the only big truth is the real truth, not the kind of, sort of, sometimes when it passes for truth among the political class. The real truth is not just the truth of the moment; it is the truth of the ages. And it is not the truth based on self interest, it is a truth based on principle.
Republicans don't walk their talk, we all know that. But too often we don't talk our walk. Over the last few decades, we have ceded words like morality and patriotism to those who are more than glad to take it from us, and boy have they.
People who have passed policies destructive to everything families should stand for, have claimed to stand for family values.
People who have passed policies that have created the largest income inequality since 1929 claim to have given us a good economy.
And people who have led us into unjustifiable wars that have killed tens of hundreds of thousands of people claim to be stronger on security.
Are those lies? Oh, yeah, they're lies. But have they been politically powerful, Oh, yes. And why have they not been held accountable for their lies? Because we too often have not held ourselves accountable to truth. Too often the Democrats have been the party that stands for the right thing, but still cosies up to the
forces that do the wrong thing, thinking that that's okay, if we do it, because once we get in power, we will do the right thing. And then we naively think that that doesn't smell to people, that the putrid stench of that more complicated corruption will not be wafting into the nostrils of the average voter. In other words, too many Democrats are half truth tellers, ladies and gentlemen, and Donald Trump will eat the half truth tellers alive.
The real truth is how deeply corrupt our country has become, how we're no longer functioning as a government of the people, by the people and for the people. We are a government of the multinational corporations for the multinational corporations and for the multinational corporations. We rejected of the people—of a few of the people, by a few other people or for a few of the people, we rejected that aristocratic nonsense in 1776 and it is time for us to repudiate that stuff again.
The political system has brought us to this point, and it is now time for we people to step in. The abolitionist movement ended slavery because the people stepped in. And the women's suffrage movement got women the right to vote when the people stepped in. And the civil rights movement ended segregation when the people stepped in. It was not the political system that initiated those changes, those changes occurred when the people stepped in.
Ladies and gentlemen, it is now time once again for the people to step in. [music starts] That to me is brutally honest and brutally true. We need a nominee who is a radical truth teller and an inspirer of love. That is why I am here. Thank you very, very, very much. Thank you.
DEMOCRACY IN ACTION TRANSCRIPT | [also see: prepared remarks]
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