‘It’s the Economy, Stupid!’

Is the U.S. moving toward the left? Since Ronald Reagan, we were used to seeing the United States as the nation with the most unfettered liberalism. Bill Clinton and Barack Obama had certainly tempered the imperious conservative revolution, but their victory was gained at the price of a refocusing of the system, which left social issues at the bottom of the list of priorities.

Bernie Sanders’ beautiful campaign has changed the deal. Openly a social democrat (or socialist, as he says), Hillary Clinton’s challenger has modified the Democratic agenda. After more than 30 years of economic growth that reserved the benefits of this growth for a small group of millionaires (or rather, billionaires), the Americans are discovering the extent of the inequalities that their successive leaders have allowed to develop. For the first time in a long time, they are coming around to the idea of considering the advantages of a European-style minimum wage in the country of free enterprise and a minimal welfare state.

During his first election, Bill Clinton defined the meaning of his overall message with the wisecrack, “It’s the economy, stupid!” Will Hillary write “It’s society, stupid!” on the walls of her campaign headquarters? If she succeeds in the primaries, the controlled spokesperson for the Democratic establishment could still change the focus of her rhetoric, especially if she must face Trump, against whom she will compete for the votes of moderates. But Sanders, against all odds, could manage to identify America’s great wound: the arrogant tyranny of the rich.

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