California Governor Jerry Brown (D) said on Sunday’s “Meet the Press” that intelligence should be the “litmus test” for new candidates in the Democratic Party. The well-known governor said that the deciding factor should not be abortion, it would not be helpful nationwide.
“Well, the litmus test should be intelligence, caring about, as Harry Truman or Roosevelt used to call it, the common man,” Brown told NBC’s “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd when he was asked if abortion should be the litmus test for his party.
“We’re not going to get everybody on board. And I’m sorry, but running in San Francisco is not like running in Tulare County or Modoc, California, much less Mobile, Alabama,” Brown continued.
The Democratic Party is in the process of wrestling with whether support for abortion rights should be a requirement for candidates to get party support.
The chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), Rep. Ben Ray Luján, recently said in an interview with The Hill that his party would not keep funding from candidates who do not support abortion rights. They will be in an all out effort to flip the House in the 2018 midterm elections. This announcement did not sit well with some within the party and with outside groups. In a later comment, Luján reiterated his commitment to abortions rights but described the need for a big-tent Democratic Party.
“We will have to win in very tough, diverse, swing Republican held districts across the country. Ultimately, the people in districts across the country will determine who will take on the Republican incumbent,” Luján said last week.
Governor Jerry Brown echoed this sentiment saying that Democrats must rise “above the more particular issues to the generic” if they want to govern a country that is both ideologically and ethnically diverse. “So I’d say, look, even on the abortion issue, it wasn’t very long ago that a number of Catholic Democrats were opposed to abortion. So the fact that somebody believes today what most people believed 50 years ago should not be the basis for their exclusion,” Brown explained. “In America, we’re not ideological. We’re not like a Marxist party in 1910. We are big tent by the very definition. We’re not ideological in the European sense of what political parties used to be. Even in Europe now, they don’t have that same ideological purity.”
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Credit: The Hill