By Thaha K Sherwani, Opinion Writer
Senator Elizabeth Warren from Massachusetts showed the American people on February 8, that she would continue to stand against Republicans and Donald Trump. During Senate floor arguments regarding Attorney General Nominee Senator Jeff Sessions, Sen. Warren read a letter by Martin Luther King Jr.’s wife, Coretta Scott King. The Republican Senate Majority Leader stood up and forced Sen. Warren to be silenced by calling her out of order. “She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted,” Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, said on the Senate floor. Unable to finish speaking on the Senate floor, Warren took to Facebook Live to read the letter, which had more than 3 million views by the next morning. “They can shut me up, but they can’t change the truth,” she told CNN’s Don Lemon on “CNN Tonight.”
When Senator Warren stood up to President Trump, the hashtag #letlizspeak emerged on social media. Senator Warren has positioned herself as the voice that critiques the administration from the Senate floor and Twitter. President Trump’s “Twitter presidency” has caused many Congressional Democrats to use Twitter for the same platform.
Sen. Warren and Senate Democrats have held the Senate floor for entire nights or even for an entire day to inform the American people about the dangers of the new cabinet. Sen. Gillibrand from NY has shown what true democratic leadership looks like by opposing every Republican nominee. Congressional Democrats have been united against repealing the Affordable Care Act, President Trump’s Muslim ban and building a wall.
Most recently, Congressional Democrats are pressuring their colleagues into launching an investigation into President Trump’s campaigns ties to Russia. Democrats continue to stand up to the Trump Presidency and oppose his nominees for cabinet. I believe that the Democrats can be successful in 2018 midterm elections if they continue to persist. Recently, Nate Silver, the famous 538 creator predicted that if President Trump continues governing like he is there is a chance of retaking the House.
Congressional Democrats have a tough task; they can’t be seen as extreme obstructionists, however, they need to call out the GOP and President Trump every step of the way. Due to the Democrats’ recent calls for a full investigation of Trump’s campaign relations with Russia, Republicans are daily criticizing congressional leaders like Senator Chuck Schumer. Senator Schumer will persist and continue fighting the good fight because the majority of Americans want him to.
It is important to remember that Senator McConnell declared right after the election of President Barack Obama that his mission, along with GOP members of Congress, would be to obstruct every piece of legislation. Congressional Democrats can do the same, but that would result in getting nothing done for the American people.
Senator Schumer and House Minority Leader and Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi have difficult tasks ahead of them. They have shown their willingness to oppose the new administration and to stand up for key American values. Sen. Schumer will need support from not only members of Congress but from the American people as well. The American people have shown the world that they can organize into a solid movement and that, as Americans, we are only stronger together.
Time will only tell if President Trump and the GOP-controlled Congress get anything done. So far, there has not been much to show except for a 77-minute long press conference and countless rants on Twitter. As an American, I hope the President and Congress can work together to get things done, however, I do not want all the progress which former President Obama made to be undone in months.
A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, February 21st print edition.
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