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Shahid Buttar, longtime defender of our Bill of Rights, is on the San Francisco ballot, opposing Nancy Pelosi from her left. In this podcast, he makes a strong case.Buttar was executive director of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, and a frequent guest on the syndicated Peter B. Collins Show during the Bush era. A Stanford Law grad, he later worked at the Electronic Freedom Foundation. He challenged Pelosi in the 2018 primary, and this year faces her in the general election. Visit his campaign website here.
Buttar first explains why he sees the Democratic Party as a vehicle for progressive change, and presents his policy differences with Speaker Pelosi. We discuss domestic surveillance, the morphing of the Democratic Party into a pro-war, pro-corporate movement, and related issues. Buttar and PBC visited Occupy Berkeley together back in 2012, and we talk about the impact of that effort.
We also discuss the complicated politics of San Francisco; despite its image, the "progressive prevention" coalition of Pelosi, former mayor Willie Brown and tech investors present serious obstacles for a Democratic Socialist like Buttar.
To his credit, Buttar raised the subject of twin smear campaigns he was hit with this summer: unhappy primary staffers who weren't included in the rest of the campaign, and allegations of sexual harassment by a female acquaintance from 15 years ago. He handled these matters in a direct and credible manner.
And, we discuss the bipartisan support for regime change in Caracas, and the challenge of enacting serious climate change legislation.