Stanford Progressive

Eric Schneiderman: The Great Blue Hope

By Shadi Bushra, published October, 2011

President Barack Obama has fallen dreadfully short on a number of issues leftists hold dear. He kept essentially the same economic advisers that have been in Washington for decades, did not pursue punishment for the economic crimes of Wall Street or the war crimes of the Bush administration, and he has rarely negotiated with conservatives from a position of strength. While he may be the most liberal president at least since JFK, progressives were hoping for more.

Eric Schneiderman, NY Attorney General, may be that great blue hope. He is unabashedly progressive, refusing to hide his beliefs in strong unions and financial regulation beneath a veneer of bipartisanship.

Eric Schneiderman (right) being endorsed by New York's Governor Andrew Cuomo. Courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

Schneiderman has drawn the ire of fellow liberals by derailing a $20 billion settlement to be signed by 50 state attorney generals with the banks responsible for the financial crisis. Most AGs want the settlement to use for homeowner relief, in exchange for limiting the banks’ civil liability. Schneiderman believes this is the best and last opportunity to truly reform the financial sector and find out who was culpable for the 2008 crisis.

Politico has described Schneider as “a man who may be the most powerful movement progressive in America, and who has spent his career trying to build the kind of long-term ideological infrastructure on the left that conservatives began creating in the 1970s.” While it is sad to see a liberal president acting as a moderate, progressives should rejoice that someone is representing the true left.

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