Chelsea Manning announced her Senate bid in Maryland this week; she’ll be running against incumbent Ben Cardin, a centrist Democrat. Whatever you think of Manning’s politics, they’re definitely not compromising.
In an interview with the Guardian, Manning outlines her three main platform positions: close all prisons and release inmates, make hospitals free, and open US borders completely. She’s not messing around!
“We shouldn’t be denying the absolute right to come into the United States. You have a right, everybody does.”
What would she say to a Maryland voter worried about terrorists entering the country? “We have domestic terrorists and they can travel wherever they want. Closing off the borders doesn’t solve the problem.”
At this point, Manning has two staffers and about $50,000 from small online donations to finance her campaign, while Cardin is rumored to have $2 million. She claims not to see her campaign as symbolic. She wants to win, but Manning’s views may not be warmly accepted in Maryland, where many constituents are employed by the federal government. However, her platform will likely inject some life into debates on the issues.
Republicans are apparently clapping their hands over the idea of Manning potentially fracturing Democratic unity by forcing a confrontation between established members of the party and the identity politics of the radical left, but Manning’s not speaking much to identity politics or being a transgender woman. Manning only says that she is not “deterred by somebody saying horrible things” about her.
Manning also isn’t interested in turning the discussion to Donald Trump, which is honestly kind of a relief.
“All our problems are personalized into one individual, but it’s a systemic problem. Our broken immigration system didn’t pop up overnight, it was a machine built over decades by centrists from both sides,” she says.
You can read the rest of Manning’s interview here.