Democrats Seek to Own ‘Occupy Wall Street’ Movement… a consensus is emerging among Democrats that the “Occupy” movement is worth tapping into, even helping along and joining with in some instances…. To Democrats eager for a liberal antidote to the Tea Party energy that lifted Republicans to power last year, the “Occupy” rallies that started in New York last month and have spread to cities nationwide are tempting to embrace…. It may be that occupiers wind up playing a role for the political left that tea partiers did for the right.
If Democratic Party operatives really think that they can sweep in and adopt this movement with a firm embrace, they haven’t been paying attention. Yesterday morning, I made a point of photographing every one of the signs made by the people occupying DC’s Freedom Plaza. It wasn’t an easy task: there were over a thousand. The vast majority of them were hand-made, not supplied by any organization that might try to claim a voice on protesters’ behalf. Not one of the more than a thousand signs suggested voting for or supporting Democrats. Not one of the more than a thousand signs suggested voting for or supporting Barack Obama. More than a few of them criticized Barack Obama by name. The only sign I saw supporting any politician or party — one sign — was a Ron Paul 2012 campaign sign brought by a Texan. As I finished taking snaps of the signs, I listened to an organizer reading Barack Obama’s reactions to the Freedom Plaza protest in DC to the crowd. The crowd jeered at Obama’s words. So did the organizer.
Some, including the reporter I quote above, compare this new movement of the 99-percenters to the Tea Party, but there’s a fundamental difference in origin between the two. While core Tea Party organizations have been funded by Republican party operatives from the very beginning, the Occupation movement has self-organized.
The occupation protests across the country are not partisan protests. They are protests against the Democratic Party and protests against Barack Obama. Trying to co-opt the movement would be a waste of time. If the Democratic Party wants to make use of this movement, it should use the movement as an excuse to start considering how it might change its ways.