Dem Rep Acknowledges Party Is Listening to Donor Class, Not Working Class

January 31, 2018

Democratic Rep. Cheri Bustos (Ill.) agreed on Tuesday that Democrats are listening more to what the "donor class" wants than to the priorities of the American working class. 

MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, in a post-State of the Union special, told Bustos if Democrats want to start winning swing states, they’re going to have to "start talking to regular people and stop listening to their donor class who have their own interests."

"The people that have a lot of money have different interests than the average working person," Matthews said.

"You’re absolutely right," Bustos agreed without hesitation.

Bustos said it’s important to go to functions that aren’t solely Democratic, because otherwise lawmakers would just hear the same thing over and over again from the same people.

"Talk to everyday people, ask them about their struggles. Were they able to go on vacation to Wisconsin Dells in the past year; when was the last time they bought a new truck; when was the last time they got a raise; can they buy their kids the shoes they want instead of the shoes they need? Just ask them those types of questions and get to the heart of what they’re feeling," Bustos said as a word of advice to her Democratic colleagues in Congress.

Bustos said Trump’s Tuesday night State of the Union address was an attempt to reach across the aisle in unity, but she felt his tone implied the opposite.

"When I go home, the number one thing I hear today from people is, ‘Can't you just work together and get something done?’" ... "There’s this desire for Democrats and Republicans to work together and get something done," Bustos said.

"We’ve got to do better for people back home. We’ve got to do better for the American public," she added.