Ro Khanna represents California’s 17th District, the heart of the Silicon Valley. His progressive constituency supports his more extreme positions, like for example supporting a basic income. He won his House seat by challenging fellow California Democrat Rep. Mike Honda in 2016 and is also encouraging a progressive to run left of Diane Feinstein.
Just this week, Rep. Khanna is continuing to put himself out there as a Democrat who is brave enough to challenge the norms with this tweet — in which he aligns himself with the 6 in 10 Americans who oppose increases in Defense Spending:
The article that Senator Khanna compares the increases in defense to progressive proposals that Congress hasn’t moved forward on, making it clear how blindly voting to increasing our defense spending contradicts our progressive priorities:
… many Democrats agreed to boost defense spending by more than what Bernie Sanders estimates it would cost to make every four-year public college and university in America tuition-free and by more than what Andrew Kolodny, the co-director of opioid policy research at Brandeis University, estimates it would cost to end the opioid crisis.
Rep. Khanna understands that blindly agreeing to increases in Defense Spending goes against American Progressive values. Especially when we are losing so much potential tax funds with the recent Trump Tax Cuts, we need to be vocal about how tax funds can be better used instead of Defense increases — such as making colleges & universities tuition free has the Representative proposes in his tweet.
Last year’s Wired Article on Basic Income above sums Khanna’s perspective well: “For Khanna, the Democrats lost in 2016 because they failed to lay out a clear vision.” Part of laying out a clear vision is sticking to it on every vote — and it seems that Rep. Khanna’s point is that is the responsibility of progressives in the Democrat party to take charge by leading efforts to paint that clear vision that the party can offer.