In a confounding move, Sen. Joe Manchin decided to derail the Build Back Better bill in a Fox News appearance Sunday night. It’s not difficult to prove how wrong Manchin and the 50 GOP senators opposed to Build Back Better are. But how do we enact progress when 51 people can stand in the way of what the majority of us want?
While it may be the end of Andrew Yang’s political aspirations for now, it is critical to recognize that his signature issue of basic income is here to stay—with a movement and footprint bigger than any one election or politician.
Basic income has deep roots in racial justice movements—counting the National Welfare Rights Organization, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Black Panthers among its historic proponents. Many guaranteed basic income pilots in the U.S. predate Yang’s rise, led by Black politicians and advocates, from Michael Tubbs’s Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration to Aisha Nyandoro’s Magnolia Mother’s Trust.