Alyssa Milano: The key to beating Trump? Elect all of the Democratic candidates

Alyssa Milano: The key to beating Trump? Elect all of the Democratic candidates
© Getty

In July, CNN made the decision to treat the Democratic debates like entertainment. It was a sporting event, with an inane WWF style-introduction designed to play up “in-fighting” between the candidates. “Tonight,” the “in-a-world” movie trailer announcer began, “a fight for the heart of the Party. Bernie SandersBernie SandersProgressives soaring after big primary night 'Absolutely incredible': Ocasio-Cortez congratulates Cori Bush on upset victory over Lacy Clay Sanders supporters launch six-figure ad campaign explaining why they're voting for Biden MORE…. goes head-to-head with Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenBill from Warren, Gillibrand and Waters would make Fed fight economic racial inequalities The other reason Democrats want Biden to shun debates The Memo: Biden faces balancing act MORE” and on and on like that for nearly four minutes. It would have been laughable if it weren’t so bad for our nation.

Then it got worse. The moderators were clearly more interested in getting the candidates to fight against one another than they were in facilitating a true discussion of the issues and outlining what’s at stake in the 2020 election.

In the very first question of the second night, Dana BashDana BashWhite House not optimistic on near-term stimulus deal Clyburn rips GOP proposal to give businesses tax deductions, scale back unemployment in stimulus package Birx says COVID-19 outbreak not under control because 'people are on the move' MORE tried to get Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisTwitter bans Trump campaign until it deletes tweet with COVID-19 misinformation Virginia mayor refuses to resign over controversial Biden, 'Aunt Jemima' post Exclusive: Democrats seek to increase racial diversity of pandemic relief oversight board MORE (D-Calif.) and former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenGOP chairmen hit back at accusation they are spreading disinformation with Biden probe Trump outraises Biden in July, surpasses billion for the cycle Duckworth: Republican coronavirus package would 'gut' Americans With Disabilities Act MORE into a fight. It was a sad attempt to reignite the drama between the two from the first debate.


It wasn’t just them, and it wasn’t just that night. Normally respectable journalists have become provocateurs, apparently more beholden to the whims of their programming director and potential viral videos than their own history of quality journalism or the good of our country.

None of this might matter if this was a normal election against a normal president and electorate, but it is not and we must stop acting like it is.

Despite the media’s best effort to normalize this administration by cashing in on the entertainment value of the spectacle, Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpLincoln Project ad dubs Jared Kushner the 'Secretary of Failure' Pence: Chief Justice Roberts 'has been a disappointment to conservatives' Twitter bans Trump campaign until it deletes tweet with COVID-19 misinformation MORE seemingly thrives in this conflict and so do his voters. He basks in chants at rallies that validate his policies. And to make matters worse, there is evidence that Russia is trying to amplify the dissent of the Democratic primary, to the benefit of Trump. Which is what the Kremlin did during the Sanders-Clinton primary, to devastating effect. 

The answer to defeating him, then, cannot be in politics as usual, or surrendering to entropy, division, and the whims of Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinThe tragedy of Trump's foreign policy Steele's dossier: 'Clown show' or the greatest Russian coup? US 'deeply troubled' by escalating conflict in Libya MORE’s seeming propaganda.

If we want to get rid of Trump and his administration, we should not focus on electing one candidate. We should elect them all.


There is a Democratic dream team currently running for a single position. Like the party itself — and like the nation as a whole — this slate of candidates has a diversity of background, experience and thought. Instead of fighting against one another, they should pledge, right now before the next debate, to form a unity ticket under any eventual nominee.

If they let go of their own egos and band together to fight Trump; spoke in unison about the Democratic vision for America; and refused to succumb to the conflict narratives media outlets are all too ready to encourage. They would be unstoppable.

Imagine this: Vice President Biden is currently leading the field, so let’s start there. With Biden at the top and a Harris vice presidency we would speak to the majority of Americans who prefer Biden to any other candidate.

At the same time, we would bring the perspective of a new generation of leaders to the highest offices in the land. Attorney General Cory Booker could take on the NRA and the racial injustices he so often faced as mayor of Newark.

Elizabeth Warren could lead the Department of Education and it would transform our nation for generations. Bernie Sanders playing the role, as Secretary of Health and Human Services would ensure every person in America could access health care we could afford.

In any administration, Julian CastroJulian CastroGoya fury underscores Biden need to attract Latino support Trump tweets his support for Goya Foods amid boycott Joe Biden must release the results of his cognitive tests — voters need to know MORE’s experience as a cabinet secretary and Congressman would be the perfect antidote to the Trump regime’s border policy as the first Latinx Homeland Security Secretary.

But it needn’t stop there. New voices like Andrew YangAndrew YangIs this the end of the 'college experience'? Biden campaign to take over 'Supernatural' star's Instagram for interview Hillicon Valley: Justice Department announces superseding indictment against WikiLeaks' Assange | Facebook ad boycott gains momentum | FBI sees spike in coronavirus-related cyber threats | Boston city government bans facial recognition technology MORE, as the head of the Council of Economic Advisors would bring business acumen and the idea of basic income to the president’s ear.

Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegCNN's Ana Navarro to host Biden roundtable on making 'Trump a one-term president' Former Indiana Gov. Joe Kernan dies How Republicans can embrace environmentalism and win MORE applying his lived experience as an LGBTQ service member and executive expertise as a mayor to bear as the secretary of Veteran’s Affairs would be transformative to our nation’s heroes.

Beto O’Rourke as chief of staff to the president would guide the nation’s most important decisions with compassion and ease. Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandProgressives soaring after big primary night Bill from Warren, Gillibrand and Waters would make Fed fight economic racial inequalities Biden should pick the best person for the job — not the best woman MORE as Commerce secretary. Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharLobbying world Biden should pick the best person for the job — not the best woman House committee requests hearing with postmaster general amid mail-in voting concerns MORE as Agriculture secretary. Former candidate Jay InsleeJay Robert InsleeInslee, GOP's Culp advance in Washington governor's race Governors call for Trump to extend funding for National Guard coronavirus response Washington state officials confirm federal officers leaving Seattle MORE bringing environmental issues to the level they deserve as the helm of the Department of Energy. Strong union supporter Tim RyanTimothy (Tim) RyanThe Hill's Coronavirus Report: HHS Secretary Azar says US plans to have tens of millions of vaccine doses this fall; Kremlin allegedly trying to hack vaccine research Democrats see victory in Trump culture war House Democrat calls for 'real adult discussion' on lawmaker pay MORE as Secretary of Labor. Treasury Secretary Delaney. Recently withdrawn Congressman and Veteran Seth MoultonSeth MoultonPortland: The Pentagon should step up or pipe down House panel votes to constrain Afghan drawdown, ask for assessment on 'incentives' to attack US troops Overnight Defense: House panel votes to ban Confederate flag on all Pentagon property | DOD report says Russia working to speed US withdrawal from Afghanistan | 'Gang of Eight' to get briefing on bounties Thursday MORE as Secretary of Defense. Bullock at FEC. Bennet at Interior. 

And how could Michelle ObamaMichelle LeVaughn Robinson ObamaMichelle Obama says she is managing 'low-grade depression' Michelle Obama supporters urge Biden to pick former first lady as running mate Michelle Obama wishes Barack a happy birthday: 'My favorite guy' MORE say no to the critical role of Secretary of State if this unified group asked her to serve? Our reputation and luster around the globe would be instantly restored. If Biden doesn’t win the nomination, he would be a world-class leader in nearly any other department. Swap him out for anyone else.

The fact of the matter is that these candidates all agree on the “what.” Their generally minor differences are in the “how.” Instead of encouraging the cult of personalities surrounding each individual candidate, reaping the division this long and damaging primary will sow, let’s get behind them all. We truly have an embarrassment of riches in our field. We should not be winnowing it. We should be uniting it, pooling their resources and creating a complete ticket that no American could vote against.

 The Democratic Party is progressive. The Democratic Party is moderate. And like America, the Democratic Party is diverse. This slate of candidates represents the breadth of the American experience and the excitement of new ideas and perspectives.

These are desperate times. The heart and soul of our nation is at stake. Our country cannot afford another four years of Donald Trump. Desperate times call for thinking outside the box with Democratic measures. If we want to beat Trump, we know whom to elect: All of them.

Or we can just keep proceeding with politics as usual and act shocked when he’s re-elected.

Alyssa Milano is an actor, activist and recently joined the ERA Coalition’s Advisory Council. She is also the ACLU’s ambassador for reproductive rights. For 15 years, Alyssa has been a UNICEF National Ambassador.