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2017 Re-Wire Policy Conference Morning Keynote

Beware the Pitchforks from Widening Inequality

Nick Hanauer is one of the country’s leading voices on the state of America’s political economy. In a seminal message delivered in Politico and a TED talk in 2014, Hanauer said “Beware, fellow plutocrats, the pitchforks are coming.” His argument is not a moral one, but an economic one: a functioning democracy and thriving economy require a strong, vibrant middle class. Today, his argument fits within the federal context: a poorly functioning national policy environment makes an active state-level policy vision even more important than ever if we want to avoid pitchforks coming for us.