Rep. Alan Grayson, a Florida Democrat, isn’t afraid to criticize the head of his party. “There’s a complete disconnect [with] the rank and file of the Democratic Party,” he says. “Most elected leaders [are] on one side, and the president [is] on the other side.”

In an interview with The Young Turks TYT Network’s Jordan Chariton, Grayson discusses the future of truly progressive politics. He begins with trade deals, specifically the Trans-Pacific Partnership, saying that they have caused the collapse of the American economy, which wouldn’t have happened if President Obama hadn’t been “an ardent supporter of these trade giveaways to multinational corporations.”

Chariton asks Grayson about the state of the Democratic Party today. Grayson replies that campaign finance controls most politicians. “The party has become a tool for that kind of [corporate] manipulation,” he says, noting the difficulties of running a Senate campaign without ties to corporate sponsors.

Grayson says he is extremely successful at passing legislation in Congress, explaining:

The reason for that is I actually have the time to legislate and do good things for people—without having to toady for lobbyists and call up millionaires and billionaires and lobbyists and PACs all day long and beg for those $10,000 checks. That’s not what the public wants, but the public has to step up and make a difference—not only with their votes, but also with their telephone calls, their small-dollar contributions. People have to participate in order to make a difference.

Watch the entire interview below:

—Posted by Emma Niles

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