Campaign 2020

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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Big Magilla » Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:41 pm

I don't know about the first instance, but in the second one she said she heard the question as "would you give up your private coverage" to which she said she gave a different answer than she would have had she understood the question to be "would you give up all private coverage".

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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Sabin » Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:12 pm

Mister Tee wrote
But, based on what I did see -- and the overwhelming reaction in pundit-land -- this was Kamala Harris' coming out party. I said in my thread-opening post I thought she was one of the candidates with star potential. Over the past months, when people have asked me who I was favoring to start, her name has consistently been the first one I cited. So I can't say I'm surprised by this. But the degree to which she dominated seems to have been pretty spectacular -- as a friend tweeted, she didn't just outrun the others; she was Secretariat, leaving them in the dust.


There are many reasons why people I know support a Kamala Harris candidacy, chief among them her ability to "prosecute" Trump in a debate. After seeing her awkward Town Hall performance a few weeks prior, I had real concerns about whether this was wish-fulfillment. After this debate, we all know it is clearly not.

I am slightly bothered about something else re: a Harris candidacy, and I'm not saying this is anything that would remotely get in the way of me A) voting for her or B) enthusiastically supporting her if she was the nominee. Twice she has answered a question about Medicare For All in the affirmative and twice she has restated her position the next day, saying she did not understand the question. Leaving my own personal opinions about Medical For All out of it (I'm mixed--which not the point of this post), this strikes me as either odd that "The Lawyer Candidate" would misunderstand the question twice or curiously disingenuous politically. It's just time to come up with a good answer and stick to it.

And, y'know, for the truancy prosecution as well.
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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Mister Tee » Fri Jun 28, 2019 4:11 pm

A few words about this week's events. (Well, can't really promise the "few" part; I may edit this when I finish.)

Didn't see the first night -- a beloved niece was in town, and I spent the evening with her and her family. I dove deep into trusted-sites commentary, and came away with:

-- Warren was top dog going in, and held position.

-- Castro took away much of what little life the fading Beto has left. (Someone said the subtext of their exchange was "Drop out and run against Cornyn"; "No -- YOU drop out and vote against Cornyn".) Beto has really suffered from the emergence of Buttigieg as even-shinier-newer media toy, and is now saddled with the suspicion he's an empty suit.

-- DeBlasio's a loudmouth. Unlike (seemingly) many of my fellow New Yorkers, I have no problem with DeBlasio (given his dreadful press coverage, you'd never believe he won two easy mayoral elections). But he has utterly no business running for president in this bountiful field.

-- Booker and Castro are pretty good, but would need big breaks to vault into the real race.

Can't say I watched all of last night, either. I find certain people hard to listen to, and don't really like the debate format, so I floated in and out -- sometimes following the commentary instead of listening.

But, based on what I did see -- and the overwhelming reaction in pundit-land -- this was Kamala Harris' coming out party. I said in my thread-opening post I thought she was one of the candidates with star potential. Over the past months, when people have asked me who I was favoring to start, her name has consistently been the first one I cited. So I can't say I'm surprised by this. But the degree to which she dominated seems to have been pretty spectacular -- as a friend tweeted, she didn't just outrun the others; she was Secretariat, leaving them in the dust. Most attention has been paid to her racial dust-up with Biden -- because, you know, race is always click-bait -- but it's misleading to single that or any clip out, because her entire evening was memorable. She's got a way with language, her delivery is strong, she's powerful without seeming humorless. And, above all, she projects command: she seems like someone who COULD be president. As some other Twitterer put it: Eric Swalwell asked Biden to pass the torch; Kamala Harris just grabbed the damn thing.

Biden, of course, is the flip side. As I've said over and over, I like Biden, I think he'd be a more than acceptable president. But last night highlighted all the doubts I've had about his candidacy. He evokes no passion; his campaign, in fact, more or less rests on the idea of draining passion from the arena. The entire premise of his running is, basically, let's pretend Trump never became president; pick up life as if a Democrat won in November 2016. But life has moved on since then; things have happened that need to be confronted. And I think, in the old military phrase, the only way out is through, not back. Biden doesn't seem prepared for that campaign. In fact, he's never been much of a campaigner at all, as attested to by his '88 and '08 primary failures. His chief assets are his deep connection to Obama and the sense that he's as close to Generic Democrat as we can get. I think he's beginning to somewhat over-use the first, wielding Obama almost like a shield at certain points (Biden's greatest moment as a candidate was saying Guiliani's every sentence was "A noun, a verb and 9/11" -- he's flirting with giving his opponents the right to call his claims "A noun, a verb and Barack Obama"). As far as the second: I'm waiting for someone to cite me an instance of Democrats' winning a presidential election by nominating the safe choice.

I don't know there's much to say about the rest. Sanders seemed almost an afterthought in this debate -- he did his usual shtik, and only had one bad moment (when he accused Rachel of misrepresenting him, and she countered that she was quoting him directly). But, given his wilting polls, I think he needed to do something to boost his candidacy, and I saw no sign of that. It's like the other candidates have worked a pincer movement on the Sanders pool of voters: Biden stripped away white working class, Warren took the lefty-ideas group, Beto and later Buttigieg grabbed the young/idealistic crowd. All of this leaves Bernie depleted, and feeling like a TV show that should have been cancelled a season or two ago.

Buttigieg, as usual, acquitted himself well -- no denying his smarts and his ability to communicate. But he has the Gary Hart/Bill Bradley problem of appealing hugely to white cultural progressives without having any ability to bring over black voters. The police issues back home clearly don't help in that regard. My overall feeling about Buttigieg -- who has obviously emerged as more significant a force than I'd imagined when I started this thread -- is that I like him, and see him near top-tier in the charisma competition...but I think 1) his experience level is just frightfully short of presidential and 2) the country's still a ways away from being advanced enough to elect a gay man. (People who say "Anyone who'd exclude him on that basis would never vote Democratic" don't know much about politics.)

But...I'd never say never. There was a time when electing a black man, let along by a wide margin, seemed a pipe dream. If the incumbent is unpopular enough, anyone can beat him. Apropos of which: the economic news today, that the yield curve has been inverted for a month now, a good forecast of imminent recession, could be the day's most important. If the economy goes south on Trump, he'll get his ass kicked by whoever ends up the Dem choice.

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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Sabin » Thu Jun 27, 2019 11:21 pm

Before last night's debate, I thought that Elizabeth Warren would be the clear winner in a crowd of second-stringers while tonight would see a few different winners. Instead, last night saw a few different winners but this night had the clear winner.

Kamala Harris did excellent.

I'm not sure who could claim second place. Pete Buttigieg had some good moments but all anyone will talk about is that look he gave Eric Swalwell when challenged. Andrew Yang virtually disappeared but when he spoke he was certainly interesting. It wasn't Bernie Sanders who had at best a mediocre night, but at worst (like assuming most Americans feel like nothing has changed in the past forty years when the past THREE YEARS have been so disorienting) like a bad harbinger of things to come. I don't think he connected.

A more interesting conversation is who did the worst. On the one hand, Joe Biden had an awful night. He was challenged again and again on the substance of his career. On the other hand, every moment with Marianne Williamson was lunacy. This is a remarkably unserious candidate.

Of the second-stringers, everyone (except the John Hinkenlooper, who I just remembered was on-stage) seemed to learn from Bill De Blasio last night. Michael Bennett, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Eric Swallwell all struggled to get above 1%. I couldn't really say who did the best of them. Maybe Michael Bennett because he attacked the most effectively.

Let's lose half these people.
Last edited by Sabin on Fri Jun 28, 2019 7:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Big Magilla » Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:58 pm

Night 2 was to Night 1 what the Oscars are to the Golden Globes.

Harris clearly won the night and will likely gain in the polls but by how much remains to be seen.

Biden is right to say that it's about the future, not the past and Sanders is right to say that attacks on him and Biden are ageism, comments in both cases made on MSNBC after the debate.

Buttigieg was great going against the false religion of the evangelicals and managed to stay above the fray on other issues. Gillibrand and Swalwell started out annoyingly, but improved as the night went on. Bennett and Hickenlooper were impassioned, but didn't move the needle. Williamson and Yang made zero impact.

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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Big Magilla » Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:06 am

DeBlasio - you'll figure it out in time.

Ryan - speaks to the average guy in ways that elude most of the other candidates.

While they all talk about increasing the minimum wage to $15 for everyone and equal pay for women - he's the only one I've heard say that's all well and good for those that don't have it, but what about the guy (or gal) who was earning $40 an hour and their job went away, what are we doing for him or her?

They all want universal health care, but he, Klobuchar and I think Delaney were the only ones on that stage last night saying in essence, don't throw the baby out with the bathwater. Don't take private health insurance away from those who want it.

As I've said before, Medicare as it's currently constructed, isn't the answer you think it is. It only covers about 80% of costs. You need supplemental insurance to cover the rest.

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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Sabin » Thu Jun 27, 2019 7:28 am

Big Magilla wrote
The country didn't know the last NYC mayor to run for president, now the current president's TV lawyer, when he first ran either, but they sure found out.

You're saying that Bill De Blasio is as bad as Rudy Giuliani and Michael Avenatti? Besides his tone, how? He was up there advocating for universal health care, Democrats to become the party of working people, and immigrant's rights. I wish all bullies had those priorities.

Big Magilla wrote
Ryan was flustered by Gabbard. That's a minus, but he quickly recovered by stating that the Taliban didn't attack us but protected those who did. Afghanistan is a tough one. We have to leave but it could be a bloodbath for those who relied on our protection all these years.

He corrected what he said but I'm not sure he pulled it off. His words and body language came off as imprecise and awkward. Besides, there's other candidates that are running on paying attention to the forgotten working class.
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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Big Magilla » Thu Jun 27, 2019 6:59 am

The country didn't know the last NYC mayor to run for president, now the current president's TV lawyer, when he first ran either, but they sure found out.

Ryan was flustered by Gabbard. That's a minus, but he quickly recovered by stating that the Taliban didn't attack us but protected those who did. Afghanistan is a tough one. We have to leave but it could be a bloodbath for those who relied on our protection all these years.

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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Sabin » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:52 am

Big Magilla wrote
De Blasio is insufferable. Toward the end he had a couple of impassioned speeches, namely those about his father and his son, but anyone in or near NYC has heard them before. His constant interruptions and talking over other candidates up to that point were bullying and unpleasant. He is a generally unpleasant person, a Trump from the left.

Well, I haven't heard them. And I'd imagine a lot of Americans haven't. I think he went into the night as the one candidate who people thought was the most a joke for running. I don't think that's the case anymore. I don't think he has much of a chance but I think he did well.

Big Magilla wrote
Ryan is not a joke. He's a little rough around the edges, but he has a strong message. If Biden were to drop out, who knows, he might emerge as a stronger candidate from the fading rust belt.

Sure, but he was VERY rough around the edges. He had awkward body language, bugging eyes and a suit that didn't appear to fit him, and he claimed that the Taliban attacked us on 9/11. Ultimately, I think that gaffe is going to overshadow his message.
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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Big Magilla » Thu Jun 27, 2019 3:46 am

De Blasio is insufferable. Toward the end he had a couple of impassioned speeches, namely those about his father and his son, but anyone in or near NYC has heard them before. His constant interruptions and talking over other candidates up to that point were bullying and unpleasant. He is a generally unpleasant person, a Trump from the left.

Ryan is not a joke. He's a little rough around the edges, but he has a strong message. If Biden were to drop out, who knows, he might emerge as a stronger candidate from the fading rust belt.

Basically, all the candidates are for the same things. It's a matter of personalities and priorities. We'll see what tonight brings.

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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Sabin » Wed Jun 26, 2019 10:59 pm

According to CNN, the winners were Castro, Warren, and Booker. The losers were Beto, the sound people at MSNBC, 10 person debates, Beto again (bc he did so bad), Klobuchar, and De Blasio. According to Vox, the winners were Warren, Castro, De Blasio, and Booker. The losers were O'Rourke, The Iran Deal, and Awkward Spanish.


I think Castro did great. For me, the clear winner of the night. Am I an idiot for not knowing what "reproductive justice" is?

I wanted Elizabeth Warren to do better. Maybe I'm too familiar with her by now. Most of America won't be. I thought she gave some good speeches, but a few of her answers were bad (like on gun control) and she disappeared for stretches on end. I think we all thought that the night would be an Elizabeth Warren Blowout. That didn't quite happen.

Corey Booker did well. He's a good politician, pivoting his answers to issues he wanted to talk about, but it felt a little transparent to me at times.

Amy Klobuchar is so much better in interviews than on a stage. She had some good moments but debates are just fundamentally not her strong suit.

Tulsi Gabbard wasn't given much time. It appeared that she forgot her lines at times, but she had some strong moments. She should send Tim Ryan a Thank You card.

I thought Bill De Blasio did fine. Good, even. For a candidate nobody was remotely taking seriously, he managed to stand out. He's a talented politician. He basically took John Delaney and Tim Ryan's talking points about the working class but sold them better.

Speaking of John Delaney, this guy has been on the road campaigning as a realist, which is very hard to do. He clawed tooth and nail for airtime and got it. At the end of the day, I don't think it's going to do much for him but he doesn't deserve to be remembered as a joke.

Tim Ryan does. Man, that guy was terrible.

Jay Inslee wasn't any better. A lot of candidates had no idea what to do with any of their facial expressions. Jay Inslee came across as kooky.

And then there's Beto O'Rourke. It's hard for me to be objective because I'm just so disappointed in him as a candidate overall. So, I'll just say I think he flopped. He was anecdotal and pandering and came across like he was desperately trying to remember talking points on stage. Honestly, I just want him to go away.
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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Big Magilla » Wed Jun 26, 2019 10:13 pm

Quick thoughts.

Warren and Booker came off best with Klobochar right behind. Ryan and Castro were strong, Gabbard stronger than I would have thought.

O'Rourke was pretty bad. DeBlasio was totally obnoxious. Delaney was pretty bland. Insley was one-note and forgettable.

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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Sabin » Wed Jun 26, 2019 2:36 pm

Tonight is Elizabeth Warren. Tomorrow is everyone else.

I’m generalizing of course, but i do wonder if tensions with Iran favor someone besides the generally foreign policy-weak Warren. Perhaps Tulsi Gabbard who has made non-interventionism one of the touchstones of her controversial campaign.

NOTE: never mind.
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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby Sabin » Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:37 pm

OscarGuy wrote
Obama tried working with Republicans and look how that ended up. The time for working with a belligerent and petulant Republican party is at an end.

Exactly. If they want to come back in twenty years with a political/ideologically consistent agenda, great! There are only two ideological parties in this country right now (conservative moderates and progressive liberals) and they're both in the Democratic Party.

NOTE: although if Joe Biden were elected and he faced pressure from the left to act and eventually did, that wouldn't be the worst thing in the world.

NOTE: I am in a mood. It's a mood that's been going on for a few years, but it's still a mood. Sorry.
"Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough." ~ FDR

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Re: Campaign 2020

Postby OscarGuy » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:09 pm

Obama tried working with Republicans and look how that ended up. The time for working with a belligerent and petulant Republican party is at an end.
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