The mainstream media, which includes liberal and conservative news outlets, were successful in convincing a very large segment of Americans, including progressives, that Hillary Clinton was/is a bad person. She was too ambitious, for a woman. She supposedly used foul language. She was protective of her private life. She was a hawk/warmonger. She was extremely careless with classified information, i.e., her email server.
Likewise, the mainstream media is attempting to convince Americans, including progressives, that Elizabeth Warren is a bad person related to her economic worldview. Despite her claim that she is a capitalist, Republicans promote that she is as much of a socialist as Bernie Sanders is.
Are Hillary Clinton and Elizabeth Warren bad for the USA? I have seen nothing that supports that narrative. Probably as a result of her middle-class upbringing, Hillary Rodham was a Republican in her youth. She was indeed a Goldwater girl. However, unlike Goldwater, she always had a heart for inclusiveness and equality. Her public life reflects a history of speaking out on behalf of those who did not have a seat at the table, primarily minorities and females. People who don’t support those who don’t have a seat at the table will naturally find champions of those people, distasteful.
Elizabeth Warren also had a middle-class upbringing and like Hillary Rodham, she was initially a Republican, albeit much longer than Hillary into her adult life. Warren said she was a Republican because she thought the Republican Party supported the market. She changed her mind in 1996 because she thought Republicans supported tilting the playing field in favor of large financial institutions and against middle-class American families.
I recently heard Willie Geist of MSNBC’s The Morning Joe show say that the 2017 World Series title should be taken away from the Houston Astros and given to the Los Angeles Dodgers, because Houston stole pitching signals and used that tactic to win baseball games. I am not sure if Willie was being sarcastic, but I think history might treat the 2016 presidential election in that manner. Officially, Hillary Clinton lost the 2016 presidential election to Donald Trump. However, a true account of that election would have to include an asterisk to denote that Russia interfered in that election and the Trump campaign at the very least welcomed that interference.
I recently discovered that there is a narrative on the internets that P’taah, the real God of Erra and Terra (Earth) said that had Hillary Clinton become President of The United States, a catastrophic world war would have ensued, and that Donald Trump, although he might appear to be chaotic, was actually the lesser of two evils related to the 2016 American presidential election. I was intrigued by the Billy Meier Story until I read this.
So, is Elizabeth Warren the Hillary Clinton of 2020? Recently, even President Obama came out against Warren. Although he did not name her specifically in his comment about the Democratic Party moving too far to the left and not being practical related to healthcare and some other issues, his comments seemed to be directed at Warren and Sanders. Although Republicans portrayed Obama as the most liberal senator in the Senate during his 2008 general election campaign, those same Republicans as well as moderate Democrats agree with President Obama now related to the Democratic Party being too far to the left.
I think Republicans recognize that they are in trouble by sticking with Donald Trump in 2020, despite their base sticking with Trump. Yes, they can win their primaries by sticking with Trump, but it will be very difficult if not impossible for swing state Republicans to win the general election. So, what can Republicans do in this anti-Trump national environment? The most obvious option is to help moderate Democrats choose the Democratic nominee for president by promoting that moderate Republicans MIGHT support a moderate Democrat, but they will NEVER support a far-left Democrat like Sanders OR Warren. Enter, Michael Bloomberg and Deval Patrick, a Bain Capital manger who is supported by his good friend President Obama.
What scares small “c” conservatives and moderate Democrats the most about Warren is that she intends to place a wealth tax on wealthy people and she wants to take the profit motive out of healthcare insurance. The mainstream media is promoting the myth that most Americans LOVE their health insurance plans and they don’t want the government to take the private healthcare insurance option away from them, like Warren and Sanders are proposing. The mainstream media neglect to INFORM the public that the private health insurance industry is not healthcare providers, but rather healthcare FUNDERS, for a PROFIT.
There are a few points I would like to see Warren and Sanders address related to the myths the mainstream media is promoting about Medicare-For-All. First, they need to explain in plain terms how they intend to pay for it. Bernie has unequivocally stated that he supports a tax that would replace premiums currently paid to the private health insurance industry, that would be less that what healthcare consumers are currently paying. Warren says she intends to fund Medicare-For-All by imposing a wealth tax on the top one percent of taxpayers, by directing 98 % what employers now spend on employee healthcare insurance to the government, as well as repealing some of the advantages the Trump tax cuts gave to large corporations. However, she proposes not the raise taxes on the middle-class. I think that the willingness of Democrats to establish universal healthcare is FAR MORE IMPORTANT than how they will pay for it. How it will be funded will be debated in Congress and IF Congress in controlled by Democrats, the best plan for Americans will pass and a Democratic president will sign it into law.
Another issue I would like to see Warren and Sanders, and quite frankly the entire Democratic Party address is the FACT that Republicans are currently trying to have the Supreme Court declare that the ACA is unconstitutional. Not just the individual mandate, but the entire program. Why? Because it grants the government the power to require people to purchase a product or service from private entities, in violation of the Commerce Clause of the Constitution. The Roberts court already issued this ruling related to the individual mandate in 2012 in National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, because the failure to purchase something exceeds Congress’ authority to regulate interstate commerce. It is difficult to see how the plaintiff will not prevail in this argument. If they do, what is Plan B for Democrats to provide affordable healthcare for Americans? We already know what the Republican plan is. Die quickly!
The other issue to be addressed is pre-existing conditions, and how it can be funded in a private for-profit insurance environment. ALL for-profit businesses are in business primarily to make profits. How can a health insurance company make a profit if it is forced to cover people they know will cost FAR more to cover than they will pay in premiums? From my perspective as a lay-person, I don’t see how this can be done. Although I wholeheartedly support banning pre-existing conditions as a reason for denying health insurance coverage, I don’t believe the private-for-profit health insurance industry can do it economically, even if they wanted to.
So, in the current anti-Trump political environment, should Americans go for what they really want, or should they preserve/conserve the status quo and keep the 99% in economic bondage? Joe Biden and moderate Democrats and now even President Obama seem to suggest sticking with the more comfortable status quo. WHAT SAY YOU?
I wouldn’t allow them to pick anything for me. They wouldn’t allow the Democrats to pick a Republican. Republicans haven’t had a great President in decades. The voters are so loyal to their Party they can’t see the damage they are causing by allowing them all of this power without the questions as to why. It kind of makes me wonder if the Party has a bad actor playing the “My rules, do it this way only.” It could also be a group within the Party. It makes sense because of all of this stuff the Party wants trump to get away with. In normal circumstances you care for the Hill and the Constitution. You don’t trash either. But ever since trump took office the Party has been doing just that.
Just like Obama couldn’t have become president if it hadn’t been for the disaster that Bush was, I think 2020 is our opportunity to elect a true Progressive who could make the long-awaited and urgent changes this country needs in healthcare, economic injustice, political corruption, etc.
This is absolutely the wrong time to lower our sights and let Republicans push Dems into nominating someone like Biden who will be “their” candidate because we’re afraid of losing to Trump. Biden will be as weak as president as he is as a candidate, he will be overwhelmed, he will misfire as he constantly does and he won’t deliver the meaningful change we need.
And all that will also mean, he would be destroyed when he runs for re-election and we could be handing the WH in 2024 to Don Jr..
Any valuable candidate will have a challenge. Whether it’s Warren, Buttigieg, Sanders, Harris, each has built-in “obstacles” because they’re not a generic, moderate old white man (Hi Joe!) who is just trying to squeak by in a GE by not offending anyone.
It’s the same reason McDonalds sells the most hamburgers in the world. They are far from the best or tastiest burgers you’ll ever eat but they hit that common denominator, don’t have too much flavor and lots of salt and sugar to appeal to the most possible people without offending anyone.
That is not a recipe for a good president though. We can’t be any more afraid of electing a gamechanging president than we were in 2008 when we elected Obama…who many experts insisted had too many obstacles in front of him to be “electable”.
The Republicans can try in 4 years to elect their desired nominee, they’re not driving this bus though so I’ll keep slapping their hands every time they try to grab the wheel.
I get where you are coming from…..let me point to an article from The Week that captures the issues of electoral structure, party makeup, and state control that most concern me in this. https://theweek.com/articles/850350/democrats-are-denial-about-2020
I couldn’t get too far in that article because it shouts out how slanted it is in its first sentence.
What? These are all hard right columnists, each one is worse than the last. Their perspectives are skewed to the right and they’ve all said some pretty offensive things.
Democrats don’t need to be concerned about what this motley collection of conservatives think:
Stop with the puff pieces about Steve Bannon
David Brooks Dragged for Column Urging ‘Respect to Gun Owners’
Stunned Twitter Critics Swat Bret Stephens’ Bedbug Link To Nazis In NYT Column
The conservative writer ties insect insult against him to anti-Semitism. He once called Palestinians mosquitos in a Wall Street Journal column.
Stephens shut down his Twitter account earlier this week after he went ballistic when David Karpf, an associate professor at George Washington University, referred to him in a tweet as a metaphorical bedbug. Stephens emailed Karpf and his provost to complain, but the columnist insisted he wasn’t out to get Karpf fired.
I appreciate the electability concerns Dems may have but I don’t trust conservatives to be our sages.
Sullivan, Brooks and Stevens might support many of the things most Americans support, like Social Security and Medicare, even universal healthcare, common sense gun safety laws, humane immigration policies, social and criminal justice, climate change affected by human behavior, cultural diversity and other ideals supported by Democrats. However, trump and his base do not. The reason we don’t have these things is because most voters for the last several decades have voted for republicans. Not because most Americans don’t want these things but because most Americans who want them, don’t vote. Voter turnout is KEY!
Thus the core strategy needs to be:
Massive GOTV focused on those voters most likely to vote for Dems.
I believe that this points to a candidate who politically is a centrist who leans left (and therefore identifies with most of the issues you list and approaches them in terms of practical incrementalism) and offer, in their person, a distinctive difference, a definitive choice…which for me is a woman like Amy Klobuchar.
Of course, I would support any Democrat, but my first choice is Warren. I think the primaries are good to discuss the issues, but I think Democrats will govern with the best interest of all Americans at heart. It is of course, important to elect Democrats as the majority in Congress, as that is where laws are actually made, and that is the body that is tasked with executive oversight. The trump era has brought to bear the importance of executive oversight!
Warren is my pick right now too though I wasn’t completely happy with her performance in the debate. She seemed too programmed on bringing questions back to her specific plans that were even off topic at times.
I understand message discipline and how far it has gotten her but I would like to see more responsiveness and spontaneity from her in debates.
Trump will be throwing everything including the kitchen sink at whoever the nom is and they need to be fast on their feet. She has been in a number of instances but less so of late, IMO.
My absolutely-nots in the Dem primary are Gabbard, Biden, Steyer, Yang and Buttigieg (he seems to slick and arrogant to me, he may be popular among white moderates but he’s alienated the black voter base and that spells doom). I’m not crazy about pro-corporate/Wall Street Booker, I can’t see Klobuchar looking strong against Trump, I question Harris’ changing commitment to issues and I’m not sure that Sanders can build on his existing base. And Bloomberg and Patrick are irrelevant.
So while I have my reservations about other candidates, Warren seems to be the most appealing to me in therms of exciting voters with vision and plans for the future and being strong enough to face off with Trump. I will vote for whoever the nom is but of all of them, I see such an irony that Biden is supported by so many yet he is the weakest campaigner of all of them and the least likely to withstand a political assault by Trump.
You really think Amy Klobuchar is going to energize massive GOTV? From where? She has no passionate following, she does not appeal to young voters or black and minority voters, the key demographics that help Democrats win.
I know that it may seem like playing it safe to go with a bland moderate like Biden or Klobuchar but IMO, it’s far more dangerous to go with a candidate that does not inspire the Dem base. Yes, most Dems will vote for whoever the Dem candidate is but as you said, what Dems need is to motivate those Dem voters who are usually less inclined to vote. And an unexciting moderate like Klobuchar wouldn’t bring them out so the likelihood of Trump getting re-elected goes up.
We didn’t play it safe with voting for and nominating a black man with the middle name of “Hussein” who in the Dem primary, supported universal healthcare, and we won. We shouldn’t be afraid of going big and inspirational in 2020 either.
Who you think fits the profile of “GOP Choice”? Which of the candidates? I will say more but I am trying to get my head around the idea of a Democrat that GOP might be willing to support as a way of getting the Trump Albatross from around their necks.
Of course, the obvious one is Biden. Trump is so concerned about republicans voting for Biden, that he was willing to extort Ukraine to openly announce they were investigating him. Trump no doubt thought he could get away with it because he got away with conspiring with Russia in 2016.
However, other so-called moderate Democrats would be more acceptable to republican voters than Warren and Sanders. I think they might also accept Klobuchur, and more likely Bloomberg or Patrick. And if Trump is not removed and is allowed to run for re-election, some so-called moderate Democrats would even vote for Trump over Warren and Sanders. The media and moderate dems are misrepresenting the healthcare issue. There is a reason every other developed nation has universal healthcare. I also believe Warren and Sanders could do a better job in educating Americans about it. Warren REALLY has a heavy lift. She is a female and she is challenging the rich and powerful.
I agree with your logic here. What seems clear to me is that the GOP will paint Biden as a old, corrupt, representative of the deep state, or as an Obama agent. They will paint Warren and Sanders as free spending, out of control socialists (read that as COMMUNIST). Buttigieg will get tarred with the (whispered) words that he is, you know, one of them, you know…gay. Bloomberg will be framed as a plutocrat who was an awful mayor of NY (which he was not but his stop and frisk policy will be hard for minorities to follow). Patrick is either going to be a closet Obama, or an Oreo, or as a corporate shill. Klobuchar has the least conflicted/controversial profile and she has a strong record. She is smart, reasoning, and has very practical, down to earth proposals on a wide range of topics but her charisma level is low and her campaign is chugging along on fume.
Bottom line for me: Whoever the Democratic candidate is that person must appeal to those who tend to vote Dem (when they bother to vote) to get them out to the vote, must appeal to those who tend to vote Dem but are definitely middle of the road centrists, must appeal to minorities esp. blacks and hispanics, must appeal to the progressives and so on. All things to all people….not possible but some combination will need to be addressed to put together a winning electoral college formula, and enough coat-tails to hold the House and, perhaps, to win the Senate.
AND….they have to consider the other side of the formula. What will alienate any of these groups such that they will not vote for the Democratic candidate.
All that one has to do is consider the impact on a black voting bloc not feeling properly wooed in 2016 in three states that cost Clinton those states…..just one example…..
Will progressives do the same if they are not properly wooed? Will others? I am voting Democratic across the board in every election from now until balance is restored in our national and state governments and until enough repair of our governing institutions has taken place for me to have any faith in the GOP.
I have voted a straight Democratic ballot since 2000, and I will continue to do so until there is another viable party to challenge them. Today there is none.
I think your response may have been focused on the republican base, and that is the problem with moderate Democrats. I would not recommend courting a single republican vote. IF republicans want to join us in our vision for a better America, I welcome them. However, I would not abandon a single progressive ideal in order to appease a single republican voter. I would instead focus on getting out the vote among people who share the vison of the Democratic Party.
Most Americans support a woman’s right to choose. Most Americans support common sense gun safety legislation. Most Americans support universal healthcare (https://www.kff.org/slideshow/public-opinion-on-single-payer-national-health-plans-and-expanding-access-to-medicare-coverage/). Most Americans support ending U.S. military aggression.
And if I might stop to address that issue and what Congresswoman Gabbard said tonight and has been promoting related Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party.
I would have to be honest and go back to Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign when he promoted the notion that Hillary Clinton, due to a lack of judgment, voted for the war in Iraq. THIS WAS A LIE WHEN OBAMA TOLD IT. IT IS A LIE WHEN CHRIS MATTEWS TELLS IT. IT IS A LIE WHEN RACHELL MADDOW TELLS IT. IT IS A LIE WHEN BERNIE SANDERS TELLS IT.
Senator Hillary Clinton voted to support the President of the United States, George W. Bush, going before the United Nations to request that weapons inspectors return to Iraq after 9/11. The “resolution” that most people claim was a war resolution, was instead a peace resolution that REQUIRED Bush to come back to Congress to get permission to use military force against Iraq IF Saddam refused to allow weapons inspectors to return and give an accounting of WMD. Saddam DID NOT refuse to allow weapons inspectors to return. However Bush ordered the inspectors to leave so he could ILLEGALLY invade Iraq.
Not only did Hillary AND Bill Clinton vigorously oppose the invasions of Iraq, but so did EVERY congressional Democrat except Zell Miller and Joe Liberman. Democrats almost universally opposed the RUSH TO WAR.
On the Senate floor, after voting in favor of the peace resolution, Hillary Clinton clearly stated in no uncertain terms that her vote WAS NOT A VOTE FOR A RUSH TO WAR, AND she admonished Bush to use war AS A LAST RESORT. Those who blame Clinton or anyone else for Bush and congressional republicans hijacking the peace resolution and using it as an authorization to invade Iraq are a PART OF THE PROBLEM and NOT the solution.
Barack Obama, who claimed he had superior judgement to Hillary Clinton, chose her as his secretary of state, AND while she was in that position she initiated the Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review program as a way to elevate diplomacy ahead of military action in resolving international conflicts. THIS is who Hillary Clinton was and is, and NOT some warmonger or military hawk.
I agree, the focus of Dems should be on Dem voters and those who would be most inclined to vote Dem.
How did a Dem win the governorship in KY and LA? The stats are clear, Repub turnout was higher but Dem turnout was huge. It wasn’t from luring Repubs over to vote Dem, it was from growing Dem turnout.
The results showed that Trump’s visits to the states did rally Repubs but Dems are more driven by Trump to vote against him and Repubs.
So this is a proven dynamic that Dems win, why abandon that for the unproven and IMO, completely wrong theory that there are a lot of Trump voters out there who can be convinced to vote Dem.
It’s a tribal thing for most voters, they are either Dem or Repub voters and some Repubs look at voting Dem as a mortal sin. You’re not going to change their minds.
And consider the 38% or so who still approve of Trump in the polls. After all the insanity and criminal behavior, they still back him. You’re not going to ever win them over, they will happily drive off the cliff with their savior, Trump.
We can beat Trump and the racists making up the core of his supporters, we just need to have that confidence, run an inspirational candidate who will rally Dem voters and we can win this.
Biden has had a long and accomplished career but he is the one candidate that can only fail, whether losing to Trump or being a caretaker type president who loses support across the board, his nomination would be a time bomb for Dems which will go off between now and November or soon after if elected.
I could be wrong, but I don’t think Dems are that tribal. I suspect there are some who would support a Democrat regardless of their character and behavior, but the overwhelming majority of Democrats will not tolerate the kind of character and behavior exhibited by trump, from a Democrat or anyone else. I think turnout is the key. The more people who vote, the more likely the vote is to reflect the will of the people, whatever that is.
You’re correct, the Dem party is a coalition, not a tribe like the GOP is.
The Dem Party includes and welcomes all ages, races, religions, sexual orientations, conservatives, moderates and liberals.
The GOP is comprised primarily of older, straight, white, conservative Christians, many of whom are hateful racists, homophobes, anti-Semites and religious bigots.
The GOP is literally an enclave, a tribe, so acting in a tribal way for them with a Great Leader who can do no wrong in their fight against “the others” comes naturally.
As a coalition of many types of Americans, the Dems don’t have a tribe and an “other” in the same way Repubs do.
So by nature, a winning nominee would need to be a true and altruistic populist, a demagogue like Trump isn’t possible without dividing the party against itself.
Keeping all that in mind, Dem turnout will be affected by how well the nominee fits that role. Do they inspire and excite the coalition in a way that the different groups of people feel that this truly is their candidate? Do they seem genuinely compassionate towards all people in the coalition?
We’ve seen record turnout in 2018 and in this year’s elections so voters are primed to vote out Trump and vote in the Dem nom. Turnout should already be poised to favor the Dem nominee but to pull off the kind of decisive win over Trump that would shut down any consideration of his “Election Fraud!” protests and start brining the country back together, we do need a nominee who has the chops to excite the Dem base AND independent voters looking for change and improvement.
We can’t forget that part of what helped Trump get elected was the pervasive feeling that things have been going in the wrong direction for far too long against the majority of Americans and real change is needed.
If voters really believe in the Dem nom to deliver meaningful change and progress in this country (and not the Biden promise to just try to go back to where things were in 2008), turnout should be huge and sweep the Dem nom to victory…and take out the Trump trash.
Thanks for your complete overview here….there is an article from The Week that captures my concerns re. electoral structure, party makeup, and state control https://theweek.com/articles/850350/democrats-are-denial-about-2020
It says it better than I so I offer it in response to your very valid arguments…..
I think all effort should be focused on voter turnout. If we have a large voter turnout and the majority of those voters prefer the kind of government trump and republicans are promoting, then THAT is the kind of country we are. So we could no longer say, “we are better than that”, when we allow a president to use the powers of his office to interfere in elections or enrich himself or prosecute political opponents. Those of us who don’t support that kind of government, will just have to accept that we are just a powerful banana republic.
I very much agree that GOTV is key. And one of the principal elements in the calculations that surround those efforts is how voters identify themselves. This report from February 2019 is one I have kept in mind in all of this.
“As Gallup has previously reported, the percentage of Democrats nationally who identify as politically liberal has been increasing. This has occurred in three distinct phases: 1) 2001-2006, when the percentage was trending steadily upward; 2) 2007-2012, when liberalism held steady near 40% for several years in a row and 3) 2013-2018, when liberalism resumed its upward trajectory.
“The percentage of Democrats identifying as politically liberal averaged 32% in the first period, 39% in the second and 46% in the third. At the same time, the percentages identifying as conservative and moderate fell equally.”
The GOP choice has been Biden from the start. He’s from Delaware, pro-corporation, pro-Wall Street and a good ol’ boy who they know will play ball with them. He doesn’t want and isn’t running on change, he is running as the old Plymouth that you can drive down the usual roads and will get you from here to there…meaning status quo.
They don’t want change and Biden is happy to accomodate them.
However, as Biden has seemed weak, they and the establishment of the Dem Party have been freaking out and they’ve been pushing Bloomberg and Patrick to get in the race.
It’s ABWOS, Anyone But Warren Or Sanders.
There isn’t a big difference between who non-Trump Repubs want as the Dem candidate and who Dem establishment types want.
But one thing they don’t want is a Progressive who would tax the wealthy…which is them. And fix the corruption which they thrive on. For our sake, I hope they lose and we win the nom.
Trump is not often correct or truthful with this comments. However, one thing he is right about is that when Biden ran for president before, he got about 1% of the primary votes. He also shows signs that he is not as sharp as he used to be. I love Biden as a person, but I don’t think he is strong enough in many ways to go toe-to-toe with a scumbag like trump.
Biden gets confused and falters even in a relatively collegial debate against fellow Democrats. One can only imagine the political disaster Biden would be in a debate with Trump when a vicious rain of lies and slander are brought down on him.
And his constant gaffes and confusions will be magnified and ridiculed by Trump and the Russian propaganda machine, Biden will appear to the public as a weak, senile, bumbling old codger who is physically and mentally unable to perform the duties of president.
It’s so obvious, seeing this all waiting to fall down on him to bury him and the Dems supporting him seem so tunnelvisioned, basing everything on where things are today.
Biden is being treated with kid gloves right now, this is absolutely not going to be the case in a GE and I see no way that, as sheltered as he already is in the primary, that even his own team thinks he can stand up to the daily barrage that would await him in a GE.
He is the only possible candidate that would be most likely to self-destruct against Trump and I hope Dems continue to see what a disaster his candidacy would be, not only for the Dems but by allowing Trump to be re-elected, for the future of this country.