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 Post subject: Democratic primary 2020
 Post Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:10 am 
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Any thoughts on the Democratic primary so far? Who do you want to run? Who do you think should win? Hillary Clinton's retirement seems to have burst a dam of aspiring presidential candidates.

So far we have officially, in very rough order of declining name recognition:
Elizabeth Warren
Kamala Harris
Cory Booker
Kirsten Gillibrand
Amy Klobuchar
Julian Castro
Tulsi Gabbard
John Delaney
Pete Buttigieg

And we may also get:
Bernie Sanders
Joe Biden
Beto O'Rourke
Michael Bloomberg
And a whole lot of other people - let me know if I've left off someone major.

Because having a zillion candidates worked out so well for the Republicans in 2016, when all the mainstream ones split the normal people's votes leaving a demagogic snake oil salesman to take the nomination. Democrats aren't huffing that much crazy-stupid gas, right? Right?

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 Post Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:35 am 
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To me, those are just names; I don't know one from the other (and I can't really influence the race in any way, anyhow).

But, if I were to pick what I want in a Democratic Party leader, here's a few of my highlights:

  • Someone who will take global warming seriously
  • Someone who will make sure that the laws are followed, and that the laws are sensible
  • Someone who doesn't care about bribes
  • Someone who prefers diplomacy to war
  • Someone who is intelligent, has a good deal of sense, and knows how to tell when he (or she) is being lied to
  • Someone who cares more about the welfare of people than about money

I don't know if there's anyone in your candidates who fulfils these conditions... but I do think it would be nice if there were.

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 Post Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 4:24 am 
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[url][/url]I think at this point, all of the Democrats will take global warming seriously because they're the only game in town on that front. The Republicans have made it politically impossible for their own party to acknowledge that it even exists.

I think pretty much all of them are more intelligent than Trump, which frankly isn't difficult. The most questionable one is probably Tulsi Gabbard, who used to hold some rather bizarre and bigoted views. She is a minor candidate with virtually no chance of getting the nomination, though.

It's too early to tell where most of these people stand on foreign policy - they may not even know themselves. I don't think any of them have a clue on how to end the wars in Afghanistan and Syria because those are legitimately very difficult problems, but none of them will go out of their way to piss off allies like Germany and Canada, another incredibly low bar that Trump has set.

However, some of them have been closer to corporate donors and Wall Street than others. I think Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders are the two most clearly concerned about economic inequality. Elizabeth Warren's career was in running Obama's consumer financial protection bureau, the purpose of which was to prevent people getting ripped off by banks. And Bernie Sanders is a self-declared Socialist.

Some of these names are obscure to me as well. Until today I'd never heard of Buttigieg. (*snigger* His name has Butt in it.)

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 Post Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 6:07 am 
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I think the best version would be a ticket with a "don't rock the boat" moderate and a crazy leftwing firebrand.

So that for the election a larger faction of the democrats feel at least somewhat represented, and if they get elected, they can play good cop bad cop.

I suppose having the bad cop in the more powerfull position is more effective, so i would prefere the firebrand in the president slot.

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 Post Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:06 am 
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Kea wrote:
I think at this point, all of the Democrats will take global warming seriously because they're the only game in town on that front.


Yeah, but there's a big difference between paying lip service to the idea and actually cutting carbon emissions. I'd prefer for you to get the person who actually cuts carbon emissions.

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 Post Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:41 pm 
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I really like Elizabeth Warren. I really don't understand Biden's popularity. He was fine as VP but as President he strikes me as too much of a Blue Dog. I am really hoping a bona fide leftist wins, Sanders or Warren being the two most prominent examples.

The Republicans are probably hoping Warren gets the nomination so they can paint her as just another Clinton. I hope the Democrats don't betray her either by treating her as such as well.

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 Post Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:37 pm 
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I think any woman would be painted by the Republicans as "another Clinton", any actual similarities to Clinton being totally irrelevant. I'm happy to see so many female candidates running though, because they'll have to distinguish themselves from each other on their platforms and not just be The Woman who somehow has to stand in for all women. Unfortunately, Trump has already done a lot of damage to Elizabeth Warren with his "Pocahontas" thing, because no matter what she does, this one stupid thing will be all the media ever talks about. He would probably do this to any candidate though. He may be an idiot but he's brilliant at sucking up attention and making people forget about what's important.

I think Biden's appeal mostly comes from seeming like a relatable, decent guy. I think some of Obama's coolness rubbed off on him too, because before he was Vice President he was seen as boring and gaffe-prone. His record is pretty centrist, in a way that was pretty mainstream for Democrats in the 1980s and 1990s, but which has fallen out of favour with the base now. That's going to be a pretty big problem for the majority of candidates with long records, unless they were always outliers like Bernie Sanders.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 6:57 am 
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Is "Pocahontas" a net negative for her?

It's out already, so if she wins the primary, you can't paint a "if primary voters had known that, they would have decided differntly" narrative.


The very fact that Trump made such attacks before the primary even started, makes her a "long time enemy of Trump", which helps turnout for the anti-Trump voters.

And i guess in the general election the political correctness/identity politics angel has the potential to work in the democrats favour for a change. Will anyone who thinks she was unsensitive or something really change to Trump over that? But if the republicans keep bringing it up, and the democrats keep a "yeah we know, can we talk about something else now" attitutde, thoose voters, who dislike identities and privilege being brought up period, might get turned off by republicans.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 9:34 pm 
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Elizabeth Warren does seem to have angered some Native American tribes by claiming to have native ancestry and listing herself as such on a few forms when she was younger. Native American tribes do not like this because they are the arbiters of who is officially a member or not based on ancestry records, and not random people's family legends or DNA tests. (There are many white families who claim to have a Native American ancestor, sometimes it's true, sometimes it's not. It was sometimes a dodge to explain mysteriously dark family members because nobody wanted to admit to having a black ancestor.)

Warren has apologised to them, which they seem to have accepted. Still, it is seen as a political liability among some Democrats not because they especially care about her ancestry but because they think she was stupid to fall into the trap of releasing her DNA results to address a petty insult.

It's also going to be appended to every single news report about Warren until the end of time. "Elizabeth Warren announces plan to tax wealth, also Donald Trump called her Pocahontas again." "Elizabeth Warren supports Green New Deal, some progressives sceptical because of the Pocahontas thing." "Elizabeth Warren blasts Trump for lying about immigration policy, Trump says, 'Neener neener Pocahontas.'" "Elizabeth Warren tripped and fell on the stairs, Pocahontas." Even if the Democrats try to ignore it, the media thrives on shallow controversies that take no brain power to understand. That's why Trump is so good at sucking their attention.

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 Post Posted: Thu Feb 14, 2019 6:17 am 
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I suppose it can hurt her in the primaries.

But afterwards it might be all over the media, but i don't think it would hurt her. For rightwingers that is only a "neener neener" thing anyway, so if there is no big reaction* it will get old pretty far. And leftwingers will have found a ways to make there peace with it, so they can file it away. And it can take away space from other criticism of her, so it might be that Pocahontas cries drown out any points, that might turn politically uninterested centrists against her.

Though given experience with democrats, they might ruin such a ploy by staging counterattacks with righteous outrage.

* Be it an over the top outrage at the attack, or the other side forming a circular firering squad.

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 Post Posted: Thu Feb 14, 2019 1:18 pm 
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I think that you are probably right that if she won the nomination, the vast majority of Democrats would rally around her. The prospect of a second Trump term would do wonders to focus the mind. Nobody could accuse her of being too similar to the Republicans, for sure.

Amy Klobuchar is the one who is positioning herself as a warm cuddly centrist. We shall see how that plays.

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 Post Posted: Thu Feb 14, 2019 2:49 pm 
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Apparently Bloomberg is going to spend at least half a billion this election cycle to bring Trump down, whether he runs for the nomination or not. That's going to be one massive data operation, and it's going to hurt Republican candidates no matter where they are on the ballot.

Ok, sure, sucks to be Trump. On the other hand dueling billionaires forming what amount to shadow parties that are better funded than the actual presidential candidates might make things interesting.

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