This episode talks about how Democrats can use Trump’s documented pathology of lying to their electoral advantage, the latest from the primary campaigns, and what the outcomes of this week’s statewide elections can portend for the 2020 race.
This MPU episode covers the Turkish incursion into Syria and what ethnic cleansing of the Kurds might look like, Rudy’s unfortunate Ukrainian pals and what a straw donor scheme might look like, Trump’s growing impeachment headaches and what a senate impeachment trial might look like, what the fourth Democratic debate might look like, and AOC’s 30th birthday and what a $300 haircut actually does look like.
by Kevin Kelton
I just watched a segment on Morning Joe in which the hosts were saying that the Democratic Party insiders they know are nervous because as much as they disdain President Trump, they simply cannot bring themselves to vote for Elizabeth Warren. But, they countered, there are just as many Democrats who are worried Joe Biden is too shaky and may not be up to the task of taking Trump down. They lamented that the country needs that “just right” moderate Democrat who could excite base voters in a way that Biden cannot, and could appeal to moderates and independent voters in a way that Warren cannot. Where, oh where, is that perfect Democratic candidate?
The discussion reminded me of all those single friends I’ve known through the years who date and date, never couple up, and blame it on the self-comforting rationale that there’s no good men/women left out there. At a certain point, you have to sit these friends down and gently tell them, “It’s not the dating pool; it’s you. You are the common denominator in this equation. You are the problem.”
That’s where the Democratic party is today. We’ve had 24 fine people offer themselves up to run against Trump. Senators… governors… congresspersons… captains of industry…. all with a wealth of experience, proven competence and liberal ideologies across the Democratic party spectrum. Yet none of them have caught the imagination of a wide swath of the the Never Trump universe.
Why is that? Why is no one “just right”? We really need to ask ourselves, out of two dozen worthy suitors, why couldn’t we give our hearts and souls to any of them?
It’s the same thinking as my single friends: one is too old and plain, one too young and risky, a few are daring badboys/girls who make our hearts flutter but our heads tell us aren’t long-term prospects, and several had interesting profiles but something felt naggingly missing.
And nice-guy John Delany might’ve been “the one” if he wasn’t so darn bland and bald!
I know that many of you want to fall in love and believe that Buttigieg, or Harris, or Castro-Beto-Booker-Bennet would be just perfect – if only everyone else thought exactly like you do. But they don’t. To this point, the majority of the Democratic Party has resoundingly rejected all of them, and that’s not likely to change. By mid-October, after several televised debates, if you haven’t climbed beyond 5%, the chances of you exploding by Iowa are slim to none.
So far, only Biden and Warren have shown any real capacity to draw enough votes from enough demographics to compete for the nomination. And yet neither of them is considered electable by a wide swath the party that is poised to nominate them.
Why is that? Why, after three years and 24 proposals, are we still searching for that elusive, perfect match who’s not too hot, not too cold, not too young, not too old?
The fault, dear Democrats, is not in our candidates, and not in our stars.
It’s in ourselves.
Kevin Kelton is a co-host of The More Perfect Union podcast.
This episode covers the fallout from the burned U.S. spy who had to be extracted from Russia, how the Trump administration is dangerously rewriting the norms of federal agency independence, and what to look for (and not look for) in the upcoming Democratic primary debate.
On the heels of yet another mass shooting in Texas, the More Perfect Union hosts discuss the second amendment, the rationale for hunting as a sport, and how to take on the out-of-control gun culture in this country. Then they turn their sights to the 2020 primaries and the rest of the week in Trumplandia, then finish with a look at Dave Chappell’s new Netflix special and the state of standup comedy in the #metoo era.
In this episode the MPU gang discusses Trump’s antics at the G7 summit, his idea about nuking hurricanes, and the latest entree into the Republican presidential primary contest.
This week the MPU gang takes on the idea of buying Greenland, Ken Cuccinelli’s idea of what the Statue of Liberty means, and Stephen Miller’s idea of what being ruthlessly Machiavellian means.
This week the gang talks about the impending Mueller testimony, what the public doesn’t understand about Medicare For All, the propensity for convicted sex offenders to end up in the Trump orbit, and why FaceApp is the #1 menace to society.
by D.J. McGuire
Let’s say you are a Democratic candidate for president of the United States. You are attempting to show voters that you can help fix the broken state of governance in Washington. You are intending to use examples of “reaching across the aisle“ and “working with people despite disagreements on other issues.“
You have multiple options; among them are:
- Bill Clinton working with Newt Gingrich – yes, that Newt Gingrich – to enact tax reform in 1997.
- Clinton working with Bob Dole – his 1996 opponent – and Gingrich to enact trade liberalization in the early the 1990s.
- Ronald Reagan and Tip O’Neill working together to enact tax reform in 1986.
- Anything involving two segregationist Democrats, one of whom left office before the oldest Millennial was even born and the other from Jimmy Carter’s home state who lost his seat due to Reagan’s coattails in 1980.
If you picked anything but D, you are smarter than Joe Biden – by a country mile. Unfortunately, if you are reading this column it is quite likely that you are not in fact running for president and Biden is. Even worse, many of those running against him don’t seem to understand just how big Biden’s error was.
There is certainly something tone-deaf about Biden’s use of James Eastland and Herman Talmadge (the Senators in choice D). He has earned all criticism received on that score. However, to quote Joseph Fouche of Napoleonic France: “It was worse than a crime; it was a blunder.”
The “blunder” flows from a misconception about swing voters shared by all three major Democratic candidates: namely, that said swing voters are Obama-Trump voters.
Biden’s strategy appears to be soft-pedaling social justice issues. Elizabeth Warren‘s strategy appears to be hard-pedaling left-wing economics. Bernie Sanders’ strategy appears to be a combination of the two.
Here’s the problem: Obama-Trump voters aren’t swing voters; they are converts. They are not coming back. Bob Dole tried to win back voters who switched to Clinton in 1992; he lost over 30 states. Walter Mondale tried to win back voters who switched to Reagan in 1980; he lost over 40 states.
The actual swing voters in 2020 are the swing voters from 2018 – suburban, college-educated, and far more likely to lean to the center-right on economic and international issues than on social issues. Sanders and Warren act as if these voters don’t exist. Unfortunately, Biden doesn’t apparently think they exist either. Otherwise, he would have remembered – and discussed – when the two major parties resolved differences and found common ground on issues that appeal to current moderates, rather than harken back to days when his own party had a faction that appeals to no one outside of Trump’s base.
That Warren and Sanders are choosing not to appeal to the swing voters of 2020 does not surprise me; they’ve spent their political careers avoiding those voters. Biden, on the other hand, has a history of supporting moderate economic policies, especially on trade and on tax reform. That heis choosing not to use that history is more troubling for the party as a whole.
On this MPU episode, Kevin, DJ, Greg, and Rebekah discuss the latest assault on Roe v. Wade, the Trump v. China trade war, and the primary campaign prospects of Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.