Housekeeping comment: This is a post about the 2020 presidential election. Yes, I know there is a midterm election happening in 37 days. Our focus should be, has been and will be primarily on that and other present-day issues. But this is an almost top-10K politics and pets blog, and if we can take time to talk about gardening, gaming, TV, movies, cat-shaving, home improvement, etc., without shattering the republic due to a lapse in concentration on the midterms, by golly I think we can occasionally cast our speculation forward without all coming to naught.
Senator Elizabeth Warren made an unsurprising announcement at a town hall yesterday (NYT):
Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts declared on Saturday that she would “take a hard look” at running for the White House in 2020 once the midterm elections are over, and called on the country to elect a female president to fix the “broken government” in Washington.
Ms. Warren made the announcement during a town-hall meeting in Holyoke, Mass., where she was decrying President Trump and Senate Republicans for digging in behind Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh, the embattled Supreme Court nominee who has been accused of sexual assault. She described the hearings as a spectacle of “powerful men helping a powerful man make it to an even more powerful position.”
“I watched that and I thought: time’s up,” Ms. Warren said, according to a transcript and video of her remarks provided by an aide. “It’s time for women to go to Washington and fix our broken government, and that includes a woman at the top.”
She continued, “So here’s what I promise: After Nov. 6, I will take a hard look at running for president.”
Senator Amy Klobuchar hasn’t mentioned throwing her chapeau into the ring, but an article by Aaron Blake and Dave Weigel in The Post speculated about her possible future as a 2020 nominee. It recounted the moment when Kavanaugh angrily demanded to know if Klobuchar is a black-out drunk in response to a politely posed and relevant question.
During the hearing, Kavanaugh publicly apologized to Klobuchar after the break, perhaps perceiving that his taunting question came across as rude and aggressive, especially since Klobuchar had just shared that her 90-something father is a recovering alcoholic.
The scene at the hearing — in which Kavanaugh was defending himself against allegations of sexual assault — has at once thrust Klobuchar into the national spotlight and reinforced what could be her central shortcoming as a 2020 contender for the presidency. In a party that by most accounts is searching for liberals and powerful personalities to counteract President Trump, Klobuchar has crafted a brand almost diametrically opposed to that. In many ways, Klobuchar’s running and winning in 2020 would defy conventional wisdom, just as Trump did in 2016…
“While she’s a down-the-line Democratic vote, she doesn’t have an image here as the partisan bomb-thrower,” said Minnesota Republican consultant Mark Drake. “I think Democrats are looking for someone who is the partisan bomb-thrower. She’s the senator next door, not the bomb-thrower next door.”
If both women run, we’ll be treated to all sorts of dumb stereotypes. I don’t look forward to that, but I’d love to see either Warren, Klobuchar or both in the race and/or continuing to play prominent roles within the party. Kamala Harris and Kirsten Gillibrand too.
It’s tempting to think that Hillary Clinton’s loss proved we’re just not ready for a woman president in America. I wondered that myself early on, but I don’t anymore — there’s a difficult and unfair double-standard the first woman president will have to overcome, just as President Obama had to clear extra hurdles to become the first black president. But I do believe it’s possible.
Clinton’s loss, rather than arguing against women’s viability as presidential candidates, is an argument in favor of it. She was sandbagged by a decades-long media defamation campaign, bogus “dynasty” charges, Russian active measures, third-party sneering and voter suppression, and she still won the popular vote by millions.
On the contrary, I think the Democrats NEED a woman on the ticket in 2020. Whoever she is, she will not only be an effective foil to Trump, she’ll be a walking reminder that we can’t afford another misogynist on the Supreme Court. May the best woman win.
Amy is too ‘Minnesota Nice’ for me.
The Moar You Know
I only care about one qualification for the candidate; they have to be able to beat Trump. And that’s going to be very difficult. Incumbents have a tremendous advantage going in. I don’t have any particular preference as to who does it, but they must be able to win. This nation can’t have two terms of Donald J. Trump as president, we won’t survive. Choose wisely.
I love me some Senator Warren but I think she’s a better force in the Senate than as a candidate for President. Kamala Harris on the other hand….
A Ghost To Most
Jim, Foolish Literalist
I’ve thought for a long time that Claire McCaskill would make a run as Blue Doggish, “National Security”, “Centrist” (by the standards of a Meet The Press roundtable) Dem, but even if she (please god) wins next month, I think the moment for her type may have passed
I honestly underestimated the misogyny in 2016.
Won’t make that mistake if we nominate a woman in 2020.
Nobody, especially the MSM will get the benefit of the doubt. If there is the least hint of misogyny, they will be confronted and called out.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
I like Klobuchar best for a national election, and Warren because, well, she is correct about everything and not afraid to mix it up. Regardless, all women should be as involved as possible in the party, we will be much better off as a country. I am looking forward to new faces in 2020, we need to start pushing younger people forward. The baby boomers need to start taking a back seat.
The GOP and the media will insure that ANY woman who runs is going to get slagged with the same old tired tropes used against women since time immemorial (and Harris would be turned into the mauiest Mau Mau that ever maued).
To this I say: LET THEM TRY.
I’m voting adult — all other biological accessories negociable. But I’m the low bar, and a slightly grumpy low bar at that: OK, a woman (assisted by full congress) could manage govt clean-up (bit does it always have to be the housekeeping?!) but I want scarey smackdowns and a few unappologetic stompdowns as well. So OK, give me bread but give me Rose Thorns.
I’m more concerned about a platform than a person. I want my party to have a clear and compelling message, a set of principles regarding governance, I want a NEW new deal and I DON’T want any sideshow Bernie divisive fuckery.
Then, after the election, a real thorough investigation of corruption that leads straight to prison for the convicted.
If Kamala Harris chooses to run, I will work like a rented mule to get her elected.
If someone else wins the primary, I will work like a rented mule, to get them elected.
I declare you today’s winner for that allusion.
“Thirty days hath September
Month of paler cooler suns
And if it didn’t, who’d remember
The totals for the other ones
Thirty days hath September
Thirty shining golden beads
Thirty days hath September
Actually, that’s all it needs.”
Premature debate is premature
First let her win her race for the Senate, which is shaping up to be quite ugly.
I doubt she will win in the primaries.
I am not enthusiastic about her as a presidential candidate.
I haven’t forgotten how she joined BS of Vt in his conspiracy theories last election.
I favor Gillibrand, and wonder why there hasn’t been any buzz around Hirono.
I’d vote for a bag of mulch on the D ticket, to be clear. If the bag turns out to be named Michael Avenatti, I’ll feel queasy about it, but still support him.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
Born in Japan. Michael Avenatti might win the left blogosphere primary, I’m not so sure about others.
@The Moar You Know:
I agree. Nominate a winner, then go from there.
I think there is a chance that Trump won’t be running in 2020, either because he drops dead (he is a 70+ year old overweight man after all) or because he is removed from office (he is corrupt). That said, the fact that we can’t rule out his reelection in 2020 with certainty is pretty depressing.
I assume you’re referring to Warren and not Klobuchar.
Work to do so I’ll just leave this great protest sign here.
“I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept.”
Some of you will recognise the provenance, if not google the “Serenity Prayer.”
@zhena gogolia: Yes. I will work for whoever wins D nomination, EW is not my first choice. I was not down with her anti trade demagoguery of TPP either.
@schrodingers_cat: My understanding is Warren is cruising to victory and isn’t seriously threatened by her opponent. Is that wrong?
I have not hidden my concerns about Senator Klobuchar in the past, I agree with you but ‘nice’ is not the term I would use.
I was sure there would never be a black POTUS until the GOP elected one (I’ll ignore for the sake of this discussion the huge assist GWB gave in Obama’s effort). I got that wrong. I feel the same way about a woman candidate & hope I can be just as wrong.
Interesting story about MN politics. The last 2 times the Governor’s job has been open the DFL has nominated a liberal, smart, experienced and capable woman. Both times they lost the primary to a man who really should not have been considered. Dayton was way more effective that I ever hoped but I still wish we had stuck with the nominated one. The current guy, Tim Walz, won a Congressional seat in a deeply Republican district. He has no experience in state government & has gotten good ratings from the NRA. I’ll vote for him but again ‘liberal’ MN turned its back on a qualified woman for a questionable guy.
I really hope Warren has some DNA tests in hand, because the Republicans are not going to let go of the “she faked being an Indian to get ahead” thing and I think it’s more damaging than Warren lets on.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: Ah. That’s a shame. “Stand up and shut up” is a hell of a rallying cry.
@Betty Cracker: I haven’t seen the polls. That this race is going to get ugly was the read of my local D organizer. EW has her fans but there are many who don’t love her.
I looked it up fairly recently and almost half (22) of US states have never had a woman governor in their entire history. California is one of them.
We really cannot underestimate how deep misogyny still runs in this country.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
my hope for 2020:
1) no fucking litmus tests
2) run against trump and his party, not other Democrats
Mike in DC
My preferences thus far in rank order:
Why not Elizabeth Warren/Kamala Harris, and EWarren serves one term?
I wish Elzabeth Warren had run in 2016. I think she could have beat Trump. Bernie could not have. Hillary was too defined by Republican lies and despised. Warren has a genuinely populist economic message (as in, not “populist means white supremacist”, as the lying NY Times would tell us). But it’s past.
I’d also like to see Barack Obama or Kamala Harris on the Supreme Court. No reason KHarris cannot get some seasoning as President or VP first, though.
No to senators running. The Senate isn’t, despite their own perceptions, the presidential farm team.
Obama was the exception that proves the rule, in this as in other attributes.
@Mike in DC: Not Gillibrand. If you thought Hillary was a mean Senator from NY. Gillibrand stabs other Democrats in the back. And has a husband who works for Goldman Sachs, right? That is going to go over well.
We will have plenty, perhaps too many candidates to choose from. Personally, I like Chris Murphy from CT. The number of young, energetic possible candidates like Harris, Gillibrand, Inslee, Booker, Klobachar, Duckworth, Garcetti, Schiff is pretty impressive.
@The Moar You Know: Agreed. Ability to win is the primary concern for me, since all of the women we’re discussing vote the right way.
I have said, and I still believe, that Dems need to do better on style points. I think Harris is my favorite right now. I LOVE the message that would be sent by her nomination: we nominated the brilliant black dude, we nominated the whip-smart woman, and now we’re doubling down on that. She wouldn’t need to say a word about her race or gender, she would just embody everything good about our party. We’re younger and more energetic, and we’re the future.
OTOH, I remember reading an opinion piece about ten years ago (and remember where or by whom) in which the writer posited that the first woman president would be a Republican, since that’s the only way Republican men would feel comfortable enough with a woman. At the time I read that, I thought no way. But perhaps that was my wishful thinking, and that writer was making a good, if upsetting, observation.
I very much appreciate that Klobuchar’s niceness shines through as she ably performs her Senatorial work. And, view it as a significant strength as opposed to a liability. It would serve her well, should she run for President, to the usual sexist nonsense the GOP fires at female Democratic candidates.
I want the best candidate for President, regardless of gender.
@chris: love it.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: general agreement my ass.
Maybe among the “Democrats” who talk to Weigel, who (I’m sure) are overwhelmingly male.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@Betty Cracker: this looks ugly as a cut’n’paste, but we’ll see how it posts. The polls from early summer through last week show EW with a massive lead.
If Senator Whitehouse decided to run, I’d vote for him. Besides being bright, he has a great name. Now you can mock me.
@Suzanne: I too like Kamala. Beto will be a strong contender if he wins his senate race.
Villago Delenda Est
The only apology Amy Klobuchar should have entertained from the Kavenaugh asshole would be a Captain Needa apology.
@JPL: He has great hair too, so Doll Hair in the WH will be jealous.
what the hell does that even mean? a hairdo? narcissist like Trump? someone who draws at a rally but can only win caucuses? Someone who is willing to throw Roe and POC and immigrants under the bus to appease the deplorables? Not a canckled harridan like “fill in the blank 50+ woman” Hitlery?
wish for a unicorn and then crucify them because the GOP cheats better?
let 2020 be 2020. we need to focus on Congress, November and state races now.
Also, no one who wasn’t a registered Democrat in 2012-2014 should be allowed to run in the Democratic primary for President.
Mike in DC
@schrodingers_cat: Beto already ruled it out, at least for 2020.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: Good to know. Thanks!
@rikyrah: I’d prefer Kamala Harris. However, I’m at the “anyone but Orange Bigot” stage so Klobuchar would do just fine.
Please, no Bernie though. Can’t take another round of obnoxious Bernie Bros.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@Patricia Kayden: You’re not impressed by the way he’s rallied his mill-youngs against Kavanaugh? (here is where I would insert snark tags if I knew what that rune was)
@NotMax: Fortunately, we have a super-strong farm team at the gubernatorial level! Oh wait…
I hate to say it, but Harris has a nice deep voice and is a good orator. This sounds sexist, but people react viscerally to tone of voice. She has the intelligence of Hillary Clinton but is much better equipped for the stump speech and coming across on teevee (much better than Warren as well). I think that her natural gifts would outweigh the reactions to her gender and ethnicity. She’s my top choice. If we have to go white male, and sometimes I think we do, I’m all in for Chris Murphy.
I feel bad that I’m just hearing about Friday’s earthquake and tsunami which hit Indonesia and has killed 800+ people. I’ve been so focused on Kavanaugh that I missed that tragedy.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
OT, because I’m catching up with Joy Reid and twitter, and I will max out to the Dem Senator who, in response to the inevitable R floor speech claiming that if we believe Christine Ford, no man is safe, I will max out to the Dem who points out that neither Alito nor Gorsuch, neither McCain nor Romney, neither Sessions nor Paul Ryan, neither Dick Cheney nor GW Bush, as controversial as they all were, was ever accused of sexual assault, and finishes with, “Senator Graham, one of the fiercest partisans in this and other matters, one of Donald trump’s most aggressive loyalists, no woman as ever accused Senator Graham of sexual impropriety.”
@feebog: Inslee is not young, he’s 67.
The Democrats need someone young, preferably under 50. If you look at Presidential elections going back to 1952, you’ll see that young Democrats win and old Democrats lose, and the dividing line between young and old is at about 52.
Why that? Maybe because younger candidates are not associated with old time politics, and because they play the game differently to a certain extent.
No Biden – too old, too lecherous, too bad at campaigning. He’s never won a single delegate and his prior attempts were embarrassing. I thought Kerry should have run with him in 2004 but now I think he would be a bad chief executive and his time has passed. Plus – his performance at the Anita Hill hearing has aged even more badly than in 2016.
No Warren – too old, too polemical, too narrow, too uncharismatic, also very bad at campaigning (barely winning in one of the most Democratic states). And the Native American ancestry thing, while a bullshit distraction, would make butter emails look like a one-news cycle story. Plus I can’t forgive her giving oxygen to the “rigged primary” bullshit.
Open to Harris, Gillibrand, Booker, and Klobuchar among those who seem to be making moves, with a current strong preference for Harris.
Ted Lieu and Adam Schiff are great legislators and counterpunchers – not sure if either of them has any strong interest and if I don’t know by now, the answer is probaby no.
“Put Whitehouse in the White House!” Catchy. I like it.
As a sidebar, can someone please tell me why the gd FTFNYT is speaking to a republican consultant about Dem candidates?? Don’t we have any of our own?
@laura: Kamala. She’s who I hope against hope will run. Calm and cool under pressure, exceptionally intelligent, an excellent legal mind and knowledge of constitutional law, and yet not afraid to absolutely whup ass when necessary.
@Mnemosyne: We’ve only had women running for Governor in the general twice DiFi(1990) and Chairman Jerry’s sister Kathleen(1994).
The Other Chuck
@spudgun: Probably the first wonk on speed dial who responded. The defining characteristic of news media these days is their laziness.
I hope that these formidable lionesses stay in the Senate, gain the committee leaderships they deserve, and are joined in that august body by other strong Democrats. Co-equal powers of government are much more than merely a consolation prize.
We’ll be spoiled for choice in the presidential primaries for the 2020 election. No need to fuss ourselves about it quite yet.
And now, a walk in glorious fall weather, and back to welcome-wagon-ing the flood of new volunteers in our state for 2018!
Her “niceness” servers her as a Senator. For instance she had no problem voting for Bush stupidity during her first two years & then lying about it to constituents. Her pet causes are designed to cause no offense. She can go along to get along & that is OK in a body like the Senate. I’d just as soon not have that in the White House.
I’m in for Harris or Gillibrand. Preferably Harris. I think it’s also time to break the Ivy hold on governance. As we’ve seen from this whole Kavanaugh debacle the Ivyies (esp. Harvard and Yale) haven’t exactly covered themselves in glory as of late.
A) Warren is too old – we need youth, B) conservatives will just keep pounding about the issue of her stating that she had some Native American blood in her background, C) she’s too easily painted as too progressive.
The conservative attack on her statements about her NA background will be the same as attacks on Kerry’s service and Clinton’s emails – overblown, overwrought, and over-emphasized by the media to where that becomes the only story instead of the corruption & incompetence of the Trump admin.
I don’t think it is just Rapey McRapejudge tht is at fault. I used to love newspapers & one of the things that fascinated me was how they filled in the odd spaces leftover in the old ‘hot lead type’ days. I remember reading ‘filler’ about a tsunami killing thousands in India or earthquakes in Turkey with hundreds dead. No headline, not big deal, just a couple of lines to take up the blank space. We really live isolated from much of the world
Leaning Harris, but I’m from California and this is partially a bias towards the familiar. (Also, she’s lethal in debates, which I’d love to see.)
@Jim, Foolish Literalist:
THIS IS WHY WE NEED ‘STAR’ COMMENTS ON BJ!!
I am going to steal that for FB and twitter – thanks!
Mike in NC
Fat Bastard is a particularly vicious mysoginist and it would be folly to run another woman against him. It’s what he wants and expects. He despises women as do most of his deplorable bigoted cultists. It’ll take a male candidate to start to remove the filthy stain of Trumpism from this sad country.
West of the Rockies
How do I keep missing all the damn cat-shavings posts?!?
Villago Delenda Est
@Seanly: Rethuglicans also get really, really stabby about apostates from their party of hate.
@spudgun: All available NYT real estate must be filled with “Democrats Are Hapless Demons” pieces. Unless of course there are more Trump voters in NE BooFoo Land who still support their leader because reasons we’ve heard 70 thousand times already but suck it Hillbots.
@Seanly: I partly disagree about the Native American ancestry issue. Wingnuts will shriek “Pocahontas” until the cows come home, of course, but the claim that Warren used NA ancestry to get jobs has been thoroughly debunked, and fairly recently. The people for whom it’s an issue would never vote for Warren anyway, and I don’t think the media would obsess over it like Clinton’s emails or Kerry’s service record.
Formerly disgruntled in Oregon
May be best woman win!
(Like many of y’all, I think Kamala Harris is awesome. Among her many other appealing characteristics, we haven’t had a West Coast Democrat on a presidential ticket since… well… shit, I’d have to look that up. My point being, I’d love to see a Democrat from California in the White House for once!)
@B.B.A.: Hirono had kidney cancer.
One thing that Trump did very, very well as a campaigner was rhetorical jujitsu. Turned his negatives into positives. (Don’t roast me for saying this. The man is exceedingly good at marketing and image manipulation. They’re the only things he’s good at.) One exchange at one of the debates stands out to me, in which he was asked a question about how he seems angry and that isn’t a good thing. And he turned it around and said some nonsense about forgotten Americans, and how he was proud to take up the mantle of anger. That was the moment that I knew he was going to be really successful. His response to Ted Cruz’s “New York Values” bullshit also springs to mind.
I like Harris as our candidate in part because, after we nominated the black dude and the woman, nominating her shows the same sort of negative-into-positive thinking. It shows that we don’t view being a minority or a woman as a hurdle, we see them as great assets into representing people who haven’t been represented.
I have no doubt that, if she was nominated, the decision and sexism would be hideous. I also think it could be a fucking sea change.
@Mike in NC: Trump’s a vicious racist too. In your view, should black and brown Democrats stand down in 2020?
@West of the Rockies:
I think there was really only one. And that what Steve got was a trim rather than a shave.
Absolutely why Warren ought not to even think of running.
Someone said (I think) that it should be a man, under 50 yo, and that would be my first thought. Taking Harris or Warren out of the Senate is not a good idea, either.
Chris Murphy, Adam Schiff, maybe…
??? Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) ??
Which is kind of an absurd, contradictory message like how Obama was dictator and wimp at the same time.
All I want is someone who can beat Trump and will govern well. That’s pretty much it.
Inslee is 67? Well he looks like he is in his mid-50s. Anyway, I like the guy, from a progressive state, and very articulate.
@Suzanne: Expect BS bros to go on full attack mode if Kamala Harris runs.
@Betty Cracker: I’m not so sure that the media wouldn’t go all hot buttered emails over Warren’s ancestry. Not after 2016.
@Mike in NC: No Democrat will win over his deplorable bigoted cultists, even zombie FDR.
@Mike in NC:
Sadly, I think this is true.
Also what someone said, the first woman the repubs would vote for would be one of their own. I am at a loss to understand these creeps, but that seems logical. Tribalism all the way down.
West of the Rockies
I probably should have used the sarcasm/facetiousness bars.
Fun fact: facetious is one of two English words that features all five vowels in their natural order.
(Beats head on table in despair)
West of the Rockies
And if we did win those people over, something went terribly wrong.
(Continues to beat head on table in despair)
The Other Chuck
I don’t know who’s going to run in 2020, but I can tell you right now I won’t be reading a thing about it on fucking Facebook or Twitter. I’m fucking sick of stupid people being given a megaphone.
??? Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) ??
I almost want Wilmer to be the nominee just to see him lose because I don’t think he could win against Trump. I think that would show once and for all what a paper tiger he is and always has been. However, the stakes are too high for 2020 and I don’t really want to see this happen.
If I could run a VR simulation to test it I would
@pat: Schiff’s a few months younger than I am, so he’ll be 60 in 2020. Why not Baud!2020!?
Formerly disgruntled in Oregon
@Mike in NC: I disagree vehemently – if Trump is alive, still in office, politically viable, and running for re-election in 2020, it will take a woman to beat him.
A confident female Democrat won’t be at all tempted to play Trump’s BS toxic masculinity game.
And women are the future of American politics in general right now, Dems would be stupid not to directly tap into that energy… Step aside boys! (Full disclosure: I’m one of those boys.)
West of the Rockies
I would like to see my senator run. Harris is charismatic, whip smart, and has emotional/social intelligence by the boatload.
Give Beto some Senate experience, and then he could be very good, too!
Why do you believe the media won’t obsess over it? There was no reason to obsess over Kerry’s purple hearts of Obama’s birth certificate but here we are
The Other Chuck
@??? Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) ??: I’d like him to release his tax returns this time. In fact, I think the party should make it a requirement to be in a primary. I’d also like stupid sideshows like caucuses to go away for good.
I like Harris. I think a prosecutor is just what we need.
Also, I loved the blog post referenced here last night, here it is for those who might have missed it:
you could say we’re pissed
Was just perusing an LA Times from 1952 that my dad found while cleaning out an old foot locker. Aside from the larger overall width, many one-paragraph stories: a thief in Lisbon who squeezed through a tiny hole, now dubbed the Eel Thief; two Vancouver BC dogs who killed 155 chickens.
I wish I could remember who said it yesterday, but the theme of “Making Capitalism Work for Everyone” would be a brilliant theme. Dems need to point out that the GOP and Wall Street have made even success predatory and that this is what is keeping America from being great again.
@Calouste: LBJ turned 58 in 1964.
That’s such a small sample size you really can’t draw any firm conclusions. It’s basically comparing Kennedy/Clinton/Obama to Humphrey/Mondale/Kerry and ignoring the outliers.
1952 and 1956: Stevenson was 52 and 56, respectively. Arguably any Democrat would have lost to Ike, who was a war hero and a centrist (and aged 62 and 66, respectively). Stevenson was both “young” and “old.”
1960: Kennedy was 43. “Young,” but Nixon was only 47. Both of them were WWII veterans and basically from the same generation.
1968: Humphrey was 57. “Old”
1972: McGovern was 50. He was “young,” and arguably any Democrat would have lost that year.
1976: Carter was 52. “young.” Arguably any Democrat would have won that year. Carter wasn’t viewed as a youngster.
1980: Carter was 56. “Old,” but running against a guy significantly older.
1984: Mondale was 56 and “old” but his opponent referred to his “youth and inexperience.” Gary Hart was only eight years younger and arguably any Democrat would have lost that year. (Jesse Jackson was significantly younger at 43.)
1988: Dukakis was 55. “Old” by a smidge. Lost not because of his age/perceived “establishment” ties (Bush was 64 and it was a contest between the WWII and Korea generations), but because Atwater successfully smeared him over the summer back when the Democrats still had their conventions way too early. (Dukakis had a huge lead coming out of a very effective convention with barnburner speeches by Jackson and Kennedy.)
1992 and 1996: Clinton was 46 and 50, respectively. “Young” Vietnam-era candidate against significantly older WWII veterans.
2000: Gore was 52. “Young” and perceived as young. He worked out a lot before campaigning and was fairly buff back then. On the other hand, he did win the popular vote.
2004: Kerry was 61. “Old.” Also somewhat older than Bush, and going to the war had aged him more.
2008 and 2012: Obama was 47 and 51, respectively. He and Clinton are probably the best examples of the successful young candidate, but they’re only two guys.
2016: Clinton turned 68 just before the election but was running against guys at least as old. No dynamic younger candidate was shunted aside.
Phooey. Trump has faked being a successful businessman and a #1 bestselling author.
@schrodingers_cat: I didn’t like the mass running away from TPP either.
Note as soon as the USA walked away, everyone else fixed the most egregious IP provisions and signed.
Specifically, they are too concerned about maintaining their aura as being in the stratosphere compared to other schools, and in so doing have probably made too many compromises in the name of raising funds. I can actually imagine some institutions that would admit Jared Kushner, by all accounts an utterly mediocre student, just to collect a large check from his dad. But that Harvard did so seems more like an unjustified obsession with money when its endowment is something like $1 billion.
@?BillinGlendaleCA: Baud! 2020! Extending the franchise to your other personalities!
@Formerly disgruntled in Oregon:
Obama’s election demonstrated something that the best brands have known for a long time, which is that people respond most potently to aspiration. People don’t buy things, or vote, because of who they are. They buy the things that help them identify and present themselves as the people they want to be. Trump voters certainly did this. They voted for him because they wanted the fantasy of the lowbrow white man who holds power and restore support their sense of “respect”, which, in the way they’re using it, really means dominion. Obama was also very potent aspirationally. HRC was not.
I think the way we tap back into that is with someone young, full of charisma (good looks would help), a strong orator, who can articulate a compelling vision of the 21st century American dream for the core Dem constituencies: African-Americans, women, young people, urbanites, those who were not born to wealth and privilege.
I like Klobuchar a lot, but I don’t think she is that person. That is no negative statement about her. Being a senator is a really critical gig and she is great at it.
I am so tired, so tired, of the way Democrats deal with politics.As someone says upthread, it’s the platform that matters, and democrats banging on it repeatedly, presenting an united front, until the noise overwhelms even the FNYT’s republican filters. One message and an united attack.
We also need to have a long term plan to take back the states, as many as we can, as solidly as we can, from school boards to the state house. A democratic president even with a partially democratic-majority Congress, hell, even a completely democratic Congress, will get stalled if we have 30 to 40 Republican state governments.
The Other Chuck
@Bobby Thomson: If baseball statistics only tracked half the games of every fourth World Series, they’d still have more significant data points than what the average political analysis works from. It’s just another way unqualified pundits try to make themselves look smart, and simultaneously draw in the readership by making them feel they share in this appearance of intelligence.
@pat: I’ll ask you too, then. Trump is also a vicious racist, so should black and brown Democratic candidates stand down, or is it just women who should take a seat?
Warren’s personality remind me of a judicious, kind but seen-it-all-before third-grade teacher. I can’t imagine Trump scoring points with many people by attacking a third-grade teacher. Most of us would shudder at the thought of abusing our beloved elementary school teachers.
60 in 2020 works for me.
Yes, they would. They absolutely would. We’re talking about the dumbest class of journalists who don’t understand policy, love talking about horse race stuff, and will pursue any shiny object as long as one of the candidates keeps mentioning it.
It’s these septuagenarians that I don’t understand.
I think Kamala’s voice also shows a real passion for whatever she’s speaking about. I’ve heard many women forcing their voices when they speak with passion, which makes them come across as less than sincere.
Ha! Does the name Pocahontas mean anything to you?
@pat: It means something to dead-enders. Does it appeal to anyone else besides them?
@debbie: Did you hear about Warren’s accountable capitalism bill? I don’t know who I’m for in 2020 yet, but I like the ideas in that bill a lot and hope Democrats can get behind it or something similar.
Not sure that’s true. I mean, the platform matters to us, because we are nerds who care about policy. But we are so, so few in number compared to the vast majority of Americans. Trump won the GOP nomination despite being out of alignment with much of their platform. He was, however, very much in line with their sense of grievance.
Not to downplay the sexism factor in 2016, but I think it was minuscule compared to the Hillary Hatred factor — which, yes, was part sexism, but mostly not. Can’t explain it, but it was out there, and it was huge, and it was SEETHING.
How Sheldon Whitehouse, with a name like “Sheldon Whitehouse,” has avoided becoming a university president is beyond me. Universities have search committees devoted to nothing but finding people with names like “Sheldon Whitehouse.”
MY GOD, am I slow: I just this moment put it together. Whitehouse … White House. How has anyone as dumb as me managed to live this long?
Republicans always assume that Democrats are a reflection of themselves.
The media would absolutely obsess on this and the GOP would sit back grinning like fat Cheshire Cats. It would be a distraction, sadly.
I won’t roast you, but you are wrong. Those he manipulates are too stupid to know they’re being manipulated and too proud to admit to it no matter how obvious the lies. Anyone who had observed Trump over a period of time would never fall for his bullshit.
@Bobby Thomson: Well, in that case, we’re doomed. No matter who runs, I’m sure Trump will come up with a stupid name and/or ridiculous lie about that person, and the Beltway media will repeat it on endless loop, and that will be that. Trump and the Beltway press are all-powerful, so we should just get used to living in Republican dystopia forever.
@Suzanne: Not if it is presented as “and this is what it means for you”. People think about themselves first. The white folk who voted for Trump did it because they felt their racial identity, and with it their only claim to superiority, was under threat. A black man in the White House drove them nuts. But most people think about their retirement, and their kid’s future, and their taxes. Remember, the real working class went for Hillary. That’s where we need to bang on.
Having witnessed the backlash to the teacher strikes out here, I am disheartened to learn how many people apparently have much long-standing resentment of teachers. The Joan Williams book I keep talking about notes that many people without a college degree find public schoolteachers irritating, and disagree with their crazy idea that they are as important to society as police officers and firefighters. I am sure that absolutely no misogyny, anti-intellectualism, or racism underlie this viewpoint. Anyway, when Mr. Suzanne went on strike earlier this year, it really proved to me how many people did not have the respect for teachers that I thought they did.
@Barbara: Dr. Mrs. G is a prof at an “elite” private university and the slavish devotion to “prestige” is sickening. The kinds of shit that students try to get away with academically because their parents are so-and-so (plagiarism, not doing work, etc.) is so far outside what the two of us experienced in college that it might as well have been on another planet.
Pre-tenure she had a student plagiarize HER OWN WORK and was strongly advised to let it go so as not to humiliate the poor student (she didn’t let it go). Another prof (who went to an Ivy) had the same experience with the same student and did nothing. If we would have done that at Large Midwestern Public University we would have been laughed out of our dept. and kicked out of school. I think that kid went on to one of the industries set up for the lesser children of privilege (publishing, banking, or something like that).
Yes, and I like it. I think it was Warren who first said capitalism needs to work for everyone. There can’t be too much focus on the economic issues, if you ask me. Didn’t someone once say, “It’s the economy, stupid>”? ;)
I didn’t say that he wasn’t a liar. I didn’t say that he managed to fool smart people. I said he was really, really good at convincing people that he was the answer to their problems. The fact that it is so transparently bullshit to anyone with a brain makes it even more of a marketing coup on his part.
The man created a powerful cult of personality. He didn’t do that by accident.
Just FYI, 5 of the last 6 governors of Massachusetts were Republican. Massachusetts is liberal, but Republicans win statewide elections there pretty regularly.
@Mike in NC:
That sort of thinking is what led to Kerry’s doomed campaign. You can’t find a candidate who is somehow immune to Republican shit-flinging. We’ve found two solutions so far: Clinton managed to pull off “of _course_ I’m an untrustworthy cheating scoundrel, but I’ll be one on your side!,” which confused the republicans badly, while Obama turned unflappability into a borderline superpower and had a devastating feel for the opportune moment to turn the tables.
There may be other solutions. I’m very sure, though, that “find someone impossible to attack” isn’t one of them.
Probably the people who didn’t know him before they heard hate resentment, etc. spewing from his mouth. The people who did know him largely knew him to be a fraud.
I’ve had to endure Trump since I moved to NYC in 1978. I think he was more opportunistic than clever creator, but there’s no denying his power over his base.
I’m not arguing with you. I just don’t think he’s clever. Quick, maybe, but not clever.
James E Powell
It’s for certain that the press/media, led by the NYT, will make it the most covered issue of the campaign.
How about let’s see if we’re all fortunate enough to make it intact to 2020 first?
James E Powell
@Jim, Foolish Literalist:
Those poll numbers are great, but if you’re asking me to trust Massachusetts, forget it.
@West of the Rockies: Second, abstemious. Couldn’t leave that hanging in view of the current hearing debacle.
We’re doomed in the sense that we’ll never find a candidate that Trump won’t call names and against whom the media won’t hare down trivialities to “balance” their coverage. I don’t think that trying to find such a candidate is a productive use of our time. We need to look for a candidate who punches back both hard and entertainingly. There’s a reason we remember phrases like “It’s like these guys take pride in being ignorant”—Obama was a master of this.
James E Powell
@West of the Rockies:
And sometimes facetiously.
@Llelldorin: I think a good strategy for Warren would be to get DNA tested and then when the results prove which nation she is, have an official welcoming ceremony. Tackle that racist $hit head on.
@West of the Rockies:
We’re including obsolete words like acheilous? (medicine, obs., having one or both lips absent)
Your first thought is terrible.
Personally, I’d like to see a field of 6-8 candidates in the Democratic race having a defining debate on who we want to be as a country. That’s how most of the country discovered Obama, who also had no business running according to all the pundit theories of 2008. He was supposed to be too young, too green, hadn’t paid his dues, America didn’t elect Senators and believe it or not, lots of people thought the country wasn’t ready for a black president.
I’d be thrilled to have another candidate of that quality. Harris, Warren and Booker would all be great options and I’d like to see who else is out there. I’m not interested in limiting our choices on nonsense theories of electability.
Sally Yates, that is if she has any political ambition. She is the perfect opposite of trump which, according to the George Carlin presidential pendulum hypothesis, is the most important factor. She is viewed as law and order, principled, honest, and non partisan. When she was interviewed on a live Pod Save America show she got the most applause from the young audience of any person that has been on their live shows. She represents standing up for American values since the Muslim Ban was first thrust on the country. Since then I always ask the youngs about her and they love her.
The cynical side of me says she sounds enough (voice and mannerisms) like a conservative southern woman to win back some of the 53% of trump voting white women.
My heart loves Kamala Harris and Chris Murphy.
I have a huge caution for Democrats about learning the wrong lessons from 2016. Yes Hillary faced a decades long GOP smear campaign and misogyny but she won. The FBI, GRU, FSB, and GOP voter suppression stole that election and not just the top of the ticket.
@Doug R: It might not. As she herself has said, all she has is family legend. As do, it seems, a train car s_itload of people from those states.
@Llelldorin: Or crystallographic terms like acleistous?
@Gozer: That’s been my experience as well, and not just with rich kids. I recently had 6 really lazy and bad students cheat on a set of 10 quizzes (they all submitted the same set of answers, verbatim). My university refused to find them guilty of cheating because it claimed it could not document that I had told the class not to work together on the quizzes. Then the university insisted on giving them all passing grades, though they never submitted some of the required papers and their overall course grade worked out to below 50%. And finally, most insultingly, the university disciplinary board published as a reference tool for faculty/students a set of case studies of recent cheating hearings and the punishments meted out; they included my case, but claimed falsely that the board had found the students guilty and punished them severely!
The past 2 weeks, I’ve had a series of students in one class coming to me to ask for “help”, complaining that they do all the readings carefully but keep failing my daily reading comprehension quizzes. Many of the assigned readings are posted online on a bulletin board, which tracks which students have opened which files. None of the complainers has ever opened a single one of the files posted there. That is the kind of BS we have to deal with from students these days. There was none of this entitled garbage back when I first started teaching in the ’90s.
How about this. A Biden/Harris ticket and Biden pledged not to run on 2024? I like it. Biden can counter the faux populism of Trump. And Harris gets 4 years of on the job training!
@??? Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) ??:
In all the VR simulations I’ve been running in my head since 2016, the best outcome for Willmer is that he somehow beats Hillary, then somehow beats Shitgibbon, and then makes it less than 60 days after his inauguration before his supporters abandon him and call him a sell-out the very first time the political realities of being POTUS compel him the compromise on any issue. Alas, destroying capitalism isn’t quite as easy as the Bernie Bros think it is.
@Llelldorin: I don’t think we’re doomed. I was being facetious to make the point that we can’t cross people off the list because Trump will make fun of them on some specific issue. He’ll lie about whomever the eventual nominee is, and the dumbest pundits will repeat the lies. I view that as baked into the cake, a non-factor.
I do think there’s a difference between issues like Clinton’s emails and Warren’s so-called Pocahontas problem. Both were nothing-burgers, but emails were easily conflated with all sorts of other issues in a way that Warren’s ancestry is not. The main charge against Warren was that she used family lore about Native American ancestry to screw actual minorities out of plum law professor jobs. She didn’t, as the Boston Globe recently proved.
That doesn’t mean Trump, Gateway Pundit, Breitbart, the deplorables, etc., will ever stop screeching about it. But I don’t think the NYT will devote the front page of its paper to analyzing Warren’s DNA for two solid years. Maybe I’m wrong, but I don’t see that happening. It’s more akin to the birther lie than the email controversy, IMO. The birther lie got coverage, but no one who wasn’t already a racist kook believed it.
@Suzanne: A lot of it, I think, is that he played the part of a competent CEO on “The Apprentice” for years on national TV. People who saw that thought that’s who he was, and a competent CEO type was what they wanted in the White House.
I grew up on Long Island in the 80s, so I remember him, too. I agree with you on this. He isn’t smart at all. He has a couple of very potent skills, though, and people who live in a reality-based society underestimate how much other people respond to those. One of his skills is the marketer’s ability to distill…..think of “low-energy Jeb” and “lil’ Marco”. Those attacks are devastating because they were A) true, or at least plausible, B) something we all thought but didn’t really do a good job articulating, and C) very concise and memorable. The negative-into-positive thing is also a marketing trick. The most important instinct he has is the knowledge that many people don’t buy a product or vote for a candidate because they carefully weigh options and make informed selections. They do what they do so they can align themselves with others in ways that give them social potency (think of people who wear obvious logos). Those fucken MAGA hats were a twisted kind of genius. Trump, who sucks at business but has managed to fail upward for years, owes all of his success to this. He isn’t smart at all, but we underestimate how much other people respond to this, because we are in the cohort who respond to it less. I am so over the calls to empathy on the left, but I do think that there is a great deal of value in learning how people make these kinds of decisions. Marketers and advertisers do this all the time, because it is effective.
Biden can’t win. He’s demonstrated that amply in the past.
J R in WV
Because the New York Times is a mouthpiece for fascism. They have been since the early part of the last century, when they pushed the innate success of both Mr. Joseph Stalin and Mr. Adolph Hitler in leading their nations to great things for the mass of people not deliberately murdered.
You can look up the coverage of fascists in the 1920s and ’30s; it was a great thing to see American Nazis marching down the boulevards of New York City, swastikas proudly held up, and gathering in Madison Square Garden for their rallies. Right up until December, 1942, in fact.
I don’t know what happened, but they suddenly stopped after the first week of December. ;-) Marching, I mean, the NY Times just paused in their florid support until later in 1945, when they resumed their pilgrimage for better fascism in Amerika.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: Wait, wut? Wikipedia sez born in Albany, NY? [Gillibrand, that is]
@Chetan Murthy: oh sorry, you meant Hirono. Read better, Chet.
Amen. Biden is an awful choice on more levels than in a Horta colony. The best that can be said of him is that he’s amiable.
Why on earth would she need on-the-job training? What makes her different from any other Senator who stepped into the job? What? What could it be? Hmmm….
Also, Biden tried running for the Dem nomination twice and flamed out early both times. But apparently the idea of him running again is just fine, while the idea of say, Hillary running again has people freak, even though she went on to get the nomination and win the popular vote. What could the difference be? What? What?
Of course we have democratic consultants.
The issue is that the FTFNYT doesn’t want to hear from them. Doesn’t want to know anything about dems. It is not a democratic newspaper, it is a conservative paper for the wealthy New Yorkers. They want the entire slant of the paper to reflect republican views because they are conservative. They have a few left leaning writers, for “balance.” Which wouldn’t be bad if they actually attempted to achieve anything close to “balance.” But they don’t. It’s the FTFNYT.
The Moar You Know
@smintheus: what country do you live in? My wife, who is a teacher, and I would love to move there.
The vast majority of people I knew even before I got married hated and resented their teachers. Now that I’m married to one, I’m going to up that figure to “all of them”. There are a very few exceptions but not enough to matter.
How bad is it? Well, we don’t go out socially in the city we live in, and neither do my wife’s coworkers. We commute, for everything from movies to dinner. Even grocery shopping. If it’s done locally I have to do it. I’ve seen how weird/hostile it can get otherwise.
@Mike in DC: If he wins this year, I’d be more concerned about him working to *keep* Texas blue. That’s more important than -which- Dem is President, and there are so many other great choices. Geez, a blue Texas, with all those Hispanic voters, would be …. well, ok, no the death-knell of the GrOPers, but it’d be a big, big step.
If we had the primary today, I think Harris would be my top choice. She’s a perfect foil to Trump in several ways – black woman; former prosecutor; one of the smartest, sharpest people in politics; a formidable debater, for all that mattered in the last election. Obviously her politics are also solid. The misogyny and racism of the media are obviously major concerns, but I have to think the fact that we’ve begun purging harassers from the media is going to have to make a difference, and I can’t imagine anyone being as complacent about giving the media a pass for their racism and sexism after they gave us Trump.
Gillibrand is a very close #2 for me. I’d work my ass off for either of them.
I like Warren a lot, but I’d prefer someone younger, and she seems a lot more divisive for whatever reason. People don’t like to feel politicians are smarter than they are, and while Gillibrand and Harris are obviously smart, Warren comes across as professorial in a way the other two don’t. I’d still work my ass off for her. She would’ve been my top choice in 2016 had she run.
Booker also impresses me a lot, and the more I’ve seen of him, the more this has been the case.
I like Schiff a lot, but I’m not sure his quiet demeanour would be an appropriate foil to Trump. It’s also hard for a representative to run for president. That said, he’d be a great president.
I also like what I’ve seen of Whitehouse, though I don’t know too much about him. He would have the best campaign slogan ever if he ran for president.
It’s unfortunate that Hirono probably can’t run.
I think I agree with what people have said about Klobuchar being too nice. Don’t get me wrong; I like her a lot. But I favour a fighter against Trump.
In the “please, no, but I’ll still vote for them if they’re the nominee” category are Biden and Sanders. Which I’m saying as someone who voted for Sanders in the 2016 primary. I’ll vote for whomever has a D after their name as usual, but amongst their other flaws, they’re too fucking old.
I’ll write about other potential candidates later if I think of them, maybe. I need to get back to schoolwork.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
Warren for president.
* She’s got presence. She actually made me stop and watch her youtube advert before I know who it was.
* She’s got a lot of enthusiasm.
* It’s clear the GoP slime machine doesn’t stick to her. My opinion why – she really comes across as a very sincere person. She’s not guarded like Hillary is so your temped to end up filling the blanks.
* As it’s been mentioned before she is old – and a lot of this anger at Washington is at old out of senile people trashing the place. .
* She’s woman,..er maybe, the haters will hate for what every because who ever the Democratic Candidate – the Dems could reanimate Ronald Regean, convince him to go blue and the Base would scream at Regean he is a Californian so “it might upset the Right” isn’t much of an argument. One hand she won’t be able to go Marcon on Trump with the handsakes, then again, Trump is going to look like a blithering idiot and petty tyrant next to her sincerity. Also Warren doesn’t come across as a vindictive a-hole so male fears of harsh, emasculated words from the wymmen folk won’t be stirred.
@MomSense: I knew I forgot someone important. I’d like to see Yates run for something else like senator first, but I’d be able to get behind a Yates presidential campaign. I suspect she’d probably be pretty good at retail politics, just from what I’ve seen of her on the teevee. She’s got a refreshingly candid, down-to-earth demeanour that might be just what these times call for.
I think people need to see beyond this “competent” CEO schtick. They need to see the multiple bankruptcies and realize that means a very large number of “little” people got stiffed while he got out of the hole he’d dug himself into. How many of those “little” people were just like the MAGAts?
I put out there back seemingly 4 or 5 decades ago the question, was the country ready for a black man for president. I was righteously roasted for asking that question because well, with a racist country, it’s never a “good” time for that. Same thing here with we should run a man for the job.
We should run the best person for the job. Not the best white/black/brown/male/female. The best person. There will always be at least a short list of people, such as many have named here. I am one to say that age is a determining factor and really should be considered. Yes I’ve known a person who was amazing at 95 when I met him, lived to 104, but that is by far the exception. We need youth and vigor to run this country, not old, cranky and set in their ways.
But mostly we should put forth our best person, to run the government, to help make our lives better.
And as an aside, will people please stop the talk that we need President Obama to be on the Supreme Court. I’m sure he’d be great but the man has done far more than his share. Give him a break, let him rest, he deserves that, as does his family, many times over.
I was in grad school 2004-07 and I wouldn’t have even thought to try some of the shit I’ve heard these students attempt. After a hearty laugh my profs would have told me to fuck off and ejected me from the program.
I don’t know if it’s a public/private divide or age (I was in my mid-20s then) or something else, but it’s bizarre.
@Jinchi: Just FTR, MD is about to elect its first 2-term GOP governor since Theodore R. McKeldin in the 1950s – & we may be looking at a stretch comparable to MA’s.
For MD Democrats, the dilemma is that the brutal & exceedingly uncomfortable fact is that while MD appears deep-blue by registration (something like 60-40 D), roughly 10% of those Democrats are virulently racist/misogynist white DINOs who if the Democratic candidate for Governor is AA or female, will crawl over their dying grandmothers to vote for the GOP candidate. At the same time the AA vote is dominant in Democratic gubernatorial primaries – this year the top 2 finishers were both AA (Ben Jealous & Rushden Baker) who between them hoovered up nearly 80% of the vote – but when the general election comes round, the DINOs slither out of the Jurassic suburbs & exurbs to vote GOP & it becomes a dicier proposition.
Likewise in 2014 incumbent Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown won the Democratic gubernatorial nomination in a walk, but lost the general to Larry Hogan (RE developer son of a former GOP Congressmaan [1969-75] & later Anne Arundel County Executive [1978-82]). Brown had some self-inflicted wounds, but not IMO enough to have sunk him had he been white.
IOW a credible Democratic candidate for MD-GOV who happens to be AA will normally get a tailwind from the registration demographics in the primary, but then hits a DINO headwind in the general. Result: GOP governor.
In the last 4 gubernatorial elections (2002/06/10/14) the Democrats nominated a white woman (incumbent Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy-Townsend, RFK’s daughter), a white male twice, and an AA male (Brown). The woman & the AA male lost to Thugs (Congressman Bob Ehrlich & Larry Hogan.The white male (Baltimore Mayor Martin O’Malley) unseated Ehrlich & beat him again for a 2nd term.
(& FWIW, the closest MD has come to electing a female Governor was in 1994, when the Republican Ellen Sauerbrey won 21 of 23 counties but lost to Democrat Parris Glendening by 1,400,000 cast. Moral – & filed suit over the results alleging vote fraud. Moral: Be careful what you wish for.)
SRSLY. I think Uncle Joe is cool as hell, and the Obama/Biden memes were great, but all of the old white dudes feel like they are fighting the last war.
It’s especially infuriating when idiots say they hate Hillary because she’s “too corporate” but wax enthusiastic about the senator from MBNA, Joe Biden. It just sets into sharp relief what their real problem was with Hillary.
@Uncle Cosmo: In the penultimate line above that should be “lost … by 1,400,000 cast.” Edit, come back! :(
@Uncle Cosmo: Looks like I offended against FYWP formatting with greater than & less than signs.. Let’s try this once more:
That fookin’ well better do it…
A fascinating discussion here, but one that misses (IMO) one vital factor: at this point (even before the 2018 midterms) we don’t really have a clear idea of what the economic and political landscape is going to look like two years from now.
And the latter is going to depend VERY much on how the Democrats and Republicans do in this year’s (unusually vital) elections.
My guess/speculation on the “landscape” is that economic factors are probably going to loom large – a downturn of some sort in the next two years is generally considered inevitable: Trump and the GOP are likely going to blame Democrats (as usual): but it’s probably not going to work this time (especially as this shitshow Administration’s reflexive response to a recession is likely to be a massive slashing of every non-defense spending program, and trying to privatize Social Security as a “final solution” to everyone’s problems).
Also: outside of the rabid base, Donald Trump’s shtick is probably going to have utterly worn off by 2020: already nearly the most unfavorably-viewed President in modern history (save Harry Truman at his nadir), it’s hard to see his popularity improving much. I think the “base” is not going to abandon him, but the rest of the country, who might have been voting against Hillary as much as for Trump will be ripe pickings for an attractive (and, if asked I would stress COMPETENT as much as possible) Dem ticket.
My preference would be an “experienced” Presidential candidate (and sorry, “older white guy” probably IS the best choice here: Biden? Murphy? Whitehouse? Inslee?) with, say, Kamala Harris as VP, and a “one-term” pledge.
That’s a terrible idea. Aside from being a condescending way of patting Harris on the head as a nice little girl, it would simultaneously declare that Biden is too old and Harris is too inexperienced to be president and that neither of them is suitable for the job . They wouldn’t even be able to defend themselves from the accusation on the campaign trail.
(I’m pretty sure this suggestion came up during the Obama-Clinton contest as well.)
Trump got 46% of the vote in 2016 and Clinton split the rest with 2 other candidates. He has never been popular, and his popularity has plummeted since taking office. I think any opponent he faces has a very strong chance of being the next president.
I don’t disagree with you, but there are lots of people who all have reasonable claim to be “the best person”.
Look, in the last election, we nominated the person who was arguably the most qualified for the job of anybody ever in history. And we lost (not the popular vote, but the vote that actually mattered) to the person who is probably the least qualified ever. This is because most people make most decisions entirely emotionally. When we nominate candidates who are people that many Americans aspire to be, we win.
The Moar You Know
@Doug R: let me tell you an awesome story. I had been told all my life, like Warren, that I was part Native American. Cheyenne, specifically. That was why my mother and I had dark skin and virtually zero body hair.
I should add at this point that my family is from the Deep South.
So last year I got tested and guess what I am not? In any way, shape or form?
For the bonus round, guess what I am?
Vast majority, Scots/Irish. That 1/16th that wa supposedly Cheyenne? Jewish. My Cheyenne great grandmother was a full blooded Jew. I wonder if anyone knew. Alabama was never a good place to be Jewish, so I doubt it.
If Warren does something like that, she’s better know in advance what the results will be, and they had better back up her claims.
James E Powell
You nailed it. What causes some confusion, particularly among the tote-baggers, is that the NYT is old school Republican, rather than the racist, anti-science, RW Christian Dominionist Republicans that currently dominate the party and its policies. These old school Republicans were comfortable with Obama because he hired them for the important things, like money and defense. But they wanted those tax cuts, particularly the estate & gift, so they could transfer the wealth, keep hold of the reins, so to speak.
James E Powell
This reads a bit like a description of the country as a whole. At least the supposed Democratic parts.
I didn’t say it would work…….
Who will be a good president? There really is only one job like this in the country. No one knows until they are in the job if they are capable (of course we all knew that shitgibbon was absofuckinglutely unqualified) and if they don’t truly know, how do we? It’s all a massive guess that the person is qualified and capable. One reason we hire politicians is that they may have a better idea, if for no other reason than exposure.
Now we all know leaders. President Obama is a leader. That was obvious from 2004. I’m convinced that if he weren’t black he would have walked away with it. But he won and was, warts and all, the best president of the nearly 7 decades of my life.
There is a reason that so many like Kamala Harris. She is also a leader.
As humans we like leaders, because so few really are. President John Kennedy was. His brother Robert was even better. In the navy I met 3 leaders. One ships captain, out of 7 and 2 Marine sergeants. Out of how many people? A lot. And I’ve met a lot of other Marine sergeants and none of them are leaders. They led people, as did those 7 ships captains and even I did, but there is a difference between being a leader and leading. I led because that was my job and they were assigned to work for me.
Leaders lead because people want to follow them.
@James E Powell:
Being me, I first read that as estate and grift…….
Whatda know, it reads right either way.
@The Moar You Know:
Exactly. Either a welcoming ceremony or she gives a heartfelt apology and a nation accepts her as an honorary member for being such a good citizen.
Joe Biden? Joe Biden who betrayed Anita Hill and saddled us with Clarence Thomas, Joe Biden who spearheaded the war on drugs, Joe Biden who looks like a registered sex offender? That Joe Biden?
Not just no, but hell no.
Clinton won the popular vote despite all the cheating and irregularities and residual anti Clinton baggage.
Those who oppose a woman president are a minority. The trick is to win the battleground states.
I will be voting for the Democrats. That’s a no brainer. But I am not thrilled by anyone, male or female. I don’t get the buzz that some feel for Warren, but look forward to seeing and hearing more of her. I note that the stuff about her native ancestry is zombie bullshit that won’t go away even though it is absolutely meaningless.
Harris may be a rising star, but I don’t know much about her position on national issues.
Everybody else is “who’s that?”
Bernie will probably still be a factor. Trump still has time to fuck up bigly.
Also, let’s cool the “most qualified” talk about Hillary. I know it’s true, but it’s starting to sound like Kavanaugh whining “BUT I WENT TO YALE!”
@The Moar You Know:
Great story. Oral family histories can be unintentionally wrong or misleading. It drives me crazy that idiots want to hold Warren responsible for the stories she was told as a child.
It’s like Obama’s birth certificate. No controversy except to those who want to cause trouble.
Obama is still young and could become the second president elevated to the Supreme Court. He should also, of course, be named Chief Justice.
That the Democrats should make the best person their nominee means that they can be strategic with respect to age, race and gender. That’s politics.
@Mike in DC: Bingo!
@kindness: I want her writing finance & insurance industry etc. & tax legislation with teeth sooo bad, I actually kinda hope she doesn’t run. I think she could become a real Senate “power” & a counterbalance to all the insurance & finance industry Senators.
Warren would be a great president, but she’d better have a kick-ass snappy come-back, because D. Trump is going to start every sentence for the next two years with: “Well, Pocahontas says …”
@Mnemosyne: It’s not that simple, Mnem. Return with us now to those thrilling days of yesteryear…like, 1992:
Bill Clinton won the White House in a 3-way race with 43.0% of the vote, less than 6% more than incumbent President George H.W. Bush. Republicans were furious – they had held the White House for 12 straight years & had come to consider it theirs by right for all eternity. Unsurprisingly they were sure that Bush would have been reelected if not for two things:
First, the emergence of Ross Perot as a viable independent candidate (winning 18.9% of the vote). The GOP was (& remained) convinced that Perot’s votes would have gone to Bush in a 2-man race. (Nonpartisan analysis shows this was extremely unlikely, but it didn’t keep them from believing it.) Therefore, Bill Clinton was an illegitimate President.
Second, the Clintons were (in public at least) unshakable in the face of GOP accusations of serial adultery on his part. Why, any decent, upstanding, moral wife would have (should have) thrown him out & filed for divorce. (Which of course would have sunk his candidacy – which was the frackin’ point.)
The Clintons didn’t (probably never did) have that sort of marriage. Bill notoriously remarked during the campaign that with him voters were “getting 2 for the price of 1,” i.e., 2 competent, intelligent people who happened to be husband & wife working as a team. But what the GOP heard – & what they exerted themselves to sell to the electorate – was that the Clintons’ marriage wasn’t a real marriage at all but a marriage of convenience – an evil, immoral arrangement where she overlooked his philandering (or even procured him paramours) in exchange for riding his coattails into the White House, where she could exercise power she had no right to because she hadn’t been elected to it. (Power. It’s always projection with those assholes, innit?)
And then, practically as soon as he was inaugurated, Bill named Hillary to head the effort to reform US health care. And the Thuglicans shrieked See! See! And we have Travelgate. And Vince Foster, And, and, and–
All allegedly perpetrated by the illegitimate wife of an illegitimate President illegitimately wielding illegitimate power.
I am well aware of how “I hate Hitlery” has twisted & turned & bored through & metastasized & poisoned the body politic in the ensuing 26 years…but IMO this is where & how & why it started, & anyone who wants to treat the disease needs to start with that understanding.
I like Harris because she is the only candidate who grew up in a single payer healthcare system and had a parent who worked in that system. She is well placed to know its benefits and flaws.
I like Murphy because he takes unpopular positions because he believes in them, and then makes them popular. I especially admire his work on guns and his speaking out about Yemen.
But we have about a dozen candidates I’d welcome and my pick will be whoever looks strongest in the crucible of the primary.
@The Moar You Know: This is indeed the critical issue, and the strongest argument against nominating another woman. Hillary would not have won the popular vote against a conventional Republican. In any case, we elect presidents via the EC, not the popular vote, and the EC’s rural bias is disastrous for female candidates. I’m amazed at how many smart commentators don’t seem to get this. Nominating a woman will increase the odds of another Trump term.
If any woman runs, I hope she won’t make Hillary Clinton’s mistake of not wanting to appear an “angry woman”: including but not limited to not reacting to a debate opponent who’d suddenly decided to do a Frankenstein routine.
I do hope you intend to ‘allow’ us to vote.
@??? Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) ??: Agreed. I was feeling ranty being snarky about media.
It was pretty clear in 2008, as the economy was in freefall along with W’s poll numbers, that the Democrats were going to win the White House. We knew in February of that year that the nominee was either going to be a woman, or a black man, either of which would be a historic first, and both of which were considered handicaps to any candidate. She and Obama split the popular vote within a half percentage point, almost a perfect coin flip.
So it’s clear that the country was ready for a woman president, just as we were ready for a black president. They just had the misfortune to be contesting the same election and she lost the coin toss. Anyone who argues her loss proves we aren’t ready for a woman president is simply wrong.
I disagree wholeheartedly. This country is such a sexist pig of a nation, I don’t believe a woman can win in 2020 or even 50 years after. I have been keeping a list of young Democratic men who seem plausible: Adam Schiff, Eric Swalwell, Chris Van Hollen, Chris Murphy, and possibly Chris Coons. There sure are a lot of Chris’s. But, we first need that blue wave in 2018.
@Suzanne: Excellent analysis about the importance of being aspirational. Through that lens a lot of Dem front runners seem flat.
Inslee, my gov, has it. Although local consultants say his slightly nasal voice inhibits him. He’s 67 but is very athletic and comes across as huggable but no pushover in person.
Harris seems focused on policy and governing but not aspirational in her national message yet. Her identity is very aspirational so the addition of aspirational messaging would be easy.
No one has mentioned Joe Kennedy who to my thinking has a lot going for him, with the usual drawback east coast rich liberal.
There are several who really need work on their “aspirational”: Adam Schiff, Klobuchar, Gillibrand among others. At least from what I’ve heard from them.
@smintheus: Mixed emotions here about “beloved elementary school teachers”. I had several but it seemed to follow an every other year pattern. 4th grade Miss Hinkle hated kids. She blamed us when the blsckboard (old heavy slate slab) fell on us. How did we manage to pry it off the wall? Didn’t matter. Kids = demon criminals. Whee! Good times!!
BTW I admire and love Warren, but not the way Trump loves Kim…
I don’t believe for a second that Hillary’s insufficient win proved we’re not ready for a woman President.
To say that implies… insists that she was exemplary in every other possible way, truly representing what it means to be a Democrat in 2016.
Stop doing that. It’s nowhere near as disastrous as that would imply. The fact is, Trump cheated and lied like a rug and got pushed by Russian interference and Hillary STILL beat him (and got cheated by the Electoral college) even though she was just not that representative of Democrats 2016. (Sanders should never, ever have got that close no matter what: he was only there to shove the Overton window, which could have been useful once before things spun out of control.)
Democrats 2020 are EVEN MORE prepared to elect a woman than in 2016, and womanhood was not Hillary’s problem, it was one of her largest advantages.
@Jinchi: I’ll hazard a guess that Democratic voters are looking for someone with emotional and intellectual integrity, somone who they’d be happy to kiss their baby or touch their hand. Emotional intelligence makes honest anger a good look but ideological defensiveness a major karma killer.
Harris and Beto have it, as do a number of Dems.
@debbie: Anyone who goes bust running a casino is clearly not a competent CEO. Unfortunately a whole lot of people only saw that TV part and thought that was the real person. No need to look further…
@Emma: Your points, “people felt…their identity” seem to align with Suzanne’s premise. People have voted against their financial interests and their desire to be protected against heartless corporations for years. Ideas and facts are important but not often able to sway voters.
The GOP has always embraced marketing and it’s given them many wins even when their candidates were inadequate or liars. It’s pushed them into a dystopia in which the party must protect dysfunction and corruption with ever more deceptive marketing and branding.
Dems have run away from marketing and other techniques of business. We’ve had to be smarter and more capable at governing than the GOP. (in general, not every candidate, sigh) The result has been many bright but often emotionally dim Dems. What we need is the wisdom to recognize when to use the best tools.
@Dan B: Funny, my 4th grade teacher was mean too. She was really old and almost certainly in pain (had polio), but her teaching methods were out of the 1920s. But the other elementary school teachers were all cool.