The Collapse of the Obama Coalition?

Yesterday, would-be authoritarian and multiracial presidential candidate Senator Kamala Harris dropped out of the Democratic primaries.  That’s shocking news, but good for the future of republic.

Early on, I (as well as Z Man) thought that Senator Harris posed a major threat.  With the Left’s supposed desire for a charismatic, exotic-but-not-too-different, intersectional candidate, Harris fit the bill.  She is basically a female Obama:  the unusual ethnic background (Jamaican and East Indian), the meteoric rise, the stentorian rhetoric, the Third World penchant for strong-man (or -woman) rule.  As a woman, she could pick up the angry professional woman vote, and as a nominal black she could pick up  black Americans.

Boy, was I wrong—thank goodness!  The black vote is hewing pretty closely to former Vice President Joe Biden, apparently because of his association with the Obama administration, which black Americans remember fondly.  The box wine auntie vote is going to Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts.  All of the suburban soccer moms, urban young professionals, and Episcopalians are going for Pete Buttigieg.

With Harris exiting the race, does this spell trouble for the much-vaunted “Obama Coalition”?  The Democrats’ major strategy in 2012 and 2016 seemed to be to drive up black voters (who stayed home in 2016, but came out enthusiastically for their man in 2012), while also winning over squishy suburbanites with a polished presentation.  Feminists would support Obama in 2008 and 2012 with the promise of getting their demographically analogous candidate, Hillary Clinton, in 2016.

Unfortunately for Democrats, black voters didn’t keep up their end of this implied bargain, and largely stayed home, allowing President Trump to defeat the moribund Clinton in key swing States.  It also didn’t help that Secretary Clinton was an exceptionally bad candidate.

Indeed, Kamala Harris had her same deficiencies:  the haughty attitude, the phony laugh, the put-on ethnic slang and accent.  Obama might have been a biracial Hawaiian with an African (not African-American) father, but he could pull off being a black American compellingly (decades in Reverend Jeremiah Wright’s church probably helped).  Kamala Harris, whose father is Jamaican, and who is herself married to a white (Jewish?) attorney, couldn’t convince black Americans that she was legitimately black.

There does not appear to be a Democrat-uniting Obama-esque candidate.  Joe Biden gives one rambling presser after another.  Warren looks extremely angry, even when she’s smiling.  Pete Buttigieg comes across as amenable and “sharp” (as I’ve heard multiple commentators, both on the Left and the Right, call him), apparently, but black voters will never come out in large numbers for an openly gay Episcopalian.  He’s also exceptionally boring.

Tulsi Gabbard effectively destroyed Harris’s campaign, but she’s a one-issue candidate:  she beats the anti-war and anti-globalist drum, but that’s about it.  Her Party has effectively demonized her, too.

It’s little wonder, then, that Hillary Clinton seems to be considering entering the race, and that there are whispers of Michelle Obama throwing her hat in the ring.  It also explains former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s late entrance into the race (a slightly less obnoxious Tom Steyer, if anything).

It’s all a rather sordid spectacle, highlighting the fractured, tribalistic nature of the modern Democratic Party.  For progressives, race, gender, and sexual orientation matter more than ideas, policies, or substance.  It’s all virtue-signalling in service of totalitarianism.

That said, progressives are remarkably good at overcoming these factional differences when it comes time to seize power, because every group knows they stand to gain if their vehicle for dominance, the Democratic Party, gains the levers of power.  Every group in their mosaic gets a piece of the government pie when they win—just witness the orgy of spending and backscratching during the long Obama years.

All the more reason, then, for conservatives to unite behind President Trump in 2020.  The Obama Coalition may be collapsing, but the progressives know how to win—and they’ll stop at nothing to do so.

9 thoughts on “The Collapse of the Obama Coalition?

  1. Welcome to 1968, as somebody (I’m too lazy to look it up) said, yesterday. Tulsi strikes me as the most dangerous to Trump, she’s just reasonable enough to grab a bunch of votes, but the Dims appear to be trying even harder than the Stupids to lose this year. A very strange year overall.

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  2. I like Tulsi too; she’s relatively conservative & a political outsider like Trump (who was of course more connected socially & through business, and not off on some island 🌴 or fighting some war).

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    • It’s probably a sign of what passes for “conservative” when Tulsi Gabbard qualifies (even relatively). If protecting freedom of speech and religion are part of being conservative (and I think they are in this day and age, as conservatives are the only ones plausibly fighting to protect both), then she’s in the club, despite her progressive bonafides in other areas.

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      • I think the potential vice-presidential pairings are intriguing. If I could get someone of Tulsi’s integrity (and savoir faire) combined with a real health-care reformer most of my boxes would be ticked. Someone like Mitt Romney perhaps? Though he’s always come off as a political phony, kind of the opposite of TG. But maybe that’s what it takes to get deals done.

        Speaking of Utah, whatever happened to that Huntsman boy? He seemed so solid and normal; Mormon in a good way. I don’t recall him quitting a critical diplomatic post, like Nikki the Quitter Hailey. Reminds me of warmonger Killary stepping down from her secretary of state duties for purported health reasons around the time of Benghazi.

        But at least she had the healthcare reform credentials, her pet project during the Bill years. Also; I think you’ve noted how free-healthcare guru Sanders & Tulsi actually have a lot of supporters in common with Senior Trump.

        Health insurance is a huge worry for a lot of folks, and I haven’t seen El Trump moving the needle much on the kind of AMA-busting reform it would take to give US 🇺🇸 what any podunk country has nowadays ~ universal health coverage.

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  3. […] “The Collapse of the Obama Coalition?” – The identity-politics-obsessed Left now bemoans the fact that the Democratic primaries are down to two old white dudes.  It turns out there are many Democrats that don’t care about identity politics, but in 2019 the candidate I most feared was Senator Kamala Harris, the concubine-turned-prosecutor-turned-pandering-politico who seemed to check off all the intersectional boxes.  She was a woman, black(ish), exotic—like Obama.  If anyone could revive the frayed Obama coalition of the “marginalized,” it would be her.  Of course, her inauthentic pandering to blacks was so transparent, they rejected her out-of-hand.  Turns out black folks don’t like a half-Jamaican prosecutor who pretends to know about African-American culture and who spent her career locking them up. […]

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