Lazy Sunday LIII: Democratic Candidates, Part II

Last Sunday I began this two-part retrospective of the Democratic primaries.  The lengthy preamble to that post serves as an introduction, so read it first if you want to get caught up.

Here’s Part II:

  • New Hampshire Results & Analysis” – In this post, I looked at the results from New Hampshire.  Bernie Sanders doing pretty well at this point, even with the results of the Iowa caucuses still unclear.  At that time, I wrote that “South Carolina’s is Biden’s to lose,” and I was right (see below).  One thing that caught my eye:  Tom Steyer suspended his campaign after NH, but still took third in SC.  How much better would he have fared had he not announced the suspension and hung in there through SC?  The outcome likely wouldn’t have been too different, but imagine if Steyer had seized second instead of third?  The complexion of the last few weeks could have been quite different.
  • Nevada Feels the Bern” – The Nevada caucuses really marked Bernie’s rise to dominance, albeit short-lived.  Most of this post I spend analyzing the danger of a Sanders nomination and potential presidency.  But then….
  • Biden Blowout in South Carolina” – Biden destroyed his competition in South Carolina.  As I had predicted, black Americans were not going to vote for Buttigieg, and seemed skeptical of The Bern.  And Joe Biden is Obama’s heir-apparent, so he was bound to do well with Obama’s biggest supporters.
  • Super Tuesday Results” – If South Carolina weren’t enough, Biden decisively dominated the Super Tuesday primaries, as he did this past Tuesday.  Bernie is hanging in there, but his path to victory is narrowing.  I’m still holding out hope for a brokered convention, but just as South Carolina was “Biden’s to lose,” at this point, I think the same could be said of the Democratic nomination.

Of course, if Biden gets the nomination, we have to pull out all the stops to defeat him.  Bernie is dangerous because of his ideology.  Biden is dangerous because he’s an empty husk of a man in a rapidly deteriorating mental condition, who will do whatever his Democratic masters demand of him.  The erosion of freedoms may be more subtle under a Biden presidency, but they will be there, nonetheless.  Don’t succumb to the siren song of “moderation!”

Happy Sunday!

—TPP

Other Lazy Sunday Installments:

Lazy Sunday LII: Democratic Candidates, Part I

The last week saw some major momentum for Joe Biden, as he smashed through big chunks of the Super Tuesday primaries.  Then his most logical competitors, one by one, dropped out, no doubt after receiving some threatening phone calls from the DNC.  That’s narrowed the field, essentially, to Biden and Bernie, with Congressbabe Tulsi Gabbard out there with some Somoan delegates and a dream of a debate appearance.

What seemed so unlikely even ten days ago—but was the conventional wisdom last summer—now seems plausible:  Biden, possibly struggling with dementia, is on track to become the Democratic nominee for the presidency.  There’s still a chance for a brokered convention, which would no-doubt devolve into chaos as angry Bernie Bros watched their doddering hero stripped of any chance at the nomination, but the safe bet at this point seems to be a narrow Biden win.

It’s a good reminder that these primaries can be incredibly unpredictable, but also that the establishment choice usually wins.  I remember the 2012 Republican primaries, in which, week after week, one of the second-tier candidates would take the lead, only to fall behind or get knocked out of the race.  Romney was the presumed front-runner, even though he was second in most of the polls, but none of the other candidates could stay out in the lead for long.  It finally came down to Rick Santorum to offer some kind of alternative to Romney, and he, too, fell.

It’s why so many of us were dismayed when the media was trumpeting JEB! Bush as the Republican front-runner in early 2015.  I was Trump-skeptical in those days (how wrong I was), but the thought of another Bush, even a capable one (JEB! was a great governor in Florida), getting the nomination was disheartening.  Fortunately, Trump upended everything like a bull in a gold-plated hotel china shop.

Trump’s nomination now seems like an historical aberration—one for which I am extremely thankful.  I’m hoping it’s the start of a new trend of populist firebrands (at least on the Republican side), but the circling of the DNC wagons around Biden suggests that the elites are still running the show, at least on that side of the political spectrum.  Republicans do seem to listen to their base a bit more—sometimes.

Regardless, I thought it would be interesting to look back at some posts regarding the Democratic primaries to see some of the figures that rose and fell during the process.  I’ll continue this review of recent history next Sunday.

  • Box Wine Aunties for Williamson” – a social media savvy, New Age-y guru, Marianne Williamson was all the talk in the early days of the Democratic debates.  That was during the point when the party, chastened by claims of a rigged primary season in 2016, was letting everyone and their brother get on television if they had enough small-ball donations.  Thus, Williamson became an Internet sensation.  In reading back through that post, my analysis relies a great deal on symbolism, which is increasingly important in an age in which memes and images convey complex meanings.  Buuuuut the moon-bat dropped out.
  • 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.
  • Iowa Caucuses: Disaster on the Prairie” – The Democrats love to sell themselves as do-gooding technocrats who “know how to get things done” (I’m pretty sure Elizabeth Warren has said that, with all the earnestness of every girl who cried over making a 98 on a quiz, constantly over the past year).  Yet they botched the much-watched Iowa caucuses in spectacular fashion, using suspect technology with close ties to some of the candidates to calculate the results.  Sometimes good old pencil and paper really are the way to go.  Of course, that muddying of the waters screwed up the momentum for both the Bernie and the Buttigieg camps, and may have had downstream effects on both campaigns.

That’s it for this (unintentionally long) Lazy Sunday.  Part II of this retrospective will be next week.

Happy Sunday!

—TPP

Other Lazy Sunday Installments:

SubscribeStar Saturday: What is Political Moderation?

Today’s post is a SubscribeStar Saturday exclusive.  To read the full post, subscribe to my SubscribeStar page for $1 a month or more.  For a full rundown of everything your subscription gets, click here.

With the Iowa caucuses more or less in the books (did they ever actually get a final count?), the scuttle-butt around America’s Power Bottom, “Mayor Pete” Buttigieg, is heating up like a crowd of bejeweled dudes at a Miami nightclub.  He’s cast as the “moderate” alternative to Bernie Sanders, the self-avowed “democratic socialist” who honeymooned in the Soviet Union and who continues to lure gullible Millennials with the promise that this time, it’ll work—honest!

But Buttigieg’s alleged “moderation” is a lie.  On the issues, he’s far to the Left on many issues.  Granted, that’s the overall trend in the Democratic Party, as everyone has had to embrace increasingly Leftist positions to remain electable in the activist-heavy primaries.  Indeed, there’s no such thing as “conservative” Democrat anymore; such a creature is just a Republican who hasn’t taken the leap yet, for whatever reason.

Of course, this brings up a question:  what exactly is political moderation?  And a sub-question:  does such a thing even exist?

To read the rest of this post, subscribe to my SubscribeStar page for $1 a month or more.

Best SOTU Ever II: Extra Most Bestest

Dang.  Trump just keeps getting better and better.  If you thought last year’s State of the Union Address was good, then listen to THIS:



President Trump turned last night’s State of the Union Address into prime time television.  It was informative, persuasive, and downright entertaining.

Indeed, I can already picture the wags at National Review and other NeverTrump and Trump-skeptical outlets tut-tutting that Trump’s address is “beneath the decorum of the office” and the like.  Talk about a bunch of scrooges.

It was a powerful speech.  Trump started detailing all of the accomplishments of the past few years, with a specific focus on the improved conditions of black America.  That’s a clever way to put the pressure on Democrats:  compared to President Obama’s abysmal economic record, President Trump—so often slandered, unfairly, as a “racist”—has done far more to improve the lives of black Americans.

Read More »

Iowa Caucuses: Disaster on the Prairie

After some uncertainty and a great deal of speculation, the results are in:  incumbent President Donald Trump has won the Iowa Republican caucuses in a landslide victory reminiscent of a Latin American dictator, clinching 97.1% of caucus-goers’ votes.  Honestly, I’m a bit disappointed to see only clinched thirty-nine of the forty available delegates (Bill Weld managed to snag one with his impressive 1.3% vote share).

Oh, wait, you wanted the Democratic caucus results?  Geeze, well, I’m afraid I can’t be of much help.  Regular readers will note that this post is hitting very late in the day for me, and there’s a reason unrelated to Democratic incompetence (and/or the Party’s attempt to rig the caucuses against Bernie).

Read More »

Election Season 2020: Iowa Caucuses

After all the anticipation, it’s finally here—the proper beginning of the 2020 presidential election.  The Iowa caucuses kick off tonight, and there’s no telling how it’s all going to shake out (although it looks like Bernie is on track to have a good night).

The Iowa caucuses work differently than the primaries in other States.  Scott Rasmussen’s Number of the Day today explains the process succinctly.  Essentially, if a candidate does not receive 15% of the votes at a precinct, his or her supporters must recast their votes for one of the remaining candidates.  That means that, while a candidate always wants to be a voter’s first choice, being the second choice can still work well.  It also makes it possible to see where support will go if a candidate drops out.

Read More »