Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Democratic Party is on the verge of blowing it

As a variety of candidates take aim at front runner Joe Biden in order to increase their poll numbers by beating down Biden,  it is the usual Democratic party political stupidity. So like in 2016 the party splits, the losers sit on their hands, and Trump wins. Liberals and Progressives:  How did you like the way that worked out? Then what happens in 2020 and beyond to any form of Medicare for all..as a single payer or as a public option...neither. Then what happens to any steps to deal with global warming...nothing. Then what happens to the Supreme Court? For years to come, expect a Trump court ruling in favor of abolishing Roe v Wade, supporting an imperial presidency, and even declaring any federal health plan, including Obamacare unconstitutional. I hope many will join me in this pledge: I will refuse to support any candidate who speaks ill of another Democrat in the race. 
Candidates need to make a case for their platform on issues and let their issue arguments and credentials speak for themselves as a way to differentiate themselves from the rest of the pack. Negative campaigns in primaries are losers for Democrats. They are a circular firing squad.

Recently, some press and candidates are aiming their weapons at the front runner Joe Biden for a history of not being in favor of pro-choice. He has evolved on the issue. In 2008 he announced he was pro-choice. A devout Catholic, he paid a price when the Archbishop of the diocese in Pennsylvania refused to give him communion.  Since 2008  Biden has had a NARAL rating of 100%. He supports Supreme Court appointees who support Roe v Wade. He had supported the Hyde Amendment that bans federal funds for abortions. June 6, he reversed his prior support, citing that formerly free services provided by Plan Parenthood clinics have been so restricted in certain states, that the poor no longer had access. ,  Other attacks have centered on his past hard-line support on law enforcement and other issues. Unlike many of his fellow aspirants,  he has baggage for being a public figure for 40 years at different times,, but what should count is where he stands now on issues and his more recent track record.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Political_positions_of_Joe_Biden#Abortion,_stem_cell_research,_cloning

Not only do politicians going negative on others competing for their party's nomination create sound bites for GOP general election campaign ads and video clips, but it can also divert or suppress votes to hurt the Democratic party candidate.  One fallout of a split party going for the throats of fellow candidates in order to gain a political advantage is that it generates "; a plague on both your houses; I don't like either candidates"  disgust factor. Bernie Sanders famously proclaimed on CNN during the run-up to the nomination that Clinton "was not qualified to be President" because she did not support the same issues as he did.   The result is for a group of voters to flee to a third party, Greens and Libertarians or sat on their hands.  There is a case to be made that votes for third parties swung the election to Trump by splitting the potential Clinton vote in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Florida and costing her electoral college votes.

 Democrats cannot afford to have potential voters sit on their hands in 2020. A recent PEW study of 2016 demographics and attitudes concluded "The data also provide a profile of voting-eligible nonvoters. Four-in-ten Americans who were eligible to vote did not do so in 2016.  "Compared with validated voters,...and nonvoters were much more Democratic." 

 The Russians were very well aware of the importance of the disgust factor and aimed their very significant social media propaganda efforts to paint Hilliary Clinton in a very unfavorable light, even to the extent of targeting bots and lies and conspiracy theories aimed at her potential voters. Some of that social media targeting was aimed at supporting the candidacy of  Green candidate Jill Stein and Bernie Sanders as a way of splitting Democratic votes.  We know this from both the Mueller Report and the indictments of spies and GRU operatives.  This was not a matter of a few well placed online ads, either. Both the indictments of Russians and the content of the Mueller report reveals the significant extent and effectiveness of the Russian interference. 

We have marveled at Russian's sophisticated knowledge of their targeting in key swing states and their knowledge of demographics.  The secret of their sophistication may have been revealed in the Mueller Report as Trump in house polling data was share with the Russians by Paul Manafort's contacts with his business associate, Konstantin Kilimnik, a suspected Russian intelligence operative, but so much of that connection has been  redacted in the Mueller Report version released to the public.  That is why it is important that Congress gets the full unredacted version. 






"Trump won 290 Electoral College votes to 232 for Hillary Clinton, as of Wednesday evening, with Clinton topping him in the popular vote. But had the Democrats managed to capture the bulk of third-party voters in some of the closest contests -- Wisconsin (10), Pennsylvania (20), Michigan (16) and Florida (29) -- Clinton would have defeated Trump by earning 307 Electoral College votes, enough to secure the presidency." https://www.cnn.com/2016/11/10/politics/gary-johnson-jill-stein-spoiler/index.html

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