Wednesday, June 05, 2019


I'm not a Joe Biden fan, but I'll vote for him in a heartbeat if he wins the nomination. Ted Rall? Not likely, to judge from the op-ed he published yesterday in The Wall Street Journal:
Bernie Sanders’s 2016 challenge to Hillary Clinton revealed a deep division in the Democratic Party—one that promises to get nastier as Joe Biden consolidates his status as 2020 front-runner.
Or doesn't. But Rall's anger requires a villain and a betrayal, so he's assuming the fix is in for Biden.
The clash revolves around “electability,” which those of us on the left regard as a chimera. Centrists equate it to moderation....

Today, centrism’s credibility lies dashed on the rocks of #ImWithHer. All Hillary’s dead-enders can do is insist that she “won the popular vote.”
She didn't "win the popular vote." She won the popular vote, full stop, no scare quotes. But go on, Ted.
But she was supposed to win in a landslide.
Larry Sabato predicted a solid Clinton win, but said she'd do "10 electoral votes worse than Barack Obama in 2012." FiveThirtyEight had Clinton as a 71.4% favorite but said it would be a close election, warning, correctly, that Trump might lose the popular vote and win the electoral vote. Real Clear Politics, with all tossup states resolved in favor of state polling leaders, predicted a 272-266 Electoral College win for Clinton. What serious observer, except perhaps immediately after the Access Hollywood tape hit, believed Clinton would win in a landslide?
Some of her supporters blame recalcitrant progressives for her loss. They’re probably right.
You said it, Ted. I didn't.
Mrs. Clinton’s hawkishness and Wall Street ties were anathema to the left.
Good thing we elected a guy now being advised by John Bolton and Steve Mnuchin.
After clinching the nomination, she pivoted right, even trying to create a Republicans for Hillary group.
Do we want to tell Rall about this?

Oh wait -- he probably hated Obama from the start, too.
A stolen email from campaign chairman John Podesta listed Mr. Sanders 39th on a list of 39 vice-presidential prospects.
Here's that email. In it, the candidates weren't listed in order of desirability, but rather in "rough food groups" -- Hispanics, female senators, military figures, and so on. Tim Kaine, the running mate Clinton actually chose, was in the white-guy grouping and was fourteenth on the list.
... Kim McKinney Cohen, a leftist Democrat, told Politico her vote for Mr. Trump was “my primal scream” to the Democratic Party. “I wanted it burned down,” she said, “so that we could build a new, hopefully more equitable one that meets the needs of all, not only the superrich.”
I hope you're still screaming, Kim. I know I am.
Winning the next election isn’t necessarily more important than the long-term objective of winning over the Democratic Party.
Well, there it is.
Winning the next election isn’t necessarily more important than the long-term objective of winning over the Democratic Party. Progressives’ broader aim is to move the 50-yard-line of American politics to the left. In the Trump era they feel ascendant. The leftward surge in 2018 gave us Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and other celebrity progressives. Most of the major Democratic presidential candidates—Mr. Biden notably excepted—at least pretend to be progressive by endorsing measures such as Medicare for All and the Green New Deal.
Show of hands: Who, after watching the results of the midterms and the aftermath so far, feels "ascendant"? Sure, AOC and a few other progressives were elected (along with some solid liberals and a number of left-centrists). But Trump, Mitch McConnell, and the Federalist Society Five on the Supreme Court are unbowed, as are lower-court Trump judges and Republicans in state government. If you're already through worrying about winning elections and would rather focus on purifying the Democratic Party, then -- to use another football metaphor -- you're spiking the football not just short of the end zone, but before you've even crossed midfield.
... Hard as it is for centrist Democrats to fathom, many progressives would rather see a second Trump term than a President Biden, who would govern through Clintonian triangulation. And all those progressives have to do to win is sit on their hands.
Nice resistance you've got here. It'd be a shame if anything happened to it.

Gosh, I wonder why this was (checks notes) published on the Wall Street Journal op-ed page. Who benefits from this line of argument? Let me think....

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