Miami Debate Review: Democrats Aggressively Pursue Failure


“If liberals are so f***ing smart, why do they lose so goddamn always?” 
– Will McAvoy, The Newsroom

The candidates in the Democratic debates demonstrated a genuine desire to lose the Presidential race in 2020.  Democrats do not view elections as a contest against Republicans.  They view elections as an opportunity to trumpet their moral superiority and educate the public. 

Those on the far left used it as a chance to lecture their more centrist colleagues.  Female and minority candidates have used the debates to undermine the legitimacy of candidates who do not meet certain gender and racial standards.

CC BY-SA 3.0, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15169218

This is not the only reason Senators Corey Booker and Kamala Harris have thrown the race card at Joe Biden.  It is also because he is higher in the polls.  Prudent campaigns aim their attacks at those leading in the polls because that is where the voters are.   

Senator Amy Klobuchar took an opportunity, to criticize Governor Jay Inslee for daring to hold a similar position on reproductive rights.  Klobuchar declared, “there are three women who fought pretty hard for a woman’s right to choose.”  Vox declared victory, “Amy Klobuchar Owned Jay Inslee on Abortion Rights at a Democratic Debate.”  Vox explained, “It was a risky move on Inslee’s part.  He’s a white man running for the Democratic nomination at a time when many Democrats are concerned about men making decisions on reproductive health that disproportionately affect women.” 

Is it risky for a Democratic candidate at a Democratic debate declare he’s pro-choice?  Of course not.  The issue was his gender and, apparently, his race as well. 

The left has been so consumed by outrage with President Trump it has formed a new identity as the opposite of everything that is Trump.  Trump’s behavior is outrageous, his inability to be honest or even consistent, is disturbing and his hostility toward the rule of law and the press is authoritarian.

This does not automatically make him wrong on every decision.  Is he wrong on the issues where he agrees with Democrats?

America’s most well-known political scientist, Fareed Zakaria, urged his fellow Americans to vote against Donald Trump, labeling him a “cancer on American democracy.” He wrote, “(m)any of Trump’s campaign promises and policies are idiotic and unworkable.”  Since Trump’s election Zakaria has written that the administration has been “marked by chaos and incompetence.” 

He has also warned the left against adopting the Trump Derangement Syndrome.”  He stated Trump “cannot axiomatically be wrong, evil and dangerous.” It is advice the left and Democratic Presidential candidates have studiously ignored.

New York Magazine columnist Jonathan Chait explained, “Democrats have lots of room to run to attack President Trump from the left on economic and social policy while placing themselves on the right side of public opinion.”  Yet he warned that, “Democrats seem to have convinced themselves taking unpopular progressive positions can’t hurt them.  If they keep trying to outflank each other to the left the damage could be severe.”

On the second night of the debate all ten candidates raised their hand to indicate they favored government provided health care for undocumented immigrants. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, there are more than 26 million U.S. citizens that lack health care. One wonders what they would would think and in a CNN poll after the debate, 60 percent of respondents opposed the idea.

The left, particularly those in the media, gave former Housing Secretary Julian Castro high marks on his debate performance.  The New Republic declared Casto “the first debate’s big winner”  NBC said he “nabbed the debate spotlight,” while CNN declared his performance a “breakout” and a “star turn.”   

Castro called for a Marshall Plan for Central America.  Maybe U.S. tax dollars would be better spent fixing roads, bridges, ports in the U.S. to create American jobs?  Castro also called for decriminalizing the acts of non-citizens crossing the U.S. border without documentation.  Obama Administration Homeland Security, Jeh Johnson said Castro’s plan is “tantamount to declaring publicly that we have open borders.”

In the days following the debate Castro went further saying the re-entry of those deported by the U.S. should be decriminalized as well.  He has said current U.S. law “criminalizes desperation.”

A viewer could be excused for thinking Castro was running to be Ambassador to the Organization of American States. 

More recently, Castro said Trump is the “biggest identity politician we’ve seen in fifty years.”  He explained the President, “tries to get people to move into their camps by racial and ethnic identities.”  He is absolutely right.  Yet, his campaign is engaging in the same practice from the other side of the ideological divide.    

In a contrast to most other candidates, Senator Elizabeth Warren continued to impress.  Her command of the issues and ability to frame them persuasively gave her a victory on the first night of the debate.  She has studied the issues that negatively impact the working and middle class for much of her life.  Furthermore, for the debate, she practiced her answers to fit them within the thirty to sixty second that we allotted.  Although her personality can get her in trouble, her focus and discipline is admirable.

Former Congressman Beto O’Rourke continued to waste more words to say the least.  O’Rourke most radical proposal is to, “return power to the people.”  With this bold and visionary platform, he could be mistaken for former Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner without the personal warmth and comedic flair. 

O’Rourke, Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, Marianne Williamson and Governor Inslee should drop out of the race.  There have been rumors that some of the candidates will drop out after the second debate. 

One can only hope.  

5 comments

  1. Really thoughtful analysis here. I agree with most of it.

    You did not address Sanders whom I voted for last time but will not again.

    While ideology between the hard left and hard right might be different the behavior of both sets of supporters is similar.

    As I have watched the Showtime series on Roger Ailes I see so much of the left in the way the hard right acts. Sure the issues are different but the hard left which is basically behind Sanders isn’t interested in truths about other Democrats or the right. They are more interested in being self-righteous and developing a narrative of false equivalency about everyone else who isn’t them.

    I am obviously not a fan of the Clinton identity politics crowd, but the hard left now is creating a narrative where they are the only morally credible people and everyone else is corrupt, and if you are interested in anyone else you must be corrupt yourself, looking for work or too scared to speak out. It’s just like the hard right.

    Moreover, if you are someone like Warren that has similar issue positions as Sanders but actually a plan to implement it you are weak or a tool of the centrist elites who are trying to kill Sanders off.

    The closest thing to Sanders in western democracy is Jeremy Corbyn. Let’s look at Corbyn for a minute. Corbyn is someone who still gets defended by the hard left as the genuine article because of his marxist leanings, the only person who stood up to privatization, the banks, the monied interests, etc. He is someone with a completely pure ideology and moral compass they claim. Yet on the single-biggest issue Britain has faced since Suez, or maybe World War II, he’s so comfortable with being Labour leader and so scared of losing his power that he has taken the most moderate, ambiguous and quite frankly POLITICAL position of any major leader. We saw with Sanders similar tendencies , where he suddenly flipped on guns when it politically useful.

    Sanders is a politician like all the rest but a cult of personality has broken out among his supporters and they shout morality from the mountain tops impugning the motivations of ANYONE not supportive of them, particularly those closest in ideology to them who are not in lock step- like the Jacobins in Revolutionary France who were willing to cut the heads off of any one to the left that wasn’t totally pure – or like Mao’s cultural revolutionary yes men.

    Sanders himself may not condone this but his supporters act that way. They also downplay the genuine #MeToo concerns I have about his last campaign (if it had been Hillary’s campaign or now Biden we’d never hear the end of how the elite Dems run a frat house type party) and the wage fairness/living wage issues associated with his campaign though if any other Dem did that they would call them shills, sellouts, elites, say no difference between the parties.

    I really regret my role in enabling the crazy left on this site in the past. I agree with them on the issues 97% of the time but yet their methods and tenor are destroying any positive momentum for progressive causes and candidates.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Obviously the issue I am referring to with Corbyn is Brexit where has taken the most ambiguous stand possible while his supporters parade around saying everyone else is corrupt – the Brexiters are racists and those wanting to Remain but backing LibDems are elitist multilateral sellouts. It works well actually, similar to the moral indignation of many Sanders supporters toward anything. Many Sanders supporters much like many Trump supporters take any critique of the candidate they’ve latched on to as a personal attack on themselves.

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  3. […] posted by The Florida Squeeze on 2019-07-30 […]

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  4. At some point, the elections became like the confrontation of genders, races, religions. Did everyone forget that any politician should serve the whole nation, equally improving life for every person? Why do not they criticize actions regarding economic policies, programs for the homeless, environmental problems? After all, these are the most important things that have obviously fallen into the background ..

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