Daily Archives: February 12, 2019

My prediction: Biden or Bernie and probably Harris; Liz probably out

Updated below (on Wednesday, February 13, 2019)

It’s just one poll, but a nationwide Morning Consult poll of 2020 Democratic Party presidential preference taken February 4 through February 10 shows Joe Biden with 29 percent, Bernie Sanders with 22 percent, Kamala Harris with 13 percent, Elizabeth Warren with 8 percent and Beto O’Rourke with 7 percent.

It’s just one poll, but the poll’s sample size is a whopping 11,500-plus, so its margin of error is only plus or minus 1 percent.*

If I had to bet right now on what the 2020 Democratic presidential ticket will look like, I’d bet that it’s Bernie Sanders or Joe Biden at the top of the ticket, and Kamala Harris or Beto O’Rourke as the veep candidate.

Why?

Because both Bernie and Biden would want a younger running mate to cancel out the (real or perceived) age issue, and because Biden and Bernie, both being from New England, would want to balance the ticket out geographically, and Harris from California or O’Rourke from Texas would accomplish that.

That said, would Biden or Bernie want to put another white guy on the ticket? Biden maybe wouldn’t care, but Bernie, I think, would pick Harris over O’Rourke.

And maybe Biden’s advisers would steer him away from making another white man his running mate (if he were going in that direction), so I think that Harris has a pretty good shot at the veep spot (a better shot than does O’Rourke), whether it’s Biden or Bernie at the top of the ticket.

We’ll see, but if the nationwide polling continues in this vein, with Biden at No. 1, Bernie at No. 2 and Harris at No. 3, I think that my prognostication might just come to pass. And it seems to me that while yes, it’s early (although the Iowa caucuses are less than a year away), the field is winnowing sooner than most might have assumed.

I don’t see room for Elizabeth Warren in this if Biden or Bernie becomes the presidential nominee. Not only is Warren still polling within only single digits, but she’s also from New England and she’s also older (she’s 69; Biden is 76 and Bernie is 77), so she wouldn’t balance out the ticket in terms of age or geography.

Liz apparently very much wants to be president, and I think that she’d do a good job, but the stars don’t seem to be lining up for her.

We’ll see, but at this point I don’t see her appearing on the 2020 ticket at all.

Update (Wednesday, February 13, 2019): I probably should apply for a job with fivethirtyeight.com. This morning the website posted “Our Very First 2020 Vice Presidential Draft,” and fivethirtyeight’s head honcho Nate Silver’s top two picks are Beto O’Rourke and Kamala Harris (in that order, from what I can tell).

Cory “Love and Unity” Booker’s name was kicked around in fivethirtyeight’s discussion, but the fact that he’s a saccharine fakey-fake, shitty Obama knock-off aside, he isn’t polling as well as Harris or even O’Rourke, and I think that if the presidential nominee is Biden or Bernie (the most likely case), there will be political pressure to pick a female running mate over a non-white male running mate.

So I stick with Kamala Harris as my No. 1 veep prediction and Beto O’Rourke as my No. 2, not because I want him as veep, but because he’s a shiny bright new object that the eventual presidential nominee just might fall for (especially if it’s a female nominee). That O’Rourke lost his last election, though, should prevent him from being anywhere on the ticket, in my book.

Finally, my calculus is pretty much the same as Silver’s, which he lays out thusly:

My suppositions are that (1) there will not be two women on the ticket; (2) there will not be two people of color on the ticket; and (3) there will not be two white men on the ticket.

But you could have a white man and a non-white man, e.g. Biden and Booker. [Possibly, but, again, I think that there will/would be internal and/or external pressure on Biden or Bernie to pick a woman, not a man, as his running mate.]

Or a white man and a white woman, e.g. Beto and Klobuchar. [I just don’t see O’Rourke getting the nomination, and I think that Elizabeth Warren has a better chance at the veep spot in this scenario than does Klobuchar.]

*There was another poll taken February 9 through February 11, but its sample size was only 500, putting its margin of error at plus or minus 4.5 percentage points, and its findings differ drastically from other recent polls’ — Biden comes in at only 12 percent and Sanders at only 9 percent in that poll, for example — so I discount it, frankly. Plus, the pollster is “Bold Blue Campaigns,” which I’ve never heard of.

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Burn the witch!

File:Ilhan Omar, official portrait, 116th Congress.jpg

According to Open Secrets, last year the American Israel Public Affairs Committee spent $3.5 million lobbying members of Congress. Open Secrets notes that “Few lobbies dedicated to international issues are so active and well-financed as the Israel lobby.”

This is a powerful lobby, yet it’s necessary for them to attack — indeed, to destroy, if possible — one 37-year-old Somali-American Muslim woman, Ilhan Omar, U.S. representative for Minnesota. (Her official House portrait is above; she is only one of two Muslim women who ever have been elected to Congress [and both of them were just elected in November!].*)

Omar recently tweeted, in talking about AIPAC’s influence over Congress, “It’s all about the Benjamins baby.” Yes, $3.5 million is a lot of Benjamins ($100 bills), baby.

It’s just a fucking fact that for years and years now, the Israel-first lobby has given a lot of money to members of Congress from both parties.

The Washington Post notes that “AIPAC, which is not a political action committee, does not make campaign contributions to politicians, but its individual members can make donations, and the organization spends millions on lobbying efforts for pro-Israel legislation every year.”

Salon.com quotes former U.S. Rep. Brian Bard as having said, “Any member of Congress knows that AIPAC is associated indirectly with significant amounts of campaign spending if you’re with them, and significant amounts against you if you’re not with them.” (Indeed, to see who has received the most money from the Israel-first lobby, go here.)

Omar’s statement appears to be unflattering but true, and I wholeheartedly agree with her later statement (which came with her apparent forced apology from the establishmentarian Democrats who never met a lobbyist whose ass they didn’t kiss and whose money they didn’t take), “At the same time, I reaffirm the problematic role of lobbyists in our politics, whether it be AIPAC, the NRA or the fossil fuel industry. It’s gone on too long and we must be willing to address it.”

Absolutely. But because Omar talked about the Israel-first lobby and money, you see, she was repeating the stereotype that Jews are money-grubbers (and/or are trying to control things with money, even though lobbying is all about trying to control things with money…). Therefore, she is an anti-Semite! So says the “offended,” pearl-clutching Israel-first lobby. (Uh-oh; I mentioned pearls and Israel in the same sentence; I’m an anti-Semite for sure!)

This is what I call political terrorism: Not just AIPAC’s and other lobbying groups’ tactic of giving your election opponent campaign cash if you don’t carry their water, but also the toxic identity politics, which isn’t about correcting an injustice, but which is using historical injustices to commit new injustices today, using one’s own vaunted “victimhood” status as cover for being an actual victimizer of others him- or herself.

Under toxic identity politics, if you disagree with what a female candidate or elected official has done or said, then you’re simply “sexist” or “misogynist.” If you disagree with what a non-white candidate or elected official has done or said, then you’re “racist.” If you disagree with what a Jewish person or group of persons has done or said, then you are an “anti-Semite.”

This is political terrorism because the definition of “terrorism” is “the use of violence or threat of violence in the pursuit of political, religious, ideological or social objectives.”

We too narrowly and too literally define “terrorism” as egregious shit such as blowing shit (or oneself) up or shooting people up with automatic assault weapons.

But “terror” means fear, and if you are using any type of fear to shut up another person, not only is that terrorism, but it’s a form of violence.

And not only is the individual to be terrorized (via public shaming/censure, via job loss, ostracism, perhaps even incarceration or hell, even execution, etc.), but that individual’s destruction of course is meant to be an example and a warning to others who might dare to open their mouths and say something that you don’t want them to say or to do something that you don’t want them to do because it threatens your undue political power.

And the Democratic Party establishment endorses — and practices — such political terrorism, which is one of the reasons that I am not a member of the Democratic Party.

It’s some fucked-up shit when one of the most powerful lobbies in the United States — which always claims victimhood status — orchestrates a national (even international) gang-bang on one young Muslim woman.

It’s sick. It’s shameful. It’s Islamophobic — and it’s actual Islamophobia, as opposed to the false, slanderous charges of “anti-Semitism” that so casually are tossed around.

And no, I don’t have a horse in this race. I’m not Christian, Jewish or Muslim. I don’t believe in God. (And all three of those religions have engaged in xenophobia, bigotry, violence, misogyny, patriarchy, homophobia, anti-intellectualism, etc. — all in the name of “God.”)

I don’t believe in God (who is just Santa Claus on crack), but I do believe in fairness and balance. I believe in facts, in reality.

I oppose corruption and I oppose the powerful routinely attacking the weaker but pretending to be the actual victims themselves.

And I oppose terrorism, not only in its most egregious forms, but in its commonly accepted forms that cause just as much damage to real human beings.

P.S. This morning on NPR I painfully listened to “Democratic” Rep. Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey, in reaction to Ilhan Omar’s “anti-Semitism,” repeatedly state that the United States blindly (my word, not his) supporting Israel is in “our” “national security” interests. (It sure was an exercise in attempted propaganda if not in attempted hypnosis, hee hee hee…)

I don’t believe that propping up any right-wing government that routinely egregiously violates human rights is in the United States’ interests of any kind, and I note that in 2018, Gottheimer took almost $150,000 from the Israel-first lobby, ranking him at No. 6 in the House for taking money from that lobby. (Yes, dare I say, that’s a lot of Benjamins, baby! [Then-Rep. Beto O’Rourke, by the way, took more than $225,000, putting him at No. 1 in the House for accepting that dirty money.])

Gottheimer’s personal campaign coffers are equal to “our” “national security” interests, you see.

Whenever someone talks about “our national security interests,” really look at that.

If I’m fucking you over for my own personal gain, you see, in order for me to continue to be able to that, I have to claim, and hopefully convince you, that I’m actually benefiting you.

*Meanwhile, right now there are 28 Jewish members of the House of Representatives. The power dynamic between Jews and Muslims, here and abroad, always has been pretty fucking asymmetrical, yet Jews always are the “victims.”

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