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-   -   Is Joe Biden's campaign over before it starts? (https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=873262)

asahi 03-30-2019 04:31 PM

Is Joe Biden's campaign over before it starts?
 
https://www.politico.com/story/2019/...didate-1244375

Pretty sure most reading this are already somewhat aware that Biden has apparently been called out by Lucy Flores, a former Nevada assembly woman, for alleged non-consensual kissing, touching.

It's also being reported elsewhere that Biden is known for being, ahem, a 'hands-on' kinda guy. Not that he always meant to violate women in each or any of these cases, but it's clear that he has at least made one woman feel uncomfortable with his past behavior and there may be more.

In the age of #metoo, how much trouble is Joe in? Can he address it head-on with contrition or will this simply add to his woes, which already started with his handling of the Anita Hill hearings?

What Exit? 03-30-2019 04:34 PM

In a world where the "pussy grabber" got elected how could these accusations be said to end Biden's bid? It might lead to his not running, but I doubt we're there yet.

dropzone 03-30-2019 04:41 PM

I love Joe, but he's getting a bit long in the tooth. Watched Beto's speech today and was impressed.

aldiboronti 03-30-2019 04:41 PM

I don't think it will make a substantial impact on any potential campaign nor should it. This isn't a sexual assault and quite honestly I don't understand her motive in making a big deal of this some 5 years later. Is she saying he's some kind of monster not fit to hold public office? For holding her shoulders and giving her a friendly peck on the back of her head? Inappropriate? Yes. But rendering him unsuitable as a candidate for President? Ridiculous.

asahi 03-30-2019 04:53 PM

I agree that, at least so far, it doesn't sound like he's a monster, but Al Franken was chased off for being a little grabby and not remembering incidents the way that women recalled them.

I seem to recall a quote once by LBJ - something about making the sonofabitch defend himself, and how the perception of weakness and being on the defensive can weaken a candidate. That's probably why Trump doesn't apologize, and that's why Ralph Northam refused to step down despite repeated attempts to do so.

Guinastasia 03-30-2019 04:56 PM

I'm not making excuses for the guy, but hasn't he always been known for this kind of thing?

TriPolar 03-30-2019 05:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aldiboronti (Post 21565639)
I don't think it will make a substantial impact on any potential campaign nor should it. This isn't a sexual assault and quite honestly I don't understand her motive in making a big deal of this some 5 years later. Is she saying he's some kind of monster not fit to hold public office? For holding her shoulders and giving her a friendly peck on the back of her head? Inappropriate? Yes. But rendering him unsuitable as a candidate for President? Ridiculous.

She could be promoting herself, but more likely she is trying to suck up to other candidates, possible already coordinating with one of them. That is how the game of dirty politics is played, first the surrogates try to stir up a storm, then candidates can pretend they had no choice but attack their opponents because it has become a major issue.

bobot 03-30-2019 05:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Guinastasia (Post 21565660)
I'm not making excuses for the guy, but hasn't he always been known for this kind of thing?

It sounds like he was at a rally to upport her, and he came up behind her and massaged her shoulders and kissed her on the back of the haed. Old school paternalistic "I got ya, baby."
Sorry Joe, you have to make good on this or you're out. Sure he didn't grab her by the pussy, but he's not a Republican either. If he doesn't come clean and make good, he's got to step out of the way. And that sucks, because he was the only Democrat that I had full confidence in with regards to kicking Trump's ass.

wolfpup 03-30-2019 05:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by What Exit? (Post 21565629)
In a world where the "pussy grabber" got elected how could these accusations be said to end Biden's bid?

In a world where a Democrat gets judged by one set of standards, and Trump gets judged by no standards at all.

DSeid 03-30-2019 05:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aldiboronti (Post 21565639)
I don't think it will make a substantial impact on any potential campaign nor should it. This isn't a sexual assault and quite honestly I don't understand her motive in making a big deal of this some 5 years later. Is she saying he's some kind of monster not fit to hold public office? For holding her shoulders and giving her a friendly peck on the back of her head? Inappropriate? Yes. But rendering him unsuitable as a candidate for President? Ridiculous.

Her stated point is
Quote:

the transgressions that society deems minor (or doesn’t even see as transgressions) often feel considerable to the person on the receiving end. That imbalance of power and attention is the whole point — and the whole problem.
And it's not an invalid point.

Biden has been a politician a long time and has always been a literal gladhandler, to all. The standards that call awareness to the fact that some who never voice any objection actually may find such touch to be offensive (rather than as a form of connection) are in comparison recent.

Touching after objection has been voiced would be disqualifying. Being unaware of what was in someone's head that was never shared and not realizing that some had those unvoiced discomforts? Likely not.

I get Ms. Flores' point. I also think that holding all past behavior to a standard that did not previously exist, that disqualifying based on things that at the time they occurred would not generally have been realized to be transgressive, would not only be silly, but would turn us into a circular firing squad.

bobot what in your mind would count as coming clean and making good. He very likely honestly does not remember the specifics of the interaction as she had said nothing and was likely very gracious to him for his support. That's the gist of his response by way of surrogate.
Quote:

Responding to the accusation, Biden spokesman Bill Russo said the vice president had been happy to support Flores and to speak on her behalf at the event.

“Neither then, nor in the years since, did he or the staff with him at the time have an inkling that Ms. Flores had been at any time uncomfortable, nor do they recall what she describes,” Russo said on Friday in a statement.

Biden believes Flores has every right to share her own recollection, Russo added, and that it is a positive change for U.S. society that she has the opportunity.
I think it is safe to assume that the kiss on the back of the head happened and that that sort of touch was just so normal politicking to him that asking him to remember it is unrealistic. Given that what response would satisfy? Serious question.

The Democratic side at least now declares such touch as off limits but a long time pol has functioned before now as well.

Fuzzy_wuzzy 03-30-2019 06:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by What Exit? (Post 21565629)
In a world where the "pussy grabber" got elected how could these accusations be said to end Biden's bid? It might lead to his not running, but I doubt we're there yet.

The Democratic Primaries are a totally different beast to the Republican Primaries or the General Election.

What I find interesting is that Biden has been known for this sort of behavior for years but only now, with the Democratic Primaries on the horizon, is he getting called out in the MSM. The MSM and his fellow Democratic politicians didn't give a damn about the issue when he was Vice President.

What Exit? 03-30-2019 06:18 PM

I'm not buying this as bid ending, I think most people and even most Democrats will not consider this disqualifying.

bobot 03-30-2019 06:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DSeid (Post 21565697)
...

bobot what in your mind would count as coming clean and making good. He very likely honestly does not remember the specifics of the interaction as she had said nothing and was likely very gracious to him for his support. ..

He can't leave her unsupported now. It may appear that she is lying about this. Is he cool with that? If he really doesn't remember, then he himself has to say publicly that: "Hell, that sounds like something I would have done. But I see why it wasn't cool, and I am aware of my actions as a result."
I could buy that. Then they have to get together and agree that it's done.

TriPolar 03-30-2019 06:39 PM

And it's already begun:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Elizabeth Warren
So I don't know anything about this. But obviously if there's a problem, then Joe Biden needs to answer.

That is just so presidential, demanding answers to things she doesn't know anything about.

I couldn't care less about that old fart Biden, but this is the kind of thing that will get disgraced former President Trump re-elected.

bobot 03-30-2019 06:40 PM

Not Warren's comments, mind you, but Biden's lack of response.

CarnalK 03-30-2019 06:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TriPolar (Post 21565736)
And it's already begun:



That is just so presidential, demanding answers to things she doesn't know anything about.

I couldn't care less about that old fart Biden, but this is the kind of thing that will get disgraced former President Trump re-elected.

Don't be a frigging ninny. She's at a press conference and they ask her "what about this Biden story??". What the hell else is she going to say? This isn't about Dems going dirty on each other - it's the Press trying to poke the bee hive.

TriPolar 03-30-2019 06:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bobot (Post 21565741)
Not Warren's comments, mind you, but Biden's lack of response.

He did respond. He doesn't remember the incident nor deny it. Should he rend his clothes and tear his hair out to satisfy you?

bobot 03-30-2019 06:50 PM

No, read the thread. I've already commented on that.

TriPolar 03-30-2019 06:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bobot (Post 21565757)
No, read the thread. I've already commented on that.

This is really simple, would you rather have Joe Biden become president or stick with disgraced former president Trump? Unless you want Trump re-elected there is nothing worth discussing here about Biden.

ITR champion 03-30-2019 07:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Guinastasia (Post 21565660)
I'm not making excuses for the guy, but hasn't he always been known for this kind of thing?

Yes. I knew that something of this sort was going to erupt eventually. In today's environment, how could it not?

Quote:

Originally Posted by alidboronti
I don't think it will make a substantial impact on any potential campaign nor should it. This isn't a sexual assault and quite honestly I don't understand her motive in making a big deal of this some 5 years later. Is she saying he's some kind of monster not fit to hold public office? For holding her shoulders and giving her a friendly peck on the back of her head? Inappropriate? Yes. But rendering him unsuitable as a candidate for President? Ridiculous.

In principle that's my attitude too, and I'd bet a lot of Democrats feel that way privately. But who would say that on the record?

Have you been paying attention to how younger feminists and progressive activists treat these things? They view any unwanted touch as serious wrongdoing and an unwanted kiss might as well make the guy Bill Cosby. (See here for one of many examples: "'Sexual assault' and 'sexual violence' refer to a range of behaviors that are unwanted by the recipient,and include remarks about physical appearance, persistent sexual advances that are undesired by the recipient, threats of force to get someone to engage in sexual behavior, as well as unwanted touching".) So the way I see this playing out is Biden continues running and maybe 60% of Democrats are in the it-was-a-kiss-no-big-deal camp, while 40% view him as a sex predator. But that 40% are going to be quite noisy.

Of course the Obama administration pressured colleges and universities to adopt expansive definitions of "sexual assault" based on inflated statistics of the frequency of on-campus sex crimes, and among those who were very outspoken on the issue was Joe Biden. Karma's a bitch.

bobot 03-30-2019 07:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TriPolar (Post 21565763)
This is really simple, would you rather have Joe Biden become president or stick with disgraced former president Trump? Unless you want Trump re-elected there is nothing worth discussing here about Biden.

You're funny.

DSeid 03-30-2019 07:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bobot (Post 21565722)
He can't leave her unsupported now. It may appear that she is lying about this. Is he cool with that? If he really doesn't remember, then he himself has to say publicly that: "Hell, that sounds like something I would have done. But I see why it wasn't cool, and I am aware of my actions as a result."
I could buy that. Then they have to get together and agree that it's done.

But you understand that there will be more. His touchy feely style of politicking goes back many decades and even if 99 out of 100, hell 999 out of 1000 appreciated his little touches that leaves a substantial absolute number that still would say not. And males too! There's a picture in this article of him arm wrapped around nose into ear of a tight fisted clearly uncomfortable Strom Thurman. Some men find touch unwanted and objectionable as well.

I'm not sure what the best way to answer this is. If Ms. Flores had no point and this was completely #metoo gone too far then this could be a Sister Souljah moment, and many women voters would agree. But her point is valid: men (and to some degree women too) in positions of power have to be conscious that what they do not see as transgressive might be interpreted that way by those of lesser power (usually women) who will feel powerless to object, and even if the percent is small the power dynamic means that great caution must be exercised.

He is guilty of not knowing that before such became common knowledge. Not sure how he best articulates knowing it now.

In any case better to deal with this early ... or to prove himself unable to deal with it well enough.


OH eta - FWIW I think Booker or Harris would be stronger candidates and do not have Biden as number one choice. But I would not want this to be why he is not the choice.

bobot 03-30-2019 07:42 PM

NM

tomndebb 03-30-2019 09:39 PM

Moderating
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by CarnalK (Post 21565749)
Don't be a frigging ninny.

And don't you be a hurler of insults outside The BBQ Pit.

No Warning on this occasion, but do not repeat this behavior.

[ /Moderating ]

HurricaneDitka 03-30-2019 10:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by asahi (Post 21565623)
... In the age of #metoo, how much trouble is Joe in? Can he address it head-on with contrition or will this simply add to his woes, which already started with his handling of the Anita Hill hearings?

I've been expecting this ever since he's been talked about as a potential presidential candidate. That someone finally came forward with a direct complaint is just about the least-surprising political scandal in recent years.

AK84 03-30-2019 11:12 PM

The Democrat seems damn determined to ensure that every candidate who can take on Trump is cut off at the legs before they can miun5ba challenge.
Someone upthread said Harris? Seriously? Trump will steamroll her. Booker too.

Try2B Comprehensive 03-30-2019 11:25 PM

I don't think Trump will be steamrolling anybody. He has a devoted base, yes, but he is like running a barn door sized target for reelection. The GOP has plenty of propaganda weapons and dirty tricks, but it is the Dems with an actual case to make.

Lwt

Try2B Comprehensive 03-30-2019 11:30 PM

I don't think Trump will be steamrolling anybody. He has a devoted base, yes, but he is like running a barn door sized target for reelection. The GOP has plenty of propaganda weapons and dirty tricks, but it is the Dems with an actual case to make.

Let's see how Biden handles this. If he can't overcome it in the Dem primary, where I don't expect candidates to completely savage each other to preserve their own chances, he might not overcome it in the general.

We have too see if he can fly "it wasn't that serious" and "I don't even remember it" along with his broader case. Me? I think he's be better than Trump. I haven't really seen him make his case yet though, and the first debate is months away. I go with "not over yet.

Eta sorry for double post

Lamoral 03-30-2019 11:31 PM

Having a case to make doesn't grant any inherent strength to their chances. All Trump needs to do is say "we've had four great years, now let's have four more great years."

I used to like Biden for the nomination but at this point I feel like we have better choices.

Try2B Comprehensive 03-30-2019 11:35 PM

We've had four years of coasting on Obama's legacy, with incessant lies, corruption and incompetence. The wall is stupid, the deficit is a trillion and the GOP is literally coming for your health care. And a hundred other things.

Trump sucks and can be beaten by lots of candidates IMHO.

BigT 03-30-2019 11:46 PM

It is indeed well known. Creepy Biden is a meme, and has been for a while. I've been giving that as my reason not to put my hope in him for a while now. We're in the #metoo era, and this shit is going to be disqualifying in a way it was never before.

I've been confused why his proponents haven't seen it as an issue. Warren's stuff is less of an issue in this climate.

SmartAleq 03-30-2019 11:53 PM

Hmmm. Watch through the videos in this thread and if you don't feel queasy afterward then I guess Unca Joe is your kinda guy.

AK84 03-31-2019 01:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Try2B Comprehensive (Post 21566017)
I don't think Trump will be steamrolling anybody. He has a devoted base, yes, but he is like running a barn door sized target for reelection. The GOP has plenty of propaganda weapons and dirty tricks, but it is the Dems with an actual case to make.

The Bushes and Clinton’s had the two biggest and well connected political machines in the US. Trump beat both of them.
Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio were considered the future of the GOP. Trump eviscerated both.
There is a reason he is President.
Maybe learn from past mistakes? The “Trump has a hilariously large amount of negatives” memes, did not work when he was a failed businessman running for office.
You think it will work when he has been President for 4 years?

septimus 03-31-2019 02:15 AM

I was unaware of this behavior and am shocked.

It's barely 2019, but I've already changed my recommendation more often than I change my shirt. :o I'm now withdrawing my Biden support and offering yet another top choice:
Cory Booker for President

racepug 03-31-2019 10:13 AM

Clearly there's a different standard for this sort of behavior between what is tolerated by D.J.T. and what is tolerated by pretty much everybody else. Sad and disgusting.

racepug 03-31-2019 10:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by septimus (Post 21566101)
I was unaware of this behavior and am shocked.

It's barely 2019, but I've already changed my recommendation more often than I change my shirt. :o I'm now withdrawing my Biden support and offering yet another top choice:
Cory Booker for President

I've had my eye on Cory Booker for some time. I'd vote for him - certainly before I'd EVER vote for the person who currently occupies the W.H.!

RTFirefly 03-31-2019 10:16 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DSeid (Post 21565697)
I get Ms. Flores' point. I also think that holding all past behavior to a standard that did not previously exist, that disqualifying based on things that at the time they occurred would not generally have been realized to be transgressive

Oh, bullshit. Touching and kissing strangers in such a manner was recognized as inappropriate 40 years ago, and it's still inappropriate today. The only thing that's changed is the power of women to call men out on it.

RTFirefly 03-31-2019 10:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by racepug (Post 21566351)
Clearly there's a different standard for this sort of behavior between what is tolerated by D.J.T. and what is tolerated by pretty much everybody else. Sad and disgusting.

It's the difference between the standards Dems are willing to apply to one of their own, and the standards that Republicans are willing to apply to one of their own. That's all.

racepug 03-31-2019 10:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RTFirefly (Post 21566364)
It's the difference between the standards Dems are willing to apply to one of their own, and the standards that Republicans are willing to apply to one of their own. That's all.

Yeah. That. Such as when the fine Al Franken was taken down by a concerted effort by Sean Flim-Flammity, et al, when what HE had done was NOTHING when compared to the horrible acts committed by you-know-whom.

DSeid 03-31-2019 10:27 AM

His statement today does not quite hit the ideal note, even if it is 100% accurate.
Quote:

... I may not recall these moments the same way, and I may be surprised at what I hear. But we have arrived at an important time when women feel they can and should relate their experiences, and men should pay attention. And I will. ...
What he still needs is an acknowledgement that listening to Ms. Flores has him considering that what he intends with his physical "expressions of affection, support and comfort" may not be what is always received, and that Ms Flores' point that those in positions of power may not realize that those who are uncomfortable with those physical expressions might be hesitant to speak up is valid.

Hold on the recitation of the record on woman's issues.

Go with the simple "It seems that something that I meant as an expression of support instead made Ms. Flores uncomfortable and I am deeply sorry for that. I had no idea and that is to no small degree on me. I am glad we are entering a phase in our society that people feel more free to speak up in any such circumstance and to let others know when such occurs. I promise to listen."

RTF bullshit to your bullshit. Politicians hugging strangers, reaching out to kiss babies, and such has been SOP forever. Nothing sexual or intended as a power put down about it.

Biden's awareness of when others don't like or want it is perhaps poorer than most. Again look at that picture I linked to of him with Strom Thurman. Clearly Strom is very unhappy with that physical touch by Joe, fists clenched. Look at the reactions of the others around them. Joe though seems clueless to it all.

RTFirefly 03-31-2019 10:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SmartAleq (Post 21566036)
Hmmm. Watch through the videos in this thread and if you don't feel queasy afterward then I guess Unca Joe is your kinda guy.

I had to stop after just four or five of those clips. Seriously creepy shit going on there.

He's been able to do this stuff in situations where nobody was going to call him on it. Well, now he's getting called on it, and it's about freakin' time.

RTFirefly 03-31-2019 10:34 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DSeid (Post 21566379)
RTF bullshit to your bullshit. Politicians hugging strangers, reaching out to kiss babies, and such has been SOP forever. Nothing sexual or intended as a power put down about it.

I'm sure that's been the case for most politicians. But something different is clearly going on with Joe.

IOW, bullshit to your bullshit of my bullshit. :p

Lamoral 03-31-2019 10:48 AM

Just in the past week I've seen Democrats arguing that:

Biden - the VP to one of the most successful and beloved presidents of my lifetime (I'm 32) - is an unacceptable candidate because he is too cozy with big corporations and he has touched women inappropriately.

Pete Buttegieg - an erudite, articulate young[er] man with phenomenal charisma and speaking presence - is unacceptable because he is too much of a centrist and he disagreed with Obama's pardoning of Chelsea Manning.

Sanders - an outright socialist with a groundswell of support and major name recognition - is either too old, too liberal, or too white to get elected.

I wonder what the Republicans are arguing about?

DSeid 03-31-2019 10:49 AM

Also please note that she posed for a picture with arms around each other, apparently fairly immediately before his kiss on the back of her head. (See the The Cut article.) This was not just coming up to a complete stranger from behind and kissing them on the back of the head. The level was already at a point that arms around each other was considered okay.

Again, he was at fault for not realizing that a kiss on the back of the head might be considered more intimate than arms around each other, and at fault for not being aware of the power dynamic that many men (and women) in positions of relative power have been clueless about and many still are.

But making that lack of realization something that decides who is or is not qualified to be our nominee would be beyond dumb.

There are lots of reasons of substance to prefer a Harris or a Booker over Biden. IMHO, this is not one of them. OTOH, how he handles it can be telling as to his ability to handle all the other crap that a campaign will throw at him. And so far he has not done as well as he could.

MortSahlFan 03-31-2019 10:53 AM

I don't think he should run, because the minute he does, I'm sure there will be MORE stuff that comes out. Even now, I keep seeing all these video compilations of Biden and his gaffes.

Personally, I think Bernie Sanders is the only one who has a chance to beat Trump. I heard Donnie Douche on MSNBC say he'd rather have Trump than a progressive.

I also notice the polls adding Biden, who isn't running, only to lower Sanders' number. If the DNC (or others) do some of the shady shit from 2016, you can guarantee Trump will be re-elected. The elections never seem to end.. I'm less interested in outcomes, and more interested in actual results, real change and reform.

Exapno Mapcase 03-31-2019 11:01 AM

The practical political issue is that giving Biden a pass on this plays straight into Trump's hands.

Since the Mueller report came out he's been screaming about liberal lies, and his base believes every word. If touchy Joe gets the nomination we'll hear every day about how the liberals faked outrage about his pussy grabbing (which never happened and was another lie) and everything they say about him is also a lie. And his base will believe it, because the left has made it true.

Obviously Trump will find a fault in every candidate or make one up if that works better. But handing him a hammer to beat us over the head with is even stupider a Democratic move than usual.

Biden has a huge number of faults that would normally disqualify a candidate, and besides that he's a 76-year-old white man at exactly the wrong time. Sorry, Joe, you gotta go.

bobot 03-31-2019 11:08 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lamoral (Post 21566412)
...
I wonder what the Republicans are arguing about?

The eternal Republican argument: Which is funnier, grabbing women by their pussies or shipping kids and their mothers to two different places forever?

Lamoral 03-31-2019 11:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Exapno Mapcase (Post 21566436)
If touchy Joe gets the nomination we'll hear every day about how the liberals faked outrage about his pussy grabbing (which never happened and was another lie) and everything they say about him is also a lie. And his base will believe it, because the left has made it true.

And all Joe needs to do is say, "Donald, you have conducted yourself with such unbelievable crudeness and vulgarity not only during your presidency and campaign, but over your entire career, that it doesn't remotely compare. Do you know what 'remotely' means?"

He should say that during a debate.

I don't know if Biden is gonna get the nomination or not. But if he does, he needs to not back down an inch.

I'm sure Trump would have some words to say in response to that statement. And as soon as he does, all Biden needs to do is cut him off, as Trump always does to everyone else - and say...as loudly as he can: "Pussy. Porn stars. Affairs. That's you, Donald."

The way people are discussing this upcoming election, it's like they learned NOTHING from the last time and still think it's 1992. Fuck that. The gloves are off.

What Exit? 03-31-2019 11:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by racepug (Post 21566354)
I've had my eye on Cory Booker for some time. I'd vote for him - certainly before I'd EVER vote for the person who currently occupies the W.H.!

I would vote for Booker over Trump, but as someone from NJ, I would hardly recommend him. So far no Democrat I have seen comes close to bad enough where I wouldn't vote for them over Trump, so not a good measure.

Never loved Biden, if he has the best chance to take back states like Florida, Penn & others in the rust belt, I would support him, if this issues makes him slide in Florida polls, just tell me who is next that can beat Trump in Florida and take a few back in the rust belt.

DSeid 03-31-2019 11:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MortSahlFan (Post 21566425)
... Personally, I think Bernie Sanders is the only one ...

Really? Who knew? :)

Quote:

Originally Posted by Exapno Mapcase (Post 21566436)
The practical political issue is that giving Biden a pass on this plays straight into Trump's hands. ... And his base will believe it, ...

His base will believe anything and everything he says and are not the concern. He has that third of the vote no matter what and they will come out no matter what.

There is lots between disqualification and getting a pass and much of that space will satisfy those whose minds are not made up no matter what. There are responses that demonstrate what he learns by listening.

Will his being someone who touched lots (women, men, children) when politicking as his style, sometimes with cluelessness as to when it makes others uncomfortable, be disqualifying to Obama-Trump voters? To Romney-Clinton ones? Will Democratic women stay home rather than vote for him when the alternative is Trump? Will younger voters stay home because of this? Will Black voters?

Trump's base gives him a pass on everything no matter what, no more and no less whoever the D side runs.

As far as how this impacts his chances to win the nom ... I think the overlap between those who would not vote for another old white fairly moderate guy for the nom and those who find this disqualifying is great. I don't think he loses that much support even if it lowers his favorables slightly.


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