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  #51  
Old 02-23-2019, 12:59 AM
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Are there 51 states?
When discussing the Electoral College only a pedant would feel the need to type out Every.Single.Time in full, "51 states where for the purpose of discussing electoral votes the District of Coumbia is included among the states."
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Old 02-23-2019, 09:45 AM
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It saved Bill Clinton in 1992, who cannily parlayed it into a "Comeback Kid" narrative.
As I said (bolding and italics added just now):
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New Hampshire, of course, has been part of the winnowing process since time immemorial. Iowa first became part of the winnowing process in 1976, and with the exception of 1992, where all the Dem candidates skipped Iowa to let Tom Harkin have an uncontested win, it's been part of the winnowing process for both parties ever since.

And in all those cycles where Iowa and NH have both been part of the winnowing process, the nominees of each party have won either Iowa or New Hampshire.
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I'm not in favor of eliminating the filibuster. Too dangerous. I was glad to hear Bernie Sanders expressing reluctance to do this on MSNBC last night.
Too dangerous, how?

How can it be more dangerous than a near-complete failure to meaningfully act to deal with global warming?? If we get rid of the filibuster, will we get hit by the giant meteor?
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Old 02-23-2019, 07:56 PM
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Trump might have won by 8 points against Hillary Clinton, but he's very unlikely to win by 8 percentage points against a centrist or center-left Democrat with less baggage. Sanders or someone perceived as far left, OTOH, might lose by double digits if the economy's still buoying Trump by that point.

By contrast, the recent races show that Florida is becoming tougher and tougher for even moderate and center-left pragmatists. It's not just that Trump beat Clinton; it's also Rick Scott and Ron DeSantis winning as well in years when Trump and the GOP were much less popular nationally than they were two years ago.



Again, I think the country was just uninspired by Clinton and this was something that plagued her in every close contest. A different kind of candidate with more energy and buzz would probably carry the states that Obama did.
I'd point out, though, that in 2018 Florida Ds had a center-left pragmatist running for Senate, and a progressive leftist running for Governor, and they lost by nearly identical margins. So this doesn't support your implied thesis that it's "safer" to nominate moderates.
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Old 02-23-2019, 09:51 PM
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I'd point out, though, that in 2018 Florida Ds had a center-left pragmatist running for Senate, and a progressive leftist running for Governor, and they lost by nearly identical margins. So this doesn't support your implied thesis that it's "safer" to nominate moderates.
It does when you consider that Andrew Gillum's opponent was much more flawed and extreme than Rick Scott.

Ron "Don't Monkey this Up" DeSantis and Donald Trump ran racist campaigns - and won. Bill Nelson would have defeated Ron DeSantis for governor; he didn't defeat Rick Scott for Senate.
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Old 02-23-2019, 10:10 PM
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Yeah, but Nelson had the advantage of incumbency. So maybe all those factors just cancelled each other out, or maybe partisanship is really strong right now.
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Old 02-25-2019, 04:07 AM
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Yeah, but Nelson had the advantage of incumbency. So maybe all those factors just cancelled each other out, or maybe partisanship is really strong right now.

They both had incumbency advantages IMO. I don't think there's much advantage to being the incumbent for the particular office up for vote: both of them had won powerful statewide offices.
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Old 02-25-2019, 05:03 AM
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There's still the idea that Trump won by less of the vote than other Republican candidates lost by. If this is true, then enthusiasm for the nominee may be the more important issue than pulling in the people in the middle who could go either way. Sure, it still has to be in those states, but maybe the way to do it is to get more young people in those states enthused enough to vote.

To me, it always seems the candidate who inspires the most enthusiasm wins--at least, in my lifetime. I don't mean the most fervent supporters, but the one that can get the most people excited. While people hated Trump, he got more people excited that Clinton did. Same with Obama, both Bushes, and Bill Clinton.

I'm really still pulling for someone who can make Democrats excited to vote again.
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Old 02-25-2019, 11:51 PM
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Trump did get three million fewer votes than Hillary. That's a lot.

Democrats did vote in amazing numbers in 2018. (So did Republicans, actually, which is somewhat disconcerting.)
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Old 02-26-2019, 07:37 AM
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I guess my point about Florida is that even though there are tight margins, the Republicans have been on a pretty good winning streak there lately. They've won the governorship the last several elections. They now have two Republicans in the Senate, this despite having one guy running a race-baiting election. It doesn't matter that the Democrats were close; the bottom line is that they keep losing, and they keep failing to find the formula for victory in Florida. A progressive loses, a moderate loses. Obama somehow cracked the code, and I'm guessing that the conclusion I come to is that you want someone like Obama who can be a 'safe' progressive, but also one who can inspire people. But even if you nominate someone like that, Obama last won Florida in 2012 - that was more than 6 years ago now.

Ohio, despite Republican strength, is still more in play, in my view. As is PA, WI, and MI.
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Old 03-07-2019, 03:28 PM
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And pretty much irrelevant now as Brown announces he will not run for President in 2020.
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Old 03-07-2019, 05:35 PM
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A shame; he had a lot to contribute to the debate. Smart guy.

As has been mentioned, if he won it would mean one less Dem seat in the Senate. Possibly he didn't want that likelihood thrown in his face; and of course there are many costs involved (psychic as well as financial) in running for President.
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Old 03-07-2019, 07:38 PM
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As has been mentioned, if he won it would mean one less Dem seat in the Senate. Possibly he didn't want that likelihood thrown in his face;
I'm not seeing that as a concern that probably influenced him. Senator isn't exactly an endangered species among the declared candidates. There's six of them declared. Since Brown won his current term last November they can't even try to paint it as giving up on protecting the seat in 2020. He doesn't need to protect his seat till 2024.

Booker on the other hand needs to defend his Senate seat in 2020.
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Old 03-07-2019, 07:58 PM
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But if Brown were elected President, he would have to resign from the Senate, and the Governor of Ohio, who is a Republican, would appoint his successor. AFAIK all the other Senators running come from States with Democrat governors, so their election wouldn't result in the loss of a Senate seat.
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Old 03-07-2019, 08:11 PM
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Would nominating Sherrod Brown checkmate Trump in the Electoral College?


None of this conjecture about Senate seats matters at this point. With Brown out of the race we are basically doomed to a second four years of this President continuing to shred the Constitution.

There aren’t any Democrats running who have a prayer of winning. And even if Biden gets in he has so much baggage the GOP hit machine will destroy him. Plus the Berniecrats will never support him because he isn’t “pure”.

Last edited by Kolak of Twilo; 03-07-2019 at 08:11 PM.
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Old 03-07-2019, 08:11 PM
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But if Brown were elected President, he would have to resign from the Senate, and the Governor of Ohio, who is a Republican, would appoint his successor. AFAIK all the other Senators running come from States with Democrat governors, so their election wouldn't result in the loss of a Senate seat.
Yep, that's the issue (the GOP governor appointing a replacement for Brown). Apparently Brown may have disliked the prospect of personal attacks, too:

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Democrats with an eye on control of the Senate may be relieved by Brown's decision; had he won the presidency, Ohio's Republican governor would have appointed his replacement. And while it did not become an issue during his exploratory tour, Brown faced Republican attacks in 2018 over his first marriage and subsequent messy divorce, an issue that could have emerged anew had he run for president.
https://www.philly.com/politics/sena...-20190307.html
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Old 03-07-2019, 08:15 PM
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None of this conjecture about Senate seats matters at this point. With Brown out of the race we are basically doomed to a second four years of this President continuing to shred the Constitution.

There arenít any Democrats running who have a prayer of winning. And even if Biden gets in he has so much baggage the GOP hit machine will destroy him. Plus the Berniecrats will never support him because he isnít ďpureĒ.
I liked Brown over Biden and Sanders, too, for basically the reasons you indicate.

I'm not so sure about "doomed," though. I still think a surge in black and possibly Latino voting is possible with the right candidate--Biden or Sanders not being that candidate (though Brown + Harris could have been pretty awesome).
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Old 03-07-2019, 10:33 PM
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I think he's still in play to be tapped for the second spot on the ticket. Would make the GOP nominee (who might be someone besides Trump BTW) spend more money and time defending Ohio at least.
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Old 03-07-2019, 11:55 PM
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None of this conjecture about Senate seats matters at this point. With Brown out of the race we are basically doomed to a second four years of this President continuing to shred the Constitution.

There arenít any Democrats running who have a prayer of winning. And even if Biden gets in he has so much baggage the GOP hit machine will destroy him. Plus the Berniecrats will never support him because he isnít ďpureĒ.
What I've seen in the last few weeks is that moderate white male Democrats are withdrawing from the election, which tells me that they've done their research and concluded that they can't win the nomination.

Don't get me wrong: I think the nation can do without white male candidates for a while, and I'm all for opening up the field. But politically, I worry about the implications of a party in which white male pragmatist center-left moderates feel like they can't even compete. Obama might not have been white, but he was a pragmatist, which was why a lot of people wanted to vote for him. It seems like the Democrats are doubling down on Bernie Broism.
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Old 03-08-2019, 06:10 AM
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Brown pushes Trumpist trade policy, so no great loss here.
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Old 03-08-2019, 06:14 AM
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What I've seen in the last few weeks is that moderate white male Democrats are withdrawing from the election, which tells me that they've done their research and concluded that they can't win the nomination.

Don't get me wrong: I think the nation can do without white male candidates for a while, and I'm all for opening up the field. But politically, I worry about the implications of a party in which white male pragmatist center-left moderates feel like they can't even compete. Obama might not have been white, but he was a pragmatist, which was why a lot of people wanted to vote for him. It seems like the Democrats are doubling down on Bernie Broism.
It may well be that all of the moderate white men are dropping out because they've concluded they can't compete with Biden , though. Given that Biden is leading all the polls, it seems a bit early to give up on centrist white guys as a group.

Anzari had an interesting comment on 538 this morning, to the effect that Brown's decision might have been influenced by the fear that, to compete in a Democratic primary, he would need to have taken more liberal stances on race and gender issues than he has previously, and that if he didn't win the nomination, that could come back to haunt him in his next Senate re-election race.
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Old 03-08-2019, 07:27 AM
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None of this conjecture about Senate seats matters at this point. With Brown out of the race we are basically doomed to a second four years of this President continuing to shred the Constitution.

There arenít any Democrats running who have a prayer of winning. And even if Biden gets in he has so much baggage the GOP hit machine will destroy him. Plus the Berniecrats will never support him because he isnít ďpureĒ.
Brown is far from the only Dem who could beat Trump. The most popular candidate will be "Not Donald Trump."

On another note, Florida will be a tough get unless Dems can turn out the voters whose voting rights were restored last year. And even then we can't be sure that they will be a blue demographic, or at least blue in enough numbers to swing that election.

I don't think Texas is a Dem get in '20 either. It's looking like Georgia will flip before Texas and I don't think Georgia will flip before '24 or even '28.
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Old 03-08-2019, 07:31 AM
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Given that regaining control of the Senate is the most challenging hurdle the Dems face before they can enact any of their policy agenda, I'm quite relieved that Brown has decided to stay in the Senate.

Assuming there's a Dem in the White House in 2021, the Dems need to pick up 3 seats, net, in order to get to control via 50 Senators and the VP. Doug Jones is almost certain to lose his re-election race in Alabama next year, so they need to win 4 other seats, which will already be a challenge. (538 rates the odds at somewhat under 50-50, IIRC.) If Brown's not in the Senate in 2021, they'd need to win five other seats, and that's getting even more dicey, even in what should be another Dem wave year.

Quite simply, the Dems need to throw everything they've got into winning the Senate. And once they gain control, they'll need to kill the filibuster. With the possible exception of Bernie, I figure that anyone who does well enough in the primaries to win the nomination has a much better chance of beating Trump than the Dems have of winning the Senate.
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Old 03-08-2019, 08:57 AM
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Brown is far from the only Dem who could beat Trump. The most popular candidate will be "Not Donald Trump."
Agreed.
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On another note, Florida will be a tough get unless Dems can turn out the voters whose voting rights were restored last year. And even then we can't be sure that they will be a blue demographic, or at least blue in enough numbers to swing that election.

I don't think Texas is a Dem get in '20 either. It's looking like Georgia will flip before Texas and I don't think Georgia will flip before '24 or even '28.
Yeah, the way I rank the 2020 Dem Presidential prospects in currently GOP-leaning Sun Belt states is: AZ > NC > FL > GA > TX.
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Old 03-08-2019, 09:36 AM
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It may well be that all of the moderate white men are dropping out because they've concluded they can't compete with Biden , though. Given that Biden is leading all the polls, it seems a bit early to give up on centrist white guys as a group.
...
And in a crowded field how many others share your lane(s) is pretty important. Even before actual voting starts.
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Old 03-08-2019, 11:02 AM
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So in those terms ... Dopers who had Brown as one of their top considerations and only those Dopers, who do you now have as your favorite two or three?

Not that we are representative of the country but it might give some sense of who his dropping out helps.

I'm left with Harris as my default and close second choice but going to look more closely at Booker and would be fine but not excited with Biden.

And that I think is the biggest problem with Biden. He's fine. But we could use someone who can excite (without being overly divisive) and I don't him as that.

And to those who supported Sanders last time and only them, are you seriously considering jumping to anyone else this time? If so who?
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Old 03-08-2019, 11:09 AM
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So in those terms ... Dopers who had Brown as one of their top considerations and only those Dopers, who do you now have as your favorite two or three?

Not that we are representative of the country but it might give some sense of who his dropping out helps.

I'm left with Harris as my default and close second choice but going to look more closely at Booker and would be fine but not excited with Biden.

And that I think is the biggest problem with Biden. He's fine. But we could use someone who can excite (without being overly divisive) and I don't him as that.

And to those who supported Sanders last time and only them, are you seriously considering jumping to anyone else this time? If so who?
Well, I'm not that excited about any of them right now, but I'm off-the-charts excited to beat Trump in 2020. Luckily, we have time to get worked up into a lather.
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Old 03-08-2019, 11:43 AM
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So in those terms ... Dopers who had Brown as one of their top considerations and only those Dopers, who do you now have as your favorite two or three?

Not that we are representative of the country but it might give some sense of who his dropping out helps.

I'm left with Harris as my default and close second choice but going to look more closely at Booker and would be fine but not excited with Biden.

And that I think is the biggest problem with Biden. He's fine. But we could use someone who can excite (without being overly divisive) and I don't him as that.

And to those who supported Sanders last time and only them, are you seriously considering jumping to anyone else this time? If so who?
I'm a loyal cadre of the Political Revolution.

I don't see abandoning Bernie under any circumstances until next spring, and only then if polls clearly show someone else with a better chance of beating Trump.

If he were to suddenly drop out, I guess right now I'd lean toward Warren, while also looking closely at Harris, Booker and Gillebrand in approximately that order.

I wonder if it would be interesting to do a mock election in ranked-preference format?
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Old 03-08-2019, 11:48 AM
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To clarify, Warren would be my clear second choice in a vacuum, and I think she'd be a great President, but here's where I must confess to having my own subjective concerns about "electability".
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Old 03-08-2019, 12:13 PM
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Oh yeah, since he just got in, I'll add Inslee to my list of potential Plan Bs.
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Old 03-08-2019, 12:21 PM
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Inslee, Beto, and Booker for me. I am a Minnesotan and was high on Klobuchar, but after reading about her treatment of staff (not the comb thing, which is strangely the thing everyone is focusing on but which I find highly shruggable), she's dead to me. I won't even vote for her in her next Senate primary, although I will definitely vote for her in the general election.
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Old 03-08-2019, 12:35 PM
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Brown is far from the only Dem who could beat Trump. The most popular candidate will be "Not Donald Trump."
Maybe. There is no shortage of candidates running as Democrats who I feel would be very good Presidents. The problem is the big names in the race will be very easily depicted as either crazy, gun-grabbing, baby murdering West Coast liberals or Socialist, gun-grabbing, baby murdering East Coast elitist liberals. As much as we may regard Trump as a buffoon he knows how to effectively play the name calling game. And it usually works for him.

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On another note, Florida will be a tough get unless Dems can turn out the voters whose voting rights were restored last year. And even then we can't be sure that they will be a blue demographic, or at least blue in enough numbers to swing that election.

I don't think Texas is a Dem get in '20 either. It's looking like Georgia will flip before Texas and I don't think Georgia will flip before '24 or even '28.
The continuing focus on Florida, not to mention fantasies about TX, GA, NC, and AZ illustrate how many of my fellow Democrats either can't do math or won't face reality. The Democrats MUST win all the states Hillary got AND win MI, WI and PA. OH would also be nice but isn't essential. If the 2020 nominee wins FL but loses those four states, Trump still wins 277 to 261. Hillary wasted time, energy and money in Florida and it got her nothing other than having the voters who helped Obama win twice and who live in MI, WI and PA either stay home or go reluctantly for Trump. Any Democrat who doesn't get that is guaranteed to lose in 2020.

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Old 03-08-2019, 12:49 PM
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I picked Brown when it was him against Harris in those voting threads. But that was only because Biden didn't make the final rundown.

Biden's my choice--although I'm not 100% behind him until I see how he does in a townhall or rally or other 'requires energy' environment. If he's got the pepper, I'm with him. He's sharp and I think waaay too much has been made of his gaffes, especially now that we know what a real "gaffe-prone" moron-as-president is.

I don't agree with him on everything, certainly. I'm much further left than he is. But I see his intelligence, passion, humanity, awareness of history, and empathy as the qualities we need most right now. And again, if he's energetic and on-the-ball, the age thing will hopefully not be an issue (as long as he picks a good VP).

Trump's saying "Oh I hope it's Biden, I'd love to run against Biden" is one more reason. I don't believe a thing that shithead says.

All this said? I'll vote for Elmo if he runs against Trump. There's literally not a single Democrat currently in the race (or even not in the race!) whom I wouldn't choose over the walking clusterfuck we have now.

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Old 03-08-2019, 01:00 PM
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I'll certainly end up supporting whoever wins the nomination, but I think there's a major drop-off between Biden and the rest of the pack. I don't mean that Biden is that much more electable than the rest of the field - he's not, IMO. But in terms of knowing the job and having the ability to navigate this political environment, he has the right experience.
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Old 03-08-2019, 01:24 PM
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Maybe. There is no shortage of candidates running as Democrats who I feel would be very good Presidents. The problem is the big names in the race will be very easily depicted as either crazy, gun-grabbing, baby murdering West Coast liberals or Socialist, gun-grabbing, baby murdering East Coast elitist liberals. As much as we may regard Trump as a buffoon he knows how to effectively play the name calling game. And it usually works for him.


The continuing focus on Florida, not to mention fantasies about TX, GA, NC, and AZ illustrate how many of my fellow Democrats either can't do math or won't face reality. The Democrats MUST win all the states Hillary got AND win MI, WI and PA. OH would also be nice but isn't essential. If the 2020 nominee wins FL but loses those four states, Trump still wins 277 to 261. Hillary wasted time, energy and money in Florida and it got her nothing other than having the voters who helped Obama win twice and who live in MI, WI and PA either stay home or go reluctantly for Trump. Any Democrat who doesn't get that is guaranteed to lose in 2020.
It's not a focus and they are not fantasies. They are interesting discussion points about voting trends and future elections.
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Old 03-08-2019, 05:11 PM
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The continuing focus on Florida, not to mention fantasies about TX, GA, NC, and AZ illustrate how many of my fellow Democrats either can't do math or won't face reality.
What's such a fantasy about Arizona? The Dems just won a Senate race there, and hold 5 of its 9 House seats.
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Old 03-08-2019, 05:23 PM
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What's such a fantasy about Arizona? The Dems just won a Senate race there, and hold 5 of its 9 House seats.
Point taken. Maybe AZ isn't such an impossible state to win. But I still stand by the idea that the nominee's focus should be on recapturing the Upper Midwest states over wasting time in Florida, Texas or Georgia.
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Old 03-08-2019, 05:24 PM
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It's not a focus and they are not fantasies. They are interesting discussion points about voting trends and future elections.
Future elections, yes. Just not 2020. Getting this crop of crooks out of power should be the focus in the next election. Wasting resources and time if Florida will not accomplish that.
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Old 03-08-2019, 05:36 PM
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Point taken. Maybe AZ isn't such an impossible state to win. But I still stand by the idea that the nominee's focus should be on recapturing the Upper Midwest states over wasting time in Florida, Texas or Georgia.
I agree with you generally on that. I'd say PA, MI, WI, and even IA are all more winnable than FL.*

However, I think Ohio's basically out of reach in a close race. It might be the 330th EV for a Dem candidate, but it won't be the 270th or even the 300th. I remember when Missouri was a bellwether; now it's firmly Republican. Ohio seems to be following the same track, just trailing MO by maybe 15 years.

*ETA: And as I said earlier, FL is more winnable than GA or TX.

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Old 03-08-2019, 06:22 PM
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So in those terms ... Dopers who had Brown as one of their top considerations and only those Dopers, who do you now have as your favorite two or three?
The one who polls best against Trump, but apparently thatís Michelle Obama.
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Old 03-08-2019, 06:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Sherrerd View Post
I liked Brown over Biden and Sanders, too, for basically the reasons you indicate.

I'm not so sure about "doomed," though. I still think a surge in black and possibly Latino voting is possible with the right candidate--Biden or Sanders not being that candidate (though Brown + Harris could have been pretty awesome).
Sanders is the best candidate to maximize youth turnout including Latinos who are disproportionately younger.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruken View Post
Brown pushes Trumpist trade policy, so no great loss here.
And your economic views are to the right of Nelson Rockefeller and probably Dick Nixon as well. The problem isn't Trump's protectionist and economic nationalist instincts which to a degree are healthy, especially with regards to China but that he's going about implementing trade policy in the worst possible way .
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Old 03-08-2019, 11:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Kolak of Twilo View Post
Point taken. Maybe AZ isn't such an impossible state to win. But I still stand by the idea that the nominee's focus should be on recapturing the Upper Midwest states over wasting time in Florida, Texas or Georgia.

Your stance is a reasonable one to take: ignore the states beyond the "tipping point", which will just be gravy in a blowout. But although I recognize the power of that argument, I am slightly more persuaded by the other view. Not a "fifty state strategy", which I would agree is stupid, but something in between. The reason is threefold:

(1) It can help in Senate and other races, now and in the near future.

(2) Something might go wrong in one of the "Northern Path" states, in which case we'll need a backup plan.

(3) Perhaps most important: even if we don't actually win Texas, Arizona, Georgia, or Florida, running hard there forces the other side to dedicate time and resources to defending them, leaving them less time and resources for those Northern Path states. It's a chess game, and there are definitely compelling arguments on both sides, but that's where I land--for now, at least.
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Last edited by SlackerInc; 03-08-2019 at 11:35 PM.
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