Sunday, August 23, 2015

And On Your Left...

With so much of the interesting political maneuvering happening on the right, we shouldn't lose sight of the fact that there will be Democratic debates in the fall, and they could be just as interesting as the Republican candidate-a-thons.

While Hillary Clinton still leads in every match-up with one or the other GOP candidate, she's being pressed by Bernie Sanders in New Hampshire. Bernie's doing his best to electrify the base with his talk about tighter government control of banks and higher wages and corporate child care centers and things that the US should already have but doesn't because the right believes that Americans feel better by earning these things individually and that if you can't afford them then it's your fault. Sucker. And now Joe Biden is thinking about a run. He would most likely be a very good president if he could get beyond the verbal improvisations that have haunted him in campaigns past. Yes, there are other candidates running--Martin O'Malley, Jim Webb and Lincoln Chafee--but they are having a difficult time breaking through a national media that can only handle a few at a time.

In a twist, this election could see the Democrats painted as the older party, with Hillary, Bernie and Joe all much older than their Republican counterparts. In addition, there's a bit of a rift going through the left as the Warren-Sanders far left wing battles with the establishment, more centrist views of the Hillary, and perhaps Biden, wing. There's been so much attention over the past few years about the yawning divide on the right, that a leftish split is certainly news and could be a potential problem unless the party unites in time for the convention, and that's pretty much what I would expect to happen.

Hillary's e-mails are making people nervous and the right will shout Benghazi whenever they get the chance, but on the main issues she seems to have most of the country on her side. Her recent confrontation with Black Lives Matter activists shows her to be empathetic and realistic, and her contrasting views with Republicans on marriage equality, gender equality, wages, climate change, education and foreign policy experience show her to be a more forward-looking candidate than any of the Republicans who only seem to be able to run negative campaigns.

Democrats need to be careful about being overconfident based on the Obama electoral map, with Ohio, Florida, Nevada and Colorado possibly presenting some serious challenges. Overall, though, demographics do provide the party with an advantage the Republicans will find difficult to overcome.

For more, go to or Twitter @rigrundfest   

No comments:

Post a Comment