Kamala Harris Drops Out – Who should be next? | 2020 Election | QT Politics


As the crowded democratic primary race for
the 2020 election rages on, voters appear to be coalescing around a narrowing field
of realistic choices. The tier 1 choices at the moment appear to
be Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and Pete Buttigieg. These four candidates are the top four in
the national polls, each with more than 10% support, according to the rcp averages, and
each has their own advantages. Joe Biden has probably the best name recognition
in the field, and is polling in first nation-wide. Bernie Sanders has raised the most money from
supporters, and has the greatest number of donors. Elizabeth Warren is the only candidate to
have, although briefly, surpassed Biden in the national polls, leads in her home state
of Massachusetts, and remains in second in Nevada, South Carolina, and California. Pete Buttigieg is currently surging nation-wide,
and leads in both Iowa and New Hampshire. It would difficult for any candidate not already
in the top four to break through at this stage of the game, but that doesn’t mean that everyone
else in the race should pack their bags. Andrew Yang, for instance, has shown remarkable
progress for a political outsider, and the longer he fights on, the more seriously mainstream
democrats are to take his central issues: data rights, automation, and universal basic
income. While there are good reasons to cast a cynical
eye on Bloomberg’s run, his financial power is formidable to say the least. Deval Patrick, too, just joined the race—and
while I doubt his experience at Mitt Romney’s vulture capitalist firm, Bain Capital, will
do much to earn him a place in the hearts of democratic voters—it may be a tad too
early to totally dismiss him out of hand. With a number of candidates recently dropping
out, Wayne Messam, Joe Sestak, Steve Bullock, and Kamala Harris, it seems reasonable to
ask… Who should be next? Tom Steyer has managed to make it onto the
debate stage twice, now, passing the polling and fundraising thresholds set by the DNC. For most, his appearances have been somewhat
overwhelming. But if he’s doing so bad in the debates, you
may ask, how has he managed to do well enough in the polls, and in fundraising, to make
it onto the debate stage at all? Well, unlike most of the candidates, Steyer’s
campaign is astoundingly self-funded. While most candidates release ads, in part,
to fill their campaign’s coffers, Steyer is losing astronomical amounts of money with
every ad buy. According to CNN, by October 10th, he had
spent over 30 million dollars on ads across televison and social media. As a result, he raised a paultry 2 million
dollars from less than 160,000 unique donors. Meaning, for every dollar he spends in ads,
he takes in less than 7 cents. Not exactly a promising return on investment. A businessman should know better. But, of course, Steyer’s goal is not to get
his message out there so that the people will help fund his campaign. His goal is to directly earn support from
uncommitted or uninformed voters through ads purchased from his own pocket book. His wager is, essentially, that he can buy
his way into the White House. This graph from 538 shows the ad spending
of different campaigns. Steyer’s ads are represented in green. As you can see, while Steyer remains a relatively
minor candidate in polling and fundraising, he is outspending his primary rivals many
times over. At the current count, Steyer has already spent
a whopping 46 million dollars. That’s a massive figure, but no suprise, given
Steyer is a billionaire, and in 2016 was the second-biggest Democratic donor in the presidential
race. Now, if we extend the graph just slightly,
to today, we see the big problem for Steyer. There’s another Billionaire in the race, one
with even more money than Steyer, who actually topped the charts as the number one biggest
Democratic donor in the 2016 race. Michael Bloomberg, in the last week of November,
and in December so far, is putting his resources at work, outspending even Steyer, many times
over. He’s already spent $31 million. If Steyer’s strategy is to just use his money
to outspend everyone else in the field, Bloomberg seems to be the only guy who can out do him. He’s quite simply got more money to burn. On top of that, Bloomberg’s spending is more
likely to drive his standings in the polls and with donors. He may be quite unpopular amongst Democrats,
but at least Bloomberg has experience beyond funding campaigns. He’s got actual executive experience, having
served as the Mayor of New York. Not exactly sufficient experience for most
Presidential hopefulls, but it is more than Steyer, and more than Pete Buttigieg, who
is currently showing strong promise in the National and Early State polls. Without original policy ideas, strong debate
chops, or experience in politics, he’s got virtually zero chance of catching fire as
a candidate organically. His only advantage has been his ability to
self-fund his campaign. Bloomberg’s entry in the race totally eliminates
that advantage. Not only should Steyer drop out, he should
do so ASAP, because unlike with most democratic candidates, it’s his own money he’s wasting. From the ultimate political insider, to the
ultimate outsider, Marianne Williamson should also drop out of the race. Williamson has said that she’s going to stay
in the race until the money dries up. Bless her heart. I love the orb mother, but it’s hard to imagine
that her campaign has any reason left to exist at this point. Early on, Williamson was able to get onto
the debate stage, and bring up her issues. At times, she even had reasonably good performances. She can even take partial credit for the fact
that one of her top issues, reparations, became a topic of conversation in the debates—enough
so that even Pete Buttigieg, who enjoys very little support from the Black community—would
attempt to win over black voters with his Douglass Plan. Despite having no experience in politics,
Williamson managed to make a bit of a mark. She should be proud of what she’s done, and
hang her hat on it. Now, there’s very little else she can do. Polling at .4 percent in the RCP averages,
she has no hope of returning to the debate stage, or gaining more attention in the mainstream
media, as the field narrows in on more serious prospects. Like Marianne Williamson, Michael Bennet is
no longer likely to gain any real attention in the mainstream media, or make it on stage
for future debates. Despite his past debate appearances, he’s
failed to make his mark, and is currently polling at .8% in the RCP averages. He was also one of the lowest-fundraising
candidates in the 3rd quarter, but for some reason he’s pledged to stay in the race, at
least until New Hampshire. There’s no reason for him to do that. As Colorado’s senior US Senator, he’s got
bigger fish to fry than a campaign going no where slowly. John Delaney’s reasons to drop out are so
numerous that a small wonder he even remembers what it was like to be on the campaign trail. Sure, unlike Bennet, he’s got little else
going on in his political career, having concluded his work in the House of Representatives in
January. But like Bennet and Williamson, his appearances
in the early Democratic debates gained him little traction. He is currently polling at just .6 percent
in the RCP averages: that’s 25% less than Bennett—although with numbers this small,
his total support is well within the margin of error for most polls. Delaney’s run is also comparable to Steyer,
as before Steyer came around, Delaney was the self-funded candidate. Delaney’s campaign is actually one of the
better funded ones—with over 27 million dollars. All but 3 million of that, however, came from
his own bank account. If Steyer should drop out, now that a bigger
self-funded campaign has entered the contest, it’s astounding that Delaney hasn’t caught
on that he’s wasting his money. Having launched his campaign all the way back
in July of 2017, Delaney has been in this race for literal years longer than the major
candidates. The only benefit to his enduring efforts would
be a Guinness World Record for longest-lived campaign failure. Although a far more plausible candidate than
anyone I have mentioned so far, Amy Klobuchar might seriously consider dropping out as well. When it comes to fundraising, she’s raised
about the same amount as Beto O’Rourke, who has already left the race. Polling-wise, she’s in 8th place, with 2.4%
in the RCP averages—not exactly remarkable for an experienced US Senator. And all of this is after two debates where
she clearly performed significantly better than she had previously done. If Klobuchar was going to surge into serious
contention, she would’ve done so already. The real trouble with Klobuchar is that she
offers very little not already offered by a higher-polling candidate. You want an experienced politician with moderate
ideology? You’ve got that with Joe Biden, the leader
in the national polls. Are you a moderate who thinks Biden’s better
days are behind him? Well, in fourth place, and surging in the
early states, you’ve got Pete Buttigieg—who clearly represents a new generation of moderate
dems, far more convincingly than Klobuchar. Do you not care about ideology, and are instead
focused on gender?, you want a woman president? Well, your best bet in that case would be
Elizabeth Warren. She’s in third place nationally, and in the
first two states. Booker, too, is showing weak numbers in the
polls, even after the 5th Democratic Debate, where he delivered what was probably his best
performance in the primary race so far. He’s polled at just 1 or 2 percent since then,
retaining an overall rcp average of just 1.8%. In terms of fundraising, he’s raised about
18 and a half million, and spend 14, meaning he’s not saving up much cash on hand for an
ad blitz in the offing. Booker has a ton of charisma, and solid experience,
but it appears that voters just aren’t buying what he’s selling. To paraphrase an expression Booker used in
a dazzling debate moment, he’s selling the Kool Aid but nobody wants the flavor. Julian Castro’s campaign has shown a number
of signs of impending doom. He’s begun to struggle to make the thresholds
required to make the debates, and as I’ve previously reported, he’s shutting down what
ought to be major campaign operations in New Hampshire and South Carolina. Sure, the official line is that this is to
focus on other critical states, like Iowa (where he his polling in 12th place), Nevada
(where he is polling in 10th place) and his native Texas (where he is polling in 7th place)… But with less than a million dollars cash
on hand, and declining presence in the press, it’s hard to see his prospects as anything
other than a wild long shot. The reality is that, despite being a recurrently
forceful presence on the debate stage, Castro was essentially put in a no-win situation
after his infamous clash with Joe Biden. After asking Biden “did you forget what
you said two minutes ago?”–and repeating that line of attack—the mainstream press
repeatedly reported the encounter as Castro making a distasteful swipe at Biden’s age. In my opinion, Castro was correct in calling
Biden out, and I broke that down in my analysis of the debate at the time. But I would go on to predict that Castro would
suffer in the polls, and that in the next debate, he’d be between a rock and a hard
place: he would have to chose to double down on his aggressive debate style—one of his
only advantages in the primary race—or bend to media pressure, and soften his approach. Castro seemed to do the latter. As a result, his last appearance on a debate
stage was unremarkable, and the low-polling candidate was lost in the shuffle. It may seem a little mean spirited to suggest
that many of the long shot campaigns should end soon, but as the primaries and caucuses
draw nearer, pruning the crowded field may be extremely useful for democratic voters. Crowded debates tend to translate into little
substance, as minor candidates attempt to make their mark with attacks on the major
players, who themselves benefit most by conveying as little meaning as possible—in order to
avoid rocking the boat. With numerous candidates, it also becomes
next to impossible for working Americans to sufficiently research each of their available
options. In this way, dropping out of the race is not
just the right thing to do in terms of time, and energy, and resources for a variety of
candidates—it is also the right thing to do, morally, for Democratic voters, and the
American people. For that reason, I will end this video honouring
the departed campaigns of the patriots who have respected the voters enough to remove
themselves from the race. But of the fifteen candidates still taking
up valuable air time, I ask, how many are wasting everybody’s time? How many are continuing on out of sheer vanity,
stubbornness, and fantasy?, and how many actually have a message worth listening to? And of those, how many really deserve serious
consideration? The Democratic Party has not always opted
for the best choice when it comes to presidential nominees. It may be time for the long shots to step
aside, so that the voters can inform themselves about the realistic options, and decide… Who should be next?

PM Narendra Modi Birthday | Top Achievements of Modi Government | RRB, Bank & SSC Exams


Press the Bell icon and never miss a video from Testbook.com Hello friends and welcome to this video. Today is PM Modi’s Birthday! Before we begin the video, here’s a question for you. Do you know the constituency from which PM Modi was elected MP? If you know the answer then do comment below. By the end of the video, you will definitely know the answer to this question. So today on the occasion of Narendra Modi’s birthday, we’ll find out about his achievements. So let’s begin. Modi ji has been our Prime Minister for last 4 years and under his watchful guidance, there have been many significant changes in the Indian economy. So when was PM Narendra Modi born? He was born on 17th September 1950 in Vadnagar, Gujarat. As a child, Modi ji used to sell tea at Vadnagar station with his father. From 2001 to 2014 He was the Chief Minister of Gujarat. After he became the PM, He launched many initiatives. ‘Make-in-India’, ‘Skill India’ and ‘Digital India’ were launched to bring focus on strengthening defence and electronics. The main aim was also to create more job opportunities. Currency with higher denomination was demonetised to suppress black money. Because of the Jan Dhan Yojana, 312 million people opened bank accounts. Additionally, the LPG cylinder subsidy transformed the lives of many rural women. Mudra Yojana enabled small entrepreneurs to get loans at minimal or no-collateral security The aim is to curate self- employment, which will in turn help in creating employment. Another such brave initiative of the Modi government is ‘The National Health Protection Scheme (NHPS)’ with an annual budget of around Rs 10,000 crore. It aims to provide medical insurance cover of Rs 5 lakh to 500 million to low-income Indians. Due to vigorous changes bought in foreign policies the relation between India and several other countries have improved significantly. For example Japan, USA, Vietnam and Australia The Modi government took steps to strengthen India’s ties with Bangladesh, and is working hard to stop economic claim by China in the Indian subcontinent and the Indian Ocean region. In order to improve India’s defense against other countries, BJP government has taken initiative to invest in several equipment. Rafale fighter jets deal is an example of that. Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is yet another a thoughtful initiative by Modi Government. The program is a movement against open defecation and a step towards maintaining cleanliness in and around our surroundings. GST formulation across India brought a reform in the Indian Indirect tax regime. Before this the taxes were charged differently for all the goods and services. The implementation of GST helped to be attain single taxation system The BJP government brought transformation in the bankruptcy laws which was important because the bankers were struggling with the ever rising non-performing assets. Thus, through its mission and schemes the BJP government has made several groundbreaking achievement. If you want to read up more on the schemes and policies discussed in this video Then you can read articles on them in Testbook Blog. In fact, you will also get detailed videos on these topics on Testbook’s YouTube channel. Their links are in the description. Now coming back to the question asked in the beginning of the video. We had asked you, “Do you know the constituency from which PM Modi was elected MP?” The correct answer is Varanasi. I hope you did answer in the comments section! Do comment how you liked this video. Thanks for watching this video and all the best!

Michael Bloomberg 2020 – 5 Problems | QT Politics


After initially declaring he would not run
for president in the 2020 election, Michael Bloomberg filled paperwork to qualify for
the Alabama primary in time to meet the deadline. This action, followed soon after by fillings
in other states, has prompted many to speculate that the billionaire is seriously considering
changing his mind about running, and his spokespeople have said he would be making up his mind soon. Were Bloomberg to declare a run, he would
reportedly have at least one supporter: Jeff Bezos, the world’s richest person, who apparently
encouraged his fellow billionaire to run during a phone call earlier this year. To win the presidency, Bloomberg would, of
course, have to begin by winning the democratic primary contest. In this video, I will lay
out five serious problems he would face, if he were to join the race. Now, before I launch into this, I want to
be straight up about my bias. I think that the fact that Bloomberg is even considering
a run is an unsavory indicator of times we now live in. I do not trust the ability of
any billionaire to empathize with, or understand the problems of, ordinary Americans. I find
it incredibly difficult to believe that any billionaire is likely to favor policy that
would help working class people, over the interests of their own economic class, and
the corporations they often own, work for, and/or own stock in. And, I find it difficult
to believe that a billionaire will faithfully act in the national interest of America, over
and above their own financial interests. Beyond that, regardless of their propensity
to support policy that would widen the already unconscionable wealth gap in America, I believe
there are serious symbolic issues with having a billionaire in the oval office. Bloomberg
is the fourth Billionaire, after Donald Trump, Howard Schultz, and Tom Steyer, to seriously
consider a 2020 run. Were Bloomberg to secure the democratic nomination, the 2020 election
would be the first general election contest between two billionaires in American history,
a disheartening blow to the notion that anyone in America can grow up to become the President
of the United States. So, for full disclosure, even if a billionaire
were to propose the perfect policies, and somehow prove a faithful commitment to it,
I would still be hesitant. Michael Bloomberg does not pose such moral quandary for me,
as I am in general disagreement about much of his ideology. But, to be quite clear, I
am biased to begin with. The very fact that he is a billionaire means that even if he
were running on a platform I loved, I would still have to seriously mull over the idea
of supporting him, and ask myself: Is it worth it? To begin with, were Michael Bloomberg to join
the presidential race, he must contend with the fact that he might be a spoiler candidate
for more popular moderate Democrats, like Joe Biden and Pete Buttigieg. I don’t generally
like spoiler arguments, but the fact is that he avoided running in 2016 for that very reason.
He opted to back Clinton, rather than running himself, because he wanted to unite in common
cause against Donald Trump. Were Bloomberg to join the current Democratic
Primary, he does so mainly to oppose progressive candidates like Elizabeth Warren and Bernie
Sanders, both of whom propose wealth taxes for Billionaires like Bloomberg. Theoretically,
were Bloomberg to make the debate stage—itself a somewhat dubious potentiality—he would
use his time to rail against the progressive moment, and perhaps bolster candidates more
favorable to his own ideology. However, were he to draw support, there is
no doubt where he would be most likely to draw it from: Joe Biden, who is similar ideologically
and demographically, and has the most support to lose. So, were Bloomberg to be extremely
successful and become a major contender, he would very likely split Biden’s base of support
in the process, thus improving the chances of Warren and Sanders, the very candidates
he would join the race to stop. That said, splitting the vote is the least
of Bloomberg’s troubles, as it’s a theoretical problem for anyone joining any race. It’s
also not likely to become a real problem, as to split the vote, you have to draw supporters,
and Bloomberg is not likely to do that effectively. One obvious problem for Michael Bloomberg
is that he is entering the race late. John Delaney was the first to declare his candidacy
at the end of July of 2017. By the end of April 2015, all of the major candidates had
already declared. Candidates who declared after Joe Biden include: Bullock, Sestak,
Steyer, and de Blasio, none of whom have so far been able to gain serious traction. One
of them has actually already dropped out, and two of them might as well have, as they
have failed keep pace with the DNC’s rules for making the debate stage. Aside from this anecdotal evidence, there
is good reason to suggest any new comer to the race would have a tough time: an October
YouGov/HuffPost poll found that 83 percent of Democratic voters were already satisfied
with or enthusiastic about the current field of presidential choices. With so late an entry into the contest, among
a field of highly-liked candidates, Bloomberg would have to have an incredible plan to gain
sufficient momentum to secure the nomination. According to his adviser, Howard Wolfson,
however, Bloomberg’s plan would be to not campaign in early caucus and primary states
like Iowa and New Hampshire, but instead focus on Super Tuesday. The last time a democratic candidate won the
nomination without winning one of the first two state contests was in 1972. And that was
a strange primary contest—McGovern won the nomination despite the fact that Humphry won
the popular vote—and it was a very different time: the second contest was Florida, and
half the states did not have a caucus or primary. I’m not going to say that avoiding the early
contests is a stupid idea, but history shows that no one has ever won by skipping straight
to super tuesday, since super tuesday began in 1984. So, were Bloomberg to join the race, he’d
be joining astoundingly late, competing against already-popular competitors, and doing so
with an implausible strategy. To pull off a victory in the face of all this, Bloomberg
would have to capture a kind of magic that transcends conventional thinking. But does
Bloomberg represent what Americans love? Mmm, not so much. If you made a list of things all Americans
love, that list may look something like this: Nowhere on anyone’s list would we see Wall
Street, the Mainstream Media, or Power-hungry Billionaires, yet Bloomberg manages to be
all three in one person. Michael Bloomberg began his career on Wall
Street, and made his fortune largely through the Bloomberg terminal, the financial information
computer that became a fixture of Wall Street trading floors. Selling these terminals, Bloomberg’s
company became massively successful, and he became one of the wealthiest people in the
world. He then conceived of Bloomberg Business news,
originally as a way of expanding the services provided through his terminals. Before long,
Bloomberg had a small media empire—Bloomberg Mediagroup–with magazines, a 24-hr business
news network, a radio service, and online platforms. Not satisfied by the power he accrued in the
worlds of finance and media, Bloomberg also began a political career, becoming the 108th
mayor of New York in 2001, and served three terms. He also teased making a run for president
in 2016 as an independent, before eventually endorsing Hilary Clinton. If Bloomberg’s threat of running as an independent
in 2016 sounds familiar, it may be because another billionaire, Starbucks CEO Howard
Schultz, tried the same tact this election cycle, before realizing that there was no
clamour for an arrogant, inexperienced billionaire. He announced he would not run in September
2019. But as veteran GOP propagandist Frank Lunz
points out, “Howard Schultz is not Mike Bloomberg. Mike
Bloomberg has shown his willingness to invest in the campaign. He’s shown his willingness
to be tough enough to be able to take the criticism, which Howard Schultz was not,” Still another billionaire, Tom Steyer, is
investing significant swaths of his own money, backing his own run for the Democratic nomination.
Despite massive spending, he is currently polling in 12th place, at 1.0% in the RCP
averages. Meanwhile, two of the top three candidates, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders,
have largely built their political brands railing against the undue power of the billionaire
class. Together Sanders and Warren represent 38% of Democratic support, a full ten points
ahead of the front-runner, Joe Biden. But one thing that separates Bloomberg from
Schultz or Steyer is the fact that he’s been a politician before. A mayor has never made
a direct leap to the oval office before, but there is no doubt that Bloomberg’s experience
as NYC Mayor makes him at least as prepared for the presidency as South Bend Mayor Pete
Buttigieg, who is currently polling in fourth place. So, while Bloomberg’s political experience
may be distinctly less substantial than typical presidents—who tend to have experience as
Senators, Governors or Secretaries of State—his mayoral experience may clear the bar, perhaps
substantially lowered in light of the fact that the current president—also a billionaire—had
zero experience in politics when he beat the candidate Bloomberg backed in 2016. (Hilary
Clinton). Bloomberg’s ties to wall street and the mainstream
media may be negative indicators for his potential in this race, as would his billionaire status.
But as far as billionaires go, he is not likely to be quite as clownish a candidate as the
billionaires we’ve seen so far: unlike Steyer and Schultz, Bloomberg can call himself an
experienced politician. But as far as experience goes, his may not be the kind the Democratic
electorate is looking for. As with most things, experience is more about
quality than quantity. Valuable experience for a politician means having accomplishments
to boast about, or at least, a track record of making the right decisions. When it comes
to decision-making, Bloomberg has many vulnerabilities. He supported George W Bush for president,
he supported the Iraq conflict, and has been a staunch supporter of free trade with China,
habitually turning a blind eye to Chinese protectionism and currency manipulation. But, of all the policies associated with Bloomberg,
one stands out more than any other: stop and frisk. The issue has been talked about in
recent opinion pieces about Bloomberg that have come out in the New York Times, and the
Washington Post, and will thus be likely to be talked about ad nausium by cable news pundits,
should the billionaire declare himself a presidential candidate. When the constitutionality of stop and frisk
was challenged in Federal court, the presiding Judge Shira Scheindlin considered statistics
of police stops between 2004 and 2019. Here were some of those: “52% of all stops were followed by a protective
frisk for weapons. A weapon was found after 1.5% of these frisks. In other words, in 98.5%
of the 2.3 million frisks, no weapon was found.” “In 52% of the 4.4 million stops, the person
stopped was black, in 31% the person was Hispanic, and in 10% the person was white.” “In 23% of the stops of blacks, and 24%
of the stops of Hispanics, the officer recorded using force. The number for whites was 17%.” “Weapons were seized in 1.0% of the stops
of blacks, 1.1% of the stops of Hispanics, and 1.4% of the stops of whites.” “Contraband other than weapons was seized
in 1.8% of the stops of blacks, 1.7% of the stops of Hispanics, and 2.3% of the stops
of whites.” After assessing these statistics, Judge Scheindlin
ruled that the procedure itself was not unconstitutional, but the way the NYPD carried it out was. “Targeting young black and Hispanic men
for stops based on the alleged criminal conduct of other young black or Hispanic men violates
bedrock principles of equality” In response to the ruling, Bloomberg wrote
a Washington Post editorial called “’Stop and Frisk’ keeps New York Safe,” in which
he called that judge “an ideologically driven federal judge who
has a history of ruling against the police” He also tied the stop and frisk policy directly
to saving lives, writing, “Never once in the judge’s 197-page opinion did
she mention the lives that have been saved because of the stops those officers made.” And he claimed, “when it comes to policing, political correctness
is deadly” Bloomberg’s fear mongering about the need
for stop and frisk is not substantiated by recent crime statistics. The NYPD’s own data
has found no increases in serious crime as a result of declining numbers of police stops.
As Politico reported, “The number of reported police stops have
dropped by a total of 98 percent since their peak in 2011. In that time, homicides have
decreased 43 percent, while major index crimes have declined 9 percent.” Perhaps more politically damaging than the
fact that Bloomberg was absolutely wrong about stop and frisk, is the fact that the policy
is poison to black and latino voters. As the Atlantic reported in 2016, “In a 2012 Quinnipiac poll, seven in 10
black New Yorkers opposed stop-and-frisk. In 2013, Marist found an even higher proportion,
75 percent, wanted an overhaul.” In a primary contest where reparations are
being discussed, and multiple candidates have proposed plans for dealing with systemic racism,
Bloomberg will very easily seen as part of the problem. Were he somehow to become the Democratic nominee,
over the objections of Black and Latino voters, Bloomberg’s nomination would very likely clear
the way for a Trump victory. As Jonathan Cape of the Washington Post explains, “Trump was the first Republican to win Wisconsin since
1984. He did so by about 23,000 votes. Black voter turnout in that state plunged from
74 percent in 2012 to 55.1 percent in 2016. Voter suppression efforts played a part, but
so did distaste for the candidates.” It is difficult to imagine how the Democrats
could beat Donald Trump without recovering at least part of the rust belt states, which
voted for both Obama and Trump. To do so, the party must inspire greater turn out from
Black voters, a task that would be virtually impossible with a candidate so inextricably
tied to the NYPD’s stop and frisk policy. This is a double blow to Bloomberg’s chances
in the democratic primary race. Opposition from people of color (and their allies) doesn’t
just meaning losing their votes in the primaries, it also means losing the votes of whites who
take electability to be a determinative factor when choosing a nominee. Losing the votes of people of color would
enough to end the presidential ambitions of most potential Democratic nominees. The only
thing more fatal to a potential campaign would be to alienate a full 50 percent of the American
electorate. When it comes to his past with women, Bloomberg may have already done just
that. Michael Bloomberg boasted in his 1997 autobiography
that he kept “a girlfriend in every city” during the 60s and 70s, and has claimed “chasing
women” to be one of his favourite things to do. In a 2013 feature in New York Magazine, Bloomberg
is quoted as responding to being thanked for his positions on gun control this way: “Without even acknowledging the comment,
Bloomberg gestured toward a woman in a very tight floor-length gown standing nearby and
said, ‘Look at the ass on her.’” In 1990, colleagues gifted him a booklet called
“Portable Bloomberg: The Wit and Wisdom of Michael Bloomberg.” One piece of wit
the volume contained, was the following “hilarious” joke: “If women wanted to be appreciated for their
brains, they’d go to the library instead of to Bloomingdale’s.” Look, I’d be perfectly happy to accept an
offensive joke, were the joke discernibly funny in anyway whatsoever. While I’m not
particularly offended as supporter of women, I am, in the words of Jerry Seinfeld, “offended
as a comedian”. Here’s another piece of Bloomberg wit: when
he noticed a sales representative at his company wearing an engagement ring, he is alleged
to have said to her, “What, is the guy dumb and blind? What the
h-e-double-hockey-sticks is he marrying you for?” That’s according to a suit filed by that sales
representative in the 1990s. She also claimed that when she told Bloomberg that she was
pregnant, he replied this way: “k it!” Bloomberg denied that he ever made those comments,
but did concede that he said of her, and several other women at the company, “I’d do her.” There have been far too many discrimination
and harassment suits filed against Bloomberg and his company to sufficiently detail here.
Several suits of this nature were filed in the 1990s and beyond. In 2008, at least 58
women filed a class-action lawsuit against Bloomberg LP, alleging pregnancy discrimination,
including demotions, cut salaries, and other mistreatment. In 1998 woman filed a suit against
Bloomberg after an executive allegedly forced himself on her. Bloomberg claimed he wouldn’t
believe the woman without an “unimpeachable third-party witness”. A similar case was
filed in 2013, with another female victim and another Bloomberg executive. The suit
alleged the multiple attacks she suffered were assisted in part by a hostile work environment
and a pattern of discrimination and harassment from multiple leaders in the company. It would be unreasonable to hold Bloomberg
responsible for the the worst acts of vylense against women perpetrated by executives at
his company. But it does seem to me fair to hold him at least partially responsible for
the apparently perpetually misogynistic culture of his company, and 100 percent responsible
for his personal history of demeaning and misogynistic comments. After learning about the history of Bloomberg
and his company’s treatment of women, it would be difficult to imagine that any kind of enthusiasm
for his campaign would come from well-informed female voters. But forget how Bloomberg’s past will affect
his popularity going forward. With relatively high name recognition, current opinion polling
about Bloomberg already paints a pretty vivid picture. According to polling by Morning Consult, Were
Michael Bloomberg to join the race today, he would be polling in 6th place, between
Kamala Harris and Andrew Yang, with 4% of the vote. Given the large field overall, and
the fact that candidates tend to experience a surge after declaring their candidacy, these
numbers don’t look altogether horrible for Bloomberg. After all, we saw Pete Buttigieg
rise to fourth place out of almost total obscurity, and he’s currently polling in 2nd place in
Iowa. But, while unknown candidates can join a race
and gain significantly in the polls as people learn who they are, Bloomberg’s single-digit
status has little to do with a lack of name-recognition. Again, according to Morning Consult: “If he were to run, Bloomberg would enter
the 2020 Democratic contest with higher name recognition among the party’s electorate than
11 current contenders, including fellow billionaire Tom Steyer of California. But Bloomberg does
have baggage, with a quarter of likely Democratic primary voters expressing unfavorable views
of him—higher than any of the 15 candidates currently in the race.” FiveThrityEight data confirms this: while
his name-recognition is on par with Cory Booker and Kamala Harris, who enjoy net-approval
ratings in the mid-thirties, Bloomberg’s net-approval is less than a third of theirs, at +11 points. So, not only does Bloomberg already have high
name-recognition, meaning he has little room to grow beyond the 4% support he might already
enjoy, were he to join the race, he would be beginning his run as the most hated candidate
in the field. For a years now, Michael Bloomberg has been
teasing presidential runs. There is no doubt that he wants to become the president. But,
to even have a chance of winning, Bloomberg would have to give up a great deal of privacy,
face enormous criticism, expend a small fortune of his personal wealth, and submit himself
to an exhausting process: with debates, rallies, interviews, and the behind-the-scenes efforts
of building an effective campaign team. All this, and he would still face incredibly long
odds for even becoming a top contender for the Democratic nomination. Were he some how
able to secure that, he would then face the even more exhausting process of running in
the general against a notoriously vicious and energetic rival. Not to mention, actually
being the president is a stressful, mostly thankless task. Bloomberg may very well want to become the
president, but given all he would have to go through to even have a remote chance of
winning the prize, I wonder if he has asked himself… Is it worth it?

Complex Closets : DJ Khaled Shows His Sneaker Closet


In this scene, you might be wearing these, but then I’ll do this. Don’t let me go in the box. You got my name on there. Kiss the ring. I still can’t believe I have them. I call these Bahamas. Every time I look up in here, I can’t believe
this shit. Then I remember, we have a mall. What’s up everybody, as you can see you know
where we are. after months of proving. Yes Everyone hitting this man up to get access
to this closet yes He has blessed complex with the exclusive Everybody has been hitting me up. we have
complex doing it, 60 minutes, every sneaker blog, everything dealing with life, Has been trying to get in this room. and right
now were going to do an exclusive. DJ Khaled. Greatness We promise you’ve never seen anything like
this. Let’s do it. I don’t even know where to start but were
going to try. We’re going to start. you see what’s going
on. you see this is one side of the room. hopefully the camera will get a full 360. You see the energy in this room. you see the
passion. you see the blood, sweat, and tears in this room. you see this wall. Look at this from top to bottom. you know
what I’m saying. I call this don’t ever play yourself. I call this wall, I call war ready, in case
somebody want to sound clash. We clash anytime, you know what I’m saying. Everybody always wanted to get that Yeezy.
I call these treadmill. you know what I’m saying. You know of course, you go to the classic
ones that broke ground that made it really like don’t play yourself. You know what I’m saying. and of course you
know, how it all started. you gotta remember we have a mall. You know what I’m saying. and if you notice.
you notice, right? You notice right? That’s stock. that’s stock. That’s what I’m trying to show you. And of
course. you know. Those. It’s very important when you see that. It’s very important when you see that. You
call that a fragment Yeah I call it give thanks for the stamp. you see
what I’m saying. that’s what we do it. if you notice before we get into detail. My MCM bags are filled with Jays. My Louis
Vuitton bags are filled with Jays. Don’t let me go in the box. Special we’d the best Miami heat edition box.
You know what I’m saying. We just got random sneakers, But these sneaker right here I got a gift
from Jordan. Um Reggie uh brand Jordan jutman 23, they put my logo on these. They know I love them. They put my name on
there. You know what I’m saying. They came in this box. A leather box. With the Jump man 23 logo. DJ Khaled. Leather.
the Vibe They made another pair. these are one of my
favorite Jordan’s of all time. I just like having these. These are so like
clean and fresh. you see that logo. this ain’t no costume. uh. God. No. This is Michael Jordan. This is Reggie. This
is from Brand Jordan. This is Jump Man 23. Don’t play yourself. What do you call those? I call thesthese. Give these thanks. and thank
you and I’m very grateful. How do you decide what shoes you keep in the
grab and go bags? Well, the grab and go bags because you know
when I travel Uh huh I got to be cautious on the road. it’s a red
carpet event. it’s a show. you might be in the studio with Jay Z one day. You know what I’m saying. I know they’re coming
with their kicks on. that’s why I have the mcm bags and the big duffle bags for. to pull
out something like this Yeah You should Yeah You should saying it like you might be wearing
these. I don’t think Jay Z has these But listen, you might be wearing these but
then I do this. Right. You see what I’m saying? I do it humbly. Aye,
aye, what’s up what’s good. they notice. Each of them have a story. You know what I’m
saying. Each shoe. I remember wearing this shoe. You know what I’m saying when I made this
record or what video. you know what I’m saying. I remember which one got the most talk when
I hit the red carpet with this stuff. You know what I’m saying? Yeah You see these things? Wow OG These are the OG Chrome sixes. You know what
I’m saying. You see these babies. Carolina Blue sixes. yeah I mean come on, bro. Like like you know what
I’m saying. we champions up in here bro. Kiss the ring. Know that. Bow down and kneel
to your inspiration. Now I rep 305 Miami Day County. When I walk
in with these its shut down. I call these summertime 305s. Look at this See that Florida sign. Then look at this one.
It’s got 305. These shoes mean so much to mean. It’s incredible. And then I call these. The You. Uh huh You see that. That’s Day county man. That’s
305 for real. You know what I’m saying. I take pride in these. You know what I’m saying. You know in time when I got older I realized
I had so many sneakers in my closet and I took pride in them so I needed up being I
guess a collector Yeah You know what I’m saying. But this is more my passion and my love this
ain’t no just happen two three years ago. I’m a classic. Icon. A legend. Let me ask you. If there’s a show missing.
You walk into this closet You immediately see there’s a shoe missing? Right now we have an investigation going on.
A street investigation. There’s five sneakers missing Really I hope it’s none of my friends. Uh huh I hope we miss placed them on the road. But the five sneakers that are missing are
like five bangers. so it’s kind of like suspicious. Okay But we got you know what I’m saying. We like
doubles and triples. You know the cool grey we got the OGs and the regular ones. Dogs okay. OGs. Give Thanks when you don’t
want to wear the OGs You know what I’m saying What I’m saying is like We’re going to find that person. Right When we do find them. Once we get them back.
I’m going to give them right back to them. Really and say, congratulation. You played yourself.
I hope these sneakers last forever for you. Wow And do yourself the biggest favor and bow
down. So Joe yeah You know we got this ladder you see this Carolina Blue fives More than Carolina blue fives. Joe do you
know what these are? These are the motor sports. Thank you. Motor. Motor sports fives Listen guys guys you have to be educated and
if you’re not it’s cool. I call these Bahamas Baby Blue waters. That’s what I call them. People call them
the motor sports. I call em Bahamas. Alright. Shout out to Drake. I call these
the OVOs. I have another pair of OVOs I’m not allowed to put in this room Wow Well, they’re in this room, I’m not allowed
to show you. Political reasons. Okay. Listen, all y’all watching this. You know
about this. But do you see what’s going on in here. Triplets. Doubles. Do you see the passion of the wood. I had
a special designer put a special wood in here. I didn’t want to put them in boxes anymore. I felt like you know what this is my home.
this is my life. I want to see my hard work. You know what I’m saying. Every time I look
up in here I can’t believe this shit. Do you think you have the best sneaker closet
in the world? Of course I do. but let me be humble because
I am humble. But I’m very confident in what I do and what I represent. We The best. but notice how I say we the best. Uh huh You know the reason why you’re here is because
you’re part of the best culture. Complex is part of the best culture. That’s why my brand is called We The best.
My fans they the best. My fans and my support might have a room like this and I can’t leave
them out. because they might have one like this. If not I want to inspire them to get one like
this. uh huh But yes I feel like I have the best sneaker
room because it’s a lot of a lot of vibe a lot of culture a lot of energy. now you see these sneakers right here? One of my all-time favorites. This is called
you wish you had these What’s the story behind those Well the story behind these is I still can’t
believe I have them Out of the corner of my eye I saw these Oregon
Dion Sanders I love them How did you get these? Well this was from a secret connect. I got
two of my guys who if you ever have to get sneakers and you can’t get em and you’re trying to
get something come to We The Best. We the Best Lifestyle but give thanks because
hell pull out thing like this and you have to get them. Lets talk about this section. You have you
shimmies, valenciagas Well yeah you know A little more of a high fashion look yeah, this is more of a high fashion look
this is like you know what I’m saying. I don’t wear too much high fashion sneakers unless
they dope These right here classic this is like you
gotta have every time I see a pair of these I buy them These things. You know the story behind these I want to hear it They only gave it to like I don’t know the
exact number I call these all eyes on me 2Pac voice. Okay You know what I’m saying? It’s a Five You
know what I’m saying These Supremes be crazy Supremes Supremes that’s like that’s hard You know random Air Force Ones the daylight
soles are up there you know what I’m saying Tiffany’s yeah You know what I’m saying yeah. Then you got
these in case you want to let people know get your money right. Crocodile you know what I’m saying. There’s
so many different sneakers man You notice on this wall right here these are
the every dayers but I will always buy as many pairs of These or try to ask for some as many as I
can get it so five man. Its DJ Khaled Boy Khaled I want to thank you for inviting us
into your crib and more special Thank you your closet Thank you man appreciate it This is going to be big Guys this is going to be big. Shout out to
complex y’all look out for my new album its coming out this year it’s called I changed a lot I changed a lot.
You know what I’m saying. I just thank all y’all for making my records
go number one and supporting my music supporting my team. if you ever come to Miami come to Miami finger
licking have lunch with me. You know what I’m saying? Thank you man Joe appreciate you man. Lets do it again. Yes I’m going to do part two were going to show.
you know when we’re leaving here well show them a glimpse of the old room that’s still
filled with sneakers Okay

4th Democratic Debate Predictions | QT Politics


The fourth Democratic Debate will be held
on October 15th, 2019 in Westerville, Ohio, moderated by CNN’s Erin Burnett and Anderson
Cooper, as well as New York Times national editor Marc Lacey. The debate will feature 12 of the top polling
candidates: Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Pete Buttigieg, Kamala Harris, Andrew
Yang, Beto O’Rourke, Cory Booker, Tulsi Gabbard, Amy Klobuchar, Julian Castro, and Tom Steyer. Actually, Tulsi Gabbard just recently put
out a statement saying she is considering boycotting this debate, in part because the
debates are too much like reality tv—a strange complaint from one of the biggest drama-making
candidates—but uh, for the purposes of this video, I’m just going to assume she’s in. It won’t really make too much of a difference,
overall. In this video, I’m going to give you my predictions
of what to expect of each of these candidates, based on their past performances, apparent
strategies, and what’s been going on in the news. Hopefully, this will give you some sense of
an answer to this question: What’s going to happen? Before we kick things off, I gotta give a
shoutout to all my amazing Patrons: Sergio Guerrero
Emil Styrbaek Moller Naail Tariq
Charlotte Holden cmak
David Goodrich Victor Holmberg
Ryan Judge Adam Riordan
Torge Kummerow Stroden
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Maxwell VerKuilen Eduardo Gonzalez
Christopher Greene nordir
Matthew Gerrish Denkuro
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questiontimefanact2020 Clayton Gibson
Deckerlink Ahegao Comics
Sarah Parker-Shemilt Blake Malin
Carlos & Mike Lodato You can join this list of amazing, generous
people by heading over to patreon.com slash question time. Alright, let’s get into candidates, beginning
with Tom Steyer. This will be Tom Steyer’s first debate, and
he’ll probably be the most unfamiliar face on stage for most Americans. For those of you unfamiliar, Steyer is a billionaire
former hedge fund manager, philanthropist, and consistent democratic mega-donor, once
described by open-secrets as the top all-time democratic donor. Steyer has pledged to spend 100 million dollars
on his own presidential campaign, and spend over 7 million on ads in just his first month. Not surprisingly, Steyer’s policies match
with those of politicians who tend to be funded by Democratic mega-donors. He supports a public option, not medicare
for all. His foreign policy positions are focused on
rebuilding America’s reputation in the wake of the Trump era, rather than addressing imperialism
or regime change. Despite being a mega-donor, Steyer has a whole
plan for fixing American Democracy, which he calls structural reform, but, once again
much of his prescriptions are moderate: instituting 12-year congressional term limits; introducing
voting at home; and establishing Independent Redistricting Commissions—all plans that,
I believe, would be a positive steps, but they aren’t to radical. He also proposes repealing Citizens United,
and introducing public financing of elections—both of these moves would be huge, but he doesn’t
appear to have a plan on how to actually accomplish these things. Does he want to overturn Citizens United by
making that issue a litmus test for Supreme Court appointments, or will he encourage a
constitutional convention? He doesn’t say, which, honestly, makes me
doubt his sincerity. As for public financing of campaigns, some
candidates have detailed plans to accomplish this, like Andrew Yang’s Democracy Dollars. For Steyer, the idea is expressed in just
half a sentence on his website. Again, that kind of makes me doubt his sincerity. In general, what I would expect from a President
Steyer would be mild moderate-liberal reforms around the edges. But the chances of him getting there are extremely
low. Despite his almost limitless campaign resources,
and massive spending so far, Steyer is tied with Gabbard as the lowest-polling candidate
to make the debate. Their RCP averages of .6% are also shared
with Bullock and Williamson, who did not make it on stage. As a massive political donor, Steyer may be
exactly the opposite of what the grassroots want, given that America seems to be experiencing
a populist wave. In order to turn himself into a real contender
for the nomination, Steyer will have to have an astounding performance in the debate, but
that’s not likely. Steyer may be deeply involved in politics,
but he’s not a politician. When it comes to debating, he is an amateur
stepping up to bat against some pretty impressive orators. With a less-than-original political message,
and little experience speaking in a forum like this, he’s not exactly likely to thrive. If you have low expectations of Steyer, lower
them again, and you’ll still probably be disappointed with his performance in the 4th Democratic
Debate. After narrowly failing to make the cut for
the September debate, Tulsi Gabbard will be returning to the presidential debate stage
this time around. Despite polling relatively low, Gabbard has
been the most-googled candidate every time she’s made the stage, and has made her mark
with aggressive attacks against her fellow candidates, perhaps most notably, her sharp
critique of Kamala Harris’s record as AG of California. This time around, Gabbard would be likely
to go after a serious candidate again, but it’s hard to see who she would target. Both Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are
part of the progressive wing of the Democratic party—and thus natural allies for Tulsi. Warren could be criticized for softening her
language in support of Medicare for All—but Tulsi has done the same. So of the top three, that just leaves Joe
Biden, but Gabbard has thus far avoided going after him. She’s actually defended him when he was facing
heat over busing. She’s even defended him in regards to a top
issue for her campaign—regime change. She defended Biden to the Hill on his Iraq
vote, saying, “He was wrong—he said he was wrong and
he has apologized for it more than once…That’s the kind of reflection that I think is important
for any one of our politicians who made that wrong and fateful decision to vote for the
Iraq War .” My sense of things is that Gabbard, at this
point, understands that her chances of securing the nomination are very long, and is probably
angling for a positions in a potential democratic white house, which means avoiding conflicts
with the most likely candidates. Since a lot of the headway she’s made in the
past have been based on strong attacks on other candidates, I’d still expect her to
go after someone, but not likely someone in the top three. Buttigieg, O’Rourke, or a round two vs Harris
are more likely, but with Gabbard’s flair for the dramatic, all bets are off. Gabbard has always managed to draw new attention
in debates. I don’t see why this one will be any different. Julian Castro is also well known for his aggressive
conflicts with other candidates, but now finds himself in a bit of a pickle. While I loved his strong clashes with Joe
Biden in the 3rd Debate, as I expected, they resulted in mainly negative coverage from
the mainstream media. He was reported as being a bully, described
as implicitly attacking Biden’s age, and in the post-debate coverage, ABC even claimed
that he was totally wrong about his ‘two minutes ago’ swipe against Biden—even though, if
you actually examine the full context of what Castro had been saying, or Biden’s actual
health care plan—Castro was actually largely correct. If you want more on that, check out my 3rd
Democratic Debate breakdown. Now, Castro faces a choice: reverse course
and avoid conflict, and thus become a forgettable candidate; or plan another line of attack,
and face another round of attacks from the msm, where he is called a bully. I anticipate that Castro is most likely to
split the difference. He’s likely to go on the offence again, but
will probably be extra cautious about controlling his tone—and may avoid targeting Biden,
who seemed to have the sympathy of the mainstream press last time around. Indeed, when he was recently asked about Hunter
Biden’s position on the board of that Ukrainian gas company, Castro avoided the question. Those will be treacherous waters for Castro
to navigate, and a slight error in tone is likely to cause lasting damage to his campaign. As a result, it’s probably not wise to bet
on a victory for Castro this time around. A win is far likelier for Andrew Yang, a candidate
who has shown steady improvement in his debate performances, time after time. Last time around, Yang finally took my advice
and started to talk about policies other than UBI, like his campaign finance reforms. He has a lot of other great proposals, which
I expect him to begin pushing mentioning in the fourth debate, now that he has firmly
established himself as a tier-two contender, polling now between Kamala Harris and Beto
O’Rourke. Last time, Yang also drew much attention for
his plan to give ten families his Freedom Dividend for one year. I expected that the unusual ploy would garner
attention, but may soften support from his core. Well, it seems like I was half right. It did get him attention, but from the feedback
I’ve gotten from his supporters, they didn’t mind the move one bit. Although I still think it’s a bit cheese-balls,
I fully concede that this ended up being an even more positive move than I originally
expected it to be. As the big three candidates continue to widen
their gap with the rest of the field, few minor candidates still have a real shot at
the big time in this primary race, but having steadily gained ground throughout, Yang is
one of the few remaining candidates who could still manage to surge into contention if he
plays his cards right. His policies are thorough and often relatively
original. His online support is extremely strong, and
he’s has a powerful case to make about how to win over former Trump supporters. Yang is perfectly positioned to gain from
making a big move in the fourth Democratic Debate. Based on past performances, he’s unlikely
to get into a confrontation with another candidate, but he may have another headline-baiting trick
up his sleeve. He’s definitely a candidate to watch, and
a likely potential winner. Beto O’Rourke had a strong performance in
the third Democratic Debate, blustered by his celebrated response to a national tragedy,
and renewed commitment to fight the NRA. Having done well last time, Beto will enter
the fourth Democratic Debate with more confidence than ever before, but I can’t say I expect
amazing things. Beto’s mini-come back did not last long, and
his current RCP average is actually lower now, at 2.2%, than it was during the September
debate, 2.8%. Beto’s 15 minutes of fame seemed to be up
before he even declared his run for the presidency, and his old problems may re-emerge now that
he’s lost the glow of general sympathy. Beto has been criticized in the past for being
thin on policy, tainted by oil money, and a little hollow in his oration. He improved significantly on that last mark
last time, but I expect it’s more likely that was a temporary boost, rather than a sustainable
improvement. To solidify his standing in this race, Beto
will have to draw attention away from the other candidates—most of whom, it seems
to me, are inherently more interesting. It’s unlikely Beto will secure a solid win
in this debate. I bear no ill-will against Beto O’Rourke,
but it’s hard to see how it’s his time to become President. I loved seeing his near-miss senate race against
Ted Cruz, and honestly, I would love to see him give up on the presidency, for now, and
turn his attention to taking on John Cornyn for that other juicy Texas Senate seat. If he could almost beat someone with the name
recognition of Ted Cruz, he might have what it takes to beat out the somewhat lesser known
John Cornyn. I’m just saying: something for the O’Rouke
team to think about. Kamala Harris also appears to be a candidate
who’s hot streak is long behind her. At the beginning of the race, I quite honestly
expected her to be the strongest contender amongst the establishment candidates, but
shortly after her July surge in the polls, Harris has drooped in both the polls, and
her debate performances. I drastically overestimate what she would
bring to the third Democratic debate—expecting her to stage a come back, after getting severely
damaged by Tulsi Gabbard. Well, now it’s beginning to get a bit late
in the game for Kamala to come back strong, especially with two flop performances in a
row. Based on her performances in Senate hearings,
I always counted Kamala to be an astounding debate performer. And while she shined in her first debate,
we’ve seen her falter and fade since then. Harris may seem strong when she goes on the
attack, but she’s failed to be resilient in the face of criticism, and she’s got plenty
of vulnerabilities. Having slipped into fifth place in the polls,
Harris’s golden age seems to have come to an end, and with Gabbard on stage for debate
four, there’s every reason to expect we’ll see a deflated Harris once again. I’m expecting a loss for prosecutor. Pete Buttigieg is, of course, the candidate
who took fourth place from Kamala, more through her own poll loses than his own gains. He had a particularly strong performance in
debate 3, as he laid out his policy suggestions in the arena of racial justice—a topic that
has caused him damage in the past. It’s not hard to predict what we’ll see from
Pete this time around, as he’s pursued the same plan throughout the campaign. He’ll bring some clever lines to the debate;
stay upbeat and slightly evasive on controversial issues; avoid major conflicts; and put forth
just enough policy to avoid criticisms about standing for nothing in particular. While there is a massive polling gap between
Buttigieg and the top three contenders, he can survive another day, having out-raised
other big-money candidates, Kamala Harris and Joe Biden. He trails just behind Warren in terms of fundraising,
and actual exceeds her when it comes to cash on hand, leaving only Bernie Sanders with
a substantial lead over him in this area. While Buttigieg will need to surge in the
polls at some point to be competitive in time for the Iowa Caucus, his steady-as-she-goes
strategy has been working well enough so far. He’s unlikely to change up this tactic, and
it’s enough for him to secure a modest win for the fourth debate. Cory Booker has also been pursing a relatively
non-confrontational, positively-focused campaign so far, and has actually shown improvement
since his first appearance on a presidential debate stage. Unfortunately for the senator, he doesn’t
have the kind of money that the top contenders have, nor is he seeing positive movement in
the polls. Since the last debate, Booker has dipped from
an RCP average of 2.3 to 1.7 points, and he’s fallen definitively behind Andrew Yang and
Beto O’Rourke. While his comfort on stage has improved, Booker
was not able to make a real moment for himself in the 3rd debate, and it seems a little like
he’s running out of tricks. Seeing these declines, Booker may just pull
a rabbit out of his hat—but remember, bold moves are more likely to backfire than they
are to work. And his mild-mannered approach to confrontation
may fail to grab headlines, with characters like Gabbard and Castro willing to devastate
their fellow dems. It looks to me like Booker will have a hard
time accomplishing what he needs to do to pull out a win. Amy Klobuchar showed marked improvement in
the third debate, as she finally managed to change her passive-aggressive attacks into
direct critiques of her progressive rivals. While I chalked this up as a win for the snow-resistant
Minnesota senator, she’s still managed to make many of the same mistakes throughout
all the debates. She uses extremely cheesy lines and hackneyed
cliches; she is relatively soft-spoken and lack-luster; and focuses almost all her criticisms
on Trump, but fails to distinguish herself from her Democratic rivals. With the Ukraine scandal in full fore, Klobuchar
is likely to focus all her attention on the President’s wrong doing. The problem with this, strategically, is that
there is nothing original or special about a Democratic candidate who says that Trump
is a corrupt liar, who should never have been elected President. That’s literally what every Democratic candidate
says—it’s also what his primary challengers say. To inspire voters, a Democratic candidate
also needs to provide an inspiring vision of what she can bring to the White House. Klobuchar seems to lack that vision, and the
charisma necessary to hook voters with it. Time after time, Klobuchar is among the most
forgettable candidates on stage, and she’s poised to be the same this time around. After the third Democratic Debate, I argued
that despite saying all the right things, Sanders would lose a bit of ground in the
polls because of the simple fact that his voice sounded hoarse. I got a lot of flack for thinking the American
people would be so superficial, but as it turns out, he did experience a small drop
after that debate, dropping 1.1 points in his RCP average, while Warren’s numbers surged. Sander’s numbers began to spring back, but
he seems to have taken another dip after being hospitalized. I know this is annoying for policy-focused
voters, but Bernie’s age is a concern for a lot of voters, and will probably remain
so—at least until he picks a vibrant, younger progressive candidate as his running mate,
to assure his more tepid supporters that his ticket is a safe, and resilient bet. While Bernie never bends on policy positions
or general themes, having just bounced back from surgery, he’s gotta know that he can’t
come to this debate with a soar throat. If he comes back, stronger and angrier than
ever, I expect he’ll see gains in his support, as voters are surprised by his resilience. That would be a win for Bernie, and it’s what
I expect to see. But if he seems even slightly diminished,
the mainstream media won’t hesitate to criticize him as weak and sickly for taking more than
a week to recover from a heart attack and surgery. And that will convince a broad swath of democrats
to abandon him. So, while I do expect a win, there is a serious
risk of taking damage. So far, Elizabeth Warren has performed well
in every debate, and made gains after each and every one of them. She’s never really changed her strategy. It’s been working for her, and there’s no
reason to believe she’ll change things up, or that it will evoke a different result this
time around. Currently surging into spitting distance of
the front runner, Joe Biden, Warren may just jump to first place shortly after the fourth
democratic debate. Barring some unforeseen incident, the forth
democratic debate will be an important victory for Elizabeth Warren. With Trump’s Ukraine call becoming one of
the biggest stories of his presidency, there is little doubt that Joe Biden will have much
to say about impeachment and his own connection to Trump’s inappropriate behaviour. There is a chance that being targeted by Trump
will garner sympathy, thus making his debate performance a slam dunk. But there is also a possibility that the scandal
exposes new vulnerabilities for Biden as a candidate. It will be very interesting to watch what
kind of question Biden gets in regards to this issue. You’ll know he’s being served a layup if he
is asked about the unsubstantiated conspiracy theory, that Biden cut investigations into
the Ukrainian energy company short. If, however, Biden is asked why his son was
being paid 50 thousand dollars a month to sit on the board of a company that works in
a sector with which he had no experience—Biden’s getting a serious question about a real concern
for most Americans. Biden’s son getting this position shows that
he is a participant in the systemic Washington corruption that Americans are beyond sick
of seeing. The result of these questions is perhaps less
interesting. I would imagine that if he is asked the tough
question, Biden would likely fumble, either by providing a sprawling non-answer, or by
feigning outrage. If he is not asked the tough questions, he
may lose by default, if Americans note the media bias in his favour—just another example
of beltway table-tilting. Don’t get me wrong. Hunter Biden’s apparent pay-for-influence
was not illegal, or even irregular for the families of Washington elites. Nor is that example of systemic corruption
comparable to Trump withholding military aid while asking the Ukrainian president for a
sketchy, personal political favour. But it is very much comparable to the hundreds
of thousands of dollars that Wall Street firms paid Hilary Clinton for speeches. While those already familiar with Biden’s
fundraising sources, what he’s said to major donors, and how he’s voted throughout his
career will already likely see him as an asset of wealthy elites, his son’s unearned paydays
expose Biden to be part of the problem for a broader swath of the American public. The scandal can also deal a second layer of
damage for Biden. His participation in legal systemic corruption
may also lose him voters who no longer see him as electable. On top of the busing and the unwanted touching
issues, Biden now faces another serious challenge. At some point, voters may feel enough is enough,
and turn to someone with fewer skeletons in their closet. Again, Biden may be able elicit sympathy to
spin the story as an unfair attack on his family, which I would see as a win. But, it seems more likely to me that he’ll
earn the ire of the public for being part of typical Washington corruption. In this way, Biden enters the fourth democratic
debate more vulnerable than ever. A loss is highly likely. That’s what I expect, but honestly, it really
could break in either direction. Maybe Biden will seem like more of an elites
insider than ever. Maybe he’ll seem like a victim. Either way, this issue and how it’s perceived
will help to determine the answer to this question about the Biden campaign… What’s going to happen?

Democratic Primary Dropouts 2020 Election | QT Politics


The Democratic Primary for the 2020 Election
has seen dozens of candidates. Some of them you know well. Some, you’re getting to know a lot better. And others, are, well, probably not worth
bothering with. The primary season began way back on July
28th, 2017, when John Delaney officially launched his campaign. And while, somehow, Delaney is still in the
race, crowded field has begun to thin. In this video, I’m going to pay homage to
candidates who have dropped out so far, and speculate a little bit about why their campaigns
never gained traction. Who’s dropped out? Richard Ojeda launched his campaign on November
11, 2018, and dropped out on January 25th2019. Meaning his run began early, and ended quickly. The WV state senator was better known for
his 2018 run for the US house of representatives again Carol Miller. During that race, Ojeda would appear in Michael
Moore’s documentary, Fahrenheit 11/9, even making the trailer. He would become somewhat meme worthy for his
own, astounding campaign commercials. While Ojeda would go on to lose to Miller,
his campaign marked 32 point improvement for Democrats in his district. And this result was no doubt effected by the
fact that President Trump campaigned for Miller. As part of the effort, he pronounced Ojeda’s
name with a Spanish accent. While the campaign against Miller had captured
some national attention for Ojeda, it was by no means enough to excite sufficient support
from blue-collar populist progressives, who held out hope for the inevitable announcement
of their champion in the 2016 race, Bernie Sanders. With a platform emphasizing extreme anti-corruption
policies, such as capping the net worth of public officials to one million dollars, Ojeda
had no hope of gaining the support of financial elites. According to vote smart, his campaign raised
just 14,000 dollars. The FEC website lists $0 in contributions,
and just over $400 in total receipts. At any rate, Ojeda scorned wealthy insiders
and failed to inspire real grassroots support. He was a populist without popularity, and
thus, doomed from the beginning, which is essentially when he dropped out. Eric Swalwell announced his campaign on The
Late Show with Stephen Colbert on April 8, 2019, and made one debate appearance. There, he repeated the phrase ‘pass the torch.’ Despite becoming best known for that line,
Swalwell’s official campaign slogan was ‘Go Big. Be Bold. Do Good.’ In the end, he was a small, unremarkable candidate,
who did poorly. It’s no surprise his campaign never lit up. The relatively unknown US representative from
California’s 15th district did little to stand out from the pack. His campaign website offered little in the
way of bold policy. Instead, he relied on broad overarching platitudes,
utterly lacking in specifics. For example, here’s what his website proposed
for the top issue for Democrats, healthcare: HEALTH CARE
Too many Americans still find themselves having to choose between paying rent or paying medical
bills, between buying food or buying prescriptions – and nobody should have to rely on a GoFundMe
or a collection jar because they’ve fallen ill. Americans need a healthcare guarantee: If
you’re sick, you’ll be seen by a doctor, and if you’re seen, you’ll never go broke
because of it. We also must make a huge public investment
in finding cures in our lifetime for the diseases that ail us, from Alzheimer’s to ALS to
cancer. Our technology is surging forward, our innovation
is vast – we should focus that on saving lives. There’s little to disagree with here, but
that’s the problem. His healthcare stance was basically “sick
is bad”, “healthy is good”. Not quite a bold stance. After his iconically disastrous performance
in the first democratic debate, Swalwell found no torches being passed his way, but his campaign
was up in flames. He suspended his campaign on July 8th, 2019,
exactly 3 months after his declaration, and turned his attention to a more realistic race:
re-election to his congressional seat. Mike Gravel was never really running for president,
although he ran an exploratory committee from March 19th, to April 2nd, when he announced
an official run. From the beginning, Gravel’s campaign was
clear: it was about getting his voice heard, not making him president. Gravel gained some underground attention,
and managed to make the donor threshold for the 2nd Democratic Debate. But failing to make the polls threshold, he
never made it on stage. He dropped out soon after, on August 6th,
2019, endorsing both Bernie Sanders and Tulsi Gabbard. While we never got to see a Gravel debate
in this primary cycle, his campaign does leave behind an epic twitter account, filled with
brash commentary by the teenagers who convinced the 89-year-old to run in the first place. John Hickenlooper ran a campaign for moderates
who found Joe Biden too popular and John Delaney too interesting. The former governor once worked as a geologist,
and anyone who watched the debates did not fail to notice him mentioning that he’s a
scientist whenever global warming cam up. For a minor candidate, Hickenlooper did relatively
well when it came to raising funds. He campaign raised over 3 million, mainly
from large individual contributions, with another million funneled into pro-Hickenlooper
pacs. This could’ve been enough to keep him going,
but as the big-money donors began to coalesce around major candidates, and Hickenlooper
failed to make the 3rd Debate threshold, Hickenlooper set his sights on a more attainable goal. He dropped out of the presidential race on
August 15th, 2019, and declared a run for US Senate one week later. Jay Inslee’s campaign slogan was “our moment”,
but this wasn’t his. Focusing his efforts on addressing climate
change, Inslee’s campaign touted his experience dealing with the issue as Governor of Washington. He refused to take money from fossil fuel
companies, and quite appropriately declared his candidacy at a solar panel warehouse in
Seattle. Inslee made it to the debate stage twice,
and was, in my opinion, relatively effective during the second debate. But with so many issues to cover, climate
change could only get so much coverage. Inslee felt his issue needed special attention. Back in June, he had asked the DNC for a debate
focused on climate change. They refused, reminding him that if his campaign
participated in someone else’s climate debate, they would be excluded from future DNC debates. Inslee managed to get the support of 53 voting
members of the DNC, who signed an open letter to Chairman Tom Perez, protesting the DNC’s
decision to not host a climate debate. Nearing the end of August, it became clear
that Inslee would not make the 3rd Democratic Debate. On August 21st, 2019, during an appearance
on the Rachel Maddow Show, Inslee announced he would drop out of the presidential race. The next day, he announced he’d be seeking
a third term as Governor of Washington state. While Inslee never did get that climate debate,
not long after his withdrawal from the race, CNN hosted a seven-hour climate town hall,
with the ten top-polling candidates who are not tulsi gabbard. Seth Moulton teased a run for president, traveling
to early primary states, Iowa and New Hampshire, prior to declaring his candidacy on April
22nd. Prior to entering politics, Moulton had a
decorated career as a marine, having served four tours in Iraq, in which he earned two
medals of valor. But as a congressman, his main accomplishment
seemed to be earning the scorn of top democrats for opposing Nancy Pelosi’s leadership, while,
nevertheless, almost always voting the same way. Politico once quoted a senior Democratic aide
as saying of him, “I don’t think I’ve seen a more opportunistic,
duplicitous person serving in the House” Despite his reputation for ruthlessness, Moulton’s
presidential ambitions did not bear the fruits one would expect from a Machiavellian genius. He never polled above 2%. He never made the debate stage. He never really had any discernible effect
on the campaign whatsoever. His biggest accomplishment seemed to be distinguishing
himself as the most forgettable politician in a field of almost 30 candidates. Moulton dropped out of the race on August
23rd, 2019. According to NBC News, his allies hope to
secure him a spot in the administration if a Democrat wins the presidency. Considering his impact on the race, he’d be
lucky to get a meeting at the White House. Kirsten Gillibrand is a more recent Democratic
primary drop out. Like Moulton, she failed to secure either
popular grassroots support, or love from Washington insiders. As a former Blue Dog democrat, and mentee
of Hilary Clinton, the progressive wing of the party had a deep and long-standing loathing
for Gillibrand, despite her recent advocacy for progressive values: getting money out
of politics, fighting for women’s issues, and against climate change. The establishment of the Democratic party,
too, had a deep-seeded loathing for Kirsten Gillibrand. As Politico reported back in November of 2018, “But the still-burning resentment among
the donor class now confronts Gillibrand as she explores a presidential bid, cutting her
off from influential and deep-pocketed contributors and their networks at a time when an expansive
2020 field will compete for their dollars.” Why all the hate? Well, Gillibrand lead the charge to call for
Al Franken’s resignation amid allegations of misconduct. If not for that scandal, and his resignation,
Franken may well have become a top presidential contender in 2020. He was certainly a powerful tool for Democrats
against the Trump administration, with his legendary grilling of Trump’s appointees. Who could forget how he demolished Betsy DeVos? Having led the charge to remove Franken, prior
to an ethics investigation, Gillibrand earned the ire of the party and its top donors. Despite being, by some counts, the most anti-Trump
Senator in the country, Gillibrand never won the support of the progressive grassroots,
either. Failing to secure a spot in the third Democratic
Debate, Gillibrand dropped out of the suspended her campaign on August 28th, 2019. Also failing to make that debate was Bill
de Blasio, the Democratic Primary’s most recent drop out. While de Blasio had established himself as
a formidable, aggressive presence on the debate stage, his campaign never caught serious traction. Progressives may have doubted the sincerity
of his far-left rhetoric, which was somewhat mismatched to a mayoral record that includes
offering handouts of public money to Amazon, favoring drivers over cyclists, failing to
deal with NYC’s homelessness problem, and alleged mishandling of the Eric Garner case. On the other hand, de Blasio has had successes
with progressive policy in New York as well: expanding paid sick leave, reducing stop-and-frisk
policing, delivering universal pre-k and raising the city’s minimum wage to fifteen dollars. At any rate, de Blasio began his campaign
despite a total lack from his existing constituents. One Quinnipiac poll from early April found
that 76% of New Yorkers did not want to see him run for president. This matches with a polling analysis by Nathaniel
Rakich in FiveThirtyEight, which found that unique amongst Democratic candidates, de Blasio
became less popular the more voters got to know him. That analysis also found that de Blasio is
disliked more than liked by members of his own party, and that he was the most surprising
unpopular candidate in the entire field. So, even if he had managed to make the third
democratic debate, it would have been unlikely for him to find a path forward, anyway. De Blasio dropped out of the Democratic Primary
race on September 20, 2019. Going forward, candidates will find it more
an more difficult to make the debates, as standards rise, and the money—from donors
large and small—concentrates more an more into the cauffers of the most popular candidates. Since mid summer, just two candidates—Elizabeth
Warren and Bernie Sanders—have pulled away from the bottom of the pack to remain serious
challenges for the front-runner of this race, Joe Biden. As the contest rolls on, we’re likely to see
many more names added to the list of… Who’s dropped out?

Iran Conflict, Regime Change, and US Foreign Policy | QT Politics


In just one week, Iran managed to violate
the Nuclear Deal twice. In early July, 2019, Iran enriched uranium beyond the purity threshold
set by the JCPOA, and stockpiled more of it than allowed under the terms of the agreement.
According to Iranian officials, this was a response to the US withdrawal from the deal.
Some have suggested the breach is a political move, designed to pressure Europe, China and
Russia to compensate Iran for the damage done to its economy by the new US sanctions. President
Trump claimed the Iranians are ‘playing with fire’, but the stand off was at an even more
dangerous point, just weeks prior. On Thursday, June 20th Iran shot down an unmanned
US miltary surveillance drone. In response, Donald Trump ordered miltary strikes on Iranian
miltary targets the following morning, before abruptly cancelling the strikes over concerns
about potential casualties, according to the president. While the press seemed mixed about President
Trump’s last minute change of heart, the people clearly lean toward peace. According to a poll about the matter released
by Politico and Morning Consult, 37 percent of respondents strongly supported his decision
to call off the attck, with an additional 29 percent somewhat supporting the decision.
Just 14 percent somewhat or strongly opposed the call, with 21 percent unsure. That’s a
full two thirds of Americans supporting Trump’s decision, when that same poll found the President’s
net job approval to be -11 points. When Ben Shapiro criticized the president
over preventing the violence, his own audience rebuked him. He argued in a video, “What
is Trump’s plan for Iran”, that the use of force was necessary. That video, at the time of this recording
has received 1.4 thousand likes and 11 thousand dislikes. The American people, it seems, are staunchly
opposed to conflict with Iran. Of course, despite the country’s vilent history, the
American people have often preferred peace—even when history has rebuked the attitude. As
WWII was raging in Europe in 1939 and 1940, polls from the time indicate that Americans
were increasingly opposed to entering the conflict. If you believe, as I do, that the
United States was justified in entering that conflict, you may rightly point out that Americans
don’t always prefer the correct course. But in the case of Iran, I believe Americans
are absolutely correct in their desire to avoid a confrontation. As the great Edwin
Starr put, Wr… What is it good for? (raise the roof) REGIME CHANGE & US OIL INTERESTS To begin with, let’s address the very important
question about why there has existed a decades-long push to create conflict with Iran in the first
place. Why the country has been repeatedly sanctioned, why it’s been identified as a
rogue nation. So, let me go ahead and say something that
is both obvious, and nearly never said in corporate media: the United States has consistently
pursued a foreign policy of regime change by any means necessary for oil-rich countries
that refuse to allow Multination corporations to extract their resources. Whether by assassination,
sanctions, or direct armed conflict, the US government consistently uses its overwhelming
miltary, intelligence and diplomatic power to quench the thirst of oil companies. After Hugo Chavez was elected president of
Venezuela, he used oil revenues to combat inequality, and managed to reduce poverty
by 20 percent. As part of the effort, he nationalized all oil production, eventually forcing the
world’s largest oil companies, several of them American, to cede their oil fields to
Venezuelan state control. In 2002, he was briefly ousted from power by a coup attempt
directed by the CIA, and other attempts were made on his life, as late as during the Obama
administration—at least according to Chavez. The US also placed severe sanctions on the
country, which, in combination with falling oil prices, has crippled the Venezuelan economy.
Now, we see those economic problems used as an excuse to call yet again for regime change,
after Chavez’s successor has continued to refuse to accede to American oil interests. The Bolivarian government of Venezuela is
by no means utopian, but it is hard to argue that there is a humanitarian purpose to purse
regime change there, but not in the Orwellian nightmare state of North Korea, where there
are few natural resources worth extracting. Nor in Saudi Arabia, which has among the world’s
largest proven oil reserves, open for business for multi-national corporations, and benefits
from significant miltary aid by the United States to prop up a government described by
the CIA’s world fact book as an ‘absolute monarchy’, with an ‘Islamic (sharia) legal
system’, and no political parties. Saudi Arabia’s oil, indeed goes a long way.
As is well known, 15 of the 19 911 hijckers were Saudi nationals. So was OBL. And today,
Saudi Arabia’s religious influence and actual funding continues to fuel Islmist terrism
worldwide. As Adam Weinstein explained in a 2017 article in the Huffington Post, “Out of the 61 groups that are designated
as t organizations by the US State Department, the overwhelming majority are W-inspired and
Saudi-funded groups, with a focus on the West and Iran as their primary enemy. Only two
are Shi’a…and only four have ever claimed to receive support from Iran.” In a word, Saudi Arabia is the biggest state
sponsor of tism, a designation often misattributed to Iran. While Iran’s dealings in this area
certainly undermine the popular claim that the country has not started a w in more than
two centuries, its aggressive actions are significantly overshadowed by Saudi Arabia’s. Despite significant problems, Iran, also in
fact, has a reasonably superior society from a human rights perspective to that of Saudi
Arabia. Suffrage is universal in Iran, unlike in Saudi Arabia, and there exist numerous
political parties. The country is indeed theocratic in many ways, but it also fuses these traditions
with modern, secular structures. Thus, it is correctly identified by the CIA’s fact
book as a Theocratic Republic. Given all that, it’s difficult to see why
US hawks have consistently agitated for regime change in Iran, but supported Saudi Arabia.
It is absolutely laughable, for example, that John Bolton wants us to take him seriously
when he says things like this: “The people of Iran, I think, deserve a
better government; there’s absolutely no doubt about it. The trouble is it’s not
just a theological dictatorship; it’s a miltary dictatorship too. That’s a very
difficult circumstance. We’ll see what happens as the economic pressure continues to grow.” Iran’s people indeed deserve a better government.
But their government is quite obviously at least as good as that of America’s close trading
partner, Saudi Arabia. But Iran has committed one violation that US interests have far more
trouble forgiving. Iran ranks as fourth in the world when it comes to proven oil reserves,
and it nationalized the industry after the Islamic Revolution, in 1979. As an opponent
of Israel, a regional rival to Saudi Arabia, and a historical victim of American aggression
many decades ago, Iran’s history and geopolitical status offer multiple reasons for US opposition.
But, at the end of the day, fossil fuels are the central reason why regime change is pursued,
not the excuses propagated by neo cons like John Bolton. THE MOTHER OF ALL QUAGMIRES According to the website Global Firepower,
Iran has a miltary personnel count of 873,000. The country’s miltary equipment is no doubt
inferior to that of the US, with soviet-era tanks and planes, but its missile and anti-naval
forces pose a serious threat to potential US incursion. The UK outlet, Express, points
out that aside from its miltary infrastructure, the Iranian miltary benefits from its massive
reserves of oil, the lifebood of modern militaries But, conflict with Iran would be unlikely
to be contained within the country itself. Iran is a regional superpower, with numerous
allies and proxies. As Seth Frantzman of The National Interest points out,
“Conflict with Iran would not only be fought on Iranian soil, but could extend into Iraq,
Syria, Lebanon, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, the Persian Gulf, and Gulf of Oman—engulfing
the region in wr.” Indeed, Iran enjoys strong relations with
Lebanon, Syria, and the Palestinian authority, as well as groups like Hezbollah, and the
Houthi rebels in Yemen. Iranian militias have played a significant role in Syria’s Civil
W, and maintain a presence there and in Iraq. Beyond that, Iran could be potentially supplied
with intelligence, equipment, and money from America’s chief adversaries, China and Russia—both
of which have boldly seized upon opportunities for expanding their global influence and undermining
US hegemony. Both also have diplomatic and trade relationships with Iran. Iran has even
been frequently discussed as a potential member of the CSTO—the Warsaw pact of modern Russia. While the US invasion of Iraq has been generally
considered to be one of the worst foreign policy blunders of all time, conflict in Iran
would be almost certainly worse. Aside from having at least double the miltary of S Hussein,
and the potential to draw from the resources of formidable allies, Iran also has a more
subtle advantage. While Iran is surely a pluralistic society
in terms of ethnicity, language and religion, it is also a distinct nation, with a strong
culture and history dating back thousands of years. Iraq, on the other hand, never existed
as a unified, autonomous state prior to the 1930s, and through most of its history, order
was only maintained through the brutality of Saddam Hussein’s Ba’ath Party. Put simply,
Iraqis have less reason to believe in Iraq than Iranians believe in Iran. Iranian fighters,
then, may be expected to be evermore dedicated in their resistance to American forces—both
during the main battles, and after—during what would no doubt be a bloody and disastrous
occupation. WHAT IS IT GOOD FOR? Finally, let us consider the morality of such
an incursion—a subject both worthy in itself, and of significant practical consideration,
seeing as it would affect US public opinion. That, in turn, is a practical consideration,
as a US invasion force must contend not just with opponents on the battlefield, but with
political opponents at home, who through Democratic mechanisms are capable of lowering morale,
cutting funding, and forcing withdrawal. As mentioned in the intro, wr with Iran is
already incredibly unpopular. Will that hold? Very likely. Unlike in WWII, but much like in Vietnam,
the US would have extreme difficulty in maintaining any kind of moral high ground in a conflict
with Iran. Iran, though a formidable regional power, is in no way a serious threat to the
United States. The greatest argument that could well be is their potential ability to
create nuclear wepons. Currently, Iran has none, and has signed onto the JCPOA—or Iran
Deal—a multi-national agreement that prevents Iran from developing such a weapn. Sure, Iran has violated the deal in small
ways—twice in one week. But, this only happened after the US withdrew from the deal and re-imposed
sanctions. And sure, many think the deal was flawed in
the first place. But, whatever your opinion may be on the subject, Iran currently has
zero warheads, and their enrichment levels are still far from what is required to create
one. The United States has an estimated 3800 warheads, while its close ally in the region,
and Iranian adversary, Israel, has an estimated 80 warheads, despite its government’s policy
to neither confirm nor deny this information. So, it is
natural to ask, by what right do the United States and Israel maintain massive nuclear
stockpiles, while simultaneously threatening the use of force to prevent Iran from doing
the same? Perhaps Iran is precluded from that right
because of their aggressive actions—like funding, arming and supporting terrsts. The
US, of course, has done the same, at greater magnitudes, and for a longer period of time.
From the Contra rebels in Nicaragua, to the Mujahadin, to AQAP. According to the AP: “The coalition cut secret deals with aQ
fighters, paying some to leave key cities and towns and letting others retreat with
wepons, equipment and wads of looted cash, an investigation by The Associated Press has
found. Hundreds more were recruited to join the coalition itself.” “These compromises and alliances have allowed
aQ milits to survive to fght another day — and risk strengthening the most dangerous branch
of the terrr network that carried out the 911 attcks. Key participants in the pacts
said the U.S. was aware of the arrangements and held off on any drone strkes.” Perhaps, then, American advocates for aggression
could argue that Iran must be dealt with this way because diplomatic methods failed. Again,
Iran was willing to sign on to an agreement that prevents their development of nukes,
and has not withdrawn from the arrangement, despite the fact that the US has. So, maybe Americans can draw the moral high
ground from the fact that Iran is a rogue state, that started the conflict with the
US and her allies. That, too, falls flat, as the decades-long tension was so clearly
started by the United States. According to Brookings, “The United States and Iran were not old
allies, but Americans had played a crucial—and until 1953, constructive—role in each of
the formative experiences in the birth of modern Iran.” So, what changed things? “This…is all but forgotten today, thanks
to the U.S. role in ousting Iran’s nationalist prime minister in 1953 and the subsequent
embrace of Shah Mohammad Reza by successive American administrations. The coup was a momentous
turning point for Iran; coinciding with a broader imperative around American engagement
in the Middle East, the CIA’s role in preserving the monarchy meant that for the first time,
Washington assumed a real stake in Iran’s fate.” “The generous American program of technical
and financial assistance that followed the shah’s reinstatement enabled him to impose
greater central control and reassemble the instruments of the state under his personal
authority. Over time, it would become painfully clear that the costs of the coup in stoking
paranoia, enabling repression, and undermining the Pahlavis’ legitimacy vastly outweighed
its short-term benefits, but at the time the preoccupation with the Cold Wr obscured Iranian
resentment fueled by the American intervention.” The CIA, under freedom of information laws,
has confirmed that they, and Britain’s M16, were behind the overthrow of Iran’s democratically
elected prime minister, Mohammad Mosaddeq. While some argue the motivation was Mosaddeq’s
potential alignment with the Soviet Union, his moves to nationalize oil were, in my view,
a far more plausible cause. But whatever the case, the United States crushed Iranian democracy
for strategic foreign policy purposes. Without question, the current US-Iranian tensions
stem entirely from unprovoked, American aggression. As such, it is difficult to see new American
aggression against Iran as anything other than a continuation of arbitrary hostility.
Whatever ills Iran is guilt of—and there are many—the United States started this,
and bears the moral burden of constructive reconciliation. It’s on America to make peace,
and instead, the neo-cons push for wr. During the 1940s, America was easily painted
as a champion of democracy, opposing authoritarianism throughout the world. Since the fall of the
Soviet Union, it has grown ever more difficult to morally justify American imperial hegemony.
The United States today has unparallelled power—militarily, economically, and diplomatically—assuming
an unparallelled place in global affairs. If America continues to pursue unprovoked,
unilateral regime change wrs, someone might just ask this question about America’s unique
role in
the world: What is it good for?

Episode 1131 | Sexual Harassment in Politics (WARNING-SENSITIVE CONTENT)


NOW, NEW MEXICO LAWMAKERS
TOOK A NEW TRAINING ON SEXUAL HARASSMENT THIS YEAR,
AND THERE’S BEEN A LOT OF DISCUSSION IN RECENT MONTHS
ABOUT HOW TO ADDRESS SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN THE
ROUNDHOUSE. I SAT DOWN RECENTLY WITH TWO
WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN POLITICS.>>WOMEN ARE SPEAKING UP IN
NEW MEXICO AND AROUND THE COUNTRY ABOUT SEXUAL
HARASSMENT AT WORK. I’M JOINED BY TWO WOMEN WHO
HAVE PUBLICLY SHARED HOW MEN HAVE TREATED THEM IN THEIR
WORK IN CAMPAIGNS AND THE LEGISLATURE. VANESSA ALARID IS A LOBBYIST
AND POLITICAL CONSULTANT, AND HEATHER BREWER HAS
WORKED ON CAPITOL HILL AND IN THE ROUNDHOUSE FOR FORMER
SPEAKER BEN LUJAN. THANK YOU BOTH FOR COMING
AND TALKING ABOUT THIS ISSUE. VANESSA, LET ME START WITH
YOU. IN DECEMBER, YOU TALKED
ABOUT YOUR SITUATION IN THE NEW YORK TIMES IN AN ARTICLE
THAT GOT A LOT OF NOTORIETY THAT REPRESENTATIVE THOMAS
GARCIA ASKED FOR A SEXUAL FAVOR FOR A VOTE. CAN WE BACK UP JUST A LITTLE
BIT AND TALK ABOUT, WHAT WAS THE ATMOSPHERE THAT WENT
AROUND THAT SITUATION, AND WHAT LED UP TO THAT
SITUATION WITH MR. GARCIA?>>CERTAINLY. IN 2008, I STARTED WORKING
ON A BILL THAT I WORKED ON VERY HARD, AND
REPRESENTATIVE THOMAS GARCIA WAS THE VICE CHAIRMAN OF
BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY. HE WAS VERY HELPFUL ON THE
BILL, WITH THE BILL, IN 2008 IN THE COMMITTEE AND THEN ON
THE FLOOR. HE HELPED US WITH THE FLOOR
VOTE. SO WE CONTINUED TALKING
THROUGHOUT THE YEAR, AND IN 2009 HE WAS AGAIN VICE CHAIR
OF BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY. ON MARCH 19th, THE VOTED
FOR THE BILL IN COMMITTEE, AND AFTER THAT, OFFERED TO
HELP ME WITH MY VOTE COUNT. AS A LOBBYIST, YOU HAVE VOTE
COUNTS WHERE YOU PUT LEGISLATORS IN ONE CATEGORY,
EITHER THEY ARE COMMITTING SUPPORT OR OPPOSITION, WHICH
EITHER ONE — I MEAN, OBVIOUSLY IT’S NEVER A VOTE
UNTIL IT’S A VOTE. BUT WE CERTAINLY IDENTIFY
THOSE FOLKS. SO HE OFFERED TO HELP ME
WITH MY VOTE COUNT. THE COMMITTEE ENDED. IT WAS LATE ON THE 19th,
AND HE CAME OVER TO MY HOTEL WHERE I WAS AT. WE WERE IN THE PUBLIC AREA
DOWNSTAIRS AND JUST TALKING. HE DECIDED HE WAS HUNGRY AND
WANTED TO ORDER FOOD. THIS WAS 58 DAYS OF A 60-DAY
SESSION AT THAT POINT, SO I HAD BEEN STAYING AT THIS
HOTEL FOR 58 DAYS. THE HOTEL FOLKS SAID, WE
DON’T SERVE FOOD DOWNSTAIRS EXCEPT IN THE RESTAURANT
AREA, YOU’RE GOING TO HAVE TO ORDER ROOM SERVICE. WELL, I HAD AN OFFICE SUITE
WITH PUBLIC ACCESS WHERE ALL THE LOBBYISTS COULD HELP ME
OUT WITH, AND I OFFERED THAT REPRESENTATIVE GARCIA AND I
GO UP TO THE OFFICE AND ORDER FROM THERE. HE WAS CERTAINLY AMENABLE TO
THAT. WE WENT UPSTAIRS, ORDERED
THE FOOD, WENT OVER THE VOTE COUNT. ONCE THE FOOD ARRIVED, WE
REALLY STARTED DISSECTING THE VOTES AND GOING INTO
WHERE WE WERE, AND IT WAS AT THAT POINT WE HAD A
THREE-VOTE MARGIN WHERE WE WERE AHEAD, AND HE SAID, I
SEE YOU HAVE INDICATED THAT I’M IN FAVOR OF YOUR VOTE. AND I SAID, OF COURSE — IN
FAVOR OF YOUR BILL. OF COURSE, YOU JUST VOTED ON
IT. YOU VOTED ON IT THE LAST TWO
VOTES IN 2008, SO YOU VOTED ON IT THREE TIMES. OF COURSE YOU’RE IN FAVOR OF
IT. IS THIS A JOKE? SO I WAS SITTING ON THE
COUCH BY THE DESK AREA, AND HE STARTED WALKING AROUND
THE SUITE AND OPENED UP THE DOOR INTO MY BEDROOM SUITE,
AND HE WALKED THROUGH, AND I FOLLOWED HIM, AGAIN
THINKING, WHAT DO YOU MEAN? WE WERE RIGHT BY THE BED,
AND HE SAID, IF YOU (BLEEP) ME, I WILL VOTE YES AND WHIP
YOUR VOTES ON THE FLOOR. YOU HAVE THE SAME NAME AS MY
WIFE, I WON’T EVEN GET CONFUSED WHILE WE’RE
(BLEEP). IT’S BEEN A WHILE, AND IT’S
STILL VERY DIFFICULT.>>I CAN IMAGINE.>>THE VERY NEXT DAY, I TOLD
A LEGISLATOR, AND WE TALKED ABOUT WHAT MY OPTIONS WERE. AND I MADE THE DECISION TO
JUST DEAL WITH IT WHEN THE SESSION WAS OVER. I HAD A DAY AND A HALF LEFT
FOR THE SESSION. SO WE DID, AND CONTINUED
WITH LOBBYING ON THIS BILL. THE VOTE TOOK PLACE ON
MARCH 20th, LATE IN THE EVENING. I BELIEVE IT WAS AFTER
11:00. AND WHEN THE VOTE CAME UP
FOR DISCUSSION, I SAW THOMAS WAS WALKING THE FLOOR,
TALKING TO SOME OF THE MEMBERS THAT I HAD PUT IN
THE ‘YES’ COLUMN, AND LOOKING UP AT ME. CLEARLY THEY WERE TALKING
ABOUT MY VOTE, MY BILL THAT I WAS WORKING ON. THE FLOOR WAS OPEN FOR A
FINAL VOTE, HE VOTED NO. IT FAILED ON A TIE VOTE. HE TURNED AROUND, BLEW ME A
KISS, SHRUGGED HIS SHOULDERS. A FINAL INSULT. THAT’S WHAT HE DID.>>WOW. HOW DID YOU FEEL AFTER THAT
VOTE, AFTER THAT MOVE WITH THE BLOWING OF THE KISS?>>SHOCKED. DISGUSTED. I MEAN, AT THAT POINT IT
DIDN’T SINK IN FOR A COUPLE OF DAYS, AND THAT’S WHEN I
ACTUALLY TOLD MY DIRECT SUPERVISOR. THERE WERE ACTUALLY
INSTANCES WHERE I THOUGHT, WELL, COULD I HAVE JUST DONE
IT, JUST CLOSED MY EYES? WHAT AM I THINKING. ABSOLUTELY NOT, NO WAY. WHAT HE DID AND HIS ABUSE OF
POWER, IT’S NOT OKAY. IT TOOK ME QUITE SOME TIME
TO TELL SEVERAL PEOPLE, MY FAMILY, OTHER MEMBERS OF THE
LEGISLATURE. AND I HAD TO STILL DEAL WITH
THIS PERSON. HE WAS STILL A LEGISLATOR. A COUPLE OF MONTHS LATER, I
INVITED HIM TO MEET ME IN ALBUQUERQUE, AND I MET HIM
AT THE FORK RESTAURANT. IT WAS ANOTHER NAME THEN. I WAITED FOR HIM BEFORE THE
HOSTESS SAT ME. AND AS WE SAT DOWN AND THE
HOSTESS AND THE WAITRESS WENT TO GO GET WATER, I
ASKED HIM: ‘DO YOU ALWAYS TRADE SEX FOR VOTES, OR WAS
THAT JUST WITH ME?’ HE GOT UP AND WALKED OUT. THAT IS THE LAST TIME I HAVE
TALKED TO HIM, AND HE WAS A LEGISLATOR AFTER THAT.>>WOW.>>VERY LAST TIME.>>IN THE NEW YORK TIMES
PIECE, HE HAS DENIED THE ALLEGATION. HE SAID THE ALLEGATIONS WERE
FALSE. WERE YOU SURPRISED THAT HE
DENIED THAT IN THAT NEW YORK TIMES PIECE?>>I AM NOT SURPRISED. WHO WANTS TO ADMIT TO
SOMETHING SO DISGUSTING AND HEINOUS, HONESTLY. I DON’T KNOW WHY HE WOULD
THINK I WOULD MAKE THAT UP, OR WHY ANYBODY WOULD THINK I
WOULD MAKE IT UP.>>HAVE YOU SEEN HIM SINCE
OR RUN INTO HIM IN ANY CAPACITY?>>I SAW HIM YESTERDAY AND
THE DAY BEFORE AT THE LEGISLATURE.>>REALLY?>>I DID.>>WHAT WAS THAT LIKE?>>YOU KNOW, I HAD THOUGHT,
ESPECIALLY SINCE MY STORY HAS BECOME PUBLIC, I KNOW
WHAT I’M GOING TO SAY TO HIM. I’M GOING TO HIT HIM. I’M GOING TO THROW SOMETHING
AT HIM. I’M GOING TO SCREAM AT HIM. I DID NOTHING. I WAS SO IN SHOCK. I LITERALLY JUST SAT THERE
AND LET IT SOAK IN, THAT HERE IS THE MAN WHO USED AND
ABUSED HIS POWER AND KILLED TWO YEARS OF MY WORK IN ONE
NIGHT. AND THERE IS HE IS WALKING
BY ME, AND I COULDN’T SAY ANYTHING. I’M NOW GATHERED. I KNOW WHAT I’M GOING TO SAY
TO HIM WHEN I SEE HIM AGAIN. BUT IT WAS INCREDIBLY
UNCOMFORTABLE. I CAN TELL YOU, I RECEIVED
TEXT CALLS FROM PEOPLE SAYING, HE’S IN THE
BUILDING, BE AWARE, BE AWARE, BUT I’D JUST RUN INTO
HIM. BUT THANK YOU FOR WATCHING
OUT FOR ME.>>THAT’S NO WAY TO WORK,
THOUGH. YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN? YOU’RE THERE TO DO YOUR
BUSINESS. HEATHER, WHEN YOU HEAR THIS
STORY, I’M CURIOUS YOUR REACTION, WHEN YOU HEAR
VANESSA’S STORY. YOU KNOW, THIS ISN’T THINGS
THAT HAPPEN IN THE ROUNDHOUSE ALL TOO OFTEN, AS
WE HEAR. WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS?>>YOU KNOW, IT’S UPSETTING. IT’S AN INCREDIBLY UPSETTING
STORY. VANESSA HAS BEEN WORKING IN
NEW MEXICO POLITICS SINCE I’VE BEEN HERE. SHE’S A STAPLE AND SOMEONE
THAT I’VE LOOKED UP TO IN MY WORK, AND TO KNOW THAT SHE’S
GONE THROUGH SOMETHING THIS OUTRAGEOUS IS DISTURBING,
AND IT’S UPSETTING. BUT AM I SURPRISED? NO. AM I SURPRISED TO HEAR THAT
A LEGISLATOR ABUSED HIS POWER IN THAT WAY? NO, UNFORTUNATELY, I’M NOT
SURPRISED. I’M DISAPPOINTED.>>RIGHT. NOW, YOU HAVE YOUR OWN
STORY, OF COURSE, CERTAINLY. IN THE SANTA FE NEW MEXICAN,
YOU TOLD A VERY DIFFICULT TO READ STORY ABOUT YOUR OWN
SITUATION ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL. TELL US ABOUT THAT.>>SO, IT WAS JUST ABOUT 15
YEARS AGO WHEN I FIRST MOVED TO NEW MEXICO, AND I HAD
ACCEPTED MY FIRST CAMPAIGN JOB. I HAD WORKED IN D.C. FOR A
NUMBER OF YEARS DOING LOCAL COMMUNICATIONS, AND DECIDED
TO TRY A NEW LIFE, A NEW WORLD IN NEW MEXICO. AND I WAS EXCITED TO HAVE MY
FIRST CAMPAIGN JOB. I DIDN’T REALLY KNOW THE LAY
OF THE LAND, I KNEW I WAS TAKING A LITTLE BIT OF A
RISK, BUT I ACCEPTED THE JOB AND WAS EXCITED AND READY TO
GO. THAT NIGHT AT MIDNIGHT, MY
PHONE RANG, AND THIS WAS 15 YEARS AGO, SO I JUST GRABBED
THE PHONE. THERE WAS NO PICTURE THAT
POPPED UP OR ANYTHING LIKE THAT. I GRABBED THE PHONE, AND IT
WAS THE CANDIDATE WHO HAD OFFERED ME THE JOB AND THAT
I HAD ACCEPTED EARLIER THAT DAY, ASKING ME TO COME OVER
TO HIS HOUSE AND HAVE SEX WITH HIM. HE WAS NOT AS VULGAR AS
THOMAS WAS, BUT IT WAS GROSSLY, GROSSLY
INAPPROPRIATE AND OUT OF LINE, AND QUITE HONESTLY,
SCARY. IT WAS MY FIRST POLITICAL
JOB IN NEW MEXICO. I DIDN’T KNOW WHO THE
POLITICAL PLAYERS WERE. I DIDN’T KNOW WHO TO TRUST. I DIDN’T KNOW WHAT WAS GOING
ON. I SAID, NO.
AND THE NEXT DAY — KIND OF AS YOU WERE TALKING ABOUT,
YOU HAVE TO SORT OF GATHER YOUR STRENGTH. I GATHERED MY STRENGTH, WENT
INTO THE OFFICE, MADE IT VERY CLEAR THAT THAT WOULD
NOT BE HAPPENING AGAIN, AND WE SORT OF WENT ON WITH
BUSINESS. BUT THERE WAS NOBODY FOR ME
TO REPORT THAT TO. THERE’S NOWHERE TO GO. YOU TELL A COUPLE OF PEOPLE,
BECAUSE YOU CAN’T — YOU CAN’T JUST KEEP IT ALL TO
YOURSELF. YOU HAVE TO TELL SOMEONE,
BECAUSE IT’S HUMILIATING. I MEAN, IT’S ABSOLUTELY
HUMILIATING. YOU’VE BUILT A CAREER,
YOU’VE BUILT A REPUTATION, WHICH FOR ME WAS STILL VERY
NEW IN NEW MEXICO, BUT I CERTAINLY WASN’T NEW TO THE
POLITICAL GAME. YOU TELL A COUPLE OF PEOPLE,
AND YOU JUST TRY AND GET BY, HAD FOR SO LONG BEEN THE WAY
THAT THIS WAS HANDLED.>>RIGHT. OR, WHAT DID I DO WRONG?>>EXACTLY.>>WHEN YOU DIDN’T DO
ANYTHING WRONG. I DIDN’T DO ANYTHING WRONG. HE DID SOMETHING WRONG.>>EXACTLY. I’M CURIOUS HOW THAT
IMPACTED YOUR WORK IN THAT CAMPAIGN. WAS THAT SOMETHING YOU COULD
JUST — LIKE YOU SAY, YOU GATHERED YOUR STRENGTH AND
YOU HAD THAT CONFRONTATION, BUT THINGS CAN’T BE THE
SAME.>>NO, OF COURSE THEY’RE
NOT. OF COURSE THEY’RE NOT.
AND IT’S THE SAME THING AS HAVING TO GO BACK TO THE
LEGISLATURE THE NEXT DAY AND JUST ACT LIKE NOTHING HAS
HAPPENED AND KEEP WORKING. I DIDN’T KNOW ANYBODY IN THE
STATE. I DIDN’T HAVE A SUPPORT
NETWORK, I DIDN’T HAVE THAT SORT OF THING, SO I JUST HAD
TO JUST KEEP BLINDLY MOVING FORWARD NOT KNOWING, WAS
THIS GOING TO BE HELD AGAINST ME, WAS I GOING TO
LOSE THE JOB, WERE THERE GOING TO BE MORE
SUGGESTIONS, WAS THERE GOING TO BE MORE INAPPROPRIATE
BEHAVIOR. WHAT WAS I GOING TO DO ABOUT
IT. AND THERE IS JUST THIS WAY,
NOT NECESSARILY TRADITIONALLY, BUT CERTAINLY
IN MY PROFESSIONAL CAREER, THAT YOU JUST HAD TO FIGURE
OUT A WAY AROUND IT. LIKE YOU JUST HAD TO FIGURE
OUT HOW TO LIVE WITH IT, HOW TO DEAL WITH IT. I HEARD A WOMAN INTERVIEWED
SEVERAL WEEKS AGO TALKING ABOUT HOW HANDLING SEXUAL
HARASSMENT ON THE JOB WAS ALMOST LIKE A JOB SKILL THAT
WE HAD TO DEVELOP. LIKE, YOU JUST FIGURED OUT
HOW TO NAVIGATE IT AND YOU MOVED ON. BUT YOU NEVER CONSIDERED —
I MEAN, I NEVER, EVER CONSIDERED, AND THIS IS
SOMEONE WHO WENT ON TO SERVE IN OTHER POLITICAL OFFICES,
I NEVER CONSIDERED SPEAKING OUT AGAINST HIM. I NEVER CONSIDERED TELLING
THAT STORY. TIMES HAVE CHANGED.>>BUT AT THE SAME TIME, AND
AGAIN, FOR THE BOTH OF YOU, WE ARE A SMALL STATE, AND
EVERYBODY SORT OF KNOWS EACH OTHER AT EVERY LEVEL UP AND
DOWN THE LADDER. SO IN MY IMAGININGS WHEN I
HEAR THESE STORIES, YOU’RE ALWAYS SORT OF CASTING
AHEAD, WE’RE ALL THINKING ABOUT OUR CAREER, THE NEXT
STEP, AND IF PERSON IS THERE AT THAT NEXT STEP, WHAT DO
YOU THEN DO? DO YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN? THAT’S A DIFFICULTY.>>IT IS VERY DIFFICULT, AND
IT’S A VERY REAL CONSIDERATION OR CALCULATION
THAT WOMEN HAVE TO MAKE IN DECIDING WHEN, HOW, AND IF
TO TELL A STORY.>>ONE OF THE THINGS THAT
I’D LIKE TO ADD INTO THAT IS, SINCE MY STORY WAS
PUBLIC, SINCE IT BECAME PUBLIC, I’VE HAD OVER 100
PEOPLE CONTACT ME, EITHER FINDING MY NUMBER ON THE
INTERNET, CALLING ME, TEXTING ME, DIRECT
MESSAGING, FACEBOOK, LinkedIn, WHATEVER MEANS
OF COMMUNICATION, TALKING ABOUT NOT ONLY WHAT DO I DO,
BUT, OKAY, THAT WAS A RIGHT OF PASSAGE. EVEN MAKING JOKES ABOUT IT,
BECAUSE IT’S JUST SO COMMON. AND THEN I’M SAYING, YOU
KNOW WHAT, IT WASN’T A RIGHT OF PASSAGE, IT WAS WRONG,
AND THANK YOU FOR SPEAKING UP AND THANK YOU FOR TALKING
ABOUT YOUR STORY. AND THE OTHER WOMEN THAT
HAVE DONE IT, AND THE MEDIA HAVE REFERENCED YOUR STORY
AS WELL, HEATHER, PEOPLE ARE FINDING A VOICE NOW, AND I
THINK THAT THESE CONVERSATIONS ARE REALLY
CHANGING THE CULTURE. AND, YES, NEW MEXICO IS A
SMALL STATE, AND THAT’S TO OUR ADVANTAGE, BECAUSE THERE
ARE LESS FEW PEOPLE THAT HAVE TO BE TAUGHT HOW TO
TREAT OTHER PEOPLE WELL AND RIGHT.>>THAT’S A GOOD WAY TO LOOK
AT IT, THAT’S EXACTLY RIGHT.>>AND I DON’T THINK THAT WE
CAN ALSO HAVE THIS CONVERSATION WITHOUT TALKING
ABOUT THE RETALIATION AND THE FEAR OF RETALIATION.>>ABSOLUTELY.>>AND IN MY EXPERIENCE, THE
RETALIATION THAT I EXPERIENCED CAME NOT IN
SHARING THE STORY OF WHAT HAPPENED TO ME, BUT IN
CRITICIZING A MALE POLITICAL BLOGGER IN THE STATE FOR HIS
RESPONSE, ACTUALLY, TO YOUR STORY IN THE NEW YORK TIMES. I QUESTIONED HIM AND
CRITICIZED HIS APPROACH ON SOCIAL MEDIA, AND THE NEXT
MORNING I AWOKE TO HIS ENTIRE BLOG BEING DEDICATED
TO DEFAMING ME, MY HUSBAND, MY FRIENDS, MY FRIENDS’
HUSBANDS. I MEAN, THERE IS STILL A
CULTURE OF RETALIATION OUT THERE. I’M HAPPY TO SAY THAT PEOPLE
REALLY RALLIED BEHIND ME AND AGAINST THAT, AND PEOPLE
HAVE PULLED THEIR ADVERTISING FROM THAT BLOG,
HE’S BEEN UNINVITED FROM PUBLIC APPEARANCES. THERE IS DEFINITELY A STRONG
CONTINGENT OF INDIVIDUALS AND UNIONS AND A REALLY
INTERESTING COALITION OF PEOPLE WHO ARE SUPPORTING
WOMEN WHO SPEAK OUT, BUT YOU STILL RUN THAT RISK OF
HAVING YOUR NAME PUBLICLY DRAGGED THROUGH THE MUD AND
HAVING YOUR FAMILY BROUGHT INTO IT.>>I HAVE TO CONGRATULATE
YOU, I DID READ THAT IN REAL TIME, THAT BLOG YOU’RE
TALKING ABOUT. THAT WAS A VERY VIGOROUS, TO
USE A WORD, BUT A VERY NECESSARY DISCUSSION THAT
HAD TO HAPPEN IN THAT FORMAT. LAST DECEMBER THERE WAS A
WORKING GROUP FORMED IN THE LEGISLATURE, SOME WOMEN THAT
YOU PROBABLY KNOW PERSONALLY WITH SOME OF THE MALE
LEGISLATORS TRYING TO FIGURE THIS OUT.
AND VANESSA, WHAT TO YOU WOULD BE THE BEST NEXT STEP
IN THE LEGISLATURE TO TRY TO GET THIS PROBLEM RESOLVED? WHAT HAS TO HAPPEN?>>WELL, AS YOU KNOW, THE
LEGISLATURE DID PASS A POLICY ON THE EVE OF THE
START OF THE LEGISLATIVE SESSION, SO THE DAY RIGHT
BEFORE IT STARTED, AND AT THE SAME TIME REQUIRED ALL
LEGISLATORS TO PARTICIPATE IN A SEXUAL HARASSMENT
TRAINING. THE SECRETARY OF STATE ALSO
FOLLOWED UP, AND I BELIEVE SHE DID IT BEFORE IN HER OWN
POLICY, TO HAVE SEXUAL HARASSMENT TRAINING AND SET
A POLICY IN PLACE. THE FACT THAT WE NOW HAVE
PROTOCOLS AND AN ESTABLISHED FRAMEWORK ON HOW WE REPORT
SEXUAL HARASSMENT IS A GREAT FIRST STEP. I DO THINK THAT THE
LEGISLATORS ARE GOING TO HAVE TO LOOK AT THIS POLICY
AND DISCUSS IT AND DISSECT IT, BECAUSE IT’S STILL NOT
PERFECT, AND IT WON’T BE FOR A WHILE, BUT IT CERTAINLY
ESTABLISHED A FRAMEWORK FOR INDIVIDUALS.>>HEATHER, FOR YOU, WHAT
WOULD BE THE BEST NEXT STEP, DO YOU THINK?>>I DO APPRECIATE THE WORK
THAT THE LEGISLATURE DID AND THE TIMELINESS IN WHICH THEY
DID IT. IT WAS VERY CLEAR, AND MADE
VERY CLEAR, THAT THEY WANTED TO HAVE A NEW UPDATED POLICY
IN PLACE BEFORE THE SESSION STARTED, AND I DO APPRECIATE
THAT, AND I THANK THEM FOR HAVING THAT CONVERSATION,
AND LISTENING TO THE FEEDBACK. THEY GOT FEEDBACK FROM THE
PUBLIC, AND THEY MADE CHANGES TO THEIR DRAFT
POLICY. MY CONCERN IS WE’VE HAD
SEXUAL HARASSMENT POLICIES IN PLACE FOR 30 YEARS. EVERY BUSINESS HAS A POLICY. EVERY INSTITUTION HAS A
POLICY. THE POLICY IS LESS
MEANINGFUL TO ME THAN THE ACTUAL CULTURE CHANGE THAT
NEEDS TO COME WITH THAT POLICY. IF THE POLICY IS NOT
ENFORCED IN A WAY THAT HOLDS PERPETRATORS ACCOUNTABLE AND
PROTECTS THE VICTIMS, IT’S NOT WORTH THE PAPER IT’S
WRITTEN ON. SO I REALLY DO APPRECIATE
THE POLICY, I APPRECIATE THE EFFORT THAT WENT INTO IT,
WHAT I WANT TO SEE IS A REAL CULTURE CHANGE THAT SAYS NOT
ONLY DO WE HAVE A PIECE OF PAPER THAT EXPLAINS THAT WE
DON’T AGREE WITH THIS, BUT WE’RE ACTUALLY GOING TO ACT
ON THAT, AND WHEN ONE OF OUR OWN DOES SOMETHING THAT IS
GROSSLY INAPPROPRIATE, HE OR SHE WILL BE HELD
ACCOUNTABLE.>>ABSOLUTELY. HEATHER BREWER AND VANESSA
ALARID, THANK YOU FOR COMING IN. THIS IS AN IMPORTANT
SUBJECT. THIS IS A PART OF A
CONTINUING CONVERSATION WE’RE HAVING NATIONALLY, BUT
ALSO MORE IMPORTANTLY TO US LOCALLY HERE IN NEW MEXICO. WE APPRECIATE YOU SHARING
YOUR STORIES HERE AT NEW MEXICO InFOCUS.>>THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU.>>ABSOLUTELY.>>WE REACHED OUT TO FORMER
REPRESENTATIVE THOMAS GARCIA FOR A STATEMENT. THE FULL STATEMENT HE
PROVIDED NEW MEXICO InFOCUS IS ONLINE, BUT
HERE IS AN EXCERPT: “ANYONE WHO TAKES THE TIME
TO LOOK INTO THE STATEMENTS MADE BY VANESSA ALARID WILL
FIND THE TRUTH SHOULD THEY CHOOSE TO LOOK AT THE FACTS
EVEN IF THE EVENTS AS PORTRAYED BY VANESSA ALARID
WERE FACTUAL. THEY FALL WELL SHORT OF ANY
TYPE OF SEXUAL ASSAULT, VIOLENCE OR HARASSMENT. HER OWN STATEMENTS THAT
CONTINUE TO CHANGE BASED ON THE MEDIA OUTLET SHE
DISCUSSES THE ALLEGATIONS WITH SHOW THERE WAS NOTHING
DONE TO MEET THE BASIC THRESHOLD OF WRONGDOING.”

Hotly Contested Race To Lead The State Republican Party | The Line


>>WELCOME BACK TO THE LINE. FORMER NEW MEXICO CONGRESSMAN
STEVE PEARCE FACES A NEW BATTLE THIS WEEKEND. WHEN REPUBLICANS DECIDED TO
PICK A NEW STATE PARTY CHAIRMAN. HIS OPPONENT, AN ALBUQUERQUE
BUSINESSMAN, JOHN ROCKWELL, WHO RAN FOR THE CHAIRMANSHIP
TWICE BEFORE AND LOST. NOW, FORMER SPEAKER OF THE
HOUSE DON TRIPP THIS WEEK PUBLICLY ENDORSED MR. ROCKWELL
AND THEN — WHEN YOU THINK ABOUT THE CONTEXT OF LOSING —
THE PARTY LOSING ALL STATE-WIDE SEATS AND EIGHT
SEATS IN THE HOUSE, AND JUST A REAL MESS, IS THIS THE NORMAL
CYCLE OF HOW STATE PARTIES OPERATE? YOU LOSE A RACE AND YOU COME
BACK OR IS THIS A STATEMENT OF SOMETHING WAY BIGGER GOING ON
HERE.>>I THINK IT IS WAY BIGGER. AS A MEMBER OF THE REPUBLICAN
PARTY, I MEAN, I LOST AN ELECTION FOR THE HOUSE. WHEN I LOST MY ELECTION, YOU
DISAPPEAR. YOU DON’T GO RUNNING AROUND —
WE HAVE A GUY WHO TOOK ONE OF THE WORST LICKINGS THAT
ANYBODY HAS TAKEN IN A STATE-WIDE RACE AND WITHIN A
MONTH OF LOSING THE RACE, HE IS NOW THE ANSWER FOR STATE
PARTY CHAIR. OR THE OTHER OPPORTUNITY IS
LET’S ELECT ANOTHER OLD RICH WHITE GUY. LOOK, I HATE TO BE THE GUY
SCREAMING FROM THE MOUNTAINS BUT AS A REPUBLICAN, WE THINK
THE WAY TO INGRATIATE OURSELVES TO THE CITIZENS OF
THIS STATE IS ELECTING RICH WHITE GUYS OVER 55 YEARS OLD,
THEN I THINK WE ARE GOING TO KEEP DOING WHAT WE ARE DOING. THERE SEEMS TO BE NO MOVEMENT
FOR INCLUSION, TRYING TO BRING PEOPLE IN. AS WE WERE SAYING OFF CAMERA,
THIS IS A JUMP FOR THE LIBERTARIAN PARTY. CONSERVATIVES WANT TO BE
INDEPENDENT BECAUSE THEY DON’T WANT TO NOT HAVE A VOICE AND
WE TEND TO HAVE DESIRE A TITLE WITH THIS. CONSERVATIVE. I AM CONSERVATIVE. THIS IS A BIG JUMP FOR THE
LIBERTARIAN PARTY. IF THEY GET THEIR ACT TOGETHER
THEY COULD DO SOME STUFF. I APPRECIATE SPEAKER TRIPP AND
I THINK IN MY OPINION WHAT SPEAKER TRIPP — IT IS NOT THE
ENDORSEMENT THAT SPEAKS LOUDLY, IT IS THE LACK OF
ENDORSEMENT THAT SPEAKS LOUDLY. YOU KNOW. THE SHENANIGANS ABOUT TRYING
TO CHANGE THE DATE AND TELLING PEOPLE YOU HAVE TO REGISTER AT
THESE CRAZY TIMES, AT THE END OF THE DAY, I DON’T KNOW WHY,
I’LL US A SPORTS ANALOGY, WHEN YOU GET SHELLACKED, I DOUBT
THAT THE ATLANTA FALCONS AFTER LOSING TO YOUR NEW ENGLAND
PATRIOTS, BIGGEST COME FROM BEHIND, I DOUBT WHEN THEY
GATHERED AS A TEAM AND SAID, LET’S HAVE A POST MORTEM RIGHT
NOW. LET’S TALK ABOUT WHAT JUST
HAPPENED. YOU WANT TO STEP BACK, LET THE
DUST SETTLE A LITTLE BIT. AND THE LAST THING I’LL TELL
YOU, IF PEOPLE OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY THINK THE
BEST THING TO DO TO ADVANCE CONSERVATIVE VALUES IS TO
ELECT THE LOSER OF THE GOVERNOR’S RACE TO KEEP THE
GOVERNOR IN CHECK, YOU’RE GOING TO GIVE GOVERNOR LUJAN
GRISHAM AND HER FOLKS THE UNABASHED ABILITY TO DISMISS
THE PARTY BY SAYING THIS IS NOTHING BUT SOUR GRAPES. THEY NEED TO SLOW THE ROLL A
LITTLE BIT AND SMELL THE BURNING TEA LEAVES AND —
>>IS THAT THE ANSWER TO SLOW DOWN A LITTLE BIT HERE OR IS
THIS SYSTEMIC THAT NEEDS FAST ACTION TO SOLVE?>>I THINK BACK TO THE LATE
’90’S AND WHEN I MOVED BACK TO NEW MEXICO IN 2005, THE
REPUBLICAN PARTY HAS NEVER BEEN COHESIVE. THERE HAVE ALWAYS BEEN
FACTIONS. BUT NEW FIGHTS BEGAN, WHAT YOU
HAVE RIGHT NOW, YOU HAVE THE MARTINEZ MACHINE BACKING JOHN
ROCKWELL AND YOU HAVE STEVE PEARCE WHICH COULD BE DEFINED
AS THE REST OF THE STATE. AND WE ALREADY KNOW HOW THE
MARTINEZ FACTION FEELS ABOUT THE STATE PARTY, GIVEN THE
FACT THAT THEY ARE SITTING ON ALMOST SIX MILLION DOLLARS IN
PAC MONEY AND THE REPUBLICAN PARTY IS OUT OF CASH. NO MONEY WAS SPENT IN THIS
GENERAL ELECTION CYCLE. SOME MONEY SPENT IN THE
PRIMARY WHO ALSO LOST. MARTINEZ DID NOT WIN ANY
SEATS, PEARCE DID NOT WIN ANY SEATS. WHAT HAS TO HAPPEN IS YOU HAVE
TO FOCUS ON GETTING REPUBLICANS ELECTED AND THAT
IS THE CRUCIAL MISTAKE THAT THE MARTINEZ FACTION HAS MADE
IS NOT FOCUSING ON GETTING MORE REPUBLICANS ELECTED OR
EVEN BUILDING A COALITION WITH THOSE WHO ARE.
>>2014, WE HAVE NATE GENTRY WORKED LIKE A DOG, GOT A
MAJORITY IN THE HOUSE AND WE COULDN’T GET A BUDGET PASSED
BECAUSE THE GOVERNOR WOULD NOT TELL HER CAUCUS WHAT SHE
WANTED. SPEND A MONTH OR TWO MONTHS, I
DON’T REMEMBER, WE ARE IN THE SAME BUILDING TOGETHER AND YOU
CAN’T HAVE THAT CONVERSATION. WE HAVE A BROKEN SYSTEM WITH A
LOT OF MONEY. WE HAVE AN UNHAPPY REST OF THE
STATE, I THINK IT IS KIND OF BANDING BEHIND PEARCE WHO HAVE
NO DIRECTION BECAUSE TO USE DAN’S TERM, WE WERE
SHELLACKED. SO, I THINK THIS SEEMS PRETTY
FAST BUT WHOEVER WINS HAS GOT TO STOP THESE FIGHTS AND IT
HAS GOT TO REACH ACROSS THE AISLE AND IT IS REGIONAL. BECAUSE A LOT OF REPUBLICANS
ARE NOT IN ALBUQUERQUE. AND PERCEPTION OF BERNALILLO
COUNTY REPUBLICAN PARTY, THEY ARE BETTER, DIFFERENT AND
VERIFIED AND BERNALILLO COUNTY REPUBLICANS ABSOLUTELY AGREE.>>EVERYBODY HIRES YOUNG
PEOPLE THAT DON’T HAVE A SIDE, DON’T HAVE A FIGHT. HIRE THEM AND TURN THE KEYS
OVER. IF I GOT ELECTED, I WOULD FIND
50 YOUNG PEOPLE, AND SAY, HERE YOU GO, ASK ME IF YOU HAVE A
QUESTION.>>COLLEGE REPUBLICANS AND
FOLKS OF THAT –>>I DO SEE SOME INTERESTING
VOICES COMING UP ON THE CONSERVATIVE SIDE. I CAN THINK OF THREE, TWO IN
ALBUQUERQUE, ONE DOWN SOUTH, AND THEY ARE IN VERY DIFFERENT
ROLES. ONE IS ALMOST A LIBERTARIAN. ONE IS A STRONG CONSERVATIVE
AND ONE IS A SOCIAL CONSERVATIVE, AND I THINK
THESE PEOPLE UNDER 30 ARE MOST IMPORTANT.>>A FEW MINUTES TO SPLIT
BETWEEN THESE OTHER GUYS. INTERESTING, THAT I THINK HE
IS MAKING POINT I HAVE A MACHINE BUILT. THEREFORE THE MACHINE —
>>THE BOTTOM LINE IS, IT DOESN’T MATTER WHO GETS
ELECTED THIS WEEKEND, RIGHT? REPUBLICAN PARTY IS GOING TO
DOUBLE DONE ON A LOSING STRATEGY. BOTH ROCKWELL AND PEARCE
REPRESENT IDEOLOGY THAT DON’T MATCH. CLEARLY THE ELECTION SHOWED
THAT, THAT DON’T MATCH THE IDEOLOGY OF THE REST OF THE
STATE. THEY ARE BOTH TOO EXTREME FOR
NEW MEXICO, THAT THREAT TO ANYBODY WHO IS A HARD WORKING
NEW MEXICAN, LGBTQ, WOMEN, PEOPLE OF COLOR, TO EXPAND ON
THIS ANALOGY, WHEN A TEAM KEEPS LOSING, YOU GET RID OF
THE COACH. YOU DON’T REELECT THEM TO A
NEW — YOU DON’T KEEP THEM, RIGHT? THIS IS — I THINK THIS IS
GOING TO BE A GENERATIONAL DEFICIENCY FOR THE REPUBLICAN
PARTY IF THEY ELECT EITHER OF THESE PEOPLE.>>INTERESTING POINT.>>SEEMS TO ME THIS IS WHAT WE
ARE ALSO SEEING ON THE NATIONAL LEVEL, THOUGH. WE HAVE A SENATE LEADERSHIP
THAT IS LIKE, OKAY, WE DIDN’T REALLY EXPECT THAT THIS WAS
GOING TO BE A GREAT ELECTION, YOU HAVE THE REPUBLICANS IN
D.C., ESSENTIALLY, LIKE, WELL, YOU KNOW, TRUMP. AND IT SEEMS LIKE THAT IS THE
SAME THING HERE. WELL, WE ARE NOT GOING TO DO
TOO MUCH INTROSPECTION, JUST CONTINUE WHAT WE HAVE BEEN
DOING IN THE PAST. AND IT SEEMS TO ME AT LEAST
NOW WE SAY THIS IS A GUY WHO WE GOT, IT CAN BE QUITE
DIFFICULT FOR CHANGE. IN NEW MEXICO, WE ARE NOT
SEEING YET THE BOLD NEW LEADER WHO CAN TAKE THE PLACE OF
PEARCE AND ROCKWELL HERE, MAYBE KIND THIS IS KIND OF A
HUNKERING DOWN PERIOD.>>RANK AND FILE — THERE IS
NO UPDRAFT HERE, IT ALL SEEMS TO BE DRIVEN FROM THE TOP.>>THE PARTIES ARE PRETTY MUCH
IRRELEVANT NOWADAYS. THE WAY THINGS ARE DONE, IT IS
REALLY NOT ABOUT THE IDEOLOGY OF THE PARTY CHAIRMAN BUT
ABOUT BEING ABLE TO MAKE THE TRAINS RUN ON TIME, BEING ABLE
TO RAISE MONEY AND GATHER PEOPLE TO FOLLOW A VISION AND
NOT NECESSARILY A VISION THAT WE AGREE ON. THESE GUYS ARE RIGHT. BUT WE HAVE A MYOPIC VIEW OF
REPUBLICANS, YOU’RE ALL WITH ME OR YOU’RE AGAINST ME. UNTIL WE REALIZE THAT WE HAVE
TO GIVE ON SOME ISSUES, IF I DON’T AGREE WITH YOU ON THESE
TWO ISSUES, BUT AGREE ON THESE FOUR ISSUES, WE SHOULD BE
WORKING TOGETHER. THE ONLY WAY YOU DO THAT IS BY
EMBRACING YOUNGER FOLKS AND BRINGING THEM IN THAT HAVE A
DIFFERENT VIEWS AND OTHER FOLKS, THAT 50 AND OVER CROWD,
I AM NOT THERE YET, YOU NEED TO SIT BACK, SLOWLY ROLL, AND
SAY WE HAD OUR TIME, IT DIDN’T WORK WELL, IT IS YOUR TIME.>>END THAT THERE. WHEN WE COME BACK TO THE TABLE
DEBATING ARCHDIOCESE OF SANTA FE’S DECISION TO FILE FOR
CHAPTER 11 BANKRUPTCY PROTECTION.

JOE WALSH – Could Donald Trump’s Tea Party Primary Challenger End his Presidency? | QT Politics


I’m Joe Walsh, and I think I can be the president. On Sunday August 25, 2019, Joe Walsh announced
that he would be running for president, issuing a primary challenge for President Donald Trump. The very first question Joe Walsh was asked
as a declared candidate is an obvious one for anyone who follows Trump’s approval ratings
closely. Indeed, Trump’s approval rating amongst Republicans
has remained high throughout his presidency. A recent Monmouth University Poll placed that
figure at 84%. The question of whether Joe Walsh could actually
beat Trump in a primary challenge is barely worth considering. To do so, Walsh would not just have to be
more popular amongst Republicans than Trump. He would have to be so much more favorable
that Republicans are willing to risk the White House on an untested candidate. A sitting president has never lost a primary
challenge, and Trump’s strong support from his party makes him unlikely to be an exception. But some presidents have faced serious primary
challenges: Ford, Carter, and Bush senior barely survived theirs. In all three cases, these presidents also
had problematic approval ratings. Not within their own party, but amongst the
general electorate. Along those lines, Trump’s ratings are also
low, meaning a serious primary challenge is likely. There’s something else Ford, Carter, and Bush
all have in common. They lost the general. This isn’t to say that the tough primary challenges
caused the general election loss, or that the low approval ratings caused the primary
challenges. All three things tend appear together, but
the causal links are up for interpretation. All we really know is that there seems to
be a correlation. So, the question is not whether Joe Walsh
will beat Trump in his primary race, or even whether his primary challenge will cause Trump
to lose the general election. Before a president loses a general election,
a tough primary challenger tends to emerge. The question about Joe Walsh is… Is he that guy? (Everybody gets pumped) In oder to be a serious primary challenger
for Donald Trump, Joe Walsh needs to be in it to win it. While Donald Trump’s 2016 run was initially
often regarded to be nothing more than a publicity stunt, to win, a candidate typically needs
to be serious about what they’re doing. Running a winning campaign—or even coming
close to that—requires a deep level of commitment. The easiest way to eliminate Walsh as a serious
contender for Trump would be to claim that the run is insincere. Fortunately for everyone, one person who has
laid that charge was Herman Cain, former presidential candidate, pizza CEO, and expert on Libya. Here’s what Herman Cain had to say about Joe
Walsh’s run. Dispersions! See, this is why I love Herman Cain. Every time he opens his mouth, it’s hilarious. In case you’re watching Herman, a dispersion
is the process of distributing something over a wide area, like what would happen to a sliced
Godfather pizza, if you threw it across the room. The word you were looking for was aspersion. Like, if someone were to say of you, that
your 9-9-9 tax policy was an obviously fiscally irresponsible platform, intended to cynically
prey on the mathematical illiteracy of the most ignorant of your potential supporters. I, of course, would never say this about you,
as I assume your character is such, that you, too, must be mathematically illiterate. Anyway, that was all just a fun tangent. I got so much stuff twirling around in my
head Let’s press on! Publicity! In fact, given that Walsh is a nationally-syndicated
radio host, the prospect of doing something just for the publicity is a real possibility. Except that, in fact, he has already lost
the national distribution of his show because of this presidential run, and according to
his radio network, his program will even be removed from local distribution once he becomes
“a viable and legal candidate for president.” Of course, you could argue that this was an
unintended consequence, and that the publicity run some how back fired. But, I’m inclined to believe Walsh when he
claims that he kind of expected this all along. He said, “I’m running for president. I oppose this president. Most of my listeners support the president. It’s not an easy thing to do to be in conservative
talk radio and oppose this president…And I knew that, John, when I made the announcement
yesterday, that it could be in jeapardy” It really is difficult to believe that Walsh
was so unaware of his own audience and the rules of his radio network that he couldn’t
anticipate losing his show over this run. At any rate, he did point out that he anticipated
serious backlash just moments after making his announcement. So, it seems clear that Walsh takes his own
candidacy seriously. As for Republican voters, well, that’s another
matter, altogether. For Joe Walsh to be the serious primary challenger
that would ultimately signal a general election defeat for the President, he would need to
give Republican primary voters a very good reason to switch sides. Three points he made repeatedly in his ABC
interview were that: 1. Trump is disloyal
2. Trump is unfit
3. Trump is a liar He also made these points in his campaign
video launched the same day Now all three of these points could be effective
attacks on the president, but they don’t exactly make a positive case for Walsh. Loyalty to the United States is obviously
a basic criterion to be president, and Trump’s loyalty has been certainly questioned quite
a bit. From his taking Putin’s side at Helsinki,
to his son trying to get dirt on Clinton from Russian operatives, to Trump having foreign
business interests all over the world. However you come down on these issues, it’s
fairly clear that loyalty is a more complicated issue with Trump than it is with Walsh. But, that isn’t because Walsh has done anything
uniquely patriotic. He just simply hasn’t done the things Trump
has done—which is not enough to make him a serious challenger. In terms of being unfit, certainly Trump has
faced questions about his mental fitness. He responded to these concerns by calling
himself a very stable genius, which didn’t help matters. He apparently had trouble reading his daily
briefings, and in plain view of the press, we’ve seen him say “oranges” when he meant
“origins” and claim the wrong birthplace for his own father. A number of the people who have worked with
Trump have even talked about invoking the 25th Amendment. But as with the loyalty issue, sanity is an
extremely low bar, one that virtually any primary challenger would likely clear. As for lying, it may be easy to be caught
lying less often than Trump, but it’s also a more muddled issue, since it’s not exactly
easy to find an honest politician. When it comes to dishonesty, Walsh may have
particular difficulty distinguishing himself even from Trump—let alone other potential
challengers. Flip-flopping can indicate dishonesty, and
like Trump, Walsh has flip-flopped on the abortion issue. He was a failed pro-choice candidate in the
1990s, before running as a pro-lifer when losing his seat in 2012. He’s also, of course flip-flopped on the issue
of Trump himself, having claimed he would be “grabbing [his] musket” if Clinton
won the 2016 election, to now challenging Trump in 2020. One of Trump’s most infamous lies was that
there was something suspicious about the circumstances of President Obama’s birth. Even before Obama produced his long-form birth
certificate, Birtherism was always a lie. Not only was Barrack born in America, there
was never any reason to doubt this—and insinuations that there were, were laced with both sinister
bigotry and thorough intellectual dishonesty. Trump helped to establish himself in the political
dialogue through Birtherism. But, so did Walsh, even as late as during
the Republican primary in 2015. He even dabbled in the dishonest narrative
about Obama’s religion. These tweets demonstrate sufficient dishonesty
that Walsh may have trouble claiming the moral high ground on the issue of honesty. They’re also quite divisive, which could threaten
another mantle he seems to be trying to take up. Expressing regret for some of his past statements,
Walsh wrote in a New York Times op-ed, “We now see where this can lead”. This is just one part of a broader campaign
theme, which he tapped into repeatedly in his launch video. The promise here, is the return to normal. A return to civility and character, and away
from ugliness and division. This theme has been expressed by a number
of Democratic candidates. It’s what Kamala Harris was connecting to
when she said, during the 2nd Democratic Debate, “We are better than this.” It’s what Joe Biden has been near-constantly
evoking with his catch phrase, “We are in a battle for the soul of this
nation.” Say what you will about Joe Biden, he does
genuinely represent civility: he’s in fact been criticized for being too civil. And rightly so, in my view. He’s been civil to segregationists and the
current vice president. Say what you will about Kamala Harris, she’s
not likely to say that some tiki torch-wielding white nationalists are very fine people, nor
is she likely to secure the support of David Duke. A return to normal, in my view, is not a particularly
strong campaign message. But it is a plausible choice, one that Joe
Walsh seems keen on associating with himself. But unlike his Democratic counterparts, he
does not exactly have the right history to claim this mantle. He himself has admitted, “I wouldn’t call myself a racist, but I’ve
said racist things on Twitter.” Now, I’m not a particular fan of the modern
phenomenon of digging through a public figure’s old and deleted tweets to dig up dirt. Just because someone tweeted an insensitive
joke ten years ago does not mean they should be subject to public shaming, or a boycott,
or barred from public office. But the sheer volume of hateful tweets that
have come from Joe Walsh is astounding, and he himself has made this an issue by criticizing
Trump’s twitter rants. So, let’s just look at a few of Walsh’s tweets
that may actually be worse than anything Trump has ever tweeted. Trump has criticized the media extensively,
and called for banning Muslims from entering the country during the 2016 campaign. He even jokingly-not-jokingly called upon
Russia to continue their DNC hacks. But I don’t think he’s ever asked Islamists
to commit gruesome acts of violence. Trump has tweeted about black-on-black crime,
and apparently called countries with majority black populations what he has. The racist subtext is fairly clear. But here, Walsh connects the racist implications
for us. In this astounding tweet, Walsh uses a straw
man argument about the Washington Red Skins, reminds of the good old days when people were
bigoted towards the Irish, and delights in gratuitously using the N word. Here he employs the N word and the S word,
and draws a false equivalency to racist terms about the race that has most of the people
and power in America. And here, he thankfully departs from using
the N word, while still managing to say something entirely racist. Suffice it to say, Joe Walsh does not exactly
have a history of being woke on Twitter. Now, anti-Trump Republicans might rightly
be irritated by the fact that Walsh might be politically damaged by his own bigotry,
while Trump seems to be immune to similar criticism. New York Times contributor, Peter Wehner,
who considers himself to be one of the earliest Republican never Trumpers expressed frustration
at the fact that Trump supporters have been demanding that Walsh be called out. “Mr. Trump’s most vocal supporters are now
demanding that Mr. Trump’s most vocal critics do what they will not, which is to publicly
recoil against a politician—in this case, Mr. Walsh—who appeals to the worst instincts
and ugliest sentiments in America.” “Their argument seems to be that decency
requires the president’s relatively few conservative critics to call out Mr. Walsh for saying detestable
things while Mr. Trump’s right-wing supporters cheerfully defend him under any and all circumstances,
regardless of the fact that the president’s rhetoric is pathologically dishonest, dehumanizing,
cruel, crude, racist and misogynistic. There’s a word for what Trump supporters are
doing here: hypocrisy.” Wehner, by the way, would go on to criticize
Walsh at length in his op-ed, concluding with these words about Joe Walsh and Donald Trump: “They are cut from the same rancid cloth. That they personify the Republican Party today
is still, for some of us at least, a source of shock and shame.” The point I’m making about Walsh’s divisiveness
is not that he should be shamed or criticized or barred from office because of it—although
he should. My point is that his past statements make
it impossible for Walsh to successfully present himself as plausible bearer of the civility
mantle. Republicans who are sick of Trump’s divisive
language and bullying are unlikely to chose Walsh as an alternative, just as the Trump
fans who either don’t mind or enjoy his most vicious rhetoric are not likely switch to
Walsh, who has now positioned himself as formally against all that nasty stuff. As such, he is not likely to have any chance
of becoming a serious primary challenger for Trump, even if Trump’s popularity amongst
Republicans dropped dramatically. It also doesn’t help that after serving his
present term, Trump will have significantly more qualifying experience than the one-term
congressman. Now, Trump is also facing a primary challenge
from libertarian Bill Weld, and may soon be threatened by Mark Sanford, who Trump once
mocked for his infamous made-up journey through… The Tallahassee Trail! Unfortunately, he didn’t go there! Unfortunately that’s not a thing. It was the Appalachian Trail that he was not
actually hiking. At any rate, neither the scandal-ridden Mark
Sanford, nor the libertarian Bill Weld are likely to major challenges for Trump, either. Despite declaring his exploratory committee
back in February, Bill Weld’s gained little traction. He’s raised less than 700k in individual contributions,
averaging $98, meaning he’s received just over 7,000 donations. That’s not a lot of supporters. He poor fundraising has also lead to serious
financial trouble for his campaign. His FEC filing indicates his cash on hand
is $299k, and debts owed are $226k. Compare this to Trump, whose campaign has
similar debts ($294k) and $57 million cash on hand. One could argue that all three combined might
be able to deal enough damage to bring Trump down. In my view, multiple weaker opponents only
serve to help the president. By knocking them down, Trump is able to demonstrate
his own strength. Having a divided Republican opposition to
Trump also diverts attention away from a potential serious competitor. Someone like Mitt Romney, Jeff Flake, Paul
Ryan, Bob Corker, Larry Hogan or Nikki Haley could potentially pose a real threat to Trump
in a primary. Unfortunately, all of these candidates have
declined to run. Even John Kasich, who has expressed interest
in the past, has said he doesn’t see a path right now, but added, “That doesn’t mean there wouldn’t be a path
down the road.” Without a strong, unified opposition, Trump
is likely to breeze through the primaries. Without a strong primary challenge, losing
his general election campaign would be unprecedented. So unless Kasich, or some other viable candidate
steps up, Democrats should get used to the very real potential of losing the 2020 election. And Republicans, too, need to prepare for
what another 4 years of Trump will mean for the party. As the electorate of America grows increasingly
multicultural and diverse, as the sjw snowflake millennial generation ages—and thus becomes
more likely to vote in greater numbers, and as blue collar workers continue to lose their
jobs as their billionaire bosses turn to automation, the Republican party must adapt, if it is
to survive. I’ll leave it to my Republican friends to
decide just how the GOP should change to meet the needs of an ever-changing America. But just as progressive Democrats had serious
concerns about what a President Hilary Clinton would mean for the Democratic brand, Republicans
must seriously consider what eight years of President Trump will mean for the GOP. As an insurgent candidate in 2016, Trump’s
first term could be chalked up as a bizarre departure for the GOP. A blip. But after serving two terms, Trumpism will
become synonymous with the conservative movement and the Republican party. Trump will define the party for a generation. So, I do recommend that Republicans seriously
consider what kind of person would best embody Republican character and values in the 21st
century, then take a long hard look at Trump, and ask yourselves, Is he that guy?