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?

All the 2020 Election Presidential Candidates | QT Politics


So far, the 2020 election features several
serious declared Democratic candidates, with a number of others still suspected to join
the primary, a broad range of independents and third-party candidates, and, very likely,
a primary contest for the Republican incumbent, President Donald J Trump. Technically speaking, there are over 600 candidates,
if you count everyone who has filed with the FEC. At least one of these people were kicked off
the Dr. Phil show. Yes, he’s actually running. And like Mr. Vegan—that’s his actual legal
name–most of the people who have filed to run don’t have anything resembling a chance
of even having their names mentioned on a major media outlet, let alone becoming a serious
contender for the presidency. And, there are a handful of significant potential
candidates who have yet to file. So, in this video, I’ll attempt to give you
a broad overview of the serious 2020 contenders for the highest office in the land, and answer
the question… Who’s actually running? (Everyone puts their lighters in the air) INDEPENDENTS Let’s start with the independents and third
party candidates. In 2016, they played an unusually large role,
partly because both the Democratic and Republican candidates were unprecedentedly unpopular. If the two major parties do a better job of
holding the favor of the American people, these candidates will likely play a smaller
role in 2020, but they are still worth a little examination. Howard Schultz, a former Democrat, and former
CEO of Starbucks is, so far the most talked about potential independent candidate. Despite having no political experience, Schultz
got his very own CNN town hall, but some remain skeptical that Schultz has the capacity to
run a serious third-way campaign. Howard Schultz says… Oh, isn’t that great!?! I know a lot of regular hard working people
who know frankly a lot more about politics than does Mr. Schultz. Mark Cuban has also gotten some attention
teasing a potential run, but it’s not very likely. He recently told NY Daily News, “It really would take the exact right set
of circumstances.” The billionaire also warned in the outlet, “Rich people are stupid.” (He actually said that!) Fashion model Ronnie Kroell is running a campaign
for president or publicity, as well. Akon has also expressed serious interest in
making an independent run, which probably shouldn’t be taken too seriously, as had John
McAffee, of McAffee anti-virus, before deciding to declare himself for the Libertarian Party. LIBERTARIANS Also running for the Libertarian party is
the former Vice Chair of the LNC, Arvin Vohra, and Adam Kokesh, a former Republican and anti-war
activist. But of course the most fun candidate for the
party is, as always, 7-time failed presidential candidate Vermin Supreme, the iconic boot-as-a-hat-wearing
joke candidate, who has previously run on a four-point platform of: Like Mr. Supreme, Sam Seder, of the Majority
Report, is running a joke campaign in the Libertarian party, and has actually come up
in first place in the early polling of the field by a group called Third Party Watch,
although it should be noted this is not a reliable pollster. Republican congressman Justin Amash is also
considering joining the Libertarian party primary race. GREENS The declared Green Party Candidates so far
include, Sedinam Kinamo Christin Moyowasifza-Curry, who was also 2016 Green Party primary candidate;
Ian Schlakman, former co-chair of the Maryland Green Party; and Dario Hunter, who serves
on the Youngstown, Ohio Board of Education. Also considering the race for the Green Party
nomination is former governor, conspiracy theorist, and wrestler, Jesse “the Mind”
Ventura. Howie Hawkins, a co-founder of the Green Party
of the United States, may also run. Jill Stein’s running mate in 2016, Ajamu Baraka,
is also considered a potential candidate. AMERICAN SOLIDARITY PARTY The American Solidarity Party, a Christian
faith-based political party, with conservative social leanings, and liberal economic leanings,
is spotlighting Brian Caroll, Joshua Perkins, and Joe Schriner as their potential candidates. Okay, now let’s get into the real candidates. REPUBLICANS For the Republican Party, President Donald
Trump filed with the FEC all the way back on January 20, 2017 for his 2020 run, and
nothing short of a conviction in the Senate is likely to stop him for running. Like all incumbent presidents, Mr. Trump will
be running on his current record, which includes an unusual mix of peace talks with North Korea,
tax cuts that disproportionately benefit the rich, a trade war with China, renegotiating
NAFTA, a draconian immigration policy, planned withdrawal from Syria, repealed environmental
protections, a partial repeal of the Dodd-Frank Act, cuts to agricultural subsidies, weakening
of the CFPB, reinstating asset forfeiture, and increasing military spending, just to
name a few. Trump’s economy features a reduction in unemployment,
by standard measures, an increase in GDP, and an increase in the deficits and national
debt. As of January of 2019, Mr. Trump continues
to enjoy an approval rating of 87% among Republicans, indicating that he is unlikely to lose to
any primary challenge he may face. But while he is absolutely the front-runner
in the Republican party, he will almost certainly face a primary challenge. Bill Weld, the Libertarian VP candidate in
2016 and former Republican Governor of Massachusetts , has already declared an exploratory committee
to seek the Republican nomination. Forming an exploratory committee is not technically
a declaration that a candidate is running, but it is the first step, and those who announce
exploratory committees do typically go on to formally announce a run. Ohio governor John Kasich, former senator
Bob Corker, and Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, have also all considered giving Trump a primary
challenge, and have not ruled out the possibility. Even fast talking conservative commentator
Ben Shapiro has teased a run, And while Shapiro has criticized Trump in
the past, he has been pretty clear that he’ll supporting him in 2020. Of course, that won’t stop his fans from continuing
to petition him to run, but it most probably isn’t gonna happen. There have also been calls for popular former
UN Ambassador Nikki Haley to run. She too, has endorsed the President, and claims
she will be campaigning for his re-election. Former governor and GOP presidential nominee
Mitt Romney, a vocal critic of Trump, has made it clear that he will not be seeking
the 2020 nomination, but has signalled that he might endorse a primary opponent. He told CNN’s Jake Tapper, “I’m going to see what the alternatives
are.” Jeff Flake, yet another vocal critic of the
president caught some attention and much speculation, but he has clearly indicated that he isn’t
going to run. He told C BS news, “I’ve always said that I do hope that there
is a Republican who challenges the president in the primary. I still hope that somebody does, but that
somebody won’t be me. I will not be a candidate.” While the president’s popularity among Republicans
indicate that he will likely beat any primary challenger who comes his way, his general
favorability ratings are a serious problem. Trump’s disapproval rate is around 53%, while
his approval rate is 41%. While indeed, he was quite unpopular when
he was elected president, he was then running against a historically unpopular democrat. Unpopular presidents are more likely to face
a serious primary challenge after their first term, and presidents who do face a serious
primary challenge are less likely to win re-election. President Jimmy Carter secured just 51% of
the democratic vote when he was primaried in 1980 by Ted Kennedy and Jerry Brown. George HW Bush won 73 percent of the vote
when he was primaried by Pat Buchanon and others in 1992. 73 might sound like a lot, but his son won
98% of the vote in the republican primary in 2004. An incumbent Bill Clinton locked down 89%
of the vote in his 1996 primary, as did Obama in 2012. Trump certainly defies the odds in numerous
ways, but if history is any indication at all, a serious primary challenge for the president
would be a bad omen for his reelection chances… …which brings us to the Democrats…. DEMOCRATS First, let’s quickly mention some prominent
Democrats who are definitely not running. Hilary Clinton, Tom Steyer, Michael Avenatti,
Eric Garcetti, Andrew Cuomo, Eric Holder, Sherrod Brown and Michael Bloomberg have all
confirmed that they are not running for president in 2020. Richard Ojeda, the West Virginia State Senator
who was running an early bold and aggressive anti-corruption campaign, dropped out of the
race near the end of January, 2019. But there are plenty of Democratic candidates
in the race, some of whom, you may never heard of. Maryland Representative John Delaney was the
first major democrat to declare his candidacy, but few seemed to take notice, as he continues
to struggle to show up in the polls. While a harsh critic of Trump, Delaney markets
himself as a pragmatic, moderate with strong bipartisan bonefides. For example, on one of the most important
issues for Democrats, health care, Delaney advocates for a path toward universal health
care, but his plan is pretty conservative. His health care proposal does not touch medicare,
rather it creates a new public plan, which people can opt out of for a tax credit, and
the private, employer-system would remain in tact. Marrianne Williamson is a spiritual teacher
and published author, who has yet to make a mark in the polls. Her platform includes a strong reparations
plan. Her proposal involves spending between 200
and 500 billion dollars over a twenty year period on educational and economic programs,
to be determined by a council of trusted black community leaders. She also supports medicare for all, and a
holistic set of policies to improve public health. Tulsi Gabbard has generally been polling under
1%, but hit 1.1% in the latest survey by Emerson. Gabbard is known perhaps first and foremost
for her opposition to regime change wars. The Iraq War veteran has argued that Assad
is not an enemy of the United States, and takes a generally anti-interventionist stance
of foreign policy. While Gabbard did not support AOC’s Green
New Deal resolution, she has sponsored alternative environmental legislation in the past. She supports HR676, the house’s medicare-for-all
plan. Andrew Yang is another minor candidate, but
one with surging popularity online, enough that he has passed the donor threshold required
to make the primary debates, and he has begun to hit 1% in some of the polls. Yang’s central platform is Universal Basic
Income: a plan to give every American 18-65 one thousand dollars every month, no questions
asked. He has also endorsed the idea of expanding
medicare to all, but is also open to other ideas about moving toward a single-payer system. Jay Inslee is another minor candidate, currently
polling at .8%, focusing his campaign on a single issue. The Governor of Washington boasts a long history
of Green governance, and supports the idea of a Green New Deal. His plan includes four principles: transitioning
to clean energy; investing in jobs, infrastructure and innovation; fighting for environmental
justice and economic inclusion; and ending subsidies to fossil fuel companies. John Hickenlooper, also polling around .8%,
lays out no specific policy platform on his website, but he does tout his experience and
political accomplishments: eliminating a 70 million dollar deficit as mayor of Denver,
and growing the economy and reducing methane emissions as governor of Colorado. He also boasts that his heath care program
brought the state’s coverage up to nearly 95 percent. Kirsten Gillibrand, also currently polling
at around .8%, is surprisingly, by some measures the most progressive candidate in the race. Five Thirty Eight dot come ranks her as the
most anti-Trump person in congress, while Gov Track ranks her as the most liberal senator
in the country, even to the left of Bernie Sanders. She is a cosponsor of Bernie’s Medicare for
All Plan, and the Green New Deal. Despite being quite liberal, according to
the newest polling data by Quinnipiac, her support is strongest amongst conservative
and moderate voters. Julian Castro, now polling around 1%, is a
former Obama Administration HUD secretary, and a former mayor of San Antonio. He is pro Green New Deal, supports investment
in public housing and universal pre-K education. On immigration, he has been a vocal critic
of Trump’s policies, and supports a path to citizenship. Pete Buttigieg, once polling around 1%, is
now up to an average of 2.2%, even hitting as high as 4% in the latest poll by Quinnipiac. Buttigieg is Mayor of the small municipality
of South Bend, Indiana. He is an Afghanistan War veteran, a Rhodes
Scholar and a Harvard graduate. If elected, he would also be the first openly
gay president. Mayor Pete is pro Green New Deal, and supports
a gradual transition to single payer—in the meantime, he’s pushing Medicare for all
who want it. Buttigieg has received a CNN town hall, but
has technically not declared his candidacy—just an exploratory committee. Another mayor in the race, who just recently
declared, is Miramar, Florida Mayor Wayne Messam. Messam largely remains a mystery among the
mainstream candidates, having received little media coverage. He also doesn’t have much in the way of policy
positions on his website. But he is proposing to wipe out more than
1.5 trillion dollars in student debt. He also has a history of fighting for gn control,
and passed a living wage for city workers. He’s so far not showing up in the polls, but
that may very well change as he gains a bit of msm exposure. Also just getting a little attention at the
moment is Mike Gravel, who served as a US Senator throughout the 1970s (1969-1981). The 88 year old retiree has not technically
announced, but he has announced an exploratory committee and has an announcement scheduled
for April 8th. Astoundingly, this candidate openly admitted
his low chances of actually winning in the very tweet that launched his campaign: “I am considering running in the 2020 Democratic
primary. The goal will not be to win, but to bring
a critique of American imperialism to the Democratic debate stage. The website (mikegravel.org) is under construction. Official announcement will be in the coming
days.” On her campaign website, Amy Klobuchar criticizes
divisive politics, gridlock and grandstanding, indicating that she would aim to be president
who acts based on compromise, consensus and concessions. Not surprisingly, one of her big platform
proposals is a trillion dollar infrastructure investment, an idea well positioned for centrist
support, as “we need to fix our crumbling infrastructure” is probably one of just
two things all Washington politicians agree with–the other being that small businesses
are the backbone of the American economy. Klobuchar is indeed, a moderate democrat,
having voted with Trump 30% of the time according to 538, and vote view ranks her as more conservative
than 75% of democrats in the senate. She is a cosponsor of the Green New Deal resolution,
but not a cosponsor of the Sanders Medicare-for-all bill. Instead she supports a Medicaid buy-in expansion. Klobuchar has seen declines in her polling
as of late, currently averaging at 1.8%. Cory Booker has also seen declining poll numbers,
and currently sits at 5.8%. While’s his voting record is, overall, amongst
the most progressive in the Senate, he has a history of raising funds from Wall street
and big pharma. He famously defended Bain Capital in the 2012
presidential race, and helped to vote down an amendment co-sponsored by Bernie Sanders
and Amy Klobuchar that would have allowed Americans to buy prescription drugs from Canada. Still, Booker is co-sponsor of the GND, as
well as Bernie’s Medicare-for-all bill, and is ranked as the 5th most anti-Trump voter
in the Senate. Booker has come out forcefully against the
NRA, and perhaps the strongest moment in his CNN townhall was when he said that he is “the
only person in this race who has had shootings on their block.” Elizabeth Warren is undeniably one of the
most progressive candidates in the race. Vote view ranks her as the most liberal member
of congress, and five thrity eight ranks her as the 3rd most anti-trump voter in congress. She created the Consumer Financial Protection
Bureau, an agency which forced financial firms to return a whopping 12 billion dollars to
around 30 million consumers, who were victims to scams other predatory practices. Her presidential campaign centres on typical
progressive issues like ending Washington corruption and rebuilding the middle class. She has also introduced some more novel policy
suggestions, like breaking up big tech companies and protecting family farmers against agribusiness
mergers. She lost some credit amongst Sanders supporters,
for failing to declare herself one of them during the 2016 primaries. She has also declared herself open to different
paths toward a single payer health care system. Still, Warren is a cosponsor on Bernie’s Medicare-for-all
bill. She’s also, of course, a cosponsor of the
Green New Deal. Warren is currently polling at 5.8%. Beto O’Rourke has been surging in the polls
since he formally announced his candidacy, and now sits at 10% support. Despite facing huge backlash in the early
days of the campaign, he broke records by entering the 2020 race with a 6.1 million
dollar haul. Beto gained national attention for his Senate
race, which posed a serious threat to Republican incumbent Ted Cruz. Still, he is widely criticized for lacking
substance and specific policy suggestions. Beto has expressed support for the Green New
Deal, but has taken oil money, and voted in support oil and other fossil fuel interests. Another financial concern that while he vocally
opposes PAC money, during his Senate race, he actually received individual contributions
from bundling done by a super PAC. Beto ranked among the more conservative Democratic
members of congress. Still, he is an aggressive critic of Donald
Trump’s signature policy—the Wall. Beto has demonstrable knowledge of border
crossing and border town crime statistics as well as personal experience from representing
El Paso to back up his rhetoric. Kamala Harris has in recent weeks declined
in the polls, losing her third place spot to Beto, and now sits just behind him, with
9.6% support. A former prosecutor, she has faced serious
criticism over her ‘tough on crime’ criminal justice record, while her campaign has argued
that she was actually ahead of the country on numerous criminal justice issues. An article by Vox suggests a good reason for
the totally opposite perspectives: “She pushed for programs that helped people
find jobs instead of putting them in prison, but also fought to keep people in prison even
after they were proved innocent. She refused to pursue the death penalty against
a man who killed a police officer, but also defended California’s death penalty system
in court. She implemented training programs to address
police officers’ racial biases, but also resisted calls to get her office to investigate
certain police shootings.” On most issues, Harris is relatively progressive. She is the 7th most anti-trump voter in congress,
and vote view ranks her as more liberal than 97% of Democrats in congress. She is a cosponsor of the Green New Deal and
Bernie’s Medic—are for all bill. In April of 2018, she pledged not to accept
any more corporate PAC money, although she was a major recipient PAC money prior that
that. Bernie Sanders is widely regarded as the most
progressive candidate in the race. The self-proclaimed Democratic Socialist sponsored
the Senate’s medicare-for-all bill, and popularized numerous progressive policy positions during
his 2016 run for president, as well as through his group, Our Revolution. Bernie supports tuition free public colleges
and universities, campaign finance reform, and the Green New Deal. It’s probably safe to say that his top priority
is addressing income and wealth inequality. While broad analyses of his voting record
generally put Sanders in the same range as other progressives—he is in fact less anti-Trump
than Warren and Gillibrand, for example, by the 538 analysis—Bernie is clearly the furthest
left when you actually examine his policy proposals. Warren, for example, proposed a 2% wealth
tax on Americans with more than 50 million dollars, with an additional 1% for billionaires. Sanders, on the other hand, introduced a bill
to collect 77% of estates worth more than a billion dollars, a return to the top marginal
tax rates of post the post war era, when top rates ranged between 70 and 90%. According to RCP polling averages, Bernie
Sanders is in first place amongst declared candidates, with an RCP average of 22.6%. However, there is one candidate, still undeclared,
who, on average, polls even higher. Joe Biden, currently sits at an average of
29.8% support, and has lead the democratic field in all major polls except a recent one
by Emerson, in which he was tied with Bernie Sanders. Still, he is by no means a shoe-in for the
nomination. The popular former vice president has faced
backlash for relatively recent kind words about Mike Pence, and for much older comments,
in which he took credit for drafting the Patriot Act. Then, there’s Anita Hill, and I have not even
touched the issues I went into detail about in my 5 problems for Joe Biden video. Overall, Biden’s congressional voting record
puts him squarely in the middle of the democratic party of the time, stretching all the way
from 1973 to 2009. Despite this, Biden has proclaimed, while
accidentally all but declaring his candidacy… Biden has a well-documented history of gaffes,
and has two failed runs for the democratic nomination under his belt. More missteps seem to be continuing, even
before he’s made a formal, intentional announcement. After his allies floated the idea of him running
with Stacey Abrams as an out-of-the-gate VP choice, she said she would not run for second
place, which seems to indicate that she wasn’t asked about the idea before his team began
pushing it in the press. Still, I wouldn’t count Joe Biden out. After declaring his candidacy and announcing
a large first-day fundraising haul, Beto O’Rourke surged in the polls. Biden is, himself, reportedly thinking seriously
about his first day haul, and if he manages to out raise Bernie and Beto, he too, may
experience a bump in support. Already at the top of the field, his path
to victory only requires him to maintain his current level of support and pick up the voters
of other establishment candidates, as they exit the race. Aside from Biden, and Stacey Abrams, several
other prominent democrats have publicly expressed interest in a primary run, including US Senator
Michael Bennet, Governor Steve Bullock, Mayor Bill de Blasio, Former Governor Terry McAuliffe,
and US Representatives, Seth Moulton, Tim Ryan, and Eric Swalwell. While none of these individuals have yet to
decline to run, the window to declare is closing. The first debates will take place in June,
and to make the cut, prospective candidates must either gather 65,000 donors or attain
at least 1% in at least three major polls. The total number of debate participants is
capped at 20, with priority given to candidates who meet both thresholds. With so many candidates already declared,
the undeclared candidates need to get in soon or throw in the towel, as voters turn their
attention to candidates who meet another threshold: Who’s actually running? Thanks to the Patrons.

Political Action Committees in New Mexico Politics | The Line


>>TWO DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATES FOR
SENATE LOOKING TO REPLACE SENATOR TOM UDALL IN 2020
ANNOUNCED LAST WEEK, THEY WOULD NOT ACCEPT ANY POLITICAL
CORPORATE ACTION COMMITTEE OR PAC MONEY FOR THEIR CAMPAIGNS. ON APRIL 28, SECRETARY OF STATE,
MAGGIE TOULOUSE OLIVER ANNOUNCED SHE WOULD STAND WITH THE PEOPLE
AND, QUOTE, NOT TAKE BIG MONEY FROM CORPORATIONS. LAST WEEK, REPRESENTATIVE AND
SENATE HOPEFUL BEN RAY LUJAN EXPRESSED A SIMILAR SENTIMENT
SAYING HIS CAMPAIGN WOULD BE, QUOTE, RUN ON NEW MEXICAN VALUES
BUILT BY THE PEOPLE NOT CORPORATIONS. JANICE, REJECTING CORPORATE PAC
MONEY SEEMS TO BE A NATIONAL TREND NOT JUST A LOCAL TREND OF
THINGS TO DO. BUT I AM CURIOUS FROM YOUR SIDE
OF THE AISLE, DOES THIS MEAN ANYTHING TO YOU WHEN YOU SEE
CANDIDATES NOT TAKING PAC MONEY OR PLEDGING NOT TO TAKE PAC
MONEY.>>LET ME BE POLITE. I THINK THIS IS RUDE. CORPORATE PAC MONEY PLAYS SUCH A
SMALL ROLE, SUCH A SMALL ROLE ALTHOUGH THERE ARE SOME,
ESPECIALLY THE MEDICAL PACS ARE QUITE LARGE, AND I DON’T SEE
ANYBODY WALKING AWAY FROM THOSE, BUT IN THE SCHEME OF THINGS A
CORPORATE PAC IN AND OF ITSELF IS NOT THE ISSUE. IT IS OTHER SUPER PACS AND YOU
NEED TO BE WORRIED ABOUT THEM. SO, YOU CAN LOOK OVER HERE BUT
THE PROBLEM IS TRULY OVER HERE.>>INTERESTING. THAT MAKES ME — YOU SENT US ALL
AN INTERESTING ARTICLE FROM 2012 NEW YORKER WHERE JEFFREY TALKED
AT LENGTH ABOUT THE BEGINNINGS AND HOW, YOU KNOW, EVERYTHING
JUST CAME ABOUT WITH THIS SITUATION, BUT YOU FEEL THERE IS
A LOT OF MISUNDERSTANDING OUT THERE WHEN IT COMES TO PACS.>>WELL THE IDEA OF THE
POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEE, SUPER PAC, IT IS ENTITIES AND A
SIMPLE ENTITY. YOU GO TO THE FEC WEBSITE,
FEC.GOV, BECAUSE OF THE FEDERAL LAW IT IS AVAILABLE TO EVERYONE. IT ISN’T JUST AN EVIL THING. EVERYBODY VOTES IS SET UP AS A
FEDERAL SUPER PAC AND YOU KNOW STEVEN COLBERT SET UP A FEDERAL
SUPER PAC, RAISED 475,000, AND I HINK WHAT WE HAVE DONE, YOU
HEAR, LIKE ON MY SIDE OF THE AISLE, YOU HEAR PEOPLE SAY
FEDERAL SUPER PAC, OH MY GOD, IT IS LIKE DARTH VADER HAS ARRIVED
BUT THE ENTITY CAN BE USED FOR GOOD AS MUCH AS EVIL. THE SUPREME COURT DECIDED, IT IS
NOT GOING ANYWHERE IT IS HERE. WE ARE NOT GETTING RID OF IT AND
WE SHOULD TAKE THE ENTITY, USE IT FOR GOOD AS MUCH AS WE USE
IT.>>SUPER PAC IS NOT THE SAME AS
A CORPORATE PAC. THEY ARE VERY DIFFERENT
ENTITIES.>>ON THE OTHER HAND, IF YOU SAY
THE CORPORATE PAC, FEDERAL SUPER PAC OR THE $25 DONATION TO
BERNIE SANDERS THAT RAISES 250 MILLION, ALL OF IT IS THE
SAME THING. IT IS MONEY, RIGHT? WHERE IT COMES FROM — I MEAN,
MOST PEOPLE SAY, I AM A PAC. MOST PEOPLE, EXCEPT PEOPLE LIKE
US WHO ARE NERDS, HAVE NO IDEA WHO THAT IS, BUT THEY ARE MORE
THAN HAPPY TO SEND $25 INTO WHATEVER —
>>WE DON’T HAVE ONE.>>I AM NOT SURPRISED.>>IT IS CALLED BANK OF AMERICA.>>SO, THE IDEA THAT WE SHOULD
SUPER PAC IS EVIL, I THINK IT IS INCORRECT. IT IS AN ENTITY ALSO USED FOR
GOOD AND SHOULD BE.>>DON’T YOU THINK THE
IMPLICATION OF A CORPORATE PAC SAYS THAT BUSINESS IS BAD AND IT
IS REALLY THEY ARE VERY SIMILAR, BUT HERE WE ARE CARVING OUT THAT
WE ARE NOT GOING TO TAKE CORPORATE PAC MONEY.>>DON’T THINK SO. I THINK IT IS A DIFFERENCE
BETWEEN DEMOCRATS AND REPUBLICANS, REALLY. YOU DON’T HEAR — THIS WEEK WE
HEARD THAT THE REPUBLICANS IN THAT RACE SAY I AM NOT DOING
ANYTHING LIKE THAT, NOT MAKING ANY PLEDGES BUT ON THE
DEMOCRATIC SIDE, YOU DO HAVE TO SAY THAT BECAUSE THERE IS A BIG
CONVERSATION AMONG DEMOCRATS ABOUT THE EFFECT OF CORPORATE
MONEY ON OUR ELECTIONS. NOW, THE SUPER PAC ISSUE IS
THERE AS WELL BUT IT DOESN’T NECESSARILY MEAN THAT BUSINESS
IS BAD. IT MEANS THE CANDIDATES ARE
TRYING TO COMMUNICATE. I AM NOT GOING TO MAKE MY
DECISION SOLELY ON THE BASES OR AT ALL ON THE BASIS OF WHICH
CORPORATION GAVE ME A BIG CHUNK OF CHANGE. I AM GOING TO MAKE MY DECISIONS
BASED ON WHAT I BELIEVE IS BEST FOR THE CONSTITUENTS. THAT IS THE MESSAGE. IS IT GOING TO BE LIKE THAT AT
THE END OF THE DAY? I DON’T HAVE A CRYSTAL BALL BUT
AT THIS POINT FOR DEMOCRATS, IT IS A BOX YOU HAVE TO CHECK AND
IF YOU DON’T CHECK IT, YOU IMMEDIATELY LOOK LIKE, WELL,
ACTUALLY YOU’RE A REPUBLICAN.>>THAT IS A BIG PART OF WHAT IS
GOING ON HERE AND ON THAT NOTE, MAGGIE TOULOUSE OLIVER WAS
MENTIONED IN THE PREVIOUS SEGMENT. SHE DIDN’T MISS A TRICK AND
CALLED OUT BEN RAY LUJAN AND SAID, YOU HAVE TAKEN 180,000
FROM BIG CORPORATIONS PRIOR TO THIS, WILL YOU GIVE THE MONEY
BACK? TO SOPHIE’S POINT, THIS IS
GETTING COMPLICATED ALREADY. WHO IS THE MORE PURE HERE?>>RIGHT. NOT TO BE A POLITICAL CYNIC, OF
COURSE, BUT, I THINK SOPHIE IS RIGHT THAT ONCE MAGGIE TOULOUSE
OLIVER HAD TAKEN THAT CONVERSATION, LUJAN WAS SMART. TO TAKE IT OFF THE TABLE AND SAY
HE WOULDN’T ACCEPT THEM EITHER. BOTH THESE CANDIDATES HAVE TAKEN
IN THE PAST MONEY FROM CORPORATIONS. IT’S NOT LIKE THEY ARE RUNNING
$5 CAMPAIGNS FOR AN OPEN U.S. SENATE SEATS. THERE IS BIG MONEY POURED IN THE
RACE.>>15 MILLION, BIG OUTSIDE
MONEY, UNM MONEY.>>I ALSO THINK ONE OF THE
THINGS THAT IS IMPORTANT TO RECOGNIZE IS IF THEY ARE TALKING
ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT TAKING MONEY FROM, THEY ARE NOT TALKING
ABOUT THE ISSUE, THIS IS THE IDEA OF I AM GOING TO SPEND MY
TIME TALKING ABOUT WHERE THE MONEY IS COMING FROM AND WHERE
IT IS NOT COMING FROM. WHO CARES. TELL US HOW YOU’RE GOING TO MAKE
AN ECONOMY THAT WORKS, HOW ARE YOU GOING TO HELP RURAL NEW
MEXICO? WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO? IT IS A DODGE AND RATHER THAN
TALKING ISSUES WE TALK PROCESS WHERE I AM GETTING MONEY FROM. WHO CARES, JUST TALK ABOUT THE
ISSUES.>>JANICE, LET ME POINT
SOMETHING ELSE OUT. PREVIOUSLY MENTIONED BY
CLARKSON, HE MADE AN INTERESTING POINT IN HIS QUOTE HERE SAYING
ABOUT BEN RAY NOT TAKING ALL THIS MONEY, WHAT ABOUT PERSONAL
DONATIONS FROM MIDDLE MANAGEMENT AND CORPORATIONS THAT HAVE PACS? THAT IS AN INTERESTING POINT, I
THINK HE IS ON TO SOMETHING THERE.>>I THINK SO, TOO. IF YOU LOOK AT THE NUMBERS FOR
BEN RAY IN THE LAST ELECTION, HE TOOK 181,000 FROM CASINOS. NOT JUST A PAC BUT FROM CASINOS
AND ANOTHER 172,000 FROM HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS. AND I THINK THAT REALLY
TRANSLATE INTO HIS AGENDA IN CONGRESS. WE CAN DEBATE THAT ALL ALONG BUT
I DO THINK THAT IS IMPORTANT AND SO I WOULD ADVOCATE, AS WE TALK
ABOUT CHANGING, WHETHER OR NOT WE ARE GOING TO REMOVE CITIZENS
UNITED BUT WE TRIED EVERYTHING. MAYBE IT IS TIME TO SAY, IF YOU
WANT TO GIVE MONEY, YOU PUT YOUR NAME ON IT, YOU DON’T PUT IT
WITH ANYBODY ELSE, YOU REPORT IT OR YOU DON’T GIVE IT.>>PICK UP ON THAT, THAT IDEA
WHERE MR. CLARKSON IS COMING
FROM, ABOUT, IF YOU CAN WRITE A BIG CHECK — LET ME BACK UP.>>RIGHT, WELL NOT SO MUCH THAT
BUT ABOUT INFLUENCE. YOU KNOW. DOES IT MATTER IF IT COMES FROM
THIS DIRECTION OR AN EXECUTIVE WRITES THE CHECK FROM THIS
DIRECTION. IT IS ALL INFLUENCE AT THE END
OF THE DAY.>>YOU KNOW, I SUPPOSE SO. I THINK THAT THE BIGGER
CHALLENGE AT THIS POINT IS, AND YOU KNOW, WE HEARD JUST A LITTLE
ABOUT IT, IT TAKES SO MUCH MONEY TO RUN A POLITICAL CAMPAIGN AT
THIS POINT, TO BE A VIABLE CANDIDATE, I MEAN WE ARE HEARING
THIS BACK AND FORTH DURING THE PRIMARIES, YOU KNOW, WHOEVER
WINS IN THE PRIMARY HAS TO PUT ON A MAJOR CAMPAIGN AND THEY
NEED TO GET MONEY FROM WHEREVER THEY CAN GET IT.
AND THIS SIGNALING EARLY ON MAY HELP GET YOU THROUGH THE
PRIMARIES BUT AT SOME POINT, THERE IS SOME MAJOR FUND RAISING
AND WE AS — WE HAVEN’T ADDRESSED THE HUGE BURDEN THAT
PLACES ON OUR DEMOCRACY. THE FACT THAT OUR CONGRESS
PEOPLE, OUR SENATORS ARE FUNDRAISING CONSTANTLY
THROUGHOUT THE TIME THEY ARE IN OFFICE AND THE FACT THAT IT
BECOMES VERY DIFFICULT TO TURN AWAY MONEY AND WE SEE
CANDIDATES, NOT THESE CANDIDATES WE ARE TALKING ABOUT NOW, BUT WE
SEE CANDIDATE WHO REALLY STRUGGLE WITH, DO I HAVE TO GIVE
MONEY BACK BECAUSE NOW SOMEBODY WHO SEEMED ACCEPTABLE DOESN’T
ANYMORE, AND IT IS A REALLY COMPLEX ISSUE THAT DOES TAKE OUR
POLITICIANS AWAY FROM WHAT THEY ACTUALLY WANT THEM TO BE DOING.>>THE IDEA HAS BEEN FLOATED OUT
THERE, CAPS, JANICE’S POINT ABOUT PUTTING YOUR NAME ON IT. THERE IS NO ONE SILVER BULLET,
EITHER LOCALLY OR NATIONALLY. LOCALLY WE ARE TALKING ABOUT
BECAUSE YOUR POINT EARLIER, IT TAKES A LOT OF MONEY TO GET THIS
DONE ON THE STATE-WIDE RACE.>>RIGHT. THERE ARE CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTIONS
AND YOU KNOW IN A WAY YOU COULD SAY THAT HAS BEEN UNDONE BY
CITIZENS UNITED AND GIVEN MORE POWER TO BE SUPER PACS WHO
AREN’T LIMITED IN WHAT THEY CAN SPEND. A CANDIDATE CAN ONLY ACCEPT A
CERTAIN AMOUNT OF MONEY FROM ORDINARY CITIZENS BUT THESE
OUTSIDE PACKS CAN COME IN.>>THERE IS A CERTAIN AMOUNT
OF — MAYBE I AM A LITTLE PARANOID — BUT THERE IS A
CERTAIN AMOUNT OF, LIKE, THERE IS THIS KIND OF, IF I TAKE
PUBLIC MONEY WILL THE PAC BE THERE. THAT KIND OF CALCULATION THAT
GOES ON.>>JUST TO BE CLEAR, TOO, SO, IF
YOU READ THE NEW YORKER ARTICLE, IF YOU’RE A SUPER PAC MONEY,
UNLIMITED WAS THE NAME OF IT, YOU CAN GIVE UNLIMITED MONEY TO
THESE SUPER PACS. THERE IS NO CAP. IF YOU HAVE TEN BILLION. CALL ME. BUT, YOU CAN GIVE 10 BILLION. THERE IS NO LIMIT.>>IF THAT SUPER PAC WANTS TO
PUMP 10 BILLION DOLLARS INTO A PARTICULAR RACE, THEY COULD DO
IT, THEY ARE JUST NOT SUPPOSED TO COORDINATE.>>JUST TO BE CLEAR, ONE OTHER
THING TO REMEMBER, MID TERMS PASSED IN NOVEMBER OF 2018,
5.2 BILLION WAS OVERALL CAMPAIGN SPENDING, FOR ALL THE RACES
NATIONWIDE. THAT IS QUITE A BIT OF MONEY, I
THINK. FOR THE ECONOMY POSSIBLY IF
YOU’RE A POLITICAL CONSULTANT BUT THAT IS A LOT OF MONEY. I AM NOT SURE WE GOT A GOOD BANG
FOR YOUR BUCK.>>I THINK A BIGGER POINT IS FOR
OUR FEDERAL RACES, 68% ARE OUT OF STATE AND MOST ARE PAC MONEY
AND WHAT DOES THAT SAY ABOUT NEW MEXICANS? THAT WE ARE A CHEAP DATE? EASY BUY? I DON’T LIKE THAT. AND I THINK WE NEED TO CHANGE
THAT CONVERSATION.>>OUT OF TIME ON THAT ISSUE,
BUT WHEN THE LINE COMES BACK WE DISCUSS NEW DEVELOPMENTS FOR
SPACEPORT AMERICA.

Aai, Politics & Me: Results | #VishayKhol #BhaDiPa


अनीजी का अर्थ मंत्रालय से जुडा रेकार्ड, और जुईजी का परराष्ट्र मामलों से जुडा
इतिहास देखते हुए, मैने चाबियाँ मौसीजी को देकर जाने का निर्णय लिया है | वे दोपहार ढाई से साढ़े तीन के बीच में घर आएँगी | सिर्फ उसी समय के दौरान तुम्हें यहाँ आने की अनुमती होगी | और हाँ, वे जब जमीन पोछ रहीं होंगी, तब उन्हें परेशान मत करना | मौसीजी? वे तो चुनाव के लिए खडी भी नहीं थी | बिलकुल | मैने वोट दिया है नोटा को | नोट? आई, आपने पैसों की लालच से रिशवत ले ली? तुम्हारा नागरिकशास्त्र इतना कमज़ोर कैसे? बाहर तुम्हारा दोस्त बैठा है | वह तुम्हे बताएगा | नमस्कार! आई ने बुलाया है इसलिए आया हूँ | मैं कोई दिया घिसने से प्रकट होने वाला जीनी नही | मेरा नाम है सुशांत | जिस तरीके से आई ने अनी और जुई को ठेंगा दिखाया, उस के लिए जिस शस्त्र का इस्तमाल किया, उसी के बारे में, मैं बात करने वाला हूँ | उसे नोटा बुलाते हैं | नोटा मतलब नन् ऑफ द अबव (इन में से कोई भी नहीं) | आप जब मतदान करने जाते हैं, तब आखिर में नन् ऑफ द अबव का पर्याय होता है | तो इस बटन को दबाकर आप अपना निषेध दर्ज कर सकते हैं | अगर कोई भी उम्मीदवार आप को पसंद नहीं आया, आपको लगता है की वह काम नही कर रहा, तो यह बटन दाबाइये | उस से होता क्या है, आप मतदान भी करते हैं और निषेध भी | बाकी आराम है | हम ऐसेही सवाल साब को पूछते घूमने वाले हैं | जुई की तरह हमारा खुद का नागरिकशास्त्र तो कच्चा है | तो आइये देखते है, बाहर लोगों का विषय कितना गहरा है ? क्या आप आनेवाले चुनाव में मतदान करने वाली हैं? हाँ |
क्यों? करना पडता है इसलिए | अच्छा लगता है जब वे यहाँ स्याही लगाते हैं | हाँ | दिखावा | मतदान..पता नहीं | शायद करेंगे | सब कहते हैं की मतदान करना चाहिए | तो वह दबाव है मुझ पे | आधार कार्ड दिखा के वोटिंग कर सकते हैं न? वोटिंग कार्ड नही हो तो भी! तो इस बार करने वाली हूँ | क्यों कि वह अपना अधिकार है | एक ऐसा एकलौता अधिकार जो सरकार हमें ठीक से इस्तमाल करने देती है | अगर कल आपने आपका खुद का पक्ष शुरू किया, तो उस का चिन्ह क्या होगा? मुझे लगता है ईगल रखना चाहिए | क्यों? ईगल क्यों? क्यों कि फिलहाल, भारत ने ईगल के जैसे ऊँची उडान लेने कि जरूरत है | पेड़, पौधे, घास-पूस, ऐसे कुछ रख सकते हैं | जल्दी…माइक | माइक क्यों? सब को बात करने का मौका देने के लिए | सब के विचार सब को पहुंचाने के लिए | मेरे ख्याल से इतने सारे पक्ष नहीं होने चाहिए | ज्यादा से ज्यादा दो या तीन पक्ष होने चाहिए | उन की पहचान उन के व्यक्तिमत्व और काम से होनी चाहिए | चिन्ह का कोई ज्यादा महत्त्व नही है | आपको खबरें कहाँ से मिलती हैं? इंटरनेट से | सोशल मीडिया, व्हाट्सअॅप, यूट्यूब इ. सोशल मीडिया, फेसबुक | कभी कभी फेसबुक और व्हाट्सअॅप से झूठी खबरें भी पता चलती हैं | कुछ चीजों से सहमत नही हो सकते | क्यों की व्हाट्स अॅप पे बहुत सारी झूठी खबरें भी होती हैं | मुझे बताइये, सांसद और विधायक में क्या अंतर है? सांसद और विधायक… नही? हमारे कृषी मंत्री कौन हैं? हमारे कृषी मंत्री… क्या आपको नोटा का मतलब पता है? नोटा? – हाँ, नोटा का मतलब पता है? सुना है उस के बारे में लेकिन स्पष्ट जानकारी नही है | हुश्श! लगभग पूरे महाराष्ट्र का यही हाल है | स्कूल में सीखा हुआ नागरिकशास्त्र हम लगभग भूल गए हैं | सब को सभी प्रश्नों के उत्तर पता नही थे | आपके दोस्तों को भी आगर जवाब पता न हों, तो उन्हें वे बताइये | हम पूरे महाराष्ट्र में घूमकर जनजागृती करने वाले हैं | मुंबई और पुणे से हम ने शुरूआत की है | अगर आपको वे विडिओज् देखने हैं, तो इस लिंक पर क्लिक करें | ‘विषय खोल’ चॅनेल को सब्स्क्राईब करने के लिए यहाँ क्लिक करें | बेल आयकन दबाएँ और नियमित अपडेट्स पाएँ | देखते रहिए ‘विषय खोल’| धन्यवाद |