Democratic Primary Open Thread

Anyone have any thoughts or observations about the Democratic primary? It’s almost a four-way tie going into Iowa and NH. Some opinions must be solidifying…

My most recent thoughts have been about specific reasons I dislike Biden. I don’t enjoy his “angry old man” act, whereby he raises his voice and points fingers at almost every debate question.  But this I can live with – it is theater.

What I really dislike is his contempt for the internet and willingness to cut social security.

He has called for revoking Section 230, the law that protects people providing internet platforms from what their users choose to do with those platforms. Without Section 230, iBrattleboro would shut down, as would any site that allows registered users to add any text, images, audio or video.

Biden says the law must be revoked because of Facebook. He doesn’t like Facebook. I don’t like them either, but I’d prefer smart people simply stop using their creepy service. No need to punish everyone for their behavior. The internet is better because of Section 230. Biden is wrong.

Biden has also stated many times over many decades that he thinks social security and other social services should be “on the table” for cuts. I think that alone disqualifies him from being a candidate in 2020.


Anyone disagree?

Comments | 15

  • Pete is Best Debater

    I will stay FAR away from giving my opinion as to the best candidate overall, or name my favorite, but I will say that Mayor Pete is by far the best at debate. He’s always prepared, well studied, and in my opinion the smartest of the bunch, and can literally handle anything thrown at him at any moment without faltering.

    Again, not saying he’s the best choice, and not saying that being the best debater is going to win this election, but I admire his skill on stage.

  • It's caucus day

    It’s caucus day in Iowa.

    Will all the backstabbing and attacks on our Senator pay off? They dusted off a bunch of old Democrats to take swipes at Sanders this last week. I guess Democratic leadership does not subscribe to “anyone but Trump.” To them it is “anyone but Trump, or a progressive Democrat!” of course, the attacks seem to lead to Sanders rising in polls. If they don’t like him, maybe there is something to him? : )

    I find it kind of disgusting. Hillary Clinton saying no one likes him (a lie), O’Malley and Kerry “worrying” quite loudly about how terrible it would be to have him as a candidate. And so on. Major news outlets trying hard to give moderates a boost (Mayor Pete on all 4 Sunday talk shows?)

    Let’s not forget Mayor Pete stopping THE major poll just before the caucus, claiming a single supporter didn’t hear his name. (My guess is he just wanted to cast doubt on the poll results with this stunt, not stop the results entirely. Oops. My guess is this costs him more than he gains.)

  • Impressed by Pete & Amy in the debates

    Listened to two of them from start to finish on radio on long-distance drives. Pete was very well prepared and gave clear well though out answers. Amy answered well too, and was at times being the adult in the room, steering others back onto topic when they got into sniping at each other. Even if neither of them can get nominated, they’d make excellent cabinet members.

    • I've also been impressed with Amy. Didn't know much o

      I’ve also been impressed with Amy. Didn’t know much of her before debates began.

      Yang continues to have some appeal, though he seems a cycle ahead of his time. I bet he’d do better in 2024.

      Pete does not impress me as a candidate for president. I’d like to see him in congress for a while before risking a bigger office on him. I expect he’d surround himself with people I don’t like, sort of the way Obama did with bankers. I’d like more political history to be able to judge him by. Anyone (well, almost anyone) can talk well. Actions matter a bit more to me at this stage. Just my view. I know others have more favorable impressions.

      I still think Sanders has the best shot at beating Trump in that he’d be most likely to pick off Trump supporters in those all important midwestern districts. Trump thinks the “socialism” label will crush him, but it won’t. If he’s the nominee and adds a few other candidates as cabinet picks, I think it would be an easy win as long as the DNC gets behind it.

  • Iowa

    Iowa sure messed things up. No poll, and no results.

    Internet rumors abound. Great job!

    From the coverage I saw of a few districts, Biden was losing badly. “Not viable.” Bernie and Pete seemed to do well. Amy seemed to do better than Elizabeth. But all of this is just appearances at a few caucus places.

    I did see some memorabilia that I want – “$1000 bills” with Yang’s face on them. Send me one!

  • A Tale of Two Factions

    Listening to the way the rhetoric has evolved this election season, it seems pretty clear that the Democrats have two dominant factions going, generally characterized as the right and left wings of the Democratic party.

    The right wing — which includes Klobuchar, Buttigieg, and Biden and, from the wings, Hillary Clinton — stands in staunch opposition to the left wing of Sanders, Warren, and Yang. But especially Sanders.

    Each side appeals to different groups. The left candidates appeal to people for whom the system isn’t working. They want big, noticeable change. The right tends to appeal to people who are served well enough by the current system to want to continue and further it.

    Sanders is the bona fide change candidate, along with Yang. But he’s the enemy of people who don’t want his kind of change. People who have more to lose tend to be conservative when it comes to money.

    There’s also a sort of unaligned group of voters I think of as the terrified middle. They have less to lose but worry that they’re slipping. They want increased financial security, are afraid to risk it all on big change, and cling to something that looks safe to them. Biden can fill the role of the security candidate.

    When push comes to shove, it depends in the end on how many people want change and how many want more of the same. Income is going to play a factor in that breakdown. Even the middle will eventually have to take a stand.

  • NH and beyond

    Let’s see, where are we?

    Sanders wins NH and is projected to win most of the upcoming states.

    Biden and Warren are on fumes.

    Buttigieg has a bit of momentum but not much of a path forward. Same with Klobuchar.

    And Bloomberg hasn’t sent me a big check yet so I won’t mention him. : )

    That leaves Sanders fans cautiously nervous and semi-optimistic. It leaves centrist Democrats with a choice – support left wing Sanders, support right wing Bloomberg, support one of the others that probably won’t make it, and/or help Trump by attacking the current, leading Democratic candidate.

    The latest odds from FiveThirtyEight show that as of a few minutes ago, the greatest odds are that no one candidate gets enough delegates to claim victory, but that Sanders is likely to have the most going into a convention. I would expect this model to keep changing, especially after a few more folks drop out in the next month or so.

  • Nevada and beyond

    For those reading this many years from now, Senator Sanders is currently leading other democrats by significant margins. This is due in part to his consistent messaging and appealing platform, but also due to a number of other candidates doing just well enough to stay in the race, but not really well enough to win. Each can squint and see a way to victory, so they don’t drop out, and this has made it easier for Sanders to avoid a single opponent so far.

    The debates last week were rather brutal. Warren effectively eliminated Bloomberg, and others piled on to rub it in. He looked terrible. He should have run as a Republican against Trump. Biden did surprisingly OK. Pete was rather obnoxious, especially to Klobuchar.

    More debating scheduled for tonight. The knives are out for the frontrunner, and the mainstream media is featuring mainstream pundits worrying that if Sanders wins the nomination, things might not be quite as mainstream as before.

  • Some shifting about

    Biden gets a bounce in SC, and Steyer and Buttigieg drop out.

  • Implosion begins

    Seems like many Democrats have decided that someone who is visibly showing signs of senility is the best option! Good luck with that!

    I still can’t/won’t vote for Biden – he’s against the underlying law that makes iBrattleboro and other sites possible, among other bothersome things. I hope others would check his record, too.

    I find it odd that this election is all about stopping Sanders, rather than Trump. I do believe Democrats will win against themselves and defeat Sanders. And then they will do as well as they always do with these great centrists of recent elections – we fondly recall presidents Kerry and Clinton, don’t we?

    It isn’t over, but the centrist establishment has shown its hand(s) – and those hands need washing.

  • Bloomberg is out

    Too soon! He hasn’t sent me a check yet!

  • Warren now out

    It’s a two-person race for Democrats.

  • Delegate Count as of March 11, 1 pm

    Biden 857 delegates

    Sanders 709 delegates

    1991 needed to win nomination.

    Call me crazy, but a winning ticket might be Biden-Sanders. Ain’t gonna happen, but….

  • Biden leading

    The people are speaking, and in these unprecedented times facing an uncertain future, they are choosing to go with the status quo. (If MY house were on fire, I’d prefer emergency efforts rather than the status quo, but that’s crazy ol’ me.)

    See “Return to Normalcy”. Harding said it more eloquently:

    “America’s present need is not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration; not agitation, but adjustment; not surgery, but serenity; not the dramatic, but the dispassionate; not experiment, but equipoise; not submergence in internationality, but sustainment in triumphant nationality”

  • Sanders suspends

    He’s staying on the ballot and still amassing delegates to help sway Biden and centrists more leftwardly, but he is no longer running to win.

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