Aug
17
2014
8

The Hill more or less publishes its ‘Democratic candidates in 2016′ list.

Oh, sure, they’re calling calling it “Five figures on the left who could challenge Hillary Clinton,” but let’s face it: Democrats who aren’t on the Left these days are rare, and probably dying of old age. And since Hillary is pretty solid Left herself – socialized medicine is not even remotely conservative – the alternatives are pretty darn Left as well.  Below is the Hill’s list, with my sardonic commentary attached:

  • Hillary Clinton. Pros: Bill Clinton. Cons: Bill Clinton.  Hillary Clinton. Barack Obama.
  • Elizabeth Warren.  Pros: Can make a plausible case that Barack Obama hates her.  Cons: Ever see what happens when a Massachusetts liberal runs for President?  It ain’t pretty.
  • Joe Biden. Pros: He’s the only person on this list that has anything like a personality.  Cons: He’s the only person on this list who can’t run against – or away from – Barack Obama’s legacy.  Plus, you know, Joe Biden.
  • Martin O’Malley. Pros: Hey! He’s a sitting governor. Cons: …I don’t find him interesting enough to be worth despising.  Nobody does. That pretty much includes Maryland Democrats, the average one of whom will readily admit after his or her third drink that the man has the charisma of an empty soda bottle.
  • Bernie Sanders. Pros: He’s as close to a Commie as you can get in this country and still be elected to anything. Cons: He’s as close to a Commie as you can get in this country and still be elected to anything.
  • Russ Feingold. Pros: Of everybody on this list, he’s the only one who hasn’t been burned by Barack Obama’s policies, activities, feuds with Congress, or simple guilt-by-association. Cons: Russ Feingold hasn’t held office since 2010, and has been avoiding running for anything since then.  And the Democrats badly wanted Feingold to run for Governor of Wisconsin.

(more…)

Jun
24
2014
4

Sure, Joe Biden thinks that he’s got a shot at 2016.

I don’t know if Glenn Reynolds is any more surprised than I am at the idea that Joe Biden would think that, though. Even if you don’t agree with #2 or #3 in the list below, surely we can all agree with #1 , yes? After all, not having a shot has never stopped Joe Biden from making a run for the nomination anyway.

Anyway, there are three main reasons why Biden thinks that he has a shot:

  1. He’s Joe Biden.  I sometimes wonder what it’s like, there inside Joe Biden’s head. I suspect that it is a place with no soft edges; there are probably no unicorns, but there may be a wise standing stone or two to whisper on the wind the earth lore of the petty-gods.
  2. More pragmatically, he’s the Vice President of the United States. That’s not a bad place from where to launch a Presidential campaign.  It may or may not be the best place, but it’s certainly a legitimate place to start when it comes to getting the nomination.
  3. Look at the field. Seriously. Hillary Clinton is his most likely opponent, and the media has been hammering her ‘inevitability’ mostly because they hope that if they do then nobody will notice that she’s a horrible campaigner with bad political instincts. And after that, there is a deeeeeep chasm before you get to the next clump of candidates, like O’Malley and Schweitzer and Warren.

Personally, I don’t really care whether the Democrats nominate the old white guy with health problems, or the old white woman with health problems. From my point of view, either will be fine. For a given value of ‘fine,’ of course – and it’s a value that the Democratic party would not share.

Jun
06
2014
3

Why it doesn’t much matter who the Democrats pick to lose in 2016.

These two graphs will hopefully help people understand why I’m not panicky about any of the potential Democratic candidates for 2016 actually running.  The first graph shows Bush/Obama’s polling average, as of Election Day 2004/2012:

Bush-Obama-1

…and the second shows Bush/Obama’s polling average today (June 6, 2014/2006):

Bush-obama-2

(more…)

Written by in: Politics | Tags: ,
May
19
2014
8

The Democratic party’s biggest structural problem, in one ‘Senator vs. Governor’ chart.

It boils down to this: the American people are rapidly coming to the conclusion that you probably should be a governor of something before you become President.

(more…)

May
14
2014
6

What if the 2014 electorate *doesn’t* reset in time for 2016?

Here’s the Democrats central problem in 2016:

Seniors, who frequently voted Democratic over pocketbook issues like Social Security and Medicare, have migrated into the Republican column. White blue-collar voters, once a staple of Democratic coalitions past, have become estranged from their old political home over cultural issues. In their place are what my colleague Ron Brownstein labels “the coalition of the ascendant”single women, minorities, and millennial voters. Voters within these groups turned out at high levels in the last two presidential elections to offset Democratic losses elsewhere.

The challenge for Democrats in this year’s midterms is getting these “ascendant” voters enthusiastic about showing up to the polls when Obama isn’t on the ballot—something that Democratic turnout specialists are working overtime to achieve. Even if they don’t show up and Republicans retake the Senate in 2014, the assumption is they’re bound to return at similar levels for the next presidential election. That’s not necessarily the case.

(more…)

May
10
2014
2

:snort: Joe Biden’s candidacy ‘in danger’ of being ridiculous.

Submitted without comment. With snickering, maybe, but without comment.

Joe Biden’s prospective presidential candidacy is in danger of becoming a joke.

Peter Beinart, of course. Trust a member of the antiwar movement to write something like that… OK, so there was one comment. (more…)

May
10
2014
3

Joe Biden is running for President, bless his heart.

And he thinks that he can do it via populism, bless his heart again: “Vice President Joe Biden appeared at a closed-door fundraiser in South Carolina Friday and delivered what one attendee called “an Elizabeth Warren-type speech” about the struggles of America’s middle class, remarks that were well-received by a room full of influential primary state Democrats.” Fun fact: Joe Biden has been a member of the political class longer than I have been alive, and a Senator since before my wife’s birth. I would pay good money to see him try to run an actual retail establishment for a month…

Via Hot Air Headlines.

Moe Lane

PS: Elizabeth Warren has even less idea about what motivates blue-collar and middle class people than Joe Biden does.  She’s also about one-third as personable as her admirers think she is.  As I said on Twitter: I salivate at the thought of a Biden/Warren ticket in 2016: out-of-touch, oblivious, and old (Warren will be 67 in 2016, and the Republican candidates will not).

Mar
31
2014
5

This is defeat, Democrats: you probably should have avoided it.

This fascinates me: “For the third election cycle, Democrats are still debating their options for handling the political fall-out from passage of the Affordable Care Act: fight, flight or finesse.” And it fascinates me because there are no options. The Democrats made a big bet in 2009 that they could ram the law through first, then justify it later. They lost that bet; and now come the consequences.

Can individual Democrats survive? Sure… in the House, and in the safer parts of the Senate.  But the most viable position – I screwed up, and if you re-elect me, I will vote with the Republicans to repeal Obamacare – is also absolutely anathema to the Democratic establishment.  To be fair, there’s a reason for that.  The Democratic party has gone all-in on this issue; and if the national cadre can just hold on then eventually the Democratic party will recover, once all the old bodies are removed and a new crop of politicians from the state party apparatuses are brought in. As institutions, both the Democrats and the Republicans profit mightily from inertia*; the Democratic establishment is kind of counting on that right now. (more…)

Written by in: Politics | Tags: , ,
Feb
28
2014
--

Health whispers about Hillary Clinton.

Always hard to tell how much of this is true, how much of this is BS, and how much is BS that also happens to be true, but for completely unrelated reasons.

If you listen to the chattering class in Washington, D.C., Hillary Clinton is a virtual certainty for the 2016 Democratic nomination, and the front runner in the next presidential race.

But in private, rumors persist that the former Secretary of State may not even be capable of making it to Iowa and New Hampshire. Clinton, these skeptics often say, will not run for president again because of health concerns.

(more…)

Feb
28
2014
7

Joe Biden is so totally running in 2016. And that’s a problem for the Democrats.

Fascinating Politico article here about Joe Biden and his desire to run in 2016.  Here is the basic problem, in a nutshell: Hillary Clinton is more or less qualified to be President* – or, at least, the Democratic nominee for President – but she is a horrible campaigner and nobody likes her.  People like Joe Biden, and he is better at the entire campaigning thing.  However: by the time 2016 rolls around “close to the Obama administration” is not going to be a selling point in the general election… and while both Clinton and Biden severely suffer from that problem, Biden suffers from it a heck of a lot more. (more…)

Feb
22
2014
2

@Slate, heal thyself.

It’s not that I don’t object to the sentiment (i.e., that we’re starting the 2016 campaign too early and obsessively focusing on things)…

irony-slate

…it’s just that Slate is pretty much an integral part of the problem. Mote, beam, eye, you know the drill. (more…)

Feb
14
2014
6

My answer to “Is Hillary too old to run?”

Like Allahpundit and Charlie Cook I agree that Hillary Clinton is likely but not guaranteed to run; unlike either I am not convinced that she’s necessarily the front-runner. Typically people who are called the front-runner in these things are not… as Hillary Clinton herself might have ruefully told people in 2008. She actually has three things working against her:

  • Her health is indeed an issue.  A big one; and it will only become more of one as Hillary Clinton gets older*.
  • She is in fact inextricably linked to the Obama administration.  This will be neutralized in the primary to a large degree if Joe Biden also runs – he’d be even more linked to the Obama administration** – but if Obama’s numbers continue on the same trajectory that they’re on now then by fall of 2016 ‘part of Barack Obama’s Cabinet’ is not going to be a resume enhancer. (more…)

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