The next President…

The next President is going to need an adviser who is an expert in both economics and law if we’re going to fix things in America. Maybe a person who taught those things at a top school like Harvard Law School. Maybe someone who has written a lot of books on the subject that have been used as textbooks over the years. Maybe even someone who has been an adviser to the President on these subjects in the past.

Oh, wait.

Democrats: Stop trying to appeal to people who will never vote for you

Look.

There’s like 33% of the population who will never vote for Democrats no matter what (as we have seen, based on those who are supporting Trump no matter what). These are almost all the same people who also think gay marriage should be illegal and blacks should know their place and women should be subservient and Christians should run everything.

So Democrats: Stop trying to appeal to them. Stop being afraid to standing up for what is right. It’s not going to work. All it does is discourage the majority of Americans from supporting you, because they don’t think you actually believe in anything.

Elizabeth Warren was recently asked a question about how she would respond to an “old-fashioned” supporter who believes marriage is between one man and one woman.warren
“I’m going to assume it is a guy who said that,” Warren replied, “And I’m going to say, ‘Well, then just marry one woman. Assuming you can find one.”

Ooh, snap. Some people loved it and some Democrats sweated buckets and said, “Oh, goodness gracious! She’s going to alienate some voters with that!”

Well, no, she isn’t. The kind of person who would be insulted by a comment like that would never consider voting for her in the first place.

Republicans know this. They don’t care a bit about trying to appeal to a “middle.” They say what they think. Of course, they are more confident of winning because they cheat (through gerrymandering, voter suppression, voter purges, voting machines that don’t leave paper trails and their buddy the Electoral College, but that’s a separate topic).

Democrats are always advised to “reach for the middle” and that makes them afraid to say anything that may alienate a pretend group that would consider voting for them “if only.” That group does not exist. We are the majority. We are the mainstream.

And we should act like it.

Warren the Cougar

So a bunch of right-wing trolls decided they’d hold a press release so some young guy could claim he had an affair with Elizabeth Warrren. No one believed him, especially after it came out that he is a convicted felon who had lied about his military experience and responded to the question “Are you on any kind of medication?” with “That’s a violation of the privacy laws concerning medical records” (which is totally what people who are not on medication say).

Bette Midler had a great response:
midler

But then Elizabeth Warren came out and admitted that yes, she is a Cougar:
cougarThis is how you deal with trolls like these: laugh at them.

Of course, that doesn’t stop these idiots who somehow think they’re making some grand point or are pulling a fast one. Take this Trump-supporting girl who showed up at an Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez meeting, pretending to be a supporter, who made a ‘modest proposal’ that we all needed to save the planet by eating babies. It wasn’t long before Trump tweeted “Seems like a normal AOC supporter to me.”

AOC responded like a human being does, saying “This person may have been suffering from a mental condition and it’s not okay that the right-wing is mocking her and potentially make her condition or crisis worse. Be a decent human being and knock it off.”

Of course, it didn’t take long for people to discover that this was just another stupid troll from the right.

That, of course, won’t stop AOC’s detractors from sharing the video and trying to claim this person is one of ours. After all, they have demonstrated many times that facts don’t matter.

If you don’t vote for the Democrat, your vote is for Trump

Look.

For the next election, you’re either voting for the Democrat or you’re voting for Trump. There is no “third choice.” Any other candidate you waste your vote on helps Trump.

Yes, you want to make a point. Yes, if we got rid of the Electoral College and had ranked voting, your third party choice might have a chance. But for now, we have to play with the rules we are given, and if you waste your vote on a third party candidate, you may as well have given your vote to Trump.

If you want to stop Trump, the best possible way to do it is to vote for the only other candidate who can beat him, and that’s the Democrat. If you are voting 3rd party from either side (even as a Republican protesting Trump), you’re not doing that.

These third party votes can lose you an election.

Look at it this way:

When you vote third party instead of Democrat, yes, that’s a vote Trump doesn’t get. But it’s not a vote the Democrat gets.

Here in Pennsylvania in 2016, Trump won by 44,292‬ votes.  49,941 people here voted for Jill Stein.  I’m not saying all of those Stein votes would have gone to Trump, but none of them stopped him.

If a thousand people upset with Trump vote 3rd party as a protest and then the Democrat loses the state by 999 votes to Trump, then what’s the point? Where’s the protest there?  What good did that “protest vote” do?

If you’re not doing everything you can to stop Trump, you’re helping him. If you’re not voting for the only possible choice who can beat Trump, then you might as well vote for Trump, because that’s where you’ll end up anyway.

GOP election strategy: Cheat to win

If we come out and vote, like we did twice for Obama and in 2018 in the “Blue Wave” midterm, then we win. There are more of us than there are of them, and we represent what the majority of Americans want.

They know that. And so they know that the only way they can win is by cheating. And that’s why the Republican party has worked so hard (especially over the past twenty years) to do the following:

  • Purge voting rolls of registered voters for no real reason
  • Make it harder to register
  • Gerrymander districts to allow them to win even when they get less votes overall
  • Fight against mail-in ballots
  • Remove the Voting Rights Act
  • Refuse to pass legislation to prevent Russian hacking of voting machines
  • Refuse to pass legislation requiring paper ballots
  • Removing voting precincts in minority-held districts
  • Pass ID laws that make it more difficult if not impossible for some people to vote
  • Fight against early voting laws
  • Restricting those with criminal records from voting
  • Creating an atmosphere of fear at the precincts (especially for Latinos who worry about being detained for voting, even if they are citizens)
  • Refusing to consider getting rid of the Electoral College

You’d think the most basic right in a democracy would be the right to vote, and you’d think anyone who really supports democracy would want everyone to vote. But the history of America has constantly been one of the people in power doing everything they can to prevent that from happening, starting with the establishment of the Electoral College. Women and non-whites had to fight and die for this very basic right, and the battle continues today.

Vote for who you want, not for who you think will win

I have given up on predicting what people want. The experts all said we’d never elect a black man and we got two terms of Obama. The experts all said we’d never elect a racist asshole and we got Trump. And in the past, when we chose who we thought would probably win instead of who we really wanted (Kerry, Dukakis, Gore) we lost.

Vote for who you want. Support who you want. You may be surprised at how well you do.

Mind you, as a Political Science grad who worked on political campaigns and runs a political blog and taught political science at the college level, you could consider me an “expert” — and I’m one of those experts who has been proven wrong.

I now think what is most important when people vote is personality and charisma, which can overcome any negatives a candidate may have. “Do they look like a President?” should be the main question.

I’d love to see a Warren / Harris ticket, but people are saying they can’t win.  I think that the kind of person who would refuse to vote for two women on the ticket probably isn’t going to vote for a Democrat anyway. I think we can win by getting our base excited and actually coming out to vote, like they did for Obama. There are more of us than them, and when we vote, we win.

How to discuss the Democratic candidates without being insulting

If there’s one thing the Republicans (and their friends the Russians) want, it’s for us Democrats to be divided and fighting each other. It makes their job so much easier.

They’ll once more do all they can to encourage it, by posting articles in their newspapers and magazines full of lies and accusations, and posting blatantly false memes they know we’ll share.

We cannot play their game this time. The stakes are too high.

Harris

Sure, I have my preference. But that doesn’t mean I’m going to trash the others.

We’re at war to save our country from incompetence and corruption, and even the worst Democrat is better than the best Republican right now.

So here’s what you need to do:  Discuss campaign strategy without using personal attacks.

Like this:

“I think Kirsten Gillibrand will have a harder time getting the support of people like me because of her support of [issue].”

“Bernie Sanders will have difficulty getting the Democratic nomination because he refuses to understand that you need to work within the party to get its support.”

“I think we need to nominate someone from a red state and not another Masssachusetts or California liberal, and that’s why I’m supporting [candidate].”

This is not a sport, where you pick a team you support and call all the other ones losers. This is politics, and this time, we have a lot of good candidates. I have my preference and I can tell you why I think she has the best chance of winning, and I can do that without trashing her opponents.

I ask all my liberal friends to do the same. Please. This election is too important for us to hand it to people who want to destroy all that we stand for.