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Thoughts on Super Tuesday

Posted in Uncategorized by EloiSVM42 on March 5, 2020

With a nod to Joseph A. Heller, Something Happened. I wasn’t quite on the mark when I wrote that the Democratic primary is narrowing quickly to a two-candidate race between Sanders and Biden. I was closer when I wrote that it will be interesting to see if Democrats will move to the left, or if they will prefer to end the drama of the last few years and return to a calmer political tableau. Tuesday, they clearly voted for the latter. In the end, this wasn’t about the candidates, per se, but the atmosphere they wanted.

I think it started with James Clyburn. This idea is not original with me, but when I heard it expressed, I knew it was prescient. I heard Clyburn’s speech endorsing Biden, and when he finished his impassioned yet reasoned words, his brave and eloquent sentiments, I think a whole lot of people realized that this is the kind of principled person – speaking of Clyburn now – who they want back in charge of our government. They thought if a man like Clyburn thinks Biden is this kind of a man, too, then they went all in with him. This is called moral suasion, and we need so much more of it.

Speaking of black turnout, in 2016, black voters preferred Clinton to Trump in the same proportions that they preferred Obama in 2008 and 2012, but not nearly as many turned out. Blacks saw what Trump was doing to Obama’s legacy and learned their lesson. They turned out heavily again in 2018, and heavily again in these primaries. This is a good sign for Biden.

Other observations:

I don’t care a fig about Biden’s wins in southern states. Those states aren’t going to vote Democratic anyway. Hell, Alabama may return Sessions to the Senate! This is probably true of Texas, also, but every new voter who comes into the state these days, broadly speaking, is either an educated metropolitan or Hispanic, and every brown face that appears turns Texas a little bluer. It’s pleasing to watch. If Texas goes Democrat in 2020, which I do not expect yet, it will foretell a complete rout of Trump.

Likewise, I don’t care a fig that Sanders won California over Biden. California is going to vote for the Democratic candidate whoever it is. Hell, I will vote for Trump before California will, and do you see that happening? I suspect the same will be true of Colorado.

I was interested, however, in the turnout and votes in North Carolina, and Minnesota especially. Those are important swing states, and the primary suggests they may swing more heavily Democratic in 2020. The Democrat needs to win some of those recalcitrant midwestern states that went for Trump in 2016. I think Biden, has an advantage there.

The turnout in Virginia was particularly interesting. Clinton won a plurality of the vote there in 2016. In the Democratic primary this year, the voter turnout nearly doubled that of 2016 presidential election! It was even greater than in 2012 when Obama was on the ticket. This suggests Virginia may be solidly blue this election. Virginia is closest to ground zero in Washington and they feel the Trump fiasco perhaps more than any other state.

Clearly, Sanders did not expand his voter base as he hoped and predicted. Even his dedicated youth in California did not turn out as would seem to have been expected. This thing is not over but note to Bernie: if you want to expand your Democratic base, you need to stop calling Democrats who are not presently with you names. As legendary ad man John O’Toole said, to make sales, we must first make friends.

Sudden, tangential thought: If Republicans keep getting all their news about Covid-19 from Trump and Fox News, there may be many fewer Republican voters come November.

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