ChrisWeigant.com

New Hampshire Roils The Waters

[ Posted Wednesday, February 10th, 2016 – 16:43 UTC ]

Last night, New Hampshire shook up the presidential race and roiled what were already less-than-calm waters, in both the Democratic Party and the GOP. On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton looks a lot weaker than she did a few weeks ago. Republicans, meanwhile, are having to finally come to grips with a fact that's been staring them in the face for months: Donald Trump is indeed their frontrunner, and he might actually win their party's nomination.

Let's take the Republicans first. The head-in-the-sand-ism that many establishment Republicans have been engaging in since last summer is now officially over. The fantasy that "Trump will collapse -- it's inevitable" never actually came to pass, guys. Get over it. There was even a secondary myth that also lies on the ground in tatters: Trump would drop out of the race in a sulk if he lost Iowa or any other state. Um, no, that didn't happen either -- instead, Trump stayed in the race and won New Hampshire. In the midst of all this myth-busting, things have actually gotten even worse for the establishment guys. Not only is Trump leading the party, but the guy solidly in second place is even less acceptable to the party bigwigs. And they can't even figure out who should be in third place to challenge Ted Cruz and Donald Trump. That's a pretty disheveled state of affairs. In fact, Machiavelli would be rolling on the floor with laughter over this spectacle, were he still alive. No wonder many of the GOP establishment have been choosing to ignore this reality for so long -- it's certainly easier to pretend it'll all magically go away somehow.

Two more Republican candidates are exiting the race today, as Carly Fiorina has already dropped out and Chris Christie is expected to officially do so very soon. Two other Republicans really should hang up their spurs as well, but probably won't. Ben Carson is now (probably literally) praying for a South Carolina miracle, and Jim Gilmore apparently just likes seeing his name on primary ballots -- whether anyone chooses him or not.

This leaves three viable contenders for the "save us from Trump and Cruz" lane of the party. Marco Rubio placed third in Iowa. John Kasich placed second in New Hampshire. Jeb Bush still has oodles of other people's money to waste. So none of these three candidates will be giving up any time soon (at least until after the Super Tuesday votes are counted). The fact that there are still three of them, however, will work against their ultimate goal of defeating Trump and Cruz. The three remaining non-Trump non-Cruz candidates are going to be squabbling with each other instead of attacking either frontrunner. Since the voters are split between the three, it'll take that much longer to coalesce around any one of them. At this point, Kasich is probably the strongest of the three still left standing, because he hasn't had a debate meltdown and his last name is not "Bush." But he is definitely not running the strongest campaign, and will need to siphon off some big donors from either Bush or Rubio to have much chance in the states going forward.

The longer all this takes to play out, the stronger Trump and Cruz get. Trump is unquestionably the strongest candidate right now, having chalked up a second-place finish and a solid win. But Cruz isn't that far behind, as he out-performed expectations in both Iowa and New Hampshire. He wasn't supposed to win Iowa, and he wasn't supposed to do as well as third in New Hampshire. This could be because his ground game is a lot better than most reporters have noticed. If he can continue beating expectations through Super Tuesday, then he'll be the biggest challenger to Trump throughout March.

Trump, meanwhile, is riding high. Not only did he win New Hampshire solidly, he got twice the votes that (second-place) Kasich did. This margin, of course, is yuuuuge. So far, Trump has been able to turn voters out to the polls by ignoring all the "conventional wisdom" rules about how to do so. He hasn't spent a whole lot on advertising, and he continues to rely on the fly-in, fly-out giant rally rather than attempting the "retail politics" that all the other campaigns are slogging through. His voters are (to a large extent) both committed and enthusiastic. And the South (where many early March primaries will happen) seems almost custom-fit for Trump's persona. Trump is also enjoying a kind of immunity from attacks, since everyone else in the race now seems determined to attack each other harder than they're attacking Trump. This probably won't last, but it certainly helps Trump in the meantime.

Turning to the Democrats, Hillary Clinton just had a very bad night. She lost the two-person New Hampshire race by over 22 points. This was a bigger margin than many were expecting -- indeed, it was the biggest margin in any Democratic New Hampshire primary, ever. Even Clinton's stock excuse ("Bernie's from the state next door, so of course he was always going to win") doesn't bear up to historical examination, when you consider that Howard Dean lost New Hampshire to John Kerry.

Clinton lost almost every demographic measured. She lost among women, even. Bernie Sanders got 84 percent of the young-Iowan vote, and 85 percent of the youth of New Hampshire. Those are stunning numbers. But Clinton is in no way down for the count, at this point. One state (and a small one, at that) simply does not determine the nominee. The Clinton campaign is counting on her doing much better than Sanders among minorities, and they may turn out to be right.

The next state for Democrats is Nevada, with a large percentage of Latino voters. Clinton's edge with Latinos has never been as large as her edge with African-Americans, and Latinos who are for Clinton are less committed to her than other supporters. This means Bernie has a chance of convincing Latinos to vote for him next Saturday. He'll have to make the case fairly quickly, but the other thing that Bernie's got going for him is the fact that there are a lot of Union members in Nevada. Hillary already got the S.E.I.U. to endorse her, but there are a lot of pro-Bernie supporters among the rank-and-file Union voters. His agenda is a lot closer to what they want to see done, after all. So Bernie Sanders has a decent shot at doing well in Nevada.

South Carolina may be his toughest challenge, though. Clinton's African-American support so far shows no signs of defection, although it's anyone's guess what will happen now that Bernie has a solid win under his belt. African-Americans took a while to flock to Barack Obama, mostly because they really didn't think he had a believable chance of winning. Once he started winning primaries, they became convinced. That could happen this time around with Bernie, or it could fail to materialize. Everyone's going to be watching the South Carolina polling very closely over the next few days, to see if any signs of such movement are detectable.

Bernie Sanders had a very good night last night. But it could turn out to be his biggest night of the entire campaign. Sanders supporters would do well to contemplate this possibility. Hillary Clinton learned one lesson from her 2008 defeat, and she learned it well. She has already locked down an enormous amount of the superdelegates to the convention. Even if Bernie stays neck-and-neck with her throughout the primary season, Clinton may still be the party's nominee. In fact, she is still the prohibitive favorite, even with the impressive Sanders victory last night.

To put this another way, Sanders needed to win last night. Clinton really didn't. No matter how Nevada and South Carolina go, Sanders will also need to win multiple states on Super Tuesday. He does have a path to get there, and it's a lot more solid a path than it was last week. But he's got to show improvement among minority voters to get there, while holding on to the demographics who are already "feeling the Bern."

Democrats are going to get a real race, now that Bernie won New Hampshire and essentially tied Hillary in Iowa. There will be no coronation. But here's the thing -- no matter which candidate you prefer, a hard primary season will probably help the eventual nominee get stronger before the general election gets going. Remember 2008? By the time Barack Obama and John McCain faced off, Hillary had already hit Obama hard on several fronts -- which allowed him to brush off similar attacks from McCain, later. The same will likely happen this time around too. Hillary Clinton has already tacked in a noticeably more populist direction due to Bernie's continuing popularity with the party's base, and if Bernie Sanders thinks Bill and Hillary are now "throwing the kitchen sink" at him, just imagine what the Republicans are going to heave in his direction. Whether Hillary or Bernie ultimately stands on the stage at the convention to accept the nomination, they'll likely have thicker skins when they get there.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Cross-posted at The Huffington Post

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

70 Comments on “New Hampshire Roils The Waters”

  1. [1] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    "Carly Fiorina has already dropped out"

    She's probably lying about that.

  2. [2] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Hillary Clinton just had a very bad night. She lost the two-person New Hampshire race by over 22 points. This was a bigger margin than many were expecting -- indeed, it was the biggest margin in any Democratic New Hampshire primary, ever. Even Clinton's stock excuse ("Bernie's from the state next door, so of course he was always going to win") doesn't bear up to historical examination

    How bad can it really be? They get the same number of delegates (according to the HuffFace thing).

    That artful next door neighbor smear is bizarre. It amounts to one of the most famous people in the world claiming that he has better name recognition in NH because he lives in Vermont. Most people don't even know who their own senators are.

  3. [3] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    I believe that you're correct and it's rigged to such an extent that it's very improbable that Bernie could win. He'll have to maintain that same amount of enthusiasm. I hope he's paying attention to Trump. He needs to dominate the news cycle to get the attention he'll need. His breakfast with Sharpton may be an indication that he has been paying attention. He needs Elizabeth Warren and Michael Moore on his team and soon.

  4. [4] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    A moment ago, I was watching Trump live and he was begging for some protesters at his show. He wanted to oppress them so that the media would show the yuuge audience. They won't do it otherwise. He said he may have to call in the fake protesters.

  5. [5] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    HRC says that Wall Street money has never changed one of her decisions. Maybe so, but so what? They crashed the economy, got bailed out, and they're shoveling money to politicians left and right. The Canadian Cuban has a Government Sachs problem too. Enough is enough.

  6. [6] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @CW,

    i asked on a different thread, but this post seems better suited since you mentioned their departure. any sense of where the christie and fiorina voters will go now that they're both out?

    JL

  7. [7] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    There's no sense in any of that, Joshua.

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    Let's take the Republicans first. The head-in-the-sand-ism that many establishment Republicans have been engaging in since last summer is now officially over. The fantasy that "Trump will collapse -- it's inevitable" never actually came to pass, guys. Get over it

    Let's be fair.. The Democrat Party suffered the same malady and had the same fantasy...

    This was a bigger margin than many were expecting --

    Ahem..... :D

    Democrats are going to get a real race, now that Bernie won New Hampshire and essentially tied Hillary in Iowa. There will be no coronation. But here's the thing -- no matter which candidate you prefer, a hard primary season will probably help the eventual nominee get stronger before the general election gets going.

    UNLESS....

    Unless Bernie pulls Hillary so far to the Left that she can't tack back to the center enough to win the General...

    Overall, I noticed a somewhat sinister theme in your commentary on the Democrat race..

    You seem to be saying (or at least hinting) that even if Bernie gets the most votes/delegates in the primary race, Hillary could still be the nominee...

    Wouldn't that be considered a DNC coronation??

    Michale

  9. [9] 
    Michale wrote:

    The black vote is not assured for Clinton..

    Why Hillary Clinton Doesn’t Deserve the Black Vote
    From the crime bill to welfare reform, policies Bill Clinton enacted—and Hillary Clinton supported—decimated black America.

    http://www.thenation.com/article/hillary-clinton-does-not-deserve-black-peoples-votes/

    And the Left Wingery is always complaining about harsh drug penalties against drug users which hits the black community hardest??

    That was Clinton in conjunction with the Congressional Black Caucus.. It was the CBC that was demanding these harsh penalties to clean up the black communities and rid the community of the scourge of drugs...

    I won't even bother mentioning that the black unemployment figures are upwards of 50%+ (according to Al Sharpton)...

    In other words, to date Democrats have NOT been a friend to black Americans...

    A vote for Hillary is a vote AGAINST the interests of the black community...

    Michale

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    ? Bill Clinton presided over the largest increase in federal and state prison inmates of any president in American history. Clinton did not declare the War on Crime or the War on Drugs—those wars were declared before Reagan was elected and long before crack hit the streets—but he escalated it beyond what many conservatives had imagined possible. He supported the 100-to-1 sentencing disparity for crack versus powder cocaine, which produced staggering racial injustice in sentencing and boosted funding for drug-law enforcement.

    I'm just sayin'....

    Michale

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    “They are not just gangs of kids anymore. They are often the kinds of kids that are called ‘super-predators.’ No conscience, no empathy. We can talk about why they ended up that way, but first we have to bring them to heel.”
    -Hillary Clinton
    Speaking in support of Bill Clinton's 1994 Crime Bill

    Wow.. Reading the above article, it's amazing how many of the black community woes that the Left Wingery identifies in the here and now are a DIRECT result of BOTH Clinton's actions...

    I am gabberflasted...

    Michale

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    "Carly Fiorina has already dropped out"

    She's probably lying about that.

    "There's a special place in hell for those who don't support women"
    -Madeleine Albricht

    Hope you bring yer summer clothes... :D

    heh

    Michale

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    Another interesting effect of the New Hampshire results is that it puts Michael Bloomberg's candidate aspirations into overdrive...

    That spells doom for the Democrat Party....

    Michale

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:
  15. [15] 
    rdnewman wrote:

    @Michale [#8]

    You seem to be saying (or at least hinting) that even if Bernie gets the most votes/delegates in the primary race, Hillary could still be the nominee...

    First, NH was just one, small primary. It was dramatic to see Sen. Sanders do so well and indeed exceed expectations, but he still has a huge amount of ground to cover if he is ever really to threaten Secretary Clinton's projected lead in most states (for instance, PredictWise and others).

    Now the narrative momentum might swing a bit more to him, but if Clinton wins the next two as she is likely to do, that narrative momentum will swing back or at least even out.

    As for coronation, what often isn't talked about much in general is the huge role of super-delegates in the Democratic party nominations. Years back (late 80s, early 90s I think), their impact on selecting a candidate was made stronger in part so that the party elite could assure that a clear and "tolerable" candidate would gain an early presumptive nomination status so as to clear the field quickly and reduce party infighting. The idea was that the party could rally around a single candidate quickly and well before the convention to avoid the situation the Republicans find themselves today.

    Call it a coronation if you like, but Clinton has already publicly secured many of these super-delegates and so even if Sanders did much better in later states than he is projected to do, the deck is indeed now stacked pretty high against him.

    We would have to see several surprise states where Sanders has a NH-like win for that to begin to reverse in any meaningful way. If the super-delegates' allegience were to suddenly shift, say, were the investigation into Clinton's use of mail servers (as you often point out) become more heated and public, that too could reverse the near-inevitability of Clinton's nomination.

  16. [16] 
    rdnewman wrote:

    One more thing -- from the DNC's POV, Chris made the key point of why the Democrats walk through the primaries even with the super-delegate structure: But here's the thing -- no matter which candidate you prefer, a hard primary season will probably help the eventual nominee get stronger before the general election gets going.

  17. [17] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @liz,

    why wouldn't there be sense in trying to figure out which of the remaining candidates would receive the support of christie and fiorina voters that represent cumulatively 5-10% of the republican primary vote? that number may not be world beating, but it could serve to shake up the standings if the lion's share of that percentage goes to one or two candidates.

    if trump picks up most of those votes (as michale suspects), the donald goes from good chance to nearly inevitable. although they differ on the issues, christie is trump-like in his delivery, while fiorina draws from the crowd who want to elect a businessperson with minimal connection to the political establishment, so i see this scenario as certainly possible.

    among bush, rubio or kasich if one captures more of those voters than the others, he could pull away from the other two establishment candidates, paving the way for consolidation of the establishment branch. to challenge trump and cruz. stylistic differences aside, christie and fiorina are both pretty aligned with the GOP establishment side in their policy positions, so i think this is also possible.

    cruz i see as the least likely to get christie & fiorina voters, since they're both pragmatic types while cruz presents as more of an ideologue. still, it's not beyond reckoning that their voters choose cruz as a compromise between trump (reality tv fluff) and kasich-bush-rubio (same old, same old, same new).

    JL

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    First, NH was just one, small primary. It was dramatic to see Sen. Sanders do so well and indeed exceed expectations, but he still has a huge amount of ground to cover if he is ever really to threaten Secretary Clinton's projected lead in most states (for instance, PredictWise and others).

    Troo... But the same was said about some obscure unknown senator named Barack Obama.. :D

    Now the narrative momentum might swing a bit more to him, but if Clinton wins the next two as she is likely to do,

    I would say that prediction doesn't take into account the inroads that Bernie has been getting with the black community.. PLUS the highly publicized events where the Clintons have totally scrooed the black community...

    Once this newest information starts to percolate, Clinton's numbers will go down in the next two states..

    Remember.. Clinton had a 30 point lead nationally a scant 30-40 days ago...

    That lead has been eliminated...

    Call it a coronation if you like,

    OK It's a coronation. :D

    but Clinton has already publicly secured many of these super-delegates and so even if Sanders did much better in later states than he is projected to do, the deck is indeed now stacked pretty high against him.

    And no one here has a problem with that???

    We would have to see several surprise states where Sanders has a NH-like win for that to begin to reverse in any meaningful way. If the super-delegates' allegience were to suddenly shift, say, were the investigation into Clinton's use of mail servers (as you often point out) become more heated and public, that too could reverse the near-inevitability of Clinton's nomination.

    I can hardly disagree with that, eh? :D

    But here's the thing -- no matter which candidate you prefer, a hard primary season will probably help the eventual nominee get stronger before the general election gets going.

    UNLESS.....

    Unless the hard primary season drags the candidate too far to the Fringe....

    Independents and NPAs are going to be a bigger part of this election than ever before...

    Michale

  19. [19] 
    Bleyd wrote:

    "There's a special place in hell for those who don't support women"
    -Madeleine Albricht

    Hope you bring yer summer clothes... :D

    I live in Texas, I'm used to the heat.

  20. [20] 
    Michale wrote:

    I live in Texas, I'm used to the heat.

    Here in Florida, the same...

    But it's funny.. The WORST summer I ever spent (at least in CONUS) was the summer in New Jersey...

    BRUTAL...

    Michale

  21. [21] 
    TheStig wrote:

    The New Hampshire primary supported one piece of conventional wisdom: Trump is the candidate of the Angry Low Information Voter...the people with the clubs, pitchforks and flaming torches storming the Republican Establishment Castle.

    In more concrete terms, Trump got 35% of the vote (and and 10 delegates). He is still a long way from picking up a majority of bound delegates. This a problem for all the candidates in the running, even if the Republican field quickly condenses to 3 or 4 survivors.

    The (relatively) proportional Republican Primaries take place early in the process. Ultimately, about 60% of the delegates are going to come from winner take all or winner/most states, and a lot of these are likely to be less friendly to Trump than NH. Big States, like CA, TX, NY, PA, OH, FL,Il...many of which are Blue or Purple and which have both a disproportionate number of delegates compared to Red States. States that many of the Republican Establishment call home.

    http://frontloading.blogspot.com/p/2016-republican-delegate-allocation-by.html

    It's an open question if any Republican can go into the convention with a lock on enough delegates. That's the real nightmare for the Republican Party, and for any populist in a crowded field.

  22. [22] 
    Michale wrote:

    Trump is the candidate of the Angry Low Information Voter...the people with the clubs, pitchforks and flaming torches storming the Republican Establishment Castle.

    Yea... :^/ And Bernie is the candidate of feminists who are just after boys...

    I would have thought that, since the Democrat Party really had their asses handed to them over the Albricht/Steinem BS, they would be wary of over-generalizations.. :D

    In more concrete terms, Trump got 35% of the vote (and and 10 delegates). He is still a long way from picking up a majority of bound delegates.

    Yea, and Trump will crash and burn after the ad honimem attacks on Fiornia..

    And Trump will fall after he questioned McCain's war record..

    And Trump will self-destruct after he is handed his first defeat...

    See the point?? :D

    Michale

  23. [23] 
    rdnewman wrote:

    @Michale [#18]


    But the same was said about some obscure unknown senator named Barack Obama... Clinton had a 30 point lead nationally a scant 30-40 days ago...

    You're absolutely right, it can change and as some pundits have pointed out, the supers may switch their votes if they see momentum shift among the general populace, so it can definitely happen.

    The national polling leads don't mean a lot in part because the primaries are state-by-state. To me, the main thing to watch is if Sen. Sanders does much better than expected through the southern states indicating that his appeal has broadened... that could seriously shift the trajectory of the Democratic nomination race. Frankly, I'm not excited about any primary results (really, WRT either party) until after Super Tuesday and the first week in March. IIRC, that's when then-Sen. Obama started changing the trajectory in 2008. Any single state is unlikely to pressure the DNC super-delegates much in the meantime.

    And no one here has a problem with that???

    I think of the super-delegates more amplifying the effect of selecting a nominee early to reduce in-fighting more than locking the party into a single candidate too early. That perhaps is splitting hairs because it does tend to block out underdogs when close, but by itself it doesn't force a coronation of someone who can't win on their own. The super-delegate process is more to avoid brokered conventions or looking like the party support is too fractured late in the race.

  24. [24] 
    Michale wrote:

    I think of the super-delegates more amplifying the effect of selecting a nominee early to reduce in-fighting more than locking the party into a single candidate too early. That perhaps is splitting hairs because it does tend to block out underdogs when close, but by itself it doesn't force a coronation of someone who can't win on their own. The super-delegate process is more to avoid brokered conventions or looking like the party support is too fractured late in the race.

    Sounds like a case of THE ENDS JUSTIFIES THE MEANS...

    Which, for the record, I have absolutely NO PROBLEM with.. :D

    Michale

  25. [25] 
    Michale wrote:

    I am also constrained to point out that Nevada is not a lock for Clinton by ANY means..

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/02/11/nevada-clinton-s-firewall-maybe-not.html

    It's weird being the only one around here feeling the Bern... :D

    Michale

  26. [26] 
    rdnewman wrote:

    @Michale [#25]

    Bernie resonates for me too, but am concerned about whether his proposals are at all realistic given the likely Congress we're to have and whether he'd be strong enough in foreign policy. Having said that, I'm less concerned with electing someone who is already completely versed in all aspects of what it means to be President, and more that they can grow into being a solid President soon after taking office.

    So I'm feeling the Bern some but don't want it to just be an infatuation. If I thought Sen. Sanders would do as well as Sen. Obama did once in office and then later throughout his presidency (even with what serious criticisms I do have), I'd vote for Sanders in a heartbeat.

  27. [27] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @rdnewman,

    Funny, if i thought sanders would govern like obama, i'd be less inclined to support him over clinton. obama set bold goals and achieved mediocre results, so for all his good intentions i'm not exactly thrilled at the prospect of repeating that pattern. i'd rather have a lousy person who is a good president than vice-versa.

    JL

  28. [28] 
    Michale wrote:

    If I thought Sen. Sanders would do as well as Sen. Obama did once in office and then later throughout his presidency (even with what serious criticisms I do have), I'd vote for Sanders in a heartbeat.

    Let's face reality..

    PRESIDENT Obama didn't accomplish dick..

    EMPEROR Obama was the one who did all those "accomplishments"..

    And NONE of them will last past Jan 2017...

    Michale

  29. [29] 
    rdnewman wrote:

    @nypoet22 [#27]

    i'd rather have a lousy person who is a good president than vice-versa.

    That's fair and I thought Secretary Clinton was a solid Secretary of State, so I can see voting for her to be President, but its more difficult to see her vision. Still, point taken: good execution beats great strategy every day.

    I'm greedy though, I want both. What I don't want is a presidency constantly derailed by scandal and for as much good as Bill Clinton did, he lost half his presidency to scandal and distraction, just as Pres. Obama did in hoping he'd get more cooperation from Congress after his first two years. What I'm not thrilled with is having a moderate Republican as a Democratic president and I tend to see her more as an 80s Republican-lite although I'm not sure any other approach can make progress under current Congressional dynamics.

    One of my main criticisms of Obama is that he didn't live up to some of the promises that were important to me such as closing Guantanamo or peeling back more of the Patriot Act.

    Your point though is why I have problems with voting for Sen. Sanders. I'm not convinced that he can make worthwhile progress regardless of the passion in his vision or how well parts of his vision resonate for me.

  30. [30] 
    Bleyd wrote:

    But it's funny.. The WORST summer I ever spent (at least in CONUS) was the summer in New Jersey...

    Arguably the worst single summer day I can recall was in Washington, D.C. on the 4th of July. A million people crammed into the subways in 100 degree heat with max humidity.

  31. [31] 
    Michale wrote:

    Arguably the worst single summer day I can recall was in Washington, D.C. on the 4th of July. A million people crammed into the subways in 100 degree heat with max humidity.

    I concede.. That must of been... eeeewwwwwwwwwwwwwww

    Michale

  32. [32] 
    Bleyd wrote:

    [27] nypoet22 wrote:
    ...i'd rather have a lousy person who is a good president than vice-versa.

    I agree with that sentiment, which is a big reason why I'm still leaning more towards Clinton. For all of her personal flaws, I think she would be far more effective at governing than Sanders would be. Sanders's idealism and authenticity are very attractive qualities to many people, but I don't see it leading to anything significant in the current political climate. Clinton's philosophy of incremental change simply strikes me as the far more practical and effective manner of governing.

    To be fair though, I'm more of a moderate than a hardcore progressive, so Sanders's message doesn't resonate with me quite as much as it would with others anyway. Heck, I've even voted for Ron Paul a couple times in the past... though that was for congress since he represented the district where I used to live.

  33. [33] 
    Michale wrote:

    The problem with Clinton is very basic and very undeniable..

    She cannot be trusted...

    Michale

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    Put another way..

    If President Clinton is ever put in a position where she can enrich American lives, but to her detriment..

    Or enrich her life, but to the detriment of American's everywhere..

    Which do you think she will choose???

    Michale

  35. [35] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    John From Censornati [2] -

    The delegates thing was due to Hillary locking up the 6 (from memory, may have been 7) superdelegates in the state before the voting even started. So there are two totals news organizations are reporting -- some report the split w/superdels and some w/out. Without them, Bernie did win more. That's how (as you mention in [3]) the game is rigged so heavily in Hillary's favor -- she's got HUNDREDS of superdel commitments already. Bernie has a handful -- single digits, last time I checked.

    nypoet22 [6] -

    Well, there just aren't that many of them, to begin with. Carly's voters are a true tossup, because I think they probably liked her for either (1) her anti-abortion stance, lies and all, or (2) her anti-Hillary viciousness. The voters under (1) will probably migrate to Carson or Cruz. The (2) folks may go towards Rubio. That's just a guess, though.

    As for Christie, I'd bet most of his voters go towards Trump -- louder, shoutey-er, and more bombastic! Maybe some of them head for Kasich (the establishment types), but not many. Again, that's just a guess -- we'll have to see what happens in the next week of polling.

    Michale [8] -

    Many are now speculating about what would happen if the GOP has a "brokered convention." Fun subject, no doubt, but the Dems may have a problem as well. It's kind of a longshot at best, but if Bernie wins more delegates in primaries and caucuses than Hillary, but if Hillary's superdelegates put her over the top, then there is indeed going to be a HUGE fight at the convention. It'll be knock-down, drag-out, and bitter feelings will remain afterwards, no matter what the outcome. Perhaps it could even push the Dems towards getting rid of the whole "superdelegate" concept (Republicans don't have this category in their convention), who knows?

    Michale [13] -

    You may be right about Bloomberg. But what would that mean if the race turns out to be Trump/Sanders? Which side would more Bloomberg voters come from? Dems who can't stand Bernie or GOPers who can't stand Trump? I've been contemplating that question, but haven't really come up with any answer yet.

    [14] -

    Did you see the note about how Paglia will be writing ever two weeks for Salon for the rest of the campaign? That could get interesting, that's for sure!

    rdnewman [15] -

    Good point. Superdelegate commitments aren't written in stone or anything. They can flip their vote right up to the convention... something to remember.

    nypoet22 [17] -

    Don't forget the anti-abortion segment of Carly's voters. Cruz may be the best fit for them (or Carson, but he's already almost an afterthought).

    Michale [20] -

    "The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco"
    -Mark Twain
    (attributed, but never confirmed, I believe)

    rdnewman [23] -

    Good point about Super Tuesday. That's when the real delegate-counting will begin. The first two weeks in March are the "marathon, not a sprint" portion of the campaign, that's for sure.

    Michale [25] -

    See my previous column on NV. WHERE is the polling?!?

    Bleyd [30] -

    Having spent many a 4th crammed into a Metro car, I can totally agree. "It's not the heat, it's the humidity." Oh, and "Hey, we need a new national capital? Let's just build one on this here swampland!"

    Heh.

    -CW

  36. [36] 
    neilm wrote:

    She cannot be trusted...

    Michale

    Looking for an honest politician Michale? Tell me when you find one.

    I always forget how to spell naive? niave? Better get the dictionary out ;)

  37. [37] 
    neilm wrote:

    If President Clinton is ever put in a position where she can enrich American lives, but to her detriment..

    Or enrich her life, but to the detriment of American's everywhere..

    Which do you think she will choose???

    Obvious - she has buckets of money, she goes for the historical legacy - first female President and all that.

    If you think the other way your hatred trumps your common sense.

  38. [38] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Having lived all my life in New Jersey I can tell you the weather or time of year doesn't matter- you're in New Jersey.
    That's why it's free to cross the bridges and tunnels to get into New Jersey but it costs you money to get out.

  39. [39] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    You may be right about Bloomberg. But what would that mean if the race turns out to be Trump/Sanders? Which side would more Bloomberg voters come from?

    Considering Bloomberg's anti-gun nuttery, you can bet that Bloomberg will be the Democrat's Ross Perot..

    Did you see the note about how Paglia will be writing ever two weeks for Salon for the rest of the campaign? That could get interesting, that's for sure!

    Yea, she is refreshing, that much is certain.. :D

    Neil,

    Looking for an honest politician Michale? Tell me when you find one.

    From all reports, Bernie is as honest as they come...

    So, why is ANYONE even CONTEMPLATING Clinton??

    Because principles and integrity mean little.. It's all about winning...

    Michale

  40. [40] 
    Michale wrote:

    Having lived all my life in New Jersey I can tell you the weather or time of year doesn't matter- you're in New Jersey.

    What part???

    I lived in Weird Al Yankovic's favorite place..

    Red Bank.. :D

    Michale

  41. [41] 
    Paula wrote:

    I was just listening to Matt Taibbi on Monday's Majority Report (before NH voted) -- he is doing a story on Trump so has been going to his events to try to get a handle on his appeal, etc. He made the point that this really is an insurgency election -- that the people he's talking to in New Hampshire who like Trump have decided nothing but some kind of brute force will bring jobs back to them. They like the idea that Trump will simply order corporations to keep jobs here, etc. He then went on to say that (Matt) that people on both sides are expressing complete disenchantment with media and with party leaders (from both parties) and they have fully accepted the idea that money has corrupted the system and has to be rooted out. (I'm paraphrasing.)

    He's worried that Trump could squeak out a win against Hillary because she is seen as part of the failed establishment, and that, while Bernie supporters might "fall into line" if she gets the nod, they will lack the enthusiasm of the crazed Trumpies and Trump could win narrowly as a result.

    At this point those people most engaged and invested in the process are not remotely interested in logical arguments about "electablility". Indeed, I think we're in "opposite" land right now -- everything that used to work now makes things worse.

    On the right, unhappy people are looking for a strong man, on the left, a revolutionary. The "middle" I would contend, is filled with people who are more comfortable. The less comfortable your situation, the more you lean towards Bernie or Trump/Cruz. (Cruz appealing primarily to evangelicals.)

    Chickens coming home to roost everywhere and the future is really hard to predict right now.

  42. [42] 
    Michale wrote:

    Obvious - she has buckets of money, she goes for the historical legacy - first female President and all that.

    If she had enough money, then should wouldn't still be collecting it...

    People like Hillary think that there is no such thing as "too much money"...

    Hillary will do whatever is in HER OWN best interest...

    The country be damned..

    She has proven this time and time again...

    Do you have ANY evidence to the contrary?? :D

    Michale

  43. [43] 
    Michale wrote:

    she goes for the historical legacy

    She wasn't much worried about "historical legacy" when she decided to do an end run around transparency and set up her own private email server...

    Like I said.. Country be damned.. Hillary is going to look out for Hillary...

    Michale

  44. [44] 
    neilm wrote:

    she decided to do an end run around transparency and set up her own private email server

    Wow you really swallow the RWNJ conspiracies hook, line and sinker.

    You going to vote for Honest Bernie?

  45. [45] 
    neilm wrote:

    Paula [41] The "middle" I would contend, is filled with people who are more comfortable

    I watched the BBC News a couple of night ago. They were interviewing Trump supporters on Tuesday night whining about how bad things were for them in a nice diner that was packed with happy laughing people eating huge portions with gusto.

    Next segment: Life for the refugees from Aleppo on the Turkish border. Hungry kids, distraught parents, the crippled victims of the war.

    What a bunch of pu..... uh ... another word for Ted Cruzes the whinging "Trumpters" are.

  46. [46] 
    Michale wrote:

    Wow you really swallow the RWNJ conspiracies hook, line and sinker.

    These are the facts from the lips of Hillary's own adviser..

    But, hay.. I'll be yer Huckleberry..

    Why do YOU think Hillary set up her own private insecure bathroom closet server??

    Michale

  47. [47] 
    Michale wrote:

    Do you HONESTY believe that Hillary set it up because she couldn't handle more than ONE electronic device??

    REALLY!!??? :D

    Michale

  48. [48] 
    neilm wrote:

    For all the whiners who think they have it bad in the U.S. and want to vote for a clown on the left or the right as a 'protest', read 'The Haves and Have Nots' by Branko Milanovic.

    There is a chart in the book that shows income in 5% increments (at PPP) - the top 5% in India earn the same as the bottom 5% in the U.S. (think about that). The average PPP income of the richest 50M people in India is equal to the bottom 18M people in the U.S. (income transfers such as EIC are included of course). The top 5% in India includes all their millionaires and billionaires, and our lowest 5% include all the homeless.

    I work with many excellent Indian engineers in Bangalore who are in the top 5% in India. Our lowest 5% need to complete with them on PPP salary for ever more complex jobs.

    Think Trump or Bernie are going to put that genie back in the bottle? All they will do is cripple any firm stupid enough to do business in the U.S.

  49. [49] 
    neilm wrote:

    Do you HONESTY believe that Hillary set it up because she couldn't handle more than ONE electronic device??

    No. She set it up because she wanted to ensure that a trawling exercise by the Republicans would not expose personal emails.

    I'm under no illusions as to the Clintons - they are paranoid, but with good reason. They were hounded by the right all thru Bill's presidency, and they are lawyers so they like to keep control over documents.

  50. [50] 
    Paula wrote:

    Neilm: (45): I appreciate your point but the idea that people suffering horrible things somewhere faraway affects people's assessments of their own lives is not useful. People may feel terrible (or not) about the suffering's of others but that feeling doesn't pay those same people's bills, or relieve them from high interest rates, or nasty collectors, or fees, fees, fees, or prices they can't control.

    I don't have any sympathy for Trump supporters per se -- but I also don't have any sympathy for establishment figures who didn't see this coming. Trump is absolutely the logical an predictable result of years of Republican activity.

    Meanwhile the folks who like Bernie have a set of grievances that have been consistently underestimated by Establishment Powers. (Obviously I am making some broad general statements.)

    I really do think that people, in so many positions of power relative to "average Americans", got too comfortable. I've seen it in my personal life. I've been "poor". It sucks big time. I've been un-poor. It's much nicer. People I know who've never had their utilities shut off -- or the like -- don't understand the kind of desperation or exhaustion you feel. They may recognize problems abstractly, but not viscerally. Thus their sense of solving these problems lacks urgency -- it's all theoretical to them.

    (48): Totally agree.

  51. [51] 
    neilm wrote:

    Paula [49] Fair enough. And to Sander's credit he is sharpening the "even things out" knife, rather than nonsense like telling Mexico to build a wall, or impose shoot-yourself-in-the-foot sanctions with China.

  52. [52] 
    Paula wrote:

    neilm (50): Exactly!

  53. [53] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    OK, before I get to these other comments, here's a real answer for JFC [2]:

    Sanders won 15 delegates. Hillary won 9. Hillary, though, had already wrapped up all 6 SDs, so they both exit NH with exactly the same number.

    Unless, of course, some of those 6 have second thoughts before the convention (always a possibility).

    -CW

  54. [54] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Here's the deep dive on SDs that I just read, if anyone's interested:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/return-of-the-superdelegates-2016-election_us_56bcea6ee4b0c3c550508660

    -CW

  55. [55] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    neilm [36] -

    Here's an easy way to remember. I learned this in France, before the scourge of tiny plastic bottles of water (which wind up costing MORE THAN GASOLINE) descended on this country (early 90s). Oh, in case you're unaware, this is the most prevalent brand of bottled water in France.

    "What's Evian spelled backwards? Naive."

    There you go. It works both ways -- an easy way to remember the spelling! You're welcome...

    :-)

    Don Harris [38] -

    Back in the old days, the saying was (heading from NYC) "you can smell when you're in Jersey". Heh. Hope the situation's better now...

    Michale [39] -

    That's kind of where I was at (re: Bloomberg, gun control), but there are a whole lot of GOP voters who will be disappointed (to put it mildly) if Trump wins the nomination. They can either stay home on election day, or vote for Bloomberg. These are fairly moderate, fiscal-conservative types, not the socially conservative faction. So I do wonder if they might go to the polls to pull the lever for Bloomberg or not. Probably not, but it's worth pondering....

    Paula [41] -

    How do you see how Bloomberg would shake up this dynamic (if it's Trump/Sanders)? I'm interested to hear.

    Paula [49] -

    Good piont about being poor. I have friends who have never been poor. I have friends who have (I have, but am not now). I know that you have to go through it to understand what it is all about. People who have not simply do not understand the crushing concerns and worries of the poor.

    OK, that's it, my show's on the tube now, so I'm signing off...

    -CW

  56. [56] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    neilm [36] -

    Just re-read my answer to you, and had to add this. This is the best mnemonic I've ever heard, bar none. Here's how to remember what starboard and port mean on a ship, in one easy-to-remember tiny story:

    "A ship captain walked onto the deck of his ship. In one hand, he had a bottle of brandy. In the other, he had a bottle of port. He dropped the brandy, and it broke."

    OK, you ready for the kicker? Here goes:

    "The brandy was gone, but the port was left."

    :-)

    -CW

  57. [57] 
    Michale wrote:

    No. She set it up because she wanted to ensure that a trawling exercise by the Republicans would not expose personal emails.

    So, you agree. She wanted to avoid transparency...

    It would have been very simple for her to avoid "a trawling exercise by the Republicans that would not expose personal emails"...

    Use her private server for personal emails and use the government system for professional emails..

    Duh.... :)

    I'm under no illusions as to the Clintons - they are paranoid, but with good reason. They were hounded by the right all thru Bill's presidency, and they are lawyers so they like to keep control over documents.

    Even if it breaks the law..

    Thank you...

    Michale

  58. [58] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    hat's kind of where I was at (re: Bloomberg, gun control), but there are a whole lot of GOP voters who will be disappointed (to put it mildly) if Trump wins the nomination. They can either stay home on election day, or vote for Bloomberg. These are fairly moderate, fiscal-conservative types, not the socially conservative faction. So I do wonder if they might go to the polls to pull the lever for Bloomberg or not. Probably not, but it's worth pondering....

    The 2nd Amendment is kinda a deal breaker for any of those Republicans you are mentioning.. I can't imagine a Bloomberg run will hurt Trump at all...

    But I CAN see where it would decimate the Dem candidate...

    Michale

  59. [59] 
    Michale wrote:

    . Trump is absolutely the logical an predictable result of years of Republican activity.

    Progressives apotheosized the dictatorship of the majority. Now they finally have reason to fear it.
    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/431135/donald-trump-dictatorship-american-style

    Actually, Trump is the logical and predictable result of 7 years of Democrat dictatorship and incompetence..

    But why muddy the waters with... yunno... FACTS.. :D

    Michale

  60. [60] 
    Michale wrote:

    Trump is absolutely the logical an predictable result of years of Republican activity.

    Progressives apotheosized the dictatorship of the majority. Now they finally have reason to fear it.
    http://tinyurl.com/z9y9fp8

    Actually, Trump is the logical and predictable result of 7 years of Democrat dictatorship and incompetence..

    But why muddy the waters with... yunno... FACTS.. :D

    Michale

  61. [61] 
    Michale wrote:

    Here's the deep dive on SDs that I just read, if anyone's interested:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/return-of-the-superdelegates-2016-election_us_56bcea6ee4b0c3c550508660

    And, once again, I am gabberflasted that the Left Wingery, including the "real" progressives, stand for this..

    Considering what's going on in ya'all's Party, do ya'all REALLY have any foundation to attack the GOP's Primary process???

    I'm just sayin'... :D

    Michale

  62. [62] 
    Michale wrote:

    I'm under no illusions as to the Clintons - they are paranoid, but with good reason.

    With the utmost respect (I mean that sincerely) you are completely under delusions as to the Clintons..

    Regardless of any "Vast Right Wing Conspiracy" real or imagined, Clinton had absolutely NO RIGHT to put the entirety of the United States State Dept on an insecure server for all of our enemies to access..

    If a Republican had done something so utterly and completely moronic, ya'all would have been calling for their head.

    And rightly so!

    The **ONLY**... the SINGLE... the ONE AND ONLY reason ya'all are so blase' about it, is because Clinton has a '-D' after her name...

    But when the FBI hands down a recommendation of indictment for Clinton and/or senior staff, you (and a couple others here) will have a decision to make...

    I don't envy you that decision, I'll be perfectly honest... :D

    "I could use a good ass-kicking, I'll be perfectly honest with you."
    -Joe Pesci, MY COUSIN VINNY

    :D

    Michale

  63. [63] 
    Paula wrote:

    Chris (54): Bloomberg -- my first instinct is that he will pull Republicans more than Democrats so I would be cautiously in favor of him entering the race. My guess is he would have little attraction for Trumpies -- why go for Bloomberg, who's whole purpose is to seem reasonable when you're embracing strong-man pugnacity?

    Bloomberg's main attraction, I think, would be to Republicans who are repelled by the Donald but who were prefer not to vote for Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders. He would have no attraction for Sanders fans. He might draw some Democrats who don't like Hillary but also don't like Bernie.

    Lots of Dems right now are basically saying they'll vote for either Bernie or Hillary gladly. The deeply-invested folks are taking sides and there will be some bitterness in the end but it's hard to see disappointed Bernie fans voting for Bloomberg. I think if Bernie wins most Hillary fans will rally behind him because they really, really don't want a Republican to win.

    I can't imagine Bloomberg getting on board with the zeitgeist on the Dem side. His reign in NY represents a pretty good example of why Black LIves Matters came to life. He's Hillary squared when it comes to ties to Wall Street. I think he would try to run as the "let's all go back to the time when we thought Wall Street was great and nobody cared about poor people or police brutality or lead poisoning. Wasn't it nicer when we didn't know about all that stuff?"

    Bloomberg's biggest fans would, at least in the beginning, be the media. All sorts of media folks would try to anoint him and will be baffled when Joe and Jane Six-Pack refuse to follow their lead. Dems will be told that Bloomberg is socially liberal, and there was a time when that might have been enough -- not anymore. Who would he inspire to work for him? All that GOTV gruntwork? Can he buy a voter database? From both parties? If not, how quickly could he pull what he needs together?

    Trump-Bloomberg-Hillary? Bloomberg picks off a few Dems, more Repubs: Hillary wins narrowly.

    Trump-Bloomberg-Bernie? All depends on how the Dem machine and electorate respond to Bernie winning. If they rally around him, he wins. If they don't, I think he'd still win, but more narrowly.

    I'll revisit this if/when Bloomberg enters and we see what sort of message he runs on! :-)

  64. [64] 
    Paula wrote:

    "Trump-Bloomberg-Bernie? All depends on how the Dem machine and electorate respond to Bernie winning. If they rally around him, he wins. If they don't, I think he'd still win, but more narrowly."

    Bernie wins.

  65. [65] 
    Michale wrote:

    Trump-Bloomberg-Hillary? Bloomberg picks off a few Dems, more Repubs: Hillary wins narrowly.

    Trump-Bloomberg-Bernie? All depends on how the Dem machine and electorate respond to Bernie winning. If they rally around him, he wins. If they don't, I think he'd still win, but more narrowly.

    Talk about Wish Casting...

    Bloomberg's anti-gun nuttery (which I notice you fail to address) will make him toxic for any GOP voter...

    Bloomberg's candidacy will doom the Democrat nominee.. You can take that to the bank...

    Michale

  66. [66] 
    Paula wrote:

    Bloomberg won't appeal to gun-nuts -- they're likely to go Trumpy, maaaaybe Bernie.

    The Repubs who would like Bloomberg are the repubs repelled by Trumpies, Tea Partiers, etc. They exist. Poor sad things. Like David Brooks.

  67. [67] 
    Michale wrote:

    Bloomberg won't appeal to gun-nuts -- they're likely to go Trumpy, maaaaybe Bernie.

    Exactly...

    Bloomberg WILL appeal to the ANTI-gun nuts..

    Which is the entirety of the Democrat Party to one extent or another...

    Michale

  68. [68] 
    Paula wrote:

    Doesn't matter. We already have Bernie and Hillary talking about gun-sanity. It wouldn't a reason to go for Bloomberg.

  69. [69] 
    Paula wrote:

    BE a reason to go for Bloomberg.

  70. [70] 
    Michale wrote:

    Doesn't matter. We already have Bernie and Hillary talking about gun-sanity.

    What "sanity" would that be??

    The "sanity" about pushing anti-gun laws that are nothing more than WOULDN'T IT BE NICE laws that do NOTHING to address the issue of gun violence....

    Gun ownership has increased a hundred-fold in the last decade or so..

    Gun violence is actually down across the board...

    The hysterical Gun-mageddon that they Left Wingery has constantly predicted has NEVER come to pass..

    Texas just passed Open Carry laws.. Where's all the violence?? Where's all the destruction??

    Didn't materialize..

    They Left Wingery needs to come to grips with reality..

    Guns are NOT the problem...

    Michale

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