ChrisWeigant.com

Democratic Race Shifts Dramatically

[ Posted Thursday, February 20th, 2020 – 17:39 UTC ]

Normally, after a presidential debate, I'd wait a few days or even a week before taking a look at the state of the race nationally, but we're in the crunch phase of things so I'm just going to leap right in without the benefit of seeing how the post-debate poll numbers shift. The numbers were already shifting before the debate, though, so there's still plenty to analyze and very little time to do so. Nevada caucuses this Saturday, we've got another debate next week, and then South Carolina votes next Saturday. Three days after that is Super Tuesday, when one-third of the total delegates will be decided. So we really don't have the luxury of waiting, at this point.

Last night's debate was certainly a humdinger. It also got the highest viewership of any 2020 debate yet, if early indications are correct. More people were watching, and they certainly got more bang for their buck this time around.

Will it change anything? The conventional wisdom is that no matter how much the pundits love to dissect debates, they rarely actually move the needle with the voting public. However, that didn't turn out to be true in New Hampshire, where Amy Klobuchar rode a big debate wave right into third place. Will this one have the same effect, or possibly the opposite effect, on any of the candidates? It's hard to say, at this point.

The other campaigns have largely given up hope of beating Bernie Sanders in Nevada. That was true before the debate, and it is likely going to prove to be true afterwards as well. However, there may be a fierce battle for second place and even third place. The conventional wisdom was that Biden would likely take second, but that could be wishful thinking from the Biden campaign at this point. Oh, I should point out that Mike Bloomberg is not on the Nevada ballot, so he won't be a factor this Saturday.

Right now it seems that Amy Klobuchar, Pete Buttigieg, and Elizabeth Warren are all hoping for a strong showing in Nevada, perhaps strong enough to knock Biden out of second place. My guess is that Warren's got the best shot at doing so, especially after her strong debate performance last night. Klobuchar may have torpedoed any chance she had by her shakiness on who exactly is running Mexico. Mayor Pete has also struggled mightily with Latino voters, and he really doesn't look like he's picked up momentum in that regard.

Heading into next week, we'll have to see whether Bloomberg takes a big hit in the national polls or not. There are a whole lot of voters out there who don't watch debates and are only exposed to candidates' ads on television, and many of them may stick with Bloomberg even after his disastrous debate performance. How he does in next week's debate may be crucial, too -- stumbling in your first effort is bad, but stumbling twice may be disastrous. On the other hand, if Bloomberg does well next time around, he could reverse the first impression he gave last night. But again, he won't be on the ballot until Super Tuesday, so how soft his voter support now is won't really become apparent until then.

Joe Biden, at this point, almost has to place second in Nevada and win South Carolina. He could even manage a close third in the Silver State, but he absolutely has to win next Saturday. Otherwise his campaign is going to be pronounced dead, right before Super Tuesday happens. Will Biden's vaunted support among voters of color hold the line for him? That's the biggest question he faces, right now, because it's really all he's got left.

The national polling before last night's debate showed that both Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar have not managed to leverage their better-than-expected finishes in Iowa and New Hampshire into any sort of wider wave of support. This is somewhat odd, since Pete was declared the winner of Iowa and came in a close second in New Hampshire as well. He is now winning the race for delegates, too. Normally, that sort of thing would translate to a big bump nationwide, but this hasn't really materialized for Pete at all. He regularly polls anywhere from fourth to sixth place nationally, far behind candidates he's already beaten in the first two states. Klobuchar's rise wasn't as impressive as Pete's -- she only managed third place in one state -- and she has also failed to see this translate into any wider support nationally. If either one of them fails to get higher than fourth place in Nevada, their candidacies may soon begin to noticeably fade. Especially after the two of them went at it hammer-and-tongs in last night's debate. How can either of them continue to make the argument (with a straight face) that they are grand unifiers who can bring everyone together in both the Democratic primaries and the general election, when they engaged in the worst and most personal brawl of all last night?

Elizabeth Warren had a polling bump a few months ago that crested too early, but since then she's had a fairly solid floor of about 15 percent support in the national polls. This has slipped a few points since Iowa and New Hampshire, but she may have begun to reverse that last night. Her strong debate performance could mean a lot of people are now giving her a second look, and she's already positioned to do fairly well in Nevada. If she places third or even second (beating Biden to do so), then her campaign will gain a newfound energy just when it needs it.

Of course, the real story is how Bernie Sanders is now the unquestionable frontrunner in the Democratic nomination race. This was nakedly evident last night, when Chuck Todd asked all the candidates if they thought the candidate with the most delegates should be nominated by the convention even if they hadn't secured a majority. Every single candidate not named "Bernie Sanders" refused to support such an idea. This shows -- painfully -- that every single one of them now thinks that they won't be the candidate with the most delegates. None of them risked proclaiming that they planned on being the candidate with the most delegates, so of course they should be handed the nomination by the convention. That is palpable fear, folks.

The rise of Bernie Sanders this week has been rather remarkable. Early on, the pundits were all on board with one storyline: "Bernie has a hard ceiling of support that he can't get past." Most put this ceiling at about 25 percent. But then a funny thing happened. A bunch of national polls came out and they all showed the same thing -- Bernie had already risen above this ceiling. The lowest number in any of these polls for him was 24 percent. Most of them were closer to 30, and several of them showed him above 30 percent. So much for the agreed-upon storyline of the week, eh?

The truly astonishing thing in these polls was how far ahead Bernie now is. There is not a race for first place anymore, because Bernie has taken sole command of it. Right now the real questions are how far Biden is going to fall and whether the rise of Bloomberg is going to crest or not. The two are neck-and-neck for second place, currently, but the trendlines are pointing in opposite directions. Meanwhile, Bernie is polling anywhere from five points to double digits ahead of both of them.

This is big news. This is the first time in the entire race -- stretching back more than a year -- that Joe Biden hasn't been in the lead. Bernie Sanders is seeing polling numbers he's never seen before -- this is the first time his graph line has reached above 25 percent in the whole race. And it is happening right before the biggest primary day on the calendar.

This has led to a new storyline from the pundits: "Bernie will probably win more delegates than anyone, but he won't be able to get a majority." This may prove to be just as false as their "ceiling" obsession earlier in the week. Because what none of the pundits account for is what could turn out to be the most important development in the race -- when will any of the top six candidates quit?

We won't have six candidates a month from now, that much is almost certain. And the pressure is going to be on those who aren't doing as well because the conventional punditary wisdom has always predicted that there will only be one candidate in each ideological "lane." Right now, the "moderate lane" is pretty crowded. Amy Klobuchar, Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg, and Mike Bloomberg are all competing for this lane, so which one drops out (and when it happens) may become crucial for the other candidates to do better. But the problem is -- as it always is, I should note -- that these people have all made it this far, and they are convinced right down to their bones that they are the best choice. It's going to be excruciatingly hard for them to admit that they're not going to win, and that the best thing for the party would be for them to drop out. I seriously doubt any of them will do so before Super Tuesday, and it wouldn't surprise me if only one of them dropped out immediately after. Realistically, at least two of them should, but each will be wondering "maybe I can be the last one standing after everyone else drops out."

This is going to make the delegate math even more brutal. Right now, if the Super Tuesday election happened today in California and if all the candidates did exactly as well as they are doing in the polls, then Bernie Sanders would walk away with all the delegates (or almost all of them, at any rate). He's the only one consistently polling above 15 percent, and those who don't reach that bar get zero delegates at the end of the day. The process is more complex than I'm making it sound, I should admit -- any candidate who gets above 15 percent in any one congressional district (and California has 53 of them) will actually get delegates. Even so, Bernie's positioned to walk away with the lion's share precisely because the other candidates will be so effectively splitting up the anti-Bernie vote. This is why who drops out and when is going to become the key factor in the next month.

Bernie doesn't have a lock on the nomination yet. He could always collapse as well (picture him having a second heart attack during the next debate, for example). He could also not do well in Southern states on Super Tuesday. But barring such scenarios he certainly looks well-positioned to move his campaign forward in a big way over the next two weeks. And if all his moderate opponents are all telling each other: "We need to coalesce around one candidate, and the obvious choice is me; so please would the rest of you politely quit the race now?" then it is going to all but guarantee that they all stay in the race long enough to give Bernie an insurmountable lead in delegates.

I have to admit, I'm as astonished as anyone else over the way the race has shifted in the past two weeks. I never thought Bernie would be this far out in front of the rest of the pack. I never thought Biden would collapse in such spectacular fashion with the actual voters. I never would have believed that winning Iowa and placing second in New Hampshire would have only a very limited effect on a candidate's standing nationwide. And I certainly didn't expect Bloomberg to crash and burn quite so dramatically in his first debate. It has been a season of surprises, that's for sure, and this will likely continue through at least Super Tuesday. In other words: hold onto your hats, this rollercoaster is just getting started.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

51 Comments on “Democratic Race Shifts Dramatically”

  1. [1] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    i think based on what i've seen that klobuchar will eventually see a national bump. especially on super tuesday if biden doesn't run the table in NV and SC. she's shown some mettle and should now be seen as a legitimate back-up choice in the moderate lane.

  2. [2] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    the moderate lane also tends to be the pragmatist lane, which is why both mayor pete and mayor mike have made an initial splash but will probably fade. they each have some positives going for them, but they're both ultimately unprepared for the job.

  3. [3] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    Hey CW,

    Way to keep bapping out column after column lately. Things ARE moving awfully fast and we've got two weeks of serious intrigue barreling at us - woot!

  4. [4] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    Um, a question. As Bernie beat Mayor Pete by some 4,000 votes, how is it Pete gets a fraction of delegates more than Bernie? What bullshit rule or rules made this so?

  5. [5] 
    Michale wrote:

    Mayor Pete has also struggled mightily with Latino voters, and he really doesn't look like he's picked up momentum in that regard.

    Why sugarcoat it?? Let's call a spade a spade..

    Buttagig has a problem with hispanic (and black) American voters because he is gay..

    It's really that simple..

    Time was ya wouldn't be afraid to state the reality..

    Normally, that sort of thing would translate to a big bump nationwide, but this hasn't really materialized for Pete at all.

    Again... There is a reason for that..

    . I never thought Biden would collapse in such spectacular fashion with the actual voters.

    Aren't ya glad you have me around to keep this forum grounded in FACTS and REALITY... :D

  6. [6] 
    Michale wrote:

    the moderate lane also tends to be the pragmatist lane, which is why both mayor pete and mayor mike have made an initial splash but will probably fade. they each have some positives going for them, but they're both ultimately unprepared for the job.

    Agreed....

    In the case of Mayor Pete, his being gay will be his downfall (that's not being scared of gay people talking.. That's facts and reality talking.)

    In the case of Bloomberg, his hysterical anti-gun stance and his nanny-state insistence will be his downfall...

  7. [7] 
    Michale wrote:

    MC

    Um, a question. As Bernie beat Mayor Pete by some 4,000 votes, how is it Pete gets a fraction of delegates more than Bernie? What bullshit rule or rules made this so?

    Like the Electoral College, the Vanity Vote doesn't mean anything.. It's the algorithm that is at work here..

    But I have to say how hilarious I find it..

    Those Bernie Haters here whine and cry and scream about Hillary winning the Vanity Vote MEANS something.

    And yet, in Iowa where Bernie won the Vanity Vote, NOW they whine and scream and cry that it's meaningless..

    Ya really gotta wonder if they even SEE their own blatant hypocrisy... :D

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    Trump's support from African-Americans will rise 50 percent or more, Tim Scott predicts

    President Trump will see a 50 percent increase in support from African-American voters, Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., predicted Thursday.

    “It will go from 8 percent in 2016 to a minimum of 12 percent in 2020,” Scott told "Your World"’s Neil Cavuto. Trump could even get support from as much as 15 percent of black voters, he said.

    “And that is 'Game over,'” he added.

    Scott pointed to increases in black homeownership and Trump’s efforts on criminal justice reform as reasons why that support will likely increase.

    “Think about a top-tier Democratic candidate that talks about harassing African-American males through stop-and-frisk,” Scott said, referring to the controversial anti-crime policy employed by Democratic presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg when he was mayor of New York City. “Compare that against President Trump’s criminal justice reform packages that are making the justice system more fair for African-Americans disproportionally than it has been in a long time.”

    Black unemployment numbers are also down and the number of black people working is up, he added.

    “President Trump is not just talking a good game, he is walking a good game,” Scott said.
    https://www.foxnews.com/media/trumps-support-from-african-americans-will-rise-50-percent-or-more-tim-scott-predicts

    President Trump's support amongst black Americans is rising..
    Of that, there is no doubt.. It's unarguable..

    And, once it reaches a certain point (which we may have already passed) it's GAME OVER for the Democrat Party...

  9. [9] 
    Michale wrote:

    Scott's optimism on behalf of the president contrasted sharply with what House Majority Whip James Clyburn, D-S.C., told Cavuto on Tuesday.

    Clyburn said the president would “absolutely not” get more African-American support, adding he only gave Trump credit for continuing the economic growth started under the Obama administration.

    The South Carolina Democratic primary is scheduled for Feb. 29. The state's Republican primary was canceled.

    Really, moron???

    The huge economic upturn for black Americans was due to Odumbo??

    But how can that be?? Odumbo DENIED that such a great upturn was even POSSIBLE!!!

    So how can he get credit for it, dipshit!!

    Jeesus, dood.. Why do you let your Party membership card do your thinking for you??? Don't you have any will of yer own???

    Yer just happy as a clam to live on the Democrat Party plantation, ain'tcha..

    Same Party.... Different plantation...

    Be a MAN, for chreest's sake!!

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    FPC

    MC

    If the Democratic establishment steals the nomination from Bernie I'll do what I did in 2016: hold my nose and vote a straight Democratic ticket. I was not thrilled to vote for Hillary, and I view everyone besides Bernie and Elizabeth to be establishment tools, but Trump is an abomination and for the good of the country has to be removed from office.

    Fair enough.. I appreciate the honest answer...

    However, I am constrained to point out that it's the ANYONE BUT HILLARY attitude that GAVE US President Trump..

    :D

    Just sayin... :D

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    James Comey responds to Trump with Mariah Carey GIF: 'Why are you so obsessed with me?'
    https://www.foxnews.com/politics/james-comey-responds-to-trump-with-mariah-carey-gif-why-are-you-so-obsessed-with-me

    Why are you so obsessed with President Trump??

    The question works both ways, dipshit traitor..

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    Who is Tomeka Hart?
    https://www.foxnews.com/politics/who-is-tomeka-hart

    At the VERY least, this woman, this Trump/America hater should be charged with perjury...

    But, according to the Trump/America haters, we have two forms of Justice here.. One set for Trump/America haters and one set for President Trump and America supporters..

    #Sad

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    A new Washington Post poll Wednesday shows Sanders with a huge lead among young voters and in a statistical tie with Joe Biden among African Americans. And he is flush with cash.

    It's Bernie's primary to lose...

    That much is certain...

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    The biggest winner, however, was Trump. The debate provided sound bite after sound bite that will be useful against the eventual nominee. A couple of the best lines against Sanders came from Bloomberg, who regained his footing in the second half of the debate.

    “We’re not going to throw out capitalism,” he said. “It’s called communism, and it didn’t work.” Shortly after he added, “The best known socialist in the country happens to be a millionaire with three houses.”

    Those lines may not be an effective attack in a Democratic presidential primary — the auditorium booed and groaned — but they will be in a general election.
    https://www.reviewjournal.com/opinion/opinion-columns/victor-joecks/victor-joecks-candidate-most-likely-to-beat-trump-is-trump-1962291/

    The Democrat debates have served one fruitful purpose..

    It's give President Trump's campaign a whole plethora of campaign ads.. :D

  15. [15] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    CW-
    Quite a list of things happening that you were not expecting.

    Maybe you should reconsider One Demand. If people were informed about it it might do better than you expect.

    Unless, of course, that is the reason you won't inform people about it.

    Just be careful that you don't get caught off guard by more unexpected things.

    After all- Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!

  16. [16] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Two weeks of SERIOUS INTRIGUE barreling at us?

    That's one way to look at it.

    A more realistic way to look at it is that the Dems are Biff barreling towards the manure truck.

  17. [17] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    And just like the movie trilogy they keep repeating the same mistakes and end up covered with manure.

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    Love the movie analogy.. :D

    My evil conversion of Weigantia is nearly complete.. :D

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    FOX NEWS EXCLUSIVE: Record GOP field runs for Congress, jolted by impeachment, ‘radical’ AOC

    Republican revenge: Record GOP field forms, on 2020 mission to take down ‘socialists’
    https://www.foxnews.com/politics/republican-revenge-record-gop-field-forms-on-2020-mission-to-take-down-socialists

    Remind me again how all the GOP'ers retiring is going to be a problem for the GOP??

    I seem to have forgotten what with all the FACTS to the contrary...

    :smirk: :D

  20. [20] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    "My evil conversion of Weigantia is nearly complete."

    That's exactly what I want you to think.

    (insert diabolical laughter here)

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    That's exactly what I want you to think.

    (insert diabolical laughter here)

    "Touche' salesman. Do come in."
    -Peter Griffin

  22. [22] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    [7]

    Michale responded,

    Like the Electoral College, the Vanity Vote doesn't mean anything.. It's the algorithm that is at work here..

    But I have to say how hilarious I find it..

    Those Bernie Haters here whine and cry and scream about Hillary winning the Vanity Vote MEANS something.

    And yet, in Iowa where Bernie won the Vanity Vote, NOW they whine and scream and cry that it's meaningless..

    Ya really gotta wonder if they even SEE their own blatant hypocrisy... :D

    You make a good point here. Don't let it go to your head :D

  23. [23] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    Although...the whole "Vanity Vote" concept kinda sucks. Living in CA I knew that it didn't matter who I voted for, Hillary was going to win my deep blue state. So both my vote and every GOP vote in California were meaningless in the face of Hillary's majority, or "vanity votes."

    Likewise any vote in every state that doesn't pick the winner (Dems in red States & Repugs in blue states) is in essence a "vanity vote."

    This is why the Electoral College should be abandoned. Changing it to whoever wins the most votes nationwide will ensure that "one person, one vote" is, in fact, a reality.

    Dems especially hate it that both W and Trump were elected not by the majority of voter's but by the Electoral College. The EC was created to keep unfit candidates like Trump away from the Presidency, but as with impeachment the Repugs placed loyalty to Party over loyalty to our Constitution.

  24. [24] 
    Michale wrote:

    MC,

    You make a good point here.

    I have my moments.. Few and far between though they may be... Thanx for acknowledging it..

    Don't let it go to your head :D

    Moi??? Shirley, you jest.. :D

    This is why the Electoral College should be abandoned. Changing it to whoever wins the most votes nationwide will ensure that "one person, one vote" is, in fact, a reality.

    Of course, the downside to that is ONLY California, New York and Texas would get any attention, bot in campaigning AND in federal governance...

    The other 47 states might as well not even exist..

    You might think it's fine if Blue California elects the POTUS all on it's own..

    But how would you feel if Red Texas elects the POTUS all on it's own??

    The EC is the worst system going..

    Except for any other system...

  25. [25] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    MtnCaddy [23]

    Better yet, How about 'One white male person over 40, one vote!???

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    Better yet, How about 'One white male person over 40, one vote!???

    One white male person over 40 with BROWN EYES..

    Them blue-eyed people can't be trusted to vote intelligently.. :D

  27. [27] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Mike

    If we keep working on this, we'll eventually get it right!

    How about 'One white male heterosexual person over 40 with brown eyes'???

  28. [28] 
    Michale wrote:

    If we keep working on this, we'll eventually get it right!

    By process of elimination, we'de HAVE to!! :D

  29. [29] 
    Michale wrote:

    Republican Party war chest dwarfs Democrats’ going into 2020 high season
    https://www.foxnews.com/politics/republican-party-war-chest-dwarfs-democrats-going-into-2020-high-season

    No matter which Litmus test you use, the GOP is stomping the Dems into the dirt...

  30. [30] 
    Michale wrote:

    Since ya'all swear by polls. :D

    NEW POLL: Satisfaction With U.S. at Highest It’s Ever Been Since 2005
    https://www.mediaite.com/trump/shock-poll-satisfaction-with-u-s-under-trump-is-highest-its-ever-been-since-2005/

    Democrats don't stand a chance in Nov.. :D

  31. [31] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Well don't that make my blue eyes
    don't that make my blue eyes
    don't that make my blue eyes brown.

  32. [32] 
    dsws wrote:

    ... that both W and Trump were elected not by the majority...

    Bill Clinton didn't get a majority either, only a plurality.

    I don't think there's anything magic about fifty percent plus half a vote. If anything, though, I'd like a higher threshold, if we're going to choose a Leader by voting at all. We should use ranked-choice voting, with NOTA (none of the above) as one of the options, and have a viable system for what to do if NOTA wins. Maybe a chief administrator appointed by Congress, with more limited powers than an elected president.

  33. [33] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Mtn Caddy-
    No reason to abandon the electoral college. But it should updated to preserve the positive aspects and eliminate the downside.

    Getting rid of it would take a constitutional amendment as would updating it properly by eliminating the electors, giving each state 3.3 times their current electoral votes so each state gets at least ten electoral votes and a vote would be awarded for each 10% of the vote in a state the candidate received with the winner of the state getting any leftover votes. In states with more votes electoral votes would be awarded by percentages.

    For example, a state that currently gets 20 electoral votes would get 66 electoral votes and any candidate that got 5% of the vote in the state would be awarded 5% of the electoral votes (3 electoral votes for each 5%).

    This would not be perfect, but it would be better at enabling citizens in Republican states voting voting for Dems and the other way around and even citizens voting for third parties and independents to qualify for electoral votes.

    This can also be partially done without a constitutional amendment by either a state pact (like the misguided National Popular Vote Pact) or unilateral action by states to award their electoral votes proportionally.

    So a state with 15 electoral votes would award a vote for each 7% of the vote in that state.

    You can call people voting for a candidate that can't win electoral votes in a state because of winner take awarding of electoral votes a vanity vote because it doesn't matter what you call it as it counts for nothing.

    But once we award electoral votes proportionally it could become many more things and make all voters in all states relevant.

    Then the current "vanity" voters that think of themselves as casting a protest vote by voting for third parties could actually be casting protest votes with teeth by capturing electoral votes and build on that in the next election transforming those protest votes into movement building votes.

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    MC,

    Breaking: Bernie Briefed By U.S. Officials That Russia Is Trying To Help His Campaign
    https://hotair.com/headlines/archives/2020/02/breaking-bernie-sanders-briefed-u-s-officials-russia-trying-help-presidential-campaign/

    Now yer guy is gonna be on the receiving end of a hysterical Russia Collusion delusion..

    :D

  35. [35] 
    Michale wrote:

    “I don’t care, frankly, who Putin wants to be president.
    My message to Putin is clear: stay out of American elections, and as president I will make sure that you do.”

    -Bernie Sanders

    Amazing how much Bernie sounds EXACTLY like President Trump. :D

  36. [36] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    [10]

    Michale,

    I agree that ANYONE BUT HILLARY was a big factor, likely the biggest. But ya gotta throw in the Rooskie interference and Comey's October Surprise to tell the whole story.

  37. [37] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    [18]

    Michale wrote:

    My evil conversion of Weigantia is nearly complete.. :D

    To which I say,

    #NeverEvilMichalePlan

  38. [38] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    [19]

    Michale wrote,

    Remind me again how all the GOP'ers retiring is going to be a problem for the GOP??

    I seem to have forgotten what with all the FACTS to the contrary...

    :smirk: :D

    We won't know if it's going to be a problem until (at least closer to) the election. Conventional Wisdom says Incumbents have an over 90% chance of being reelected. Therefore, a higher than usual GOP incumbent rate means more GOP seats are in play.

  39. [39] 
    Kick wrote:

    MtnCaddy
    4

    Um, a question. As Bernie beat Mayor Pete by some 4,000 votes, how is it Pete gets a fraction of delegates more than Bernie? What bullshit rule or rules made this so?

    I thought it was around 2,500 votes. Anyway, Iowa holds a stupid caucus which by design awards delegates in accordance with "who won what area" of the state, etc., and Buttigieg won about three times the number of counties as Bernie... all across Iowa; however, Bernie's vote totals in the counties he won kept his delegate count close yet slightly less. IMO, winners should be always be determined by who gets the most votes, and that's why caucuses always suck... but the winner is the delegate winner. Die caucuses die. ;)

    In a primary, delegates are generally awarded primarily based on votes received, and the winner of the most votes generally gets more delegates; however, this is not always the case depending on the states' allocation rules which vary... because why be uniform when FUBAR is an option? In New Hampshire, Bernie was the vote winner and therefore won that state; however, he and Pete Buttigieg left for Nevada with the exact same number of pledged delegates from New Hampshire... seems stupid, but states make their own rules. Still, way better than a stupid caucus.

    So to recap:

    * The winner of a state caucus is determined by the candidate winning the most delegates in the state. Caucuses suck.

    * The winner of a state primary is determined by the candidate receiving the most votes in the state; however, the vote winner doesn't always receive more delegates because of various assorted districts and state delegate math calculations.

    ** Vote Blue **
    No Matter Who

  40. [40] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    [32]

    dsws wrote:

    . that both W and Trump were elected not by the majority...

    Bill Clinton didn't get a majority either, only a plurality.

    I don't think there's anything magic about fifty percent plus half a vote. If anything, though, I'd like a higher threshold, if we're going to choose a Leader by voting at all. We should use ranked-choice voting, with NOTA (none of the above) as one of the options, and have a viable system for what to do if NOTA wins. Maybe a chief administrator appointed by Congress, with more limited powers than an elected president.

    Excellent! I'm going to chew on this.

  41. [41] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    [38]

    Whoops, I meant to say,

    "Therefore, a higher than usual GOP incumbent RETIREMENT rate means more GOP seats are in play.

  42. [42] 
    Kick wrote:

    Mike
    7

    And yet, in Iowa where Bernie won the Vanity Vote, NOW they whine and scream and cry that it's meaningless..

    Regardless of the winner, the vanity vote is meaningless in every caucus state. Not complicated.

  43. [43] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    [33]

    Day-yam! Another good idea to chew on. You folks are on fire today!

  44. [44] 
    Kick wrote:

    MtnCaddy
    22

    You make a good point here. Don't let it go to your head.

    No, he really doesn't make a good point here. The winner of a caucus is determined by the candidate winning the most delegates regardless of who that is. Bernie didn't win Iowa whether or not he got more votes because it's a stupid caucus where Pete won the most delegates. Likewise, Pete didn't tie in New Hampshire even though he received the exact same amount of pledged delegates, and that's because Bernie won the most votes.

    It's stupid there are two different ways to determine the winner of a state, but not at all complicated. The caucuses suck and should die, die, die. :)

  45. [45] 
    Michale wrote:

    Regardless of the winner, the vanity vote is meaningless in every caucus state. Not complicated.

    The vanity vote is also meaningless in a Presidential election.. Not complicated.

  46. [46] 
    Kick wrote:

    MtnCaddy
    23

    Although...the whole "Vanity Vote" concept kinda sucks. Living in CA I knew that it didn't matter who I voted for, Hillary was going to win my deep blue state. So both my vote and every GOP vote in California were meaningless in the face of Hillary's majority, or "vanity votes."

    If everyone who believed a candidate was going to win a state election decided not to vote, the other candidate could win with one vote. Thoughts to ponder.

    Likewise any vote in every state that doesn't pick the winner (Dems in red States & Repugs in blue states) is in essence a "vanity vote."

    See above. Texas is a de facto "nonvoting" state because so many voters have believed their vote doesn't matter. This scenario is changing because a Democratic candidate for a Federal Senate seat came within around 2 points of actually flipping the seat in 2018 and helped flip two districts at the federal level and almost flipped multiple more.

    This is why the Electoral College should be abandoned.

    Near impossible and won't happen. However, a majority of states could decide to award their delegates based on the highest national vote winner and render the EC moot.

    https://www.nationalpopularvote.com/

    They are within 74 electoral votes of getting it done, and at that point, they'll fight it out in the Supreme Court whether or not it's Constitutional... so don't hold your breath. ;)

  47. [47] 
    Michale wrote:

    Former Goldman Sachs CEO: 'I might find it harder to vote for Bernie than for Trump'

    He is one of several billionaires and financial industry moguls who have taken a heel turn in the Democratic primary.

    Former Goldman Sachs CEO and lifelong Democrat Lloyd Blankfein told the Financial Times in an interview published Friday that he could have an easier time voting to reelect President Donald Trump than for Sen. Bernie Sanders, should the latter secure the Democratic nomination for president.

    “I think I might find it harder to vote for Bernie than for Trump,” the billionaire banker said, though he pointed out that the Democratic primary has just kicked off and the nomination is very much still up for grabs. “There’s a long time between now and then. The Democrats would be working very hard to find someone who is as divisive as Trump. But with Bernie they would have succeeded.”
    https://www.politico.com/news/2020/02/21/former-goldman-sachs-ceo-hard-to-vote-for-bernie-116592

    It's an uphill battle for Bernie..

    That much is certain...

  48. [48] 
    Kick wrote:

    MtnCaddy
    41

    Therefore, a higher than usual GOP incumbent RETIREMENT rate means more GOP seats are in play.

    Sort of. Candidates in the House of Representatives face reelection every two years; therefore, retirements in some heavily gerrymandered districts aren't likely to flip whether or not the incumbent retires. But in those districts across America that are competitive (whether or not gerrymandered), the incumbent advantage is removed... and when no advantage exists in more competitive districts, then more seats become "in play" even though every seat is actually always "in play."

    That's why the top of the ticket is so important to the down-ballot races. So everyone should vote whether or not you think you're vote doesn't matter, and...

    ** Vote Blue **
    No Matter Who

  49. [49] 
    Kick wrote:

    Mike
    45

    The vanity vote is also meaningless in a Presidential election.. Not complicated.

    We're discussing multiple state primaries wherein there are several different ways to determine the winner of a state and to distribute a state's pledged electors, which isn't exactly the same as the Electoral College system wherein 50 states and the District of Columbia generally award electors based on popular vote.

    So to recap: Idiots who can't understand nuance are prone to claim everything is exactly the same. Your false equivalency is alive and well. #SSDD

  50. [50] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    i fundamentally disagree with the popular vote count being about "vanity." the popular vote is a measure of just that, how popular a candidate is overall. the electoral college and caucus systems determine who wins the election, and they exist to protect voting blocs that might otherwise be drowned out. however, the popular vote matters in terms of the political capital an official gets upon being elected. basically until you get a popular majority you'll be seen as a fluke.

  51. [51] 
    Kick wrote:

    JL
    50

    i fundamentally disagree with the popular vote count being about "vanity."

    I totally agree.

    the popular vote is a measure of just that, how popular a candidate is overall.

    Exactly.

    the electoral college and caucus systems determine who wins the election, and they exist to protect voting blocs that might otherwise be drowned out.

    Exactly. In the Electoral College, almost every state awards 100% of its electoral votes to the candidate who wins the popular vote, allowing ideologues to take the votes of those strongly partisan large states for granted and claim they should therefore be discounted as "vanity"... utterly nonsensical. You will often hear Republicans and right-leaners routinely discount the voters of California and New York, while they very rarely acknowledge the same about Texas. Simply take out California alone, and Trump wins the popular vote, they'll claim. Try that by taking out Texas, your so-called "vanity vote."

    While it's obviously foolish for candidates to campaign where they are "guaranteed" to win or lose, it's equally foolish to discount the voters that reside in those states. Besides, due to ever-changing demographics, Texas is moving into the "swing state" column in the near future... ignore that, please. :)

    however, the popular vote matters in terms of the political capital an official gets upon being elected. basically until you get a popular majority you'll be seen as a fluke.

    I know, right! Trumped by the popular vote. *laughs*

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