The Thinker: Rich Galen


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Meanwhile, the Dems

Rich Galen

Monday October 14, 2019

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  • What with Turkey invading Syria, and Rudy Giuliani being investigated, and Trump appointees preparing to testify against him in his impeachment proceedings, and who knows what-all, there is still that business of Democrats fighting one another for the right to run against Donald Trump in November 2020.

  • A new round of polls show that Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren's library of plans is having a positive effect as she is now tied with Joe Biden or leads him in Iowa and New Hampshire.

  • According to a CBS poll which was in the field late last week, Warren, Biden, and Bernie Sanders are essentially tied at 22 percent each.

  • I know we talk about this about 22 times every four years, but it is worth remembering that in 2008, when Sen. Barack Obama (Illinois) "won" the Iowa caucuses over Senators Hillary Clinton (NY) and John Edwards (NC) he did so with only 37.6 percent of the caucus voters support.

  • Edwards edged out Clinton 29.7 percent to 29.4 for second place so, given the history Iowa's Democratic AND Republican parties history of getting the results of the caucuses wrong, Iowa in 2008 was well within the margin of error.

  • Nevertheless, Obama's Iowa win launched his successful campaign for the nomination.

  • There is no doubt that the Niagara Falls of Tweets led by Donald Trump and his supporters against Joe and Hunter Biden have had a negative effect. Even if people don't believe Trump's charges, they are concerned about Biden's lack of being able to construct a simple-to-understand response.

  • As Ronald Reagan has been quoted as having said, "If you're explaining, you're losing."

  • That Hunter Biden was on the board of a Chinese investment company has only become front page news in that he has announced his resignation from the board of a Chinese investment company.

  • The fact that neither that board nor his membership on the board of a Ukrainian natural gas company do not appear to have violated any U.S. laws doesn't make them any less distasteful to the 329 million Americans who don't happen to be related to a sitting Vice President.

  • And, don't tell me that the Trump family singers - Ivanka, Don, Jr, Eric, and Jared Kushner - aren't any better. They aren't, but a defense that "the Trumps do it, too" is a loser from the get-go.

  • In fact, it appears that Trump's attack on Biden have had a greater impact that Bernie's attack of his heart.

  • A month ago, on September 15, the aggregate of polls had that race:
    Biden - 28.5%
    Warren - 18.0%
    Sanders - 17.5%
    Buttigieg - 7.5%

  • Over this past weekend those same four polled as follows:
    Warren - 22.7%
    Biden - 19.3%
    Sanders - 16.0%
    Buttigieg - 12.0%

  • Keep an eye on Mayor Pete in that race. Should Hawkeyes decide this his combination of attributes - including being about 37 years old while the aggregate age of the three leaders is 225 - is a better bet for their futures, this gets way more interesting.

  • It would be surprising, but not shocking, to have had three different winners (Buttigieg in Iowa, Warren in New Hampshire, and Biden in South Carolina) as the campaign moves into Nevada then into Super Tuesday.

  • The Iowa Caucuses aren't until February 3, 2020, so there is plenty of time for these data to be revised again and again, but that's where they are today.

  • It seems to me that the advantage Elizabeth Warren has over Hillary Clinton is this: EVERYONE had a strong, unwavering opinion about Hillary Clinton. Voters either really loved her, or really hated her.

  • Of those who really loved her, they went out and voted for her. Of those who really hated her, they either voted for Trump or didn't vote for either one.

  • If Warren becomes the Democratic nominee she will have built a cadre of strong supporters, but it is hard to foresee the level of passionate support or visceral hatred that we saw with Hillary.

  • There will be some - many, even - who will say again "I can't vote for her or Trump" and write in the name of their cat, but overall it is more likely that undecided voters will shrug and vote for Warren because they still won't be able to bring themselves to vote for Trump.

  • Remember, a relative handful of votes switching in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan and we're talking about the Clinton Criminal Enterprise being run out of the White House.

  • As unsettled as the Trump White House might be, the race to replace him among Democrats is no bed of roses.

  • On the Secret Decoder Ring page today: Links to the WashPost coverage of Hunter Biden's Chinese board membership, to the polling data, and to a calendar of 2020 political events via the Hill Newspaper.

    The Mullfoto is from Marietta College, Marietta, Ohio 45750 this past Homecoming weekend.

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