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The Coup against Donald Trump

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Harry Marks
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

I am very interested in Inslee, but also in Hickenlooper. His record on the environment is not perfect, but I understand he made the drillers cap their methane emissions, which is actually a big deal. I may end up getting behind Biden, though. No sense running away from a majority, I always say.
vizitelly
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

It does seem that Trump is completely off the rails and, bizarrely, the Republican Party, after a few attempts in the early days of his Presidency at trying to get him back on, have completely abandoned any semblance of legal or administrative oversight. I am aware that may be a very European view and that US politics have different procedural emphasis, but the perspective applied from European history - which has a dark shadow - is that behind the bluster and blather and deflection there is a serious attempt to usurp the democratic process; this is evidenced by the deliberate stripping out of the administrative mechanism which is the basis of all open government.
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DWill
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

Yes, it's depressing to see such an unraveling. And the worry of having 6 more years of the Donald is a real one. The Dems are investigating the heck out of him, as indeed they must, after two years of zero congressional oversight. But Trump's people will see this as persecution, Trump will play that to the hilt, the Dems may nominate someone to whom the socialist label will stick, and enough moderate voters may cast votes against that party's nominee to keep Trump where he is. Oh, this also assumes that Mueller's and the NY Southern District's investigations don't find illegalities that are serious enough to impeach him. The Democrats might try anyway.
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

So what you mean is : they are going to have to drag him out in chains and handcuffs ?
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DWill
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

vizitelly wrote:So what you mean is : they are going to have to drag him out in chains and handcuffs ?
According to Michael Cohen, if he does lose in 2020, he will barricade himself inside the WH and refuse to come out!
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

DWill wrote:Why only Jay Inslee of Washington as a governor running for the Democrats? Do governors have better things to do, like running states? Anyway, Inslee has beaucoup experience at many levels of government, and with his commitment to attacking climate change, he's my pick so far. Senators, House members, your time has passed!
I have a one letter response: W
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LanDroid
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

DWill: Why only Jay Inslee of Washington as a governor running for the Democrats?
Harry Marks: I am very interested in Inslee...
I don't know anything about Inslee's positions, but saw a brief interview and he seems too mild-mannered. Once Trump decides on Inslee's nickname* he'll be flattened, another "Low Energy Jeb" disappearing trick. I'm not sure who the strongest personalities are yet, possibly Kamala, but that will be more important than usual this time. However I'll be all in with the Dem nominee!

*Probably something adolescent like "Ickey Inslee" but it won't take much to work. Aw hell, it writes itself:
Trump: Have you heard of this guy, Jay Inslee, Governor of pot smoking Washington State? {Insert hand motions} We call him "Ickey Inslee."
Crowed: EEEWWWWW! Boo! EWWWW!
Trump: That's right, Ickey Inslee. He's so ickey. {Insert hand motions} Just gross. Nasty! So ickey!
Crowd: Boooo! Ewwww! Booo! Trump! Trump! Trump!
The press one week later: "Governor Who?"
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DB Roy
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

There is indeed a coup against Trump being led by a vindictive little prick. His name is Donald Trump.
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Harry Marks
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

LanDroid wrote:
Harry Marks: I am very interested in Inslee...
I don't know anything about Inslee's positions, but saw a brief interview and he seems too mild-mannered.
I sort of agree. I may support him anyway. I don't think he can win even the nomination, but if he makes a real showing, polling more than 10 percent consistently, he will raise the profile of his "single issue."

Being mild mannered is not necessarily a way to lose to Trump. The Evangelicals may very well desert him outside the South, especially if a good candidate comes along. I saw William Weld interviewed on CNN and he is "too mild mannered" but it actually comes across in a very appealing way. Like, you know, sanity for a change. Trump's moment may have passed, being a combination of economic desperation (which looks more and more like it is in the rear-view mirror) and white fragility, which can be turned deftly against a blundering racist like Dear Leader. I don't think anyone will successfully challenge him in the primaries unless the Mueller report catches him red-handed at something really nasty or the trade war blows up in his face (though I still think Nikki Haley could whup his ass if she set her mind to it). But I would be even more shocked to see him win Wisconsin and Michigan in 2020 than I was to see it in 2016.

I predict we will see that the money that flowed into beating Republicans in the swing districts of the House, mainly affluent suburbs, will still be working against him in the general election. Even if the Dems don't choose a firebrand like Bernie or Kamala, the sanity vote could be HUGE. If I am not backing Inslee or Biden it will probably be Hickenlooper, who might just create the right combination of pragmatic centrist programs to swing those swing states back to Blue. I think Warren's programmatic proposals have been super, but despite being about reining in corporations, they will not appeal to the same populist Sanders/Trump voters who led Hillary Clinton to back off of the TPP proposal. The magic word could be "infrastructure", which is pretty mild mannered when you think about it.

We saw surges from 2008 to 2016 in the importance of turnout by the base. But with the size of the 2018 swing in the House, you have to consider appeal to moderates to be extremely potent. If the Dems do choose a firebrand, I hope they have the sense to appeal to the center, in the way Bill Clinton did in 1992, rather than relying on firing up supporters of Democratic Socialism. Why run away from a majority? Kamala Harris can run as a prosecutor and a leader who will knock heads together to get things done, and Bernie Sanders can run as a person who will bring back power to workers through pragmatic trade barriers or other practical programs. He actually had a good record of setting things on a sound basis in Burlington, and Democratic Socialism does not need to be about giveaways of free stuff.
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

One of the things that struck home most strongly with those outside the USA during the Obama elections was the absolute rejection of Hillary Clinton - it seemed clear the USA would never vote a woman into the Presidency - and that was compounded by the disgraceful treatment she received when Trump won. So, like her or loathe her, does the same hold true now for any woman candidate ?
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DWill
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

vizitelly wrote:One of the things that struck home most strongly with those outside the USA during the Obama elections was the absolute rejection of Hillary Clinton - it seemed clear the USA would never vote a woman into the Presidency - and that was compounded by the disgraceful treatment she received when Trump won. So, like her or loathe her, does the same hold true now for any woman candidate ?
I think the barriers to a woman being elected pres here are real, and HRC suffered for qualities that in a male would have been acceptable or even admired. That was probably especially the case in 2008. In 2016, that perception might have been less prevalent, and there might have been an aura about her as the woman "destined" to break the male monopoly. That aura may have deterred more Democrats from jumping into the race. There was by that time an inevitability about Clinton's candidacy. She won the popular vote by a healthy margin, defeated by our peculiar electoral college. The people preferred her. She was masterful in the debates, but it mattered not in the end. She had flaws, but were these any more glaring than those typical of male candidates? It is true, to some degree, that like African Americans, women will be held to a higher standard.
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

That's a real problem for the Democrats, isn't it ? It leaves them with a very thin field for 2020. From here - and I am aware that it is from here - both Biden and Sanders look far too old, experienced or not, and O'Rourke looks too lightweight. Given the backlash that elected Trump, I would think that a black male candidate would be problematic, too.
As for the Electoral College system, it has long been a source of bewilderment to people here. If USA perceives itself as a nation, and not a collection of individual states, then it doesn't matter where voters live: it's a General Election, not one for the town dogcatcher.
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Harry Marks
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

vizitelly wrote:As for the Electoral College system, it has long been a source of bewilderment to people here. If USA perceives itself as a nation, and not a collection of individual states, then it doesn't matter where voters live: it's a General Election, not one for the town dogcatcher.
Well, when I think of how diverse the original states were, I can't help thinking it made some sense. Religiously, there were Catholic states and Calvinist states and a tolerant Quaker state. Georgia was founded by convicts deported from Britain, Vermont's Green Mountain Boys were iconoclastic (their leader was a free-thinking Deist, Ethan Allen), Delaware was a haven for Swedes, and of course there was slavery. The small states simply did not want to be always told what to do by the big states. A bit like Wales, you might say.

We have learned to live with our system, and I expect we will learn all over again how to live with it. There is a movement to get states to pledge their Electors to whoever wins the popular vote, and nothing in the Constitution prevents it. If 270 electoral votes worth joined the pledge, that would end the Electoral College horseplay. But you can pretty well bet that California won't agree until their massive number of votes would put the pledge over the line for more than 270. The state I am moving to from Europe, Colorado, is seriously considering taking the pledge.

You mentioned the backlash against an African-American president. While this did help bring our current narcissist to his party's nomination, it's also true that socially conservative blacks were willing to vote Democratic for Obama, and that may have assembled the necessary majority. Black stay-at-homes probably account for the size of the 2016 Democratic losses in Ohio and Pennsylvania. At first glance that means the way to assemble a majority is with another black candidate. While somewhat plausible, I think if that pattern appeared it really would create a backlash. Imagine in the U.K. if someone had the numbers to show that Labor needs to be led by a Scot in order to win.

If Booker or Harris wants to win, they will have to do it on their own, as individuals, and without dog whistles.
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

It's certainly true that right now that the politicians in the UK would fail, by a considerable margin, to get elected as dogcatchers; they are tenth-rate and are seemingly unable to elevate the supremacy of parliament over the partisan doctrine of the present govt. It is a disgraceful state of affairs, and brings nothing but shame and ignominy on the nation.
I'm not sure the analogy regarding Scottish leaders of the Labour Party holds true, though : there have been a number of Scottish, and Welsh, leaders of the Labour Party, the most recent being Gordon Brown and, prior to him, John Smith and Neil Kinnock. There is a further line stretching back into history. It is the case that the current situation with the SNP in Scotland does appear to favour the Nationalist principle - and that is compounded by Brexit - but the probability is that the separatist camp is not strong enough to effect independence, despite the noise it makes.

I suppose the difficulty (or non-understanding) with the Electoral College is that is clear that the winning of the majority of the vote - the popular vote - does not necessarily mean winning the election. This strikes Europeans as a strange kind of democracy.
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Harry Marks
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Re: The Coup against Donald Trump

vizitelly wrote:It's certainly true that right now that the politicians in the UK would fail, by a considerable margin, to get elected as dogcatchers; they are tenth-rate and are seemingly unable to elevate the supremacy of parliament over the partisan doctrine of the present govt. It is a disgraceful state of affairs, and brings nothing but shame and ignominy on the nation.
Well, many of us felt that way about the U.S. election as well, but I would agree with you about British politics these days. When a squishy techno-caretaker like May looks like the closest thing to a real leader in the whole mess you know the boat is leaking.
vizitelly wrote:I'm not sure the analogy regarding Scottish leaders of the Labour Party holds true, though : there have been a number of Scottish, and Welsh, leaders of the Labour Party, the most recent being Gordon Brown and, prior to him, John Smith and Neil Kinnock. There is a further line stretching back into history. It is the case that the current situation with the SNP in Scotland does appear to favour the Nationalist principle - and that is compounded by Brexit - but the probability is that the separatist camp is not strong enough to effect independence, despite the noise it makes.
I was aware of Brown, which was what suggested the comparison. If someone could show that ONLY a Scot could win for Labour, that would get the back up of a lot of Lib Dems, for example. Well, maybe it is too far-fetched to consider, but I promise that even the appearance that only minority candidates or only women could win for Dems would create havoc over here.
vizitelly wrote:I suppose the difficulty (or non-understanding) with the Electoral College is that is clear that the winning of the majority of the vote - the popular vote - does not necessarily mean winning the election. This strikes Europeans as a strange kind of democracy.
But is it so strange? Thatcher managed to win majorities with a minority of the electorate, if I remember right. The "first past the post" system in the U.K. means that in a three-way race, a consistent 40 percent of each district would have a realistic chance of winning overall.

What seems so odd about the Electoral College, which has enabled a minority of the popular vote to win the election in a two-way race, is that there is extra weight on the votes of less urban (i.e. smaller) states, so that if you get a consistent rural-urban divide (as America has at the moment) then there is a strong bias toward a candidate with a minority from the rural states still winning the election overall. (Of course the last election was actually a four-way race in the sense that it is possible the outcome would have gone the other way if the two significant splinter parties had not been available).
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