Saturday, October 24, 2015

GOP grumpy cat

I like this president. In fact, I wish we'd had this Obama all along, instead of the one who bent over backward trying to appease Republicans, hoping that they'd eventually value America over politics (which they never did and never would).

Hillary Clinton clearly knows better, and that's one reason why I'm still undecided about the Democratic primary. This guy puts it well:
As an active Democrat who has remained, thus far, undecided, her performance here and at the debate have gone a long way toward convincing me to support Clinton instead of Sanders; even though, politically, my ideals line up more closely with Sanders' democratic socialism than Clinton's quasi-third way centrism.

If a Democrat wins the 2016 election, her or his main job as I see it will be defending the achievements of the Obama administration, which will surely be under even more sustained attack once he leaves office. Any major expansion to that legacy will need to be incremental given a hostile, partisan Congress that, at least in the House, is pretty much "locked in" by gerrymandering until the next redistricting cycle.

In that light, I'm increasingly leaning toward Hillary, not so much based on what she believes but on her competence, both as a public official and as a politician who knows how to punch back.

Yes. In general, I prefer Bernie Sanders' policy positions, though there's not really that much difference. And neither one is going to get his or her policy positions through Congress anyway, since the House of Representatives will stay Republican. (The GOP has gerrymandered election districts, so they continue to control the House even when they badly lose the popular vote.)

Hillary Clinton is establishment, through and through. But she's smart, she's capable, and she knows politics inside and out. Plus, there's no way she'll have the early Obama's naive hope that Republicans will be anything but bitter political enemies, no matter how much their actions harm America.

She has never been more impressive than she was during the Benghazi hearing. That's the kind of president we need. Now, yes, we need a lot of other things, too - especially to get money out of politics. But Clinton is a politician. If the voters demand it, she will get on board.

Keep in mind that Republicans benefit far more than Democrats do by letting billionaires control our country. Even for selfish political reasons, Clinton would be wise to address this problem.

Also, Citizens United was decided by the five Republicans on our Supreme Court, in opposition to the four Democrats. There's no way that any Democratic president will appoint another Scalia, or Alito, or Thomas, or Roberts - or even another Kennedy - to the Supreme Court.

The makeup of the U.S. Supreme Court is probably the most important issue in 2016, and it will probably have the most important impact on money in politics (given the fact that, as I noted previously, the Republicans will continue to control the House of Representatives).

Hillary Clinton impressed me at the debate, and she really impressed me at the Benghazi hearing. And I've always had my doubts that a self-described "socialist" could get elected in America (as stupid as that prejudice might be).

I want to support whichever candidate has the best chance to win in 2016, because the alternative would be worse than George W. Bush as a disaster for America. I was never wild about Hillary Clinton - especially after the 2008 campaign - but she's been changing my mind lately.

We'll see. Nebraska won't be deciding the Democratic primary, anyway, I'm sure.


Gregg said...

I agree completely, Bill. I like Sanders, but I'm not optimistic that he can be elected. I also see Clinton as tough enough to stand up to the republicans.

In any case, this election is too important - we need to pick a candidate that can be elected, even if we compromise on a few of our goals.

WCG said...

Yes, although I don't even see it as compromising our goals, Gregg. I don't see how either president will be able to get anything through Congress. As crazy as the GOP has become, we'll be lucky if we just keep America from default.

Thanks to gerrymandering election districts, Republicans have locked in the House of Representatives, unless it's a complete blowout.

And if that's the case, you know that the remaining GOP Congressmen will be even crazier than they are now (since those from deep red districts will still be safe).

This election is critical, yes. But we're not going to be out of the woods for years. Statewide elections in 2020 will determine redistricting again.

And if the GOP succeeds in changing how electoral votes are counted in blue-leaning states - but not in red states - they could well lock in the presidency, just as they've locked in the House of Representatives.

I'm glad that Bernie Sanders is doing well, and we need this primary campaign, because we need a real campaigner in the general election. As long as it doesn't get nasty - too nasty, at least.

And I'll be happy to support whichever Democrat wins.

Chimeradave said...

Where has this Obama been? Wish he'd been like this all along

WCG said...

Me, too, John. But I think he was afraid of being the "angry black man" of every white racist's fears. I mean, as it is, this is the guy Republicans have hysterics about?

Also, note that he campaigned on bipartisanship, on bringing our country together. So he bent over backward trying to make that happen.

Of course, you need both sides for that, and I think he just gave the Republican Party way too much credit. He underestimated the crazy and the hysterical fear in the GOP.

Barack Obama is not a radical, anyway. He's not a leftist. And he doesn't seem to get angry even when he should be angry. That just seems to be his personality. So I'm sure there's not just one simple answer.