American primary season is upon us. Order the popcorn and sit back! This election cycle, it’s the Democrats who are tearing lumps out of each other. Their ridiculously large field of candidates makes the 17 Republicans Trump put to the sword four years ago seem positively miniscule. At the last count there were about four hundred and twenty two Democrats with their hat in the ring to be their party’s presidential nominee. In fact, I’m not sure there isn’t even a write in campaign for Tim Robson.
Given the continual resistance against Trump since November 2016 - in the media, in Congress, in the courts, on social media, one would imagine that all the Democrats needed to do is select a half decent moderate candidate, avoid saying anything stupid and the 2020 race is in the bag.
However, it appears the Democrats have decided to go another way. Yes, they’ve boarded the clown car to unelectable far leftism and pumped the pedal as far as it goes. Apart from Biden, the front runners - Warren, Sanders, Booker, Harris are all streaking down the back-straight in a race to be the most voter repelling radical. It’s an unedifying spectacle. Add to this the media focus on AOC and the other three unlovely members of ‘The Squad’ and one might collude that the centrist - and election winning - party of JFK and Bill Clinton was dead.
Because, there’s a place for a centre left party in America. One that looks after normal patriotic ‘middle class’ Americans who want to work hard, save and put their kids through college. Trump captured this forgotten ‘middle class’ in 2016. They’re not Republicans but he spoke to them about putting jobs and the US first. But, seemingly the Dems have learnt nothing from their 2016 defeat. Apparently it was the Russians. Therefore, they continually bang on about open borders, free healthcare for illegal immigrants, transgender rights and third trimester abortions.
All arguable positions perhaps, but, as Bill Clinton’s successful campaign in ‘91 proved, ‘it’s the economy, stupid!’. Take the rhetoric and tweets away from Trump and underneath there’s solid successes. The US economy is roaring ahead and this rising tide is proving uncomfortable for Democrats as the people who are benefitting, in record numbers, are their own supposed client base - blacks, hispanics, women. One would have thought the Democrats would notice this and try and offer something to the middle classes other than futile attempts to subvert the electoral process and impeach the president.
The CNN debate last week was divided into two so as to accommodate all the vast horde of candidates. Everyone got their chance to perform their crazy dance in the spotlight. Four years ago the Republicans were more ruthless but better organised - they had a primetime debate consisting of the leading candidates and an undercard of the no-hopers. The Dems should try to emulate this.
Anyway in the second debate, the strident and not very likeable Kamala Harris was pitched against Joe Biden. She’d duffed him up pretty disgracefully in the first debate with some low blows by essentially calling him a racist. Quite despicable. I remember her in the Brett Kavanaugh hearings being similarly disreputable. What an awful, virtual signalling and humourless woman! A machine politician if ever there was one. And how very typical she’s a (self declared) top tier candidate in today’s Democratic Party.
And then step forward Tulsi Gabbard, the Democratic congresswoman from Hawaii. She’s a familiar sight to Republicans as she - unlike most elected Democrats - actually goes onto Fox News for interviews. She seems to hold the rather radical notion that to get elected you have to appeal to broad swathes of people who don’t necessarily agree with you. She’s also an ex soldier with tours of duty in Iraq. This means she abhors war and wants to avoid them at all cost. I supported Ron and Rand Paul over this very issue in the past and Trump’s instincts (if not always reality) are anti war. I have a lot of time for her point of view. She’s also pretty easy on the eye too which doesn’t hurt.
But back to the debate. Kamala Harris was virtue signalling versus Biden again when the moderator brought in Tulsi. And in the next minute or so Gabbard tore Harris a new one and bitchslapped her into oblivion. She questioned Harris’ record as California Attorney General, brought up hypocrisies and scandals (though not the ‘how did Camilla get started’ scandal). Unprepared and caught off guard Harris blustered but you could see in her face and posture she’d been owned on live TV. A delicious moment where a dreadful bully got the beat down she deserved.
Go Tulsi! Although Trump supporters are loyal to their Donald, they could probably live with her as Commander in Chief.
And isn’t that really what democracy is about? It’s not the winning that matters, it’s the grace in defeat that is essential for a civil society to function. And I’m hoping that whosoever wins next time, the losers will accept the defeat. The Democrats have behaved disgracefully this time around. I don’t want that to happen again. Let’s step back from the edge.
That’s why I’m backing Tulsi in the Democratic primaries.
See video below. Tulsi comes in at 3:40 after Harris talks her poison against Biden.