Klobuchar Out

The field winnows further.

Via CNN: Amy Klobuchar will end 2020 presidential campaign and endorse Joe Biden.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar will end her presidential bid on Monday and endorse Joe Biden, a campaign aide tells CNN.

The Klobuchar campaign confirmed that the senator is flying to Dallas to join the former vice president at his rally, where she will suspend her campaign and give her endorsement on the eve of Super Tuesday.

This makes tomorrow (early voting notwithstanding) basically Bernie v. Biden (with side helpings of Warren and a test of Bloomberg’s cash).

It is interesting to see Buteigeg and Klobuchar both make strategic choices at this stage of the campaign (i.e., right before Super Tuesday). They both clearly are calculating that their presence as active candidate hurts Biden and helps Bernie, and so they are actively seeking to drive the outcome towards Biden.

It is interesting to watch some level of coordinated effort clearly aimed at stopping one candidate, Sanders, from winning the nomination. It is the kind of thing that did not occur in the GOP contests in 2016.

One has to think, too, that Klobuchar thinks of herself as a possible veep candidate (which, BTW, I do not think Mayor Pete will be). I think that the veep needs to be someone not in their 70s and a female at a minimum (and a minority female optimally). That puts Klobuchar on the short list, in my estimation.

FILED UNDER: Amy Klobuchar, Campaign 2020, US Politics
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. Michael Reynolds says:

    My preferred outcome now is a brokered convention that settles on Warren as a compromise. She’s not quite as full of b.s. as Bernie and I’d rather spend four years listening to her than to Bernie obsessing over billioneahs.

    14
  2. Michael Reynolds says:

    My wife and I are slowly coming to the unwelcome conclusion that we have to vote Biden in CA tomorrow to ensure he gets above the 15%. Bernie will win CA walking away, but if Biden can clear 15% it’s not the end of the road for him.

    10
  3. @Michael Reynolds: Without a doubt, and regardless of the state, if one prefers Sanders not to get the nod, then Biden has to be the vote.

    8
  4. SenyorDave says:

    Warren has to be kicking herself over M4A. All she had to do was talk about expanding coverage to those still uninsured, improving the ACA, etc. IOS, a bunch of vague feel good promises. Instead, she actually had specific ideas as to implementing and paying for M4A. People don’t want details. I think she is head and shoulders above Biden and Sanders, and she gets the finance stuff (she is an expert in bankruptcy so she must actually understand finance at a high level). Trump will call her Fauxchontas a million times, but I think smart women scare him. But for me, anyone but Sanders will do.

    15
  5. Paine says:

    Drove me nuts the way she adopted the GOP framing of the middle of the country as “fly-over country.” Plays right into the “coastal elites” nonsense.

    1
  6. CSK says:

    My first thought on learning this was that Klobuchar wants to be Biden’s v.p.

    3
  7. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:
    @Michael Reynolds:

    …if one prefers Sanders not to get the nod, then Biden has to be the vote.

    Or put another way…if one prefers Trump not to win going away, then Biden has to be the vote.

    8
  8. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @CSK:

    My first thought on learning this was that Klobuchar wants to be Biden’s v.p.

    I’d prefer Harris…but Klobuchar does bring Minnesota and 10 Electoral votes.

    5
  9. Lounsbury says:

    @Michael Reynolds: Hopefully what you really mean is that is your fantasy option.

    A good woman Senator from Middle of USA (regretably that excludes Harris – by Geography rather than ethnicity, as running up the count in California is pointless) would be a very solid choice. Klobuchar seems very solid, not old, and Geographically Correct.

    The great lesson of 2016 being Pay Attention to the Electoral Geography, National Polling is borderline nonsense (to modestly exagerate as obviously not unrelated).

    8
  10. Jen says:

    I might be stretching here, but I’m hoping that this 1-2 punch of Buttigieg and Klobuchar dropping out and endorsing Biden (The Hill is reporting that Buttigieg will endorse Biden, not sure if this is 100% or just rumor) will rattle Trump.

    Eric Trump already posted something nonsensical about Buttigieg dropping out as evidence that the election is being stolen from Bernie, so they understand what this means.

    6
  11. MarkedMan says:

    Is it just me, or is Bernie oddly radio silent?

    1
  12. mattbernius says:

    @CSK & @Daryl and his brother Darryl:
    If Biden does win the nomination and doesn’t go for a qualified PoC (preferably a woman) as VP, then the Democrats deserve to lose (and demonstrate that they didn’t learn anything from 2016).

  13. Mikey says:

    @Jen:

    The Hill is reporting that Buttigieg will endorse Biden, not sure if this is 100% or just rumor

    My understanding of the delegate rules–and I freely admit I may be mis-understanding, so if I am, any enlightenment is welcome–is that if Buttigieg does support Biden, then he could “give” his delegates to Biden. If he did so now, Biden would become the leader in delegates.

    2
  14. EddieInCA says:

    @mattbernius:

    This. 100%. It HAS to be a woman of color or votes will stay home.

    1
  15. EddieInCA says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    My wife and I are slowly coming to the unwelcome conclusion that we have to vote Biden in CA tomorrow to ensure he gets above the 15%.

    My wife has come to the same strategic decision. Her heart is for Warren but she’s going to vote for Biden as her anti-Bernie vote.

    3
  16. Kathy says:

    @SenyorDave:

    Are you saying she failed to underestimate the intelligence of the electorate?

    2
  17. James Joyner says:

    @Lounsbury:

    The great lesson of 2016 being Pay Attention to the Electoral Geography, National Polling is borderline nonsense (to modestly exagerate as obviously not unrelated).

    So, going in to Iowa, the national polls had Biden as the frontrunner, closely followed by Sanders, with Warren and Bloomberg somewhat further behind. Biden got off to a slow start but is arguably again the frontrunner for the nomination. Sanders got off to a fast start and is the only other arguable frontrunner and likely to win a plurality of delegates. Everyone else is toast.

    5
  18. James Joyner says:

    @EddieInCA:

    It HAS to be a woman of color or votes will stay home.

    I honestly doubt that, although Kamala Harris would make a lot of sense. I’ve seen a lot of people tout Stacy Abrams but I think she’d be a net negative.

    4
  19. CSK says:

    @EddieInCA:
    Biden/Harris, then.

    3
  20. MarkedMan says:

    @Mikey:

    If he did so now, Biden would become the leader in delegates.

    And if that happens does anyone want to take bets on how long it will take before the Bernie Bros go from outraged and angry over the very idea that anyone but the candidate with the most delegates should win to outraged and angry over the very idea that someone should win just because they have the most delegates?

    7
  21. al Ameda says:

    @James Joyner:

    @EddieInCA:
    It HAS to be a woman of color or votes will stay home.

    I honestly doubt that, although Kamala Harris would make a lot of sense. I’ve seen a lot of people tout Stacy Abrams but I think she’d be a net negative.

    I live here in CA, and I like Kamala, but I think her negative in a significant part of the Black community is her history as a prosecutor. That said, she should be in play. I also wonder if Cory Booker is considered to be in play on this?

    8
  22. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @mattbernius:

    If Biden does win the nomination and doesn’t go for a qualified PoC (preferably a woman) as VP, then the Democrats deserve to lose (and demonstrate that they didn’t learn anything from 2016).

    I’m sure he will chose a woman…I’m not sure I agree that woman has to be a PoC. Although, as I said, I prefer Harris. I have a hard time believing anyone is going to stay home, no matter what. If I’m not mistaken, every state so far has surpassed 2016 turnout.

    5
  23. An Interested Party says:

    It is interesting to watch some level of coordinated effort clearly aimed at stopping one candidate, Sanders, from winning the nomination.

    Considering the fact that Sanders isn’t even a member of the Democratic Party and that he would probably lose to Trump, people don’t need to shed too many tears over this coordination…

    6
  24. Lounsbury says:

    @mattbernius: A very White Lefty white-knighting analysis. South Carolina actual black americans rather suggest that what they want is a team constructed not to please Woke White People guilt, but win and push back against racist Trumpism for a win, whatever the colour configuration.

    The Democrats should choose a VP who addresses the centre of the country and brings in added votes, rather than running up Woke White People and coastal American votes. Added bonus if said person is actually a very solid campaigner (and certainly not a walking disaster à la Palin).

    Colour is 2nd or 3rd tier – for actual winning.

    7
  25. mattbernius says:

    @al Ameda:

    That said, she should be in play. I also wonder if Cory Booker is considered to be in play on this?

    He should be. Also its worth noting that Susan Rice just endorsed Biden as well.

    Look, the reality is that, if the Democratic party is embracing it’s base and drinking its kool-aide, then, going forward, there needs to be a person of color on the ticket. There simply is no excuse for there not being one, especially post Obama.

    And no one can argue any more that there are not PoC — men and women — who are just as qualified as the white options. There are, and they deserve to be nominated.

    2
  26. mattbernius says:

    @Lounsbury:
    I’m sorry that I’m hurting your delicate white feel feels on this, but the reason that we have President Trump is that a significant portion of minority populations didn’t turn out in 2016. The exit polling data is very clear about that.

    This has nothing to do with wokeness. It has to do with the literal reality of how the party is constructed and the democratic coalition is built. If the democratic party is going to be one that is going to be the choice of minority voters, then they need to stop saying that they care about PoC and continue to put them on the frickin ticket.

    Or are you saying that you don’t think there are any people of color who are equally qualified to be a VP candidate as the current crop of white democrats?

    Colour is 2nd or 3rd tier – for actual winning.

    Hmm, interesting spelling of “color” for someone from the US.

    6
  27. Kathy says:

    Could Obama serve as VP?

    2
  28. Lounsbury says:

    @An Interested Party:

    Well particularly as it is not anything dirty tricks but simply conslidating so that a clear voting block doesn’t split its votes and allow a Bolshevik result (in the literal origin of the term) of a minority of the Left spectrum grabbing the win due to said division of votes.

    @al Ameda: Is he not New Jerseyite, yes? Not good geographical choice. Such a profile from Mid-West would be ideal, although woman better.

    If the new reporting was accurate that black democrats in SC voted heavily to “send a message” in re supporting Biden as their man (and the results rather seem to indicate that was indeed the case) then the Geography and the Gender plus one would suspect a quite chummy support from Obama should do fine.

    1
  29. Lounsbury says:

    @mattbernius: As I am not USA, my spelling of colour is proper as I learned it as a wee lad in the parental perambulations throughout the old Commonwealth for all that my New York years have left me with a misplaced sentimental weakness for the USA.

    And your Woke analysis is belayed by SC and in fact the stats on voting in 2016.

    4
  30. Tyrell says:

    @mattbernius: There should not be any prerequisites when it comes to choosing a vp running mate. The main thing is to choose someone who has the qualifications to take over and run things in case something happens to the president. Gender, race, college, and connections should not play into this at all. “Should deserve to lose”: so if you don’t like the rules, you would pick up your bat and go home.

  31. EddieInCA says:

    @Lounsbury:

    BS. If AAs come out in 2016 in Detroit, Milwaukee and Philadelphia, we are talking about President Clinton’s re-election.

    Your dismissal of the facts of 2016 shows a misunderstanding of what actually happened. It was a few bites ina few key places. It might be again.

    5
  32. mattbernius says:

    @James Joyner:

    I’ve seen a lot of people tout Stacy Abrams but I think she’d be a net negative.

    Agreed on Abrams, I also don’t see her working particularly well with Biden.

  33. the Q says:

    “……demonstrate that they didn’t learn anything from 2016″…obviously, by nominating another boring corpocrat like Biden(who opposes legalized pot for chrissakes) you neolibs obviously HAVE LEARNED NOTHING FROM 2016.

    I’ll bet the comments on Nov. 5 are “Bernie costs Biden the election” instead of “We lose again by listening to boomer neolib Dems who just can’t give up the insanity of running moderate corpocrats Dukakis, Gore, Kerry, Hillary and Biden” and then bitch about losing yet again.

    I have no problem if Biden gets a plurality of the delegates and gets the nomination, but if Bernie has the most delegates going into the convention and gets screwed on the second ballot, the Dem party will self immolate, Trump will win in a landslide and the modern GOP of Reagan/Bush will be obliterated and replaced by a cult of personality.

    Can hardly wait when old Joe is debating Trump and goes into one of those memory lapses or a strange long winded colloquy on Anita Hill.

    Then what neolibs?

    For the record, neither Bill C or Obama were considered centrists when they ran. Bill wanted to retool and overhaul the healthcare system and spend a trillion dollars on infrastructure New Deal. Barack, of course was a Marxist Kenyan anti colonial community organizer peacenik, so please spare me that they won being “centrist”.

    6
  34. James Joyner says:

    @Kathy:

    Could Obama serve as VP?

    Not without a Constitutional Amendment. He’s precluded from serving another term as President and a Vice President, pretty much by definition, has to be eligible to serve as President.

    5
  35. Jen says:

    @Mikey: As I noted in another thread, what happens to delegates is governed by state party rules. Some states allow for delegates to be unbound if the candidate suspends the campaign, others follow endorsements (if they happen). So the question to research is what do Iowa and NH require? (I don’t know, even though I live in NH. Will post here if I find out.)

  36. mattbernius says:

    @Lounsbury:

    And your Woke analysis is belayed by SC and in fact the stats on voting in 2016.

    You need to unpack that, because it sure looks like the preferred choice of PoC just won SC.

    And in terms of 2016, man the data sure doesn’t seem to back up what you claim it says. Take for example:

    https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/05/12/black-voter-turnout-fell-in-2016-even-as-a-record-number-of-americans-cast-ballots/

    or

    https://www.brookings.edu/blog/the-avenue/2017/05/18/census-shows-pervasive-decline-in-2016-minority-voter-turnout/

    But hey, would love to see you actually show some key data to back up your argument beyond keeping calling me “woke.”

    3
  37. mattbernius says:

    Ok, so clearly I hit a nerve..

    So, here’s the question, can any of you put forward a credible argument that, based on the current Democratic bench, there are no people of color (let alone women of color) who are not equally qualified to be VP as the white potential candidates?

    I’m willing to be convinced, but you need to credibly make that argument first.

    1
  38. Scott F. says:

    @mattbernius:

    Look, the reality is that, if the Democratic party is embracing it’s base and drinking its kool-aide, then, going forward, there needs to be a person of color on the ticket. There simply is no excuse for there not being one, especially post Obama.

    Genuinely curious… why does embracing its base mean the Democrats must include a person of color on the ticket versus including a woman? The Democrats have managed to get a POC into the WH. Isn’t about time for them to get a female in there as well?

    Obviously, a female POC is a two-fer. But, what’s the rationale for race over gender?

    2
  39. Polimom says:

    @mattbernius:

    the reason that we have President Trump is that a significant portion of minority populations didn’t turn out in 2016. The exit polling data is very clear about that.

    I’m relatively confident you mean the census data that you linked elsewhere showing a 7% decline in 2016 AA turnout, because if someone didn’t vote, then their exit polling data wouldn’t give much info, eh?

    But I am curious as to the why of the decline in 2016. Why did People of Color stay home? The assumption I’m hearing in your argument is that the black vote will not turn out in the numbers needed if there isn’t a black candidate on the ballot. How do you know that would be the driver? (and if that’s not your underlying argument, please forgive me.)

    7
  40. Kathy says:

    @James Joyner:

    I was joking.

    But: “No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office of President, or acted as President, for more than two years of a term to which some other person was elected President shall be elected to the office of President more than once.”

    A literal reading says Obama cannot ever again be elected president (not of the US), but does not say he cannot serve as president.

    We know it won’t ever happen, but in theory it could. it might even fun if someone were to try it. The election might be tied up in court for years. Bummer if the President should die before the matter of the legality of the VP election were settled, eh?

    This is like saying that if Texas were broken up into 5 states, Democrats would get the WH and Senate for years. It’s possible, but it ain’t gonna happen

    2
  41. An Interested Party says:

    For the record, neither Bill C or Obama were considered centrists when they ran.

    Bullshit! Clinton ran very much to the center (DLC ring a bell?) and Obama ran to the right of Hillary in 2008…

    6
  42. the Q says:

    Horseshit, Clinton raised taxes, put Hillary in charge of overhauling the medical system etc. Here’s Bill in 1992: “For more than a decade our government has been rigged in favor of the rich and special interests. . While the wealthiest Americans get richer, middle-class Americans work harder and earn less while paying higher taxes to a government that fails to produce what we need: good jobs in a growing economy, world-class education, affordable health care, and safe streets and neighborhoods. Economic growth will not come without a national economic strategy to invest in people and meet the competition. Today we have no economic vision, no economic leadership and no economic strategy.”

    Bill’s slogans in 1992: Rigged system? Working harder, earning less? Lets tax the rich? Overhaul the healthcare system so everyone is covered? Hard working Americans have no voice in America? I will be closing corporate tax loopholes, and requiring the very wealthy to pay their fair share of taxes.

    And this shit is centrist/moderate? WTF are you imbibing?

    You are confusing the way they governed and not how they ran initially. Or do you forget that Obama was so far left of the party on Iraq and Afghanistan.

    And finally, a guy named Barack Hussein Obama and the first black President is hardly an establishment candidate.

    Just to refresh your failed memory from 1992, here’s Bill left/center “putting people first” summary:

    Putting People First’

    It’s Time to Put People First.

    That is the core of our national economic strategy for America. And that will be the fundamental idea that guides every day of our Administration.

    For more than a decade our government has been rigged in favor of the rich and special interests. While the wealthiest Americans get richer, middle-class Americans work harder and earn less while paying higher taxes to a government that fails to produce what we need: good jobs in a growing economy, world-class education, affordable health care, and safe streets and neighborhoods. Economic growth will not come without a national economic strategy to invest in people and meet the competition. Today we have no economic vision, no economic leadership and no economic strategy.

    Our political system has failed us, too. Our government doesn’t work. Hard-working Americans who play by rules have no voice in Washington.

    Our National Economic Strategy puts people first by investing more than $50 billion annually over the next four years to put America back to work — the most dramatic economic growth program since World War II. To pay for these investments and reduce our national deficit, we will save nearly $300 billion by cutting spending, closing corporate tax loopholes, and requiring the very wealthy to pay their fair share of taxes.

    Christ, its hard enough to woo the brain dead wingnuts to cross over without having to fight a rear guard action against the boomer neolib centrists sabotaging true liberals.

    1
  43. Polimom says:

    @the Q:

    You are confusing the way they governed and not how they ran initially. Or do you forget that Obama was so far left of the party on Iraq and Afghanistan.

    And finally, a guy named Barack Hussein Obama and the first black President is hardly an establishment candidate.

    That’s your argument that he wasn’t a centrist?? His name and race, and he wasn’t keen on invading? Everybody was stoooopid on Iraq and Afghanistan; neither party had a lock on that one.

    I don’t know that I’d have defined him as “centrist”, but he was definitely running on moderate policy proposals. And as elsewhere mentioned, he was to the right of Hillary.

    4
  44. @the Q: Clinton decidely ran as a centrist. As An Interested Party notes, that was the whole point of the Democratic Leadership Council and he was supposed to be a Third Way candidate.

    Clinton was also considered a “New Democrat” (i.e., a less liberal one).

    8
  45. the Q says:

    To the right of Hillary????? Where was Hillarycare? Obama savaged her ( and other Dems) on their war votes. How the heck do you think he got so much support for a 2 year Senator with no experience if not for being WAY OVER TO THE LEFT?? And as for the HUGE VOTER TURNOUT by young people and POC color in 08???? Do you actually think their turnout was based on this type of thinking “geez, I’ve been waiting on the sidelines to FINALLY vote and am doing so because the Dems are running someone MORE CONSERVATIVE THAN HILLARY” that i can vote for????????????

    1
  46. the Q says:

    Bill ran as a centrist against rap lyrics, crack and gay marriage….his economic policies were decidedly left of center and I am shocked that you folks are in such denial in your defense of the “Bernie is too left” to admit it. In a year with a recession, his leftist economic populism won him the election over the “corporate GOP” poster boy GHWB.

    Does a centrist want to put his wife in charge of overhauling the healthcare system so that we have universal coverage? Raise taxes on the wealthy and close corporate loopholes and off shore bank accounts? That’s centrist? Again for the daft, Bill ran in 92 as an outsider, much like trump and by definition an outsider is not “moderate”.

    If you folks think that running against the corrupted Washington swamp is centrist, no wonder the GOP kills us. After he won, he started to toe the DLC line. Sorry, but I am dismayed at the delusion on this issue by some of you.

  47. Neil Hudelson says:

    @the Q:

    You’re fun.

    10
  48. the Q says:

    PS, what I admire in a horrible way about the wingnuts is they never say “let’s run a fucking moderate” …they are perfectly comfortable running wildly rightwing conservative “let’s cut taxes for the rich (third iteration which blows up the deficit, but they don’t care) and rat fuck the poor…..let’s pollute more and regulate less….let’s kick out immigrants and cut food stamps to welfare cheats and make them work for their assistance….let’s cut funds to education, head start, job training…” Are these moderate centrist positions??????????

    We are pussies compared to their hardcore adherence to their crackpot idealogy….

    As Truman said years ago “If you run a Republican against a Republican, the Republican wins every time.” He also said, “to live like a Republican, vote Democrat.”

    Bill himself often quoted those lines in 92….you think a Dem centrist would say that?

    1
  49. Lounsbury says:

    @mattbernius: Yes the preferred candidate who himself is not ‘of colour’ in that tedious american phrase. The original point really to your Woke requirement that the running mate must be a woman of colour, although your hand-waiving furiously…

    @Scott F.:
    Wokeness is the only rational for that sweeping statement.

  50. Andy says:

    @mattbernius:

    Is there empirical evidence that any non-white group considers candidate skin color when deciding whether to vote or not? Or deciding which candidate to select?

    Is there actually evidence that the reduced turnout in 2016 was because Clinton wasn’t black or didn’t have a black running mate? The reduced turnout in 2016 can be explained by other factors and policy differences between Obama and Clinton and I think everyone agrees that Clinton was, on the whole, a much worse campaigner and candidate than Obama was.

    Frankly, I find it troublesome to lump PoC together as a single political cohort and then imply that they use a candidate’s skin color to determine whether to vote or not. If that’s not your argument, then I apologize, but that’s how it comes across.

    3
  51. @the Q: Sincere question: how old are you? I ask because I am curious if your perception of Bill Clinton is based on experiencing that contest or just as a historical assumption.

    I would note, too, Bill was clearly a neoliberal.

    11
  52. An Interested Party says:

    @the Q: Here, let me help you out, sweetie…

    In 1992, Clinton ran as a tough crime fighter. He not only backed capital punishment – in campaign ads, no less – but as governor of Arkansas, he approved the controversial execution of a brain-damaged African American named Ricky Ray Rector. His position on the issue was popular within the party, but Democratic support for the death penalty has since plummeted, from 71 percent in 1995 to just 40 percent in 2015.

    During his first presidential campaign, Clinton was generally sympathetic to gay rights, but opposed legal recognition of same-sex marriage. He later signed the Defense of Marriage Act. In 1996, he said: “It was my position in ’92. I told everybody who asked me about it, straight or gay, what my position was. I can’t change my position on that; I have no intention of it.” Around that time, only 33 percent of Democrats supported same-sex marriage. By last year, that figure was up to 65 percent. Many Democratic activists now regard opposition to same-sex marriage as beyond the pale of acceptable political discourse.

    Journalist Clarence Page wrote that a turning point of the 1992 campaign came when Clinton faulted Jesse Jackson`s organization for giving a forum to rap artist Sister Souljah, who had seemed to endorse the idea of African Americans killing whites instead of one another. Jackson wanted an apology, but Clinton refused, and his approval numbers went up. It is unlikely that a “Sister Souljah moment” would succeed in the current campaign. Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley had to apologize merely for saying that “all lives matter” – a phrase that offended that Black Lives Matter movement.

    Clinton bristled when conservative critics accused him of pushing socialist policies. “Socialism is when the Government runs a health care system,” he said. “We don’t have socialized medicine in this country, and my plan is for private insurance and private doctors.” Indeed, he proclaimed that the 20th century had marked “the victory of democracy over totalitarianism, of free enterprise over state socialism.” But now Hillary Clinton is facing a serious threat from Bernie Sanders, a self-proclaimed socialist. According to a New York Times poll, 56 percent of those Democratic primary voters said they felt positive about socialism as a governing philosophy.

    Hmm, that doesn’t look like a lefty to me…

    In 2008, both Clinton and Obama spent a lot of time debating a single fateful vote she cast in 2002 in favor of George W. Bush’s invasion of Iraq. But if you look at all the votes that were cast during the four years they served together in the Senate, it was Clinton who amassed the more liberal record.

    -In the 109th Senate, Obama was the 17th most liberal member (between Chuck Schumer and Tom Harkin), while Clinton was the 13th most liberal member.

    -In the 110th Senate, Obama was the 18th most liberal member (again one tick to the left of Schumer) while Clinton was again 13th most liberal.

    -Another way of looking at it is that of the two Democratic senators from New York, Clinton was the more liberal. Of the two Democratic senators from Illinois, Obama was the more conservative.

    Of course, one could say that these kind of crude vote-agglomeration methods miss a lot of what matters. A single vote on Iraq was more consequential than dozens of votes on budget amendments. But this is the point. Clinton’s reputation as a centrist Democrat comes largely from her foreign policy. On the economic issues that dominate congressional votes by volume, she’s liberal.

    In keeping with her voting record, Clinton ran to Obama’s left on economic issues in the 2008 primaries. This manifested itself most clearly on the subject of health care, where Clinton was willing to include a politically unpopular individual mandate to buy health insurance as part of a program for universal coverage. Obama was not willing to go so far, and came in for substantial criticism from liberals for it. Less famously, Clinton proposed a Cabinet-level poverty czar position — an idea that might make a comeback in 2016.

    The ideological divide here was not large, but it was reflected in patterns of support for the two candidates. Clinton secured more labor union backing than Obama, and Obama did better than Clinton at gaining primary votes from self-identified independents.

    Hmm…so much for the Kenyan Socialist label, which was nothing but crude GOP scaremongering anyway…

    3
  53. the Q says:

    Yes, AIP, of course Hillary was the outsider candidate that was bucking the neolib Dem establishment corporatists who insisted she was too leftist to win and instead threw all their money and support to the bland, centrist, African American Senator with two years experience because he was by far the more establishment of the two….Hillary’s “hope and change” slogan just didn’t resonate with Dem voters……got it…..wow, and to think if we would have just run someone to the right of Hillary in 2016, we would be toasting President O’Malley right now.

  54. An Interested Party says:

    @the Q: You can bluster all you want, but the fact of the matter is that Obama ran to her right in 2008, especially when it came to domestic economic policy…she was the one who wanted an individual mandate and he was against that…in 2016 of course she appeared as the centrist when she was running against a lefty like Bernie…that you don’t see how radical he appears to a lot of Democrats who are scared to death that he will lead to Trump winning a second term is your blind spot, not anyone else’s…

    5
  55. gVOR08 says:

    In a discussion of who can win the nomination Dr. Taylor and James mentioned Bloomberg, in a pretty much pro forma manner. No one else has mentioned him. This is a bunch of political junkies, mostly D leaning. If he’s not on anyone’s mind here I think we can write him off. Despite all the TV ads and glossy mailers I’m seeing here in Florida.

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  56. gVOR08 says:

    @Andy:

    Is there actually evidence that the reduced turnout in 2016 was because Clinton wasn’t black or didn’t have a black running mate?

    I will defer to anyone with actual data, but my understanding is that black turnout for Hillary was fairly normal. It was down compared to higher than normal black turnout for Obama.

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  57. @gVOR08: I am not convinced that even all the money he has spent will lead to a significant delegate haul tomorrow. I don’t think you can waltz in as an outsider and claim the nomination.

    He isn’t even over 15% in the 538 national poll average. I know tomorrow is state-by-state, but the national numbers are an important indicator.

  58. @the Q:

    Bill himself often quoted those lines in 92….you think a Dem centrist would say that?

    BTW, I think part of the problem is that you are conflating labels with actual meaning, as well as making in-race comparisons and then comparisons over time all at the same time.

    For example, Bernie is more liberal than Biden. But that doesn’t mean that Biden isn’t liberal.

    In general: centrist compared to what? Liberal compared to what?

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  59. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @mattbernius:

    Hmm, interesting spelling of “color” for someone from the US.

    Good catch! He’s clearly not “one of us,” and as a consequence, can’t possibly have anything worthwhile to say, nor can he offer any insights that would be useful here in this greatest of all nations God ever created. Clearly he’s either a plant or a bot.

    4
  60. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @An Interested Party: You don’t get it at all. A candidate’s political leaning is not based on what policy positions that candidate takes. It’s exclusively decided on the basis of what Rush Limbaugh and Dinesh Di Souza declare it to be. Try to keep up! 😉

    4
  61. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @Scott F.: Well by the framing of your question, it appears you mean a female non-person of color. That’s easy, most of them dont vote for Democrats..especially in the South. Female non-persons of color are not part of the Democratic base. Hell, they went for Trump in ’16

    2
  62. Jax says:

    Thank God the winky emoji works, now if we only had a ROFLMAO button instead of simple thumbs up and down. You guys kill me sometimes with the implied sarcasm. 🙂

    2
  63. EddieInCA says:

    To her credit, Klobuchar gave an amazing speech introduction for Joe Biden just now in Dallas.

    She ended it with a very simple message to all of her supporters for super Tuesday. It was short. It was simple. And it easily fits on a bumper sticker.

    “Vote Joe”.

    4
  64. EddieInCA says:

    Beto just endorsed Biden and is giving a hell of a speech as well in Dallas.

    4
  65. MarkedMan says:

    I’m truly curious. Bernie expressed contempt for the Democratic Party and for each and every Democratic candidate individually, and then ran in the Democratic primary. If he wins he will be vindicated. And if he loses… all the Bernie Bros will talk about what traitors those Dems are and go vote for Trump.

    5
  66. James Joyner says:

    @gVOR08:

    In a discussion of who can win the nomination Dr. Taylor and James mentioned Bloomberg, in a pretty much pro forma manner.

    Presumably, this was both before the debates and, especially, before South Carolina. Bloomberg’s rationale depended on being the only candidate who could defeat Sanders. That presumed Biden never regained momentum.

    2
  67. Jen says:

    @MarkedMan: I have a friend who is losing his dang mind over what has transpired during the last few days. It’s apparently a huge plot by the DNC, rather than a fairly expected result of front-loading the primaries and candidates understanding the math in front of them.

    He’s a white male Bernie supporter and has, in the past, done a lot of fussing about how the office of the president should be respected. I have a feeling that yep, he’s going to vote Trump if he doesn’t get his wish on Bernie. The one commonality between Trump supporters and Bernie supporters is a near-constant state of victimhood. It’s tiring.

    3
  68. mattbernius says:

    Ok, so lots to respond to and I’ll do my best to hit them all in a single comment.

    First a mea culpa about the initial comment:
    @mattbernius:

    a qualified PoC (preferably a woman) as VP

    I think I had thought I did enough work with “qualified” to make it clear that I wasn’t simply saying “any” (as further proof that wasn’t my position, a few posts later, I said I don’t think Stacy Abrams is the right choice). So to be clear, I do think the VP needs to be from one of the minorities (I’ll respect @Lounsbury’s trigger and not say of color) who make up a significant portion of the Democratic party. That doesn’t necessarily have to be a woman, but that’s my preference (and to the degree I’ll admit to “wokeness” it’s in that preference.

    Which gets to the fair questions and critiques asked by @Polimom & @Andy. And I think both raise good points. Part of the issue is that the DNC and the Clinton campaign failed to conduct an official post-mortem after 2012. So we don’t have a definitive narrative. Third party groups have conducted some which typically either largely ignore race (https://www.brookings.edu/blog/fixgov/2016/11/16/choose-your-own-post-mortem-part-1/) or account for it (https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/democracy/reports/2017/11/01/441926/voter-trends-in-2016/).

    I do think there were a lot of factors at play in the reduced turn-out among Black voters (including disappointment with Obama and that change had not come at the rate they were hoping for within their own communities).

    However, as an anthropologist, I am going to say that a portion of progressives (not to mention White folks in general) desire to reduce everything to economics fails here. If this was simply about economic inequality, we would see candidates like Sanders running away with the field in both 2016 and 2020. But that hasn’t been the case. (Note here, I used to be part of this camp — that it’s all economics and that race prevents us from talking about that… I have come to see this as a deeply naive viewpoint that’s largely embraced to side step issues of culpability in systemic racism).

    Race and being able to speak critically to race does matter which gets to:

    @Andy:

    Frankly, I find it troublesome to lump PoC together as a single political cohort and then imply that they use a candidate’s skin color to determine whether to vote or not.

    Yup. I fully agree that no single PoC can stand for every minority. Heck no member of community should stand for their entire community as well. Working in and around community activists in the criminal justice space, that is something that I am fundamentally aware of.

    That said, we also need to acknowledge that there are aspects of the American experience that someone who grew up white isn’t going to understand. And there are commonalities with being a member of any minority.

    Which again, gets to the broader point that if your political party is going to rely on minority votes, the representation does matter. And matter deeply. Having two white folks at the top of a ticket, when there are without a doubt qualified minority candidates, is sending a message whether that makes you uncomfortable or not.

    @Polimom:

    The assumption I’m hearing in your argument is that the black vote will not turn out in the numbers needed if there isn’t a black candidate on the ballot. How do you know that would be the driver? (and if that’s not your underlying argument, please forgive me.)

    Without a doubt, I am not saying simply putting a black candidate or a latino or a latina on the ticket is all that’s needed and then game over. I do however believe to my core that having representation on the ticket does change the calculus in a way that “a white candidate who cares about community issues” does not. Why else would Obama have gotten historic turnout in a number of minority communities?

    Which gets to @Lounsbury:

    Yes the preferred candidate [Biden] who himself is not ‘of colour’ in that tedious american phrase.

    Yes, the people of South Carolina voted chose a white candidate from a slate of only white candidates. That totally sunk my battleship. I also note that you don’t even seem to mention that Biden was the Vice President for the first and only Black (I’d hate to offend your delicate sensibilities by saying African American) president.

    I am absolutely sure that had nothing at all to do with his support in the community. BTW, Clinton won SC in 2016 and yet folks didn’t turn out for her in the general.

    @Lounsbury:

    The Democrats should choose a VP who addresses the centre of the country and brings in added votes

    The appear to be selecting the Presidential Candidate whose intended to do that. That’s the core of Biden’s rationale. There’s no reason to double up — especially when I think there’s a pretty strong arguement that most Trump populist voters are probably sticking with Trump this election.

    But hey, you do you…

    Beyond that you keep aruging for the stats of the 2016 election and absolutely cite none. Which is one hell of an arguement (oh, that and I’m a crazy woke person… which honestly if you follow my pretty moderate posting record here causes me a great laugh).

    I also will continue to note that Democrats have not won the majority of the White Vote in years (men or women) — which everyone keeps seeming to just gloss over for some reason. Further, in recent close elections, it’s been the black and minority vote that has gotten Democrats over the line: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/dec/13/doug-jones-alabama-roy-moore-african-american-voters

    But hey, I guess facts have a woke bias. I’d also love to hear from minority commenters on this site to see if they think the position I’m laying out is crazy. @Jim Brown 32 and Dennis, I’d love your personal perspective (I’m not asking you to talk for your community…. just yourselves).

    Ok, last one:
    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    He’s clearly not “one of us,” and as a consequence, can’t possibly have anything worthwhile to say, nor can he offer any insights that would be useful here in this greatest of all nations God ever created.

    Fair point. I wasn’t intending to suggest that he’s a bot. However, the “-our” is a give away that he either isn’t a US citizen or wasn’t born here. Reading between the lines it was the latter (and it sounds like he’s naturalized). I do think that colors (or is it colours) a view on race in the US.

    That said, I should have unpacked that thinking in that post and leaving any room for inference was a bad move on my part. So my apologies on that.

  69. Lounsbury says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: I think of myself as an evergreen perrenial.

    1
  70. @mattbernius:

    if your political party is going to rely on minority votes, the representation does matter. And matter deeply. Having two white folks at the top of a ticket, when there are without a doubt qualified minority candidates, is sending a message whether that makes you uncomfortable or not.

    This is key.

    2
  71. BTW: in regards to chatter in this thread about a veep candidate and bringing vote/regional balance, I would note that there really isn’t any evidence (apart from Texas in 1960) that regional balance on the ticket makes a lot of difference.

    Strategic balance (such as naming a woman, or a person of color, etc) likely has more saliency.

    Having said all of that: the evidence as I understand it suggests that people rarely choose based on who the veep is.

    1
  72. mattbernius says:

    @Lounsbury:

    I think of myself as an evergreen perrenial.

    Well played sir… well played.

    And again, apologies for giving the impression I thought you were a bot.

  73. mattbernius says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    Having said all of that: the evidence as I understand it suggests that people rarely choose based on who the veep is.

    Yeah, I should have stated that — however, I wonder if race/ethnicity could be an exception (though as a counterfactual, it doesn’t appear that gender made a difference in 2008 — though that could also be due to party dynamics).

    And ultimately the sample set is really small.

  74. Lounsbury says:

    @mattbernius: No worries mate, sense of humour and all that. But for the whole lot of you, you need to chill out in accusing every bloody person who deviates from Lefty Activist line that is rather popular among commentariat to be a Russian Bot, a Republican Troll or whatnot. Like the returned Polimom.

    Chill and patience. Yes there are Putin bots but there’s a nasty tendency of late to jump to that conclusion right away.

    Against my normal prediliction (it being normally in political colour rather more like Mr James Joyner) I am indeed rooting for you gits. The Orange Cretin is intolerable and unlike Boris (who is equally if differently intolerable) rather more possible for him to blunder via stupidity into a real disaster (whereas Boris’ natural cunning will lead him to pull back).

    1
  75. mattbernius says:

    @Lounsbury:

    Chill and patience. Yes there are Putin bots but there’s a nasty tendency of late to jump to that conclusion right away.

    Completely agree and cosign. As I said, I had not caught that you’re an expat previously.

  76. Polimom says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: @mattbernius:

    Having said all of that: the evidence as I understand it suggests that people rarely choose based on who the veep is.

    My understanding is that a veep choice doesn’t help, but can hurt a candidate. Anecdotally, I saw this in action with McCain when he picked Palin (and sent quite a number of potential voters screaming from the room…).

    1
  77. @Polimom: Sure, although even then I have to wonder as to how many people really chose Obama over McCain because of Palin.

    Regardless, my fundamental point is that waaaay too much is made every four years about veep choices in terms of geography in particular.

    1
  78. mattbernius says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    Sure, although even then I have to wonder as to how many people really chose Obama over McCain because of Palin.

    Ok, this, plus @Polimom’s comment were both really helpful to read to better articulate the point that I was trying to make up thread.

    I honestly don’t think the VP has any substantive effect on the choice of who they vote for. And a quick review of the lit seems to back this up.

    I do wonder the degree to which a VP choice can motivate someone to vote. To Stephen’s point, its the idea of X VP will allow the ticket to win Y states or region. There doesn’t appear to be much to back that up. See this study summary for example: https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2016/04/election-2016-vice-president-selection-matters-less-than-you-think-213805

    It seems pretty clear that it doesn’t really matter from a geographic perspective — i.e. a VP doesn’t appear to put states into play. My gut says that might be different for specific groups (to my point members of minorities). Again, I’m not saying that it would sway people away from a candidate. But I have to wonder if it would get people who were already predisposed in a certain direction out to vote who otherwise wouldn’t show up.

  79. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @mattbernius: I think you mostly laid out a baseline from which to understand to analyze black political calculus. There will be departures of positions more liberal or more conservative depending on the class, region, and education of the individual voter.

    I’d only add that color of candidates is not as important. However, if you are going to claim to carry the water for Black issues, you better have paid your dues in our communities learning the nuance of those positions. Its is obviously when someone hasn’t, ie Mayor Pete, Bernie, Klobachar, and Warren. Joe Biden paid those dues. Sure, he caddied for Obama…that helped alot. But believe me, if he didn’t spend the time and came across as a stuffed shirt white politician talking the black vote for granted….he would have went nowhere.

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  80. mattBernius says:

    @Jim Brown 32:

    I’d only add that color of candidates is not as important. However, if you are going to claim to carry the water for Black issues, you better have paid your dues in our communities learning the nuance of those positions.

    if he didn’t spend the time and came across as a stuffed shirt white politician talking the black vote for granted….he would have went nowhere.

    I regret I only have one upvote to give. But it’s a well earned one fwiw.

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