Last night was a pop the popcorn and make the red Kool-Aid night.
I thoroughly enjoyed Super Tuesday — that once every four years glorious exercise in democracy and chaos. The only thing that would have made last night better would have been contests in both parties like 2016. Oh man, that is so much fun. This year we only had the Democratic Party to have fun with, but that turned out to be enough. Here are my seven take-aways form the voting.
One: Sanders Caucuses better but primaries worse.
In 2016 Sanders did better in the caucuses than Hillary Clinton because caucuses support activism and energy. This year several states, like Minnesota, shifted from caucuses to primaries. I think that had a blunting effect on some of Bernie’s energy.
Two: It might really be about Hillary Clinton.
Oklahoma slipped away from Sanders. In 2016 he won it by ten percentage points. However, this year it went Biden by thirteen points. We must calculate the HC factor. Just as many people voted for President Trump in the general election because they couldn’t stomach Clinton, the same thing might have been happening in the primaries. Bernie perhaps never had as much real support as the 2016 campaign indicated.
Three: Jill Biden is the new James Bond.
Jill Biden’s literally having her husband’s back when some whack job stormed the stage to protest . . . milk, Dr. Jill Biden sprung into action, used proper footing and leverage, moved herself into a defensive posture, and handled the situation. Like. A. Pro.
Four: The Democratic Party is moderate/centrist.
In most of the states, if you total the Biden and Bloomberg vote and compare it with the totals of the Sanders and Warren vote, the Biden/Bloomberg coalition dominates. In fact, the demise of Elizabeth Warren, who came in THIRD in her home state is shocking. I always thought she missed her moment. She should have run in 2016 but she demurred to Clinton and it cost her. Sanders has a ceiling, and it is about twenty-eight. Even in very liberal Massachusetts, the Warren/Biden coalition only beat the Biden/Bloomberg group by three points.
Five: Barack Obama has long coattails.
Biden’s success is a borrowed success. People voted for him because of the Obama legacy of solid, stable, no drama-Obama governance. That is what people were voting for — rejecting the revolution and rejecting the message candidates in favor of familiar.
Six: We can do better than this.
Why on earth did anyone have to stand in line for more than fifteen minutes or so to vote? I do not understand places in Texas and California where people were lined up for more than two hours. FIX THIS!
I heard some great lines last night. Perhaps the best was Brian Williams: “Michael Bloomberg isn’t having the kind of night he thought he paid for.” That is just beautiful. Brit Hume had another great line — “If Biden wins and he debates Donald Trump, the loser will be the English language.” That is a special kind of snark right there which I appreciate very much. Of course, Brit Hume currently has his own bag of vinyl problems.