Hillary needs Bernie’s support

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I am a Hillary Clinton supporter but have been impressed with Bernie Sanders’ campaign.  Amazingly, he continues to pile up victory after victory, most recently sweeping Hawaii, Alaska and Washington on a Saturday when most Americans were watching the Elite 8 NCAA tournament games.  And while he clearly has the momentum, he is still trailing in the delegate count and has practically no chance to win the nomination even if he wins the rest of the democratic races, unless Hillary Clinton drops out.

As a Hillary Clinton supporter, I am concerned about her performance and worry that her wins to date have been mostly in states that typically vote for the Republican candidate in the General election.  Bernie seems to be winning the states that Hillary needs to carry in the General to have a chance at victory.  My fear is that Bernie supporters in the states he’s won so far that went to the Democrats in 2012: WA, MI, MN, VT, ME, NH, HI, and CO will refuse to back her, or only do so if she adopts positions that he supports.  In fact, Bernie has indicated that he won’t campaign for her without getting something in return. The problem is that if she does turn sharply to the left in the general, she will lose and lose badly.  And she may lose anyway, even if Bernie accepts defeat with humility because so many of BS supporters simply do not like her, thanks to Bernie’s portrayal of her as an establishment hawk  wedded to Wall Street, wealthy donors, and Obamacare that Bernie and the Republicans reject, the very health care system that allows many of the Millenials, who make up a large portion of his supporters, to stay on their parent’s health care plan until they reach 26 years of age.  This same Obamacare has provided coverage for many people in the U.S. who formerly had no insurance at all.  Unfortunately, BS supporters don’t seem to understand that if BS loses (and he inevitably will) Trump or Cruz could be their (my, our) next President.  BS supporters, I know it will be difficult for you to embrace HC, but I urge you to read up on what a Cruz or Trump presidency would look like.

Not all is gloom and doom for HC.  While Bernie has won states that vote Dem. in the General, so too has Hillary.  In fact, for comparison sake, if the contest were a General election between Bernie and Hillary, she’d have won the equivalent of 103 electoral votes in Blue states to date, while BS would have won just 57.  She’s won the big ones that went DEM in 2012:  IL, OH, and FL.  He’s been winning the smaller Blue states (Blue in 2012) like HI, VT and NH.  He’d have to nearly run the table of the remaining Blue states to best her in electoral votes (taking all the Red States out of the equation) meaning Bernie would need to win NY, NJ, CA, CT, PA, DC, OR, RI, NM, MD and DE, a highly unlikely scenario.

If Hillary wins the nomination, as she’s on pace to do despite Bernie’s momentum, she will need to win most of the Blue states that President Obama won in 2012, including the blue states that Bernie has already won which include: WA, HI, VT, CO, MN, MI, NH and ME.  He and his supporters HAVE to deliver these states to HC in the General.  I know cooperation is not in Bernie’s DNA.  For the record, he is notorious for rarely compromising in Congress which is the basis for governance in a democracy.  He is as well known for his failure to seek or attract bipartisan support for legislation he has put forth or to support moderate legislation.  In fact, he and Cruz are on opposite extremes of the ideological spectrum and have done very little in their careers to help break the gridlock on capital hill and have actually, in many ways, contributed to it with purist and angry views.  The truth is, ideologues have a hard time uniting people and governing.

BS supporters, take a close look at HC.  Whether you like her not, she WILL appoint a supreme court judge who WON’T take us back to the stone age; she’ll protect Obamacare and try to expand it; she BELIEVES in climate change and science; she’ll protect Social Security (expanding it is a pipe dream, sorry) and won’t raise the retirement age to 96; she’ll work to address the issues of racism, including prison and police reform and will challenge states who insist on suppressing the vote;  she’ll support an INCREASE in minimum wage; she’ll support women’s rights; she’ll support the LGBT community; she’ll fight for sensible gun control laws; she’ll fight ISIS intelligently; she’ll continue to improve relationships with our allies, which is vital in a global community – we cannot allow the U.S. to become an isolationist nation, nor to promote protectionism which will spark a trade war and kill the economy.

An HC presidency would be infinitely preferable to a Trump or Cruz regime.  With all due respect to BS and to his supporters, he can’t win – the delegate math is against him.  After the convention, when Bernie’s defeat becomes official, please support and more importantly, VOTE for HC in the General.  Your future – OUR future is at stake.

 

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Likely NDT 2016 National Champion

March Madness of Another Kind

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In the East, watch out for Kentucky and Michigan; in the  Midwest, Michigan State is a lock.  Over in the South, I like Cal’s chances and in the West, well, if pressed, I’d say Baylor, who last won the championship in, is due, but don’t count Texas out just yet. The last time one of these teams won a National Championship was back in 2008, when two speedy tacticians, Jacob Polin and Michael Burshteyn smoked the field.  The tandem of Spurlock and Muppala aim to bring back the glory.

Yes, it’s March madness, but not that one in Houston.  I’m talking about the one in Binghamton.  Haven’t you heard?  The 2016 National Debate Tournament.  And it looks to be a good one.  I actually don’t know which teams will ultimately compete, but most of the schools listed have teams that were issued first round at large bids which means they qualified for the tournament. Last year, Northwestern took the prize, as they’ve done quite often over the past few decades, but this year, they will face stiff competition from the likes of Harvard, Michigan State, Kansas, Georgetown, Emory and Vermont.  Yes, Vermont feels the Bern, or I should say the Brough and Lee.

Kansas, Baylor, Michigan St., Kentucky, Cal, Texas, Gonzaga, Iowa, Oklahoma, Weber St., Indiana, USC,  and Michigan all have teams in the NCAA tournament and most will also have delegations competing at the NDT.  Wouldn’t it be something if a school brought home two nationals championships during March Madness?  And it could happen.  My prediction:  Michigan State.

Clinton Should Focus on Trump Not Bernie

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Secretary Clinton is not doing herself a favor by going after Bernie Sanders.  All she’s doing is ticking off Bernie supporters who she will need supporting her when she becomes the nominee.  Now I’m not writing off Bernie.  He’ll win some more states and do very well in others collecting a number of delegates in the process.  Notwithstanding his success, the delegate math is stacked against him.  He knows this.  And Hillary should too.  What she needs to do is start showing Bernie more respect.  Her gaffe about Bernie not standing with her in her fight for health care when she was first lady, when in fact he was standing behind her, and had received her praise, came across as another desperate lie.  I don’t think she misspoke as much as she selectively forgot.  As with the earlier comments about the Reagans being leaders in the discussion of HIV/Aids – they were anything but leaders – Nancy was famously the woman who preached abstinence and is best known for her “just say no” campaign – Clinton risks further credibility problems by reaching into the past to say something clever.  I hate to say it because it is what so many don’t like about her, but she needs to stick to the script.  The problem is, she and Bernie are both held to a much higher standard than Trump when it comes to public statements.   When they misspeak or misremember, the press trounces on them.  When Trump lies, taunts, bullies and makes some of the most vile remarks, he gets a pass.  And when he is critiqued, he simply says that the liberal media is out to get him and his faithful madly cheer seething with hatred and ready to do whatever Trump calls on them to do.  So what Clinton needs to do is explain how she plans to beat Trump, without arguing that she is better suited to beat him than Bernie, even though she is. Bernie can only defeat Trump if Trump self-implodes, which is a possibility.  Trump might not even win the nomination. But if he does, Hillary will need all of Bernie’s supporters to turn out.  If they don’t, game over.

Clinton Wins Dems in Red States

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Hillary Clinton may win the delegate count with the help of super delegates, but she hasn’t been able to defeat Bernie Sanders in very many states that typically vote blue in general elections.  So far, Bernie has taken the blue states of CO, MI, MN and VT.  Clinton, on the other hand, has won mostly in states that go for Republicans, the so called red states. Giving the delegate math, Bernie is not likely to win the nomination.  And if his supporters in Dem. strongholds do not turn out in November to support Clinton, she is not likely to win the presidency.  I can guarantee this:  them southern states ain’ta turnin blue, that’s for sure – although North Carolina and Florida could be up for grabs.  The same could be said for Virginia, a blue state in 2012 that could turn blood red in November.

The problem for the Clinton campaign has been drumming up enthusiasm for her vision, which is not terribly attractive to younger voters.  Her platform has been mostly to assure the public that she’ll continue President Obama’s legacy.  That’s just not enough for young voters who are saddled with debt and fear the future, even though the President has managed to accomplish quite a lot – things that have benefited the young and old alike, despite Republican obstructionism. The thing is, Bernie has a vision – a laudable but unrealistic one in my judgement – of a country where Wall Street is taken down a notch and corporate America willingly pays taxes; a vision where Congress suddenly decides that a single payer health care system makes sense as an alternative to the Obama care that they have tried repeatedly to repeal and replace. Can you see the legislature supporting free tuition and student loan forgiveness for all in debt?  I would like for Wall Street to forgive my credit card debt and my home loan and pay back all the student loans I paid in my day, and I am sure Bernie has a plan for that on his website.  Simply put, BS is full of promises that he cannot possibly deliver, and young people have blindly bought into the rhetoric, just as voters have bought into Trump’s slick and self-funding con job. When BS loses the nomination, as he most assuredly will, will his idealistic young fans rally behind Hillary Clinton?  Sadly, I don’t think they will.

That is, young people will not turn out for Clinton unless she scares the shit of them with the prospects of a Trump presidency.  Are the young idealists capable of grasping reality? Can’t they see that Trump would be an absolute disaster for them and the country?  Do they care?  Would they prefer to have fun at protests for the next four years? I guess it would keep activists employed.   I know that I am being cynical, but the stakes are high.  We can’t lose 4 years to a egomaniac who seems to have no core beliefs except the belief in himself.  Trump essentially wants to lower taxes for the wealthy, give corporate welfare to entice American businesses to come back home, build up a bloated military, which is always good for big business, and get rid of environmental protections, ignoring climate change in the process. He’d somehow deport the undocumented (would he bring back Trump airlines for this?) ban Muslims from entering the country and close mosques, here in the land of the free and the home of the brave.  Trump might have to knock down Lady Liberty and build a giant Trump wall on Ellis Island. Trump’s biggest supporters, the white middle class and the “poorly educated” had better brace to pay more for everything as a result of protectionism, which would spark trade wars.  You like your Honda Civic?  How about paying $50,000 for one.  Might I offer you a Chevy Spark instead?  How about a Dodge Dart? (of course you will need to buy the engine warmer if you live in a cold climate) The bailout was a good idea, but it’s time America make a better car, and only competition can make that happen, that is if you believe in free and fair trade.

And I am only getting started.  If you think the U.S. is a divided nation now, imagine a Trump presidency, full of ego and little regard for civility, a free press, peace, human rights, the environment and democratic institutions.  Congress is not a board of directors and the American people are not simply reality show TV fans.  Hostile takeovers and hardball diplomacy will not gain the U.S. standing in the world or make it any safer.  Imagine Carl Icahn negotiating peace between Israel and the Middle East. And get this, if Trump is elected, can you imagine Ted Cruz as the next Supreme Court justice?  We’d be one step closer to a heavily armed theocracy in this country. It could happen.  I’m serious. If Clinton is unsuccessful in scaring the crap out of young Bernie supporters so that they turnout in November, Trump wins handily and the next 4 years will be an absolute disaster for us all, Trump supporters included.