Former Senator Claire McCaskill (D) [2018 file photo].
This morning, after their polling and reporting yesterday evening erased Elizabeth Warren (D):
Claire McCaskill @clairecmc
This is going to be interesting. Bloomberg on the debate stage tonight. Tune in and join us for pre debate and post debate analysis. @msnbc @BWilliams @NicolleDWallace 6:46 AM · Feb 19, 2020
I just had to respond:
So, is the pre debate analysis going to erase @ewarren? Is the debate coverage going to pixelate her face and mute any of her responses? Just curious. 6:50 AM · Feb 19, 2020
We are an impatient people. We watch impatient old media. They create narratives because they are impatient. We listen to those tired narratives because we are so predictably impatient.
The old media hand wringing on the evening of the Iowa Caucus was a thing to behold. I spent my time watching their coverage screaming obscenities at the onscreen talking heads throughout the night. You’d have thought the cable networks had spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on their brand new sets and on their ominous, yet vaguely patriotic, “Decide Something 2020” theme music. Instead, we got a really bad remake of the 1970 Mary Tyler Moore Show election night blizzard episode “The Snow Must Go On”. Watch the original, it’s hilarious.
Old media had to wait, what, seventy-two hours, for an approximation of the final results of a CAUCUS, the first voting event in a line of fifty-seven or so (states, commonwealths, territories). They wanted to declare an ultimate winner THAT VERY NIGHT. How dare the Iowa Democratic Party hold a caucus like that. You know, with (very public) formulas and arcane rules. Yawn.
If you’ve ever participated in a caucus they’re all like that. [Raises hand: Missouri, 1992.] Forget that it took months for an “official winner” of the Iowa republican caucus several cycles back.
The 2020 Iowa Caucus was the best thing to happen to presidential politics in America in a long time. Maybe 2020 will be a final stake in the heart of this money sucking, faux populist, abomination of true Democracy.
Caucuses are inherently undemocratic while simultaneously being small “d” democratic. You can’t “vote” at will over a period of your choosing in the hours between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. on the day of the caucus. You have to show up before they figuratively “lock the doors” at the appointed hour and then you have to stay for the duration to have your vote counted. Who does this cockamamie process exclude? I’ll wait.
Candidates spent tens of millions in Iowa. Several campaigns, with stellar candidates, ran out of resources and the approval of conventional wisdom long before the first vote was cast. That’s a tragedy for all of us. The candidates spent tens of millions of dollars in Iowa. Think about that.
It’s on us because we let this happen, election after election.
There’s a lot to be said for retail politics, the art and charm of presidential candidates getting out there and engaging voters one on one. Get over it. You don’t live there. There are a lot of Americans who don’t get that opportunity to engage with candidates who want to be their president, because somehow we’ve anointed two small states with a tiny percentage of voters (and low turnout) and with a minimal number of nominating delegates at stake to act as the final arbiters and gatekeepers of our viable and/or electable candidates for president.
Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, Julián Castro, to name a few, are no longer candidates. Tulsi Gabbard hangs on, still. I rest my case.
Senator Kamala Harris (D) [2019 file photo].
Senator Cory Booker (D) [2019 file photo]
Former HUD Secretary Julián Castro (D) [2019 file photo].
So, here we are, with eight or so candidates remaining in the Democratic Party presidential nominating process and old media chomping at the bit to create winners and losers narratives. The next two components of the process include another arcane caucus and an honest to goodness primary. We’ll see what happens. Old media will lazily build on their previous narratives or gaslight us all if they change them. Then it’s fifty-three or so primaries or caucuses to go. Get my drift?
In the meantime, a trend on social media:
Adam Best @adamcbest
#PresidentWarren is trending because despite her being 3rd in delegates, 3rd in most national polls and 2nd in endorsements, the media acts as if she doesn’t exist. So her supporters are dealing with this blackout by making sure voters know she’s still here and still kicking ass. 3:40 PM · Feb 17, 2020
Remarks of President Barack Obama as Delivered
The White House
March 19, 2016
Hi, everybody. One of the most consequential responsibilities our Constitution grants a President is appointing a Supreme Court Justice. The men and women who sit on the Supreme Court safeguard our rights. They ensure that ours is a system of laws, not of men. And they’re given the essential task of applying the principles written into our founding documents to the most challenging questions of today.
So this is a duty I take very seriously. It requires me to set aside short-term politics in order to maintain faith with our founders. And on Wednesday, after weeks of consultations with Republicans, Democrats, and leaders across the country, I selected a nominee whose unmatched experience and integrity have earned him the respect and admiration of both parties – Chief Judge Merrick Garland.
Judge Garland grew up in my hometown of Chicago, with parents who taught him to work hard and deal fairly. As a young lawyer, he left a lucrative private firm to work for half as much in public service. Eventually, he oversaw the federal response to the Oklahoma City bombing, working side-by-side with first responders, victims, and their families to bring justice for an unspeakable crime. And everywhere he went during that investigation, he carried with him in his briefcase the program from the memorial service with each of the victims’ names inside.
For the last 19 years, Judge Garland has served on what’s known as “the second highest court in the land” – the D.C. Circuit Court – including the last three years as Chief Judge. On the bench, he’s shown a dedication to protecting our basic rights. A conviction that powerful voices must not be allowed to drown out those of everyday Americans. An understanding that justice isn’t simply abstract legal theory; it affects people’s daily lives. And a spirit of decency, modesty, and even-handedness in his work. Judge Garland is admired for his courtesy, his devotion to family, and his civic-mindedness – for the past 18 years, he’s served as a tutor for young students at a local D.C. elementary school.
During my time as President, through three separate Supreme Court appointments, in conversations with Republicans and Democrats alike, one name came up more than any other – Merrick Garland.
I understand that we’re in the middle of an especially noisy and volatile political season. But at a time when our politics are so polarized; when norms and customs of our political rhetoric seem to be corroding – this is precisely the time we should treat the appointment of a Supreme Court justice with the seriousness it deserves. Because our Supreme Court is supposed to be above politics, not an extension of politics. And it should stay that way.
So I ask Republicans in the Senate to give Judge Garland the respect he has earned. Give him a hearing. Give him an up-or-down vote. To deny it would be an abdication of the Senate’s Constitutional duty. It would indicate a process for nominating and confirming judges that is beyond repair. It would make it increasingly impossible for any President, Republican or Democrat, to carry out their Constitutional function. To go down that path would jeopardize our system of justice, it would hurt our democracy, and betray the vision of our founding.
I fulfilled my Constitutional duty. Now it’s time for Senators to do theirs. I hope that they take the time to reflect on the importance of this process to our country. I hope that they’ll act fairly. And I hope they’ll work in a bipartisan fashion to confirm Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court. That’s how we can uphold our pledge to liberty and justice for all – for our time and for generations to come.
Thanks everybody. Have a good weekend.
“…I fulfilled my Constitutional duty. Now it’s time for Senators to do theirs…”
We’re not entirely convinced that Senator Roy Blunt (r) is listening.