If I wanted to be cynical, I could say that's because racism is deeply ingrained in the values of the average American voter.
But a more nuanced answer might be that while many, maybe even most voters, may have a theoretical objection to illegal immigration (very few people seriously advocate anything like completely open boarders), this opposition is largely based on misleading stereotypes and misinformation, and the most vocal anti-immigrant activists and media-the ones pushing this as a major political agenda-are generally xenophobic.
There is also a cynical political motive, of course- the Republicans have long defined themselves as the party of anti-immigration sentiment and, frankly, white racism. Thus, predictably, minorities tend to vote Democrat. While mass voter fraud by illegal immigrant voters is of course bullshit, it reveals a real fear for Republicans- that if those illegal immigrants become legal immigrants, they will overwhelmingly vote Democrat. So "zero-tolerance" immigration policies becomes yet another means of suppressing the vote.
I'd actually like to hear what your views are on the merits of immigration, and where you feel that it should be limited, if at all. And it does matter, because people are dying and families are being destroyed (by their children being forcibly taken from them and held in secretive facilities without oversight) on account of US immigration policy.This is part of the problem I have when looking for benefits to illegal immigration. You get an article like "Illegal Immigration is good for the economy" then they start talking about the benefits of legal immigration. I don't care to actually argue the merits of immigration, merely people's reaction to it.
Of course, for practical purposes, public perception is the thing that matters. But its still important to discuss the rationales for immigration, in order to shape that opinion.
The only difference that I can see between a legal immigrant and an illegal immigrant is that one is given the rights and protections of legitimacy, and the other not. The illegal immigrant's capacity to contribute to the economy is not intrinsically less, of course, than that of a legal immigrant's. Its probably true that illegal immigrants represent a greater economic "threat" (if you wish to frame the issue of exploitation of migrant workers in highly selfish and callous terms), but that's because they are outside the law, and thus easier to exploit (and therefore can be used as cheaper labor than legal workers). Bring them into the light, give them a clear and easy path to citizenship, and that would cease to be the case.
Of course, there is a theoretical upper limit to how many immigrants a country can practically take in at a time. But I don't think that we're anywhere near that limit in the US today. There are smaller, and poorer, countries who have a much higher level of immigration per capita than the US does, are there not?
Of course, while all of this is an important discussion for the reasons stated above, to me, its ultimately not an economic issue, but a moral one. People, most of them otherwise law-abiding, come here to escape poverty and violence- and then are met with more of it when they get here. We are a rich and powerful country, and that gives us a duty to try to help others to the extent that we can, in my opinion. I would probably be trying to emigrate to somewhere like the US or Canada if I were in their place, and therefore cannot begrudge them for trying to do so.
Probably largely true, but, that doesn't change the fact that bigotry was and is a major motivation for Trump's base, and that Trump gained the Republican nomination in part by channeling the hatred and resentments of white (especially white male) voters more effectively than his rivals. I would also point out that levels of bigotry in society are not fixed, and that as there has been a stronger push for the rights of women and minorities (with some success), there has been a corresponding wave of increasing (or at least increasingly vocal) white male insecurity and resentment. So I can believe that there are some people who were swayed by Trump's bigotry.The people who made racism an misogyny an issue would have voted (R) anyway. The best case is to get them to stay home.
As I said, I don't think that this alone accounted for his win in the general election, but was only one of many factors.
Yup.But the shitstorm of them rallying behind a handjob like Trump and having their worst fear of "HRC WILL BE PRESIDENT! DO SOMETHING!" made them decide to vote this time around.
Of course, much of the fear of Hillary Clinton was also driven by a sentiment, whether implicit or explicit, that she was unfit for the Presidency on account of her gender. Yes, she had a lot of other problems, and was a poor choice for the Democratic nominee in some ways. But gender prejudices made it easier for many people to believe the worst of her.
There is some truth to this, but the counter-argument, of course, would be that Clinton actually won the popular vote, and that the Democrats are playing in a rigged game- that they have an uphill fight against voter suppression, gerrymandering, massive corporate spending on Republicans, campaign finance violations and illegal use of data, and the Electoral College.And.... the numbers weren't that great TBH. I've said it before: if THIS is what an emboldened group of shitheels can put up when their back is too the wall, then I have to blame Democrats because if they put up someone REMOTELY electable, who isn't saddle by tons of... everything, then presidental elections SHOULD be a blowout in favor of Democrat in 2020+ unless the Republicans make considerable changes to their platform. Because Trump's platform of hate is not actually sustainable. But damn sure MIGHT be if they run HRC again.
In a fair electoral system, the Dems would win most races, most likely. I still remember the reports in 2012 that if the Congressional results matched the percentage of voters who voted for a Democrat for Congress, the Dems would have won the House. But gerrymandering put paid to that. I am also aware that of the seven Presidential elections in my lifetime, Democrats have won the popular vote in six.
Republicans win because they have figured out how to play a rigged game (having done much of the rigging themselves).
Yup.Still, it's a pretty good spot considering the group Clinton should have had overwhelming support from (and didn't) and still put 3 million votes up over the Trumpster.
I am grateful for that one silver lining in 2016, and consider my grudging vote for Clinton to be worth it despite the defeat, because if the results of 2016 proved one thing, it is that Trumpism is NOT endorsed by the majority of the American voters (and that the Electoral College is a fucking travesty, especially given that one of the arguments FOR it is that its supposed to PREVENT the unwashed masses from electing a demagogue). For that, I am forever grateful.
[/quote]I know. That's what I've been saying.[/quote]
This is true, perhaps particularly in America, where the ideal of the lone outlaw hero rebelling against the system is deeply ingrained in the mainstream culture. But I would point to another (albeit related) factor that I think is possibly more important.I will say this, at least as long as I've been alive: positioning yourself as the anti-establishment candidate, the "outsider," the guy who says "I'm really like you guys, but I'll put it on myself to deal with these scumbag politicians to work with you:" it has benefits.
Charisma. If you don't have a persona that can emotionally excite voters, you are probably fucked. Obama had it, and he beat the establishment giant of Hillary Clinton and a war hero in John McCain to become the first black President, in what passes for a landslide in American elections. Trump had it, and though he still had to cheat to put him over the top, it made him a viable candidate despite being a sexually abusive, blatantly racist failed businessman who was pretty much the fucking opposite of "Presidential". Obama and Trump are very different men of course, and they appealed to the voters' emotions in very different ways-Obama appealing primarily to our positive emotions with promises of hope and change, and Trump appealing primarily to baser and more negative emotions of fear, resentment, and hate-but they had this basic underlying trait in common. You can see this same pattern as well in the election of Trudeau (the handsome newcomer) against the whitest-of-white bread Steven Harper, and in the unexpected strength of Bernie Sanders' campaign, and, in reverse, in the defeat of the stiffer and less likeable John Kerry and Hillary Clinton.
Good candidate, bad candidate, it doesn't matter. It matters a great deal for ones' actual ability to govern effectively once elected, but not so much for actually getting elected in the first place. Above all, you have to have a sense of energy, and the ability to emotionally engage and excite voters (this, by the way, is why I think Corey Booker would be a very strong choice for the Dems in 2020, despite being more Wall Street-friendly than I would care for- say what you will about the man, he has an energy and charisma as a public speaker that Hillary Clinton just didn't). At the end of the day, political campaigns are theatre, and a high-energy performance and a memorable persona can go a long way to compensating deficiencies in a performance, at least to less attentive viewers.
It may be a sad reflection on the vapidity of much of society, but I honestly believe that if Clinton had had Obama's charm, she would be President today, despite all her baggage.
You're not wrong.Obama being "the new guy" and taking shots at our leaders for failing us, and McCain comical attempts to define himself as the same thing: this ONE thing did not decide the election, but it was an important part of why people got off their ass to vote for Obama. I could make a few GW/Gore reference here, but I don't think it's needed.
Yeah.Just to focus on Clinton for a moment: she didn't even have Young Women locked up in the Primary. Sanders was giving her serious trouble here. I'm pretty sure this was the article I ran across way back:And, as we've talked about, all these little (or big) things just kind of added up to "WTF just happened" in 2016. 8 years after... pretty much everyone but geriatric white guys threw in with Obama. And even 4 years ago when enough were like "well...... otherwise it's Romney."While Trump has publicly and dramatically fractured the Republican Party, the Clinton candidacy has, in a seeming irony, brought out the fractures in modern feminism. During the primaries, a handful of high-profile women—including Madeleine Albright, Lena Dunham and Gloria Steinem—insisted that the fight against sexism is an un-won war, and that putting a woman in the White House remains a crucial goal. But younger feminists, many of them Sanders supporters, reminded us this is not the 1970s or even the 1990s, and that wealthy white female figureheads who promise to shatter glass ceilings don’t automatically get a feminist stamp of approval. The population of American women is more diverse than it’s ever been, and any leader who wants to run as a feminist must speak to their varied needs.
Of course, it was part of the Clinton campaign's arrogance (and, frankly, sexism) to assume that they would or should get womens' votes just because Clinton was a woman. I mean, yeah, I have a hard time fathoming why a woman wouldn't vote for Clinton in the general election, given that she was up against an unapologetic misogynist and groper running under the banner of the Control Womens' Bodies Party (but I guess there have always been people who voted against their own freedom and humanity). But in the primary?
It turns out women aren't a monolithic block of single-issue voters who just want a woman for President over all else.
The big demographic split in the primary, though, wasn't gender or even race. It was young vs. old. Which says some interesting things about the potential future of the Democratic Party, unless all the young progressives just quit the Dems in frustration.