SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by FaxModem1 » 2019-12-24 09:44pm

Bloomberg used prison labor call centers for his presidential campaign:

BBC
Michael Bloomberg says his presidential campaign used prison labour
4 hours ago

Mr Bloomberg said his campaign had terminated its relationship with a firm which operated call centres in two US jails
US presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg has said that his campaign "unknowingly" used prison workers to call voters on his behalf.

The billionaire Democrat said he had cut ties with a vendor which operates two call centres in state jails.

Mr Bloomberg said he learned about the company's use of prison labour only after receiving a call from a reporter.

He entered the election race in November with one of the largest-ever political ad buys.

His campaign's use of prison labour was first reported by news site The Intercept, and confirmed by Mr Bloomberg in a statement on Tuesday.

"We do not support this practice and we are making sure our vendors more properly vet their subcontractors moving forward," said the former New York mayor.

'We didn't know'
According to The Intercept, Mr Bloomberg - using a third-party vendor - hired call centre company ProCom to make phone calls for his campaign.


The firm operates two centres in Oklahoma state prisons. An unidentified source told The Intercept that incarcerated people were contracted to make calls from at least one of these prisons - a minimum-security women's prison with a capacity of over 900 inmates.

In a tweet Stu Loeser, Mr Bloomberg's long-time spokesman, said the campaign "didn't know" that "a vendor of a vendor of a vendor used prison labour".

Skip Twitter post by @stuloeser
Reiterating what we @MIKE2020 said & did when we learned a vendor of a vendor of a vendor used prison labor:

We didn’t know about it and we never would have allowed it. We don’t believe in this practice and we immediately stopped working with ProCom and the people who hired them

— Stu Loeser (@stuloeser) December 24, 2019
Report
End of Twitter post by @stuloeser
Before setting up a mass media empire, Mr Bloomberg made his billions from data terminals widely used in the financial industry. His net worth is $52bn (£40bn), according to Forbes - 17 times higher than Donald Trump.

Since joining the presidential race, he has spent $59m (£45m) on advertising and recent polls show he has support from 5% of Democratic voters. Former Vice President Joe Biden, Senator Bernie Sanders and Senator Elizabeth Warren are currently leading the race for the party's nomination.

Image copyrightREUTERS
Image caption
The US has the highest incarceration rate in the world - far above other comparable industrialised nations
While America's constitution outlaws slavery, the Thirteenth Amendment allows prisoners to be forced into labour for their crimes.

Some labour is voluntary, while some is involuntary and non-compliance can be punished.

In the past, many private firms have used so-called "prison in-sourcing" as an alternative to cheap labour in foreign countries.

Inmates have been used for a variety of tasks like packaging Starbucks coffee and manufacturing lingerie. Prisoners were also paid $1 a day to battle wildfires in California last year.

Supporters argue that the practice boosts local economies and helps to lower reconvictions by providing inmates with skills and income.

But critics argue that prison labour is exploitative and prioritises private-sector profits over the rehabilitation of inmates.

In 2018, incarcerated men and women took part in peaceful prison strikes across 17 US states to draw attention to jail conditions.

As part of their demands, organisers called for an end to "prison slavery" by paying inmates proper wages. Suspected strike leaders were later punished with solitary confinement and the removal of their communication privileges.
So, yes. Instead of using volunteers, or hiring employees, Bloomberg hired subcontractors to make calls for him, and this bit him in the ass when the cheap labor he was using turned out to be convicts being used as prison labor. I really hope this hurts his chances.
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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-12-25 01:01am

What chances? ;)

Maybe I'm being overly-complacent, but I don't see a man who's resume and policies seem tailor-made to piss off as many people as possible, who waited to the last moment and ignored the early states, to be a huge political threat.
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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-12-25 02:13am

Looks like the talk about Obama being dead-set against Bernie was exaggerated- a close Obama associate has confirmed that Obama will support whoever wins the nomination (as he has previously stated), even if its Sanders. He's also reportedly growing more favorably-disposed toward Warren:

https://commondreams.org/news/2019/12/2 ... ation-even
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"Trump admirers like @TuckerCarlson describe themselves as "nationalist." But their nationalism attaches not to the multiracial American nation... but to a multinational white race with a capital in Moscow"-David Frum

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by FireNexus » 2019-12-29 04:33pm

The point isn’t that Sanders used Amazon. It’s that Sanders campaign high-ups, including the ever-fucking-stupid Jeff Weaver had the fact that this was a bad look brought to their attention and didn’t understand why that was so thoroughly that they completely blew it off. If that hadn’t happened, this wouldn’t really be a story.

For instance, Warren is the number two spender at Amazon and it barely gets mentioned because presumably this same thing either didn’t happen or wasn’t mishandled so incompetently that the staffers in question ran to the press to bitch about their Jeff Weaver equivalent. Though, no professional campaign has a Jeff Weaver equivalent because professional campaigns drummed him out to a Virginia comic book store before Bernie resurrected his career.

I love that the media will now be treating Sanders like a real contender, and his campaign remains so incompetent at the highest levels (I suspect because of how unseriously they are usually taken) that it will be treated as them being picked on by Sanders supporters.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politic ... story.html
Sen. Bernie Sanders frequently attacks Amazon on the campaign trail, vowing to break up the online retail giant if elected, denouncing its treatment of workers and decrying its ability to pay no federal taxes on billions in profits.

That’s why impassioned dissent erupted within the Sanders campaign earlier this year over its purchases of large amounts of supplies through Amazon, according to five people with knowledge of the situation. Carli Stevenson, then a senior Sanders campaign aide in New Hampshire, raised concerns directly with national campaign officials and suggested using a different company, three of the people said.

Another New Hampshire staffer, state political director William Bateson, also voiced opposition to using Amazon, according to two of the people with knowledge of the situation. Stevenson and Bateson declined to comment for this story.

The Sanders campaign continued using Amazon despite the concerns. Through September, it had spent more than $233,000 on Amazon purchases — much of it in office supplies, and often through Amazon’s Marketplace feature — a review of campaign finance records shows.
The Washington Post is owned by Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s founder and chief executive, but the newsroom staff operates with independence in its coverage.

The campaign’s spending on Amazon is a small fraction of the more than $40 million it shelled out on operating expenditures during the same period. But it was more than other campaigns spent on the company, and more than enough to prompt surprise and complaints from staffers who felt it conflicted with the campaign’s principles.

These internal protests drew a response from a senior Sanders campaign official, who said the alternatives to Amazon also had ethical issues.

“I hear you on amazon but who is the paragon of virtue in . . . office supplies?” wrote senior Sanders adviser Jeff Weaver in an email over the summer, according to a person who saw the email and described it to The Washington Post. “I hear uline is terrible. Cant beleive staples is a great company but happy to shown I’m wrong.”

Uline, a packing supplies company, was founded by Dick and Liz Uihlein, who are top Republican donors. The private equity firm Sycamore Partners bought Staples in 2017.

Weaver did not respond to multiple requests for comment. The people with knowledge of the internal situation spoke on the condition of anonymity out of fear of retribution.

An Amazon representative declined to comment on Sanders’s remarks about the company, pointing to tweets the company previously issued defending its tax structure and highlighting a worker training program.

In a statement, Sanders campaign spokesman Mike Casca said, “We agree that too few companies have too much power over our economy and our media in America and they often don’t pay their fair share of taxes, which is why a Sanders administration will take them on.”

He declined to answer questions on why the campaign opted to use Amazon, whether Sanders (I-Vt.) was aware of the campaign’s purchasing practices and whether it was still using the retailer.

The Amazon purchases are not the campaign’s only business practice to spark internal protest. In April, the campaign used Airbnb to arrange housing for state staff who traveled to Washington for a team meeting, triggering blowback from New Hampshire campaign staffers reluctant to use the company, according to three people with knowledge of the situation. Critics of Airbnb have argued it negatively impacts housing prices and hotel workers.

These internal disputes, which have not been previously reported, underline a basic tension in the Sanders campaign: Many employees see it as not just a bid for office but a social movement that stands for workers’ rights and reining in big corporations. Some have privately vented that the campaign doesn’t always live up to those ideals.

That tension was also evident over the summer during a standoff between management and unionized Sanders field staffers over pay, with some employees complaining that their salaries conflicted with the senator’s calls for a minimum wage of $15 an hour. After the dispute became public, the workers won a raise.

At the same time, the Sanders campaign has won plaudits from liberal activists for practicing its principles in other ways, such as committing to offset all carbon emissions produced from campaign travel by partnering with an emissions reduction project; being the first presidential campaign to unionize its workers; and striving to stay in unionized hotels.

The Sanders campaign spent the vast majority of its Amazon investment on Marketplace, a section on the company’s website where third-party sellers offer their products. More than 50 percent of Amazon’s total unit sales come from third-party purchases, according to the company, and Amazon collects fees from the sellers.

The Sanders campaign also bought office supplies from other sources, though to a much lesser degree — spending nearly $82,000 total at retailers including Staples, Apple, Target, Office Depot and Walmart, campaign finance records show.

Stevenson, who initially served as deputy state director and communications director in New Hampshire for the campaign and is now a state coordinator in Indiana, recommended to national campaign officials that they discontinue using Amazon and buy from a company more in line with the campaign’s values, according to three people with knowledge of with situation. She suggested using a company called the Green Office instead.

That company, which has operated on a much smaller scale than Amazon, bills itself as a “one-stop online retailer featuring over 60,000 green and conventional office products.” Much of its inventory was out of stock this past week, a review of the website showed, and the phone number listed on the website was out of service.

Some of the campaign’s most vocal internal protests came from staffers in the New Hampshire office, but at least a handful of staffers in other parts of the campaign also felt the use of Amazon clashed with Sanders’s rhetoric, people with knowledge of the situation said.

Sanders has long been an outspoken critic of Amazon’s leadership. Appearing at a Washington Post Live event in July, Sanders said: “Amazon last year made over $10 billion in profit. What do they pay in taxes? Not a nickel in federal income taxes. Does anyone think that that is vaguely sane?” That echoed a common refrain on the campaign trail.

In August, Sanders took aim at The Post, accusing the newspaper of being biased against his campaign due to his criticism of Amazon. He later clarified to CNN that he did not think Bezos was instructing the editor of The Post on the newspaper’s coverage.

“But what I think is, in media in general, there is a framework,” Sanders said, that does not prioritize questions about income and health-care inequality.

Sanders also voiced support for striking Amazon workers on “Prime Day,” a major annual sale day for the retailer. “I stand in solidarity with the courageous Amazon workers engaging in a work stoppage against unconscionable working conditions in their warehouses,” Sanders tweeted in July.
An analysis by Bloomberg News found that the Sanders campaign spent more than its Democratic rivals on Amazon through the end of September, when the latest finance reports were available. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who has also been a staunch Amazon critic, was the second-biggest spender, the analysis showed. Sanders and Warren have brought in more money than their rivals, however, giving them more to spend.

Another point of contention inside the Sanders campaign was the use of Airbnb for a campaign meeting in April, a busy time for visiting the nation’s capital. The campaign’s expenditures on Airbnb are a very small portion of its overall spending on lodging.

Still, campaign workers from New Hampshire, including Stevenson and then-senior adviser Kurt Ehrenberg, were not pleased about the use of Airbnb, according to three people with knowledge of the situation. Then-state director Joe Caiazzo brought the complaints to national campaign personnel, two people with knowledge of the situation said. An Airbnb spokesman defended its business practices.

Ehrenberg and Caiazzo had also expressed concerns about using Amazon, people with knowledge of the situation said. Both men are no longer with the Sanders campaign. Both declined to comment.
At a culinary workers union meeting in Las Vegas this month, Sanders was asked about Airbnb by a woman who said she saw problems associated with the company as an issue for workers like her. “How are you going to stop this?” she asked.

“There are a lot of issues involved,” Sanders replied. “And the answer is we’re going to look very, very thoroughly at that.” He added, “We will stand with you in any and every way. We will take a very hard look at the impact of these B&Bs on the industry.”

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by Ziggy Stardust » 2019-12-29 07:53pm

It still doesn't really sound like much of a story to me? There is a world of difference between a minor campaign gaffe and a culture of perpetual, systemic incompetence. Anyone not vehemently anti-Sanders is going to shrug this off as an unfortunate hiccup, and everyone who is vehemently anti-Sanders would still be excoriating him even if this hadn't happened. I doubt this is an incident anyone is going to be thinking about 10 months from now.

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by FireNexus » 2019-12-29 08:33pm

Ziggy Stardust wrote:
2019-12-29 07:53pm
It still doesn't really sound like much of a story to me? There is a world of difference between a minor campaign gaffe and a culture of perpetual, systemic incompetence. Anyone not vehemently anti-Sanders is going to shrug this off as an unfortunate hiccup, and everyone who is vehemently anti-Sanders would still be excoriating him even if this hadn't happened. I doubt this is an incident anyone is going to be thinking about 10 months from now.
TBH, the more I think about it the more the article appears to say “Jeff Weaver is a fucking moron, and has worked his way back into a position of power that some of the pro talent the campaign has attracted since 2016 is unhappy with.” Because Jeff Weaver is perpetually and systemically incompetent, and is the only person the sources told on in that article.

It still shows pretty poor judgement that Sanders lets Weaver be in a position to make these kind of stupid calls, IMO, but I’m willing to concede that the only thing definitively demonstrated is “Jeff Weaver is still a colossal dumbass in a position to make some dumbass decisions.”
I had a Bill Maher quote here. But fuck him for his white privelegy "joke".

All the rest? Too long.

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by Ralin » 2019-12-29 09:26pm

FireNexus wrote:
2019-12-29 08:33pm

TBH, the more I think about it the more the article appears to say “Jeff Weaver is a fucking moron, and has worked his way back into a position of power that some of the pro talent the campaign has attracted since 2016 is unhappy with.” Because Jeff Weaver is perpetually and systemically incompetent, and is the only person the sources told on in that article.

It still shows pretty poor judgement that Sanders lets Weaver be in a position to make these kind of stupid calls, IMO, but I’m willing to concede that the only thing definitively demonstrated is “Jeff Weaver is still a colossal dumbass in a position to make some dumbass decisions.”
I had no idea who the fuck that is and having read this article I don't see anything he did regarding this that was particularly dumb or something I should care about.

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-12-29 09:43pm

I actually agree about Weaver- I think he's tactless at best, and I'd be happier if Bernie didn't give him such a big role.

I think what it comes down to is that Weaver has worked for Bernie for a long time, they're old friends, and so Bernie has a bit of a blind spot to his faults.
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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by FireNexus » 2019-12-29 09:52pm

Ralin wrote:
2019-12-29 09:26pm

I had no idea who the fuck that is and having read this article I don't see anything he did regarding this that was particularly dumb or something I should care about.
He’s Sanders’ former campaign manager, and known for going around saying and doing dumb shit on Sanders’ behalf. He appears to have been at least partially responsible for the sexual harassment issues around the 2016 campaign. The last time Sanders gave him a position of authority by tapping him to run Our Revolution, more than half of the staffers quit on the spot and the rest sent a letter to Sanders saying that this guy was a fucking joke who shouldn’t have been tapped to run the organization. He lasted less than a year in that role and has had no official status anywhere since, by all accounts rightfully so.

If you don’t see the base level stupid of him all but responding “There is no ethical consumption under capitalism” to legitimate concerns about using a vendor the principal regularly says shouldn’t exist... I’m not sure what else to say.
I had a Bill Maher quote here. But fuck him for his white privelegy "joke".

All the rest? Too long.

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by FaxModem1 » 2020-01-02 11:07am

NPR
Julián Castro Drops Out Of The Democratic Presidential Race
One more down.
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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by His Divine Shadow » 2020-01-22 06:39am

Lol, other 33%
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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by Elheru Aran » 2020-01-22 11:59am

Seriously? They couldn't even bring themselves to list Sanders?
It's a strange world. Let's keep it that way.

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-01-26 08:18pm

Elheru Aran wrote:
2020-01-22 11:59am
Seriously? They couldn't even bring themselves to list Sanders?
Given that Bernie's surging across the board, its looking like a lot of people are going to end up eating crow in the next couple of months:

https://cnn.com/2020/01/24/politics/ber ... index.html
(CNN)Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders' campaign may be surging at just the right time.

With only 10 days until Iowans caucus, Sanders is seeing his poll numbers climb nationally and in the early states of Iowa and New Hampshire.
Nationally, Sanders is at his highest point since his post-announcement bump. Our CNN poll has him at 27% earlier this week. Most other polls don't have him nearly as high, though he seems to have crossed the 20% barrier. That's big news because it puts a hole in the theory that Sanders couldn't grow his support from the mid-teens he's generally had.

Sanders is now the clear alternative to former Vice President Joe Biden in the national polls. Biden, who is still holding in the upper 20s, has seen his margin over Sanders shrink. Other Democrats such as Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg are stuck at 15% or below.

And the Biden vs. Sanders dynamic has also played out on the trail, with Sanders in recent days going after Biden for his record on social security. Biden's campaign hit back in an online video, saying, "Bernie's negative attacks won't change the truth, Joe Biden is still the strongest Democrat to beat Donald Trump."

Sanders' rise seems to be occurring in a way that is unusual for a Biden alternative. Look at the recent polls, and you see Sanders is doing as well if not better among nonwhite compared to white voters. That means that if he is able to do well in the very white states of Iowa and New Hampshire, he has a better chance of capitalizing on that momentum as the contest heads to the more diverse states of Nevada and South Carolina.

Another reason to think Sanders can do well beyond Iowa and New Hampshire: his war chest. He raised nearly $35 million last quarter and nearly $100 million over the course of the campaign, which is tops for any candidate. Sanders is sure to have incoming fire from other campaigns. He'll have a better shot financially of fighting back against than most.

First though, Sanders needs to do well in those first two contests. Sanders' polling in Iowa and New Hampshire recently shows he is in a good position to win those states.

Across all the pollsters who took a poll in Iowa in December or January and at least one previous poll, Sanders is up an average of five points from said previous poll. This includes our CNN/Des Moines Register/Mediacom poll which placed Sanders at 20% with no one in front of him. An average of CNN approved polls in January have Biden and Sanders tied at 21% and on top of the field.

Sanders' gain seems to have come from consolidating his base. He's now earning 44% among those who caucused for him in 2016. Back in September, Sanders was just at 28% among this group and trailing Warren. Remember Sanders took nearly 50% of the vote in the 2016 Iowa caucuses, so pulling in even half of his former caucusgoers puts him in a good position this year.

Sanders also seems to be doing better in New Hampshire. A new MassInc Polling Group poll conducted for WBUR found Sanders at 29% among likely primary voters. That's up from 15% in December and gives him a 12 point advantage over his nearest competitor (Buttigieg). An examination of all the polling in the Granite State this month has Sanders ahead and the only candidate clearing 20%.

Like in Iowa, Sanders did well in New Hampshire in 2016. He scored 60% of the vote. That means that even if Sanders takes about a third of his 2016 supporters, it could be enough in a crowded field.

The big question heading into the final days of the Iowa campaign is whether Sanders is surging too soon or whether another candidate is able to climb too. It's really not too late for that. Looking at polls taken in the final two weeks of Iowa since 1980, there have been multiple examples (e.g. John Kerry in 2004) of candidates doing as high as 20 points worse or better than they were polling at about this point. That leaves time for things to change.

With many Iowans claiming to still be undecided, a lot of scenarios can still happen.
If Bernie pulls it off, we're also going to get to find out how many of those Centrists and Clinton supporters who complained about Bernie-or-Busters are actually complete hypocrites who only believe in "Vote Blue No Matter Who" when its their candidate who's the nominee (note: Hillary Clinton recently attacked Bernie, and refused to say whether she would endorse him if he were the nominee- a truly staggering level of pettiness and hypocrisy on her part).

Now might be a good time to remind everyone of who actually benefits from Democratic infighting, and is actively trying to encourage it:

https://globalnews.ca/news/6462057/trum ... e-sanders/
As tensions between Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren rose earlier this month, Sanders found himself with an unusual ally: President Donald Trump.

During a raucous campaign rally in which Trump critiqued some of his Democratic challengers, the president launched into an unprompted defence of Sanders. Warren had accused Sanders of telling her that a woman couldn’t win the White House in November, but Sanders insisted he would never say such a thing. Trump concurred.

“I don’t believe that Bernie said that. I really don’t,” Trump told his supporters. “It’s not the kind of thing he would say.”

As the Democratic primary intensifies before the first contests to decide the nominee, Trump and his allies have issued a series of curiously favourable comments about Sanders.

They’ve played up the Vermont senator’s electoral strength and fundraising prowess. And they’ve suggested that if Sanders doesn’t secure the nomination, it will be because the party rigged the primary against him. It’s a sentiment that resonates with some Sanders’ backers who believe the Democratic National Committee worked against him in 2016, when Hillary Clinton won the nomination.

In offering occasional support for Sanders, Trump is taking a page out of his own playbook from the election four years ago and betting that the Democratic divisions that helped him win the White House are even deeper now.

Indeed, more moderate Democrats fear that Sanders — a self-described democratic socialist — would struggle to pull together a robust coalition in the general election. But they also worry his supporters might not vote in large enough numbers for any other nominee if Sanders fails in his second quest for the party’s nomination.

Both scenarios would benefit Trump. The president is closely monitoring the Democratic race, and has taken note of Sanders’ strong fundraising and polling, according to Republicans who have spoken with him about the election. But if Sanders stumbles in the coming weeks, Trump is also said to see an opportunity to suppress some of the senator’s most ardent supporters, or even win over some of their votes.

For some Democrats, it’s a worrisome prospect.

“There are people who are very anti-establishment, who have a lot of oppositional feelings about the political establishment,” said Jennifer Palmieri, who advised Clinton’s 2016 campaign. “Sanders is appealing to them and if that doesn’t work for them, then the Trump team hopes they’ll come their way.”

Though Trump and Sanders are at odds on most major issues, they have some striking similarities. Both rose to political prominence without the backing of their parties’ establishment, but now wield significant influence over those parties’ policy positions. Both men have forged visceral connections with lower income voters, in part by pledging to revamp trade policies they say have hurt American workers.

In 2016, Sanders and Trump did share a small number of voters. According to data from the Pew Research Centre, 3 per cent of voters who consistently backed Sanders in 2016 Democratic primary voted for Trump in the general election. Another 11 per cent of Sanders supporters voted for third party candidates over Clinton.

David Riley Campbell, 23, was among the Sanders supported who didn’t back Clinton against Trump (Campbell said he didn’t vote for anyone in the general election). He said he’s learned his lesson and will be “going blue no matter who” in 2020. Still, he acknowledged he would be “much, much less enthusiastic” about a candidate other than Sanders.

“There’s a very short list of candidates I trust,” said Campbell, who is volunteering in Iowa for Sanders before the Feb. 3 caucus.

It’s that lingering distrust of other Democrats among Sanders supporters that Trump’s team is eager to capitalize on if the senator falters in the coming weeks.

Trump has sent multiple tweets over the past week suggesting Democrats were “rigging the election” against Sanders because he was being pulled off the campaign trail to serve as a juror in the Senate impeachment trial during the final weeks before the caucus. Trump never mentioned that three other senators — including Warren of Massachusetts, Sanders’ chief progressive rival — were also marooned in Washington for the trial.

On Thursday, senior Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway wrote in The Washington Post that if Democrats were serious about nominating the most electable candidate, they would side with Sanders. He’s the candidate, Conway wrote, “who actually won primary contests and proved he can play David to Goliath in key places four short years ago.”

Tim Murtaugh, a spokesman for Trump’s campaign, said those comments don’t change the fact that the president sees Sanders as a someone who could be a “complete disaster” in the White House. Yet Murtaugh also gave a nod to Sanders’ supporters, saying it’s “obvious the knives are out” for the senator in the Democratic primary.

“It would be completely understandable if the Sanders camp said, ‘Here we go again,’” Murtaugh said.

Trump used a similar strategy in 2016. He urged Sanders to run as an independent after Sanders fell behind Clinton in the race for delegates, which determine the Democratic nominee, and openly courted Sanders’ supporters.

Four years later, some of Sanders’ backers say their eyes are wide open to Trump’s strategy.

“What they’re trying to do is throw a wrench into the works. They’re trying to do whatever they can to keep us at each other’s throats,” said Randy Bryce, a Sanders supporter and former Wisconsin congressional candidate.

Sanders’ campaign did not respond to questions about the favourable comments from the president and his advisers. Earlier this month, Sanders distanced himself from Trump’s assertions that Democrats were rigging the 2020 primary against him.

“His transparent attempts to divide Democrats will not work, and we are going to unite to sweep him out of the White House in November,” Sanders said in a statement.

© 2020 The Canadian Press
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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by Gandalf » 2020-01-27 03:21pm

The Sanders campaign has really come a long way in the past four years. It's pretty impressive.

Fucked if I can determine his electability though.
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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-01-27 09:46pm

Gandalf wrote:
2020-01-27 03:21pm
The Sanders campaign has really come a long way in the past four years. It's pretty impressive.

Fucked if I can determine his electability though.
Picking Sanders would be one of the biggest damn gambles in American political history.

But then, not picking him would be too. There's really no safe play at this point. Every since 2016 we've been in political uncharted territory, to some extent.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"Trump admirers like @TuckerCarlson describe themselves as "nationalist." But their nationalism attaches not to the multiracial American nation... but to a multinational white race with a capital in Moscow"-David Frum

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-01-27 10:42pm

Sanders up nine in new Iowa poll:

https://commondreams.org/news/2020/01/2 ... -trump-and
"We are their worst nightmare," Sen. Bernie Sanders said Sunday of the corporate and establishment forces allied against his presidential campaign—and the diverse grassroots movement fueling it—as a new Iowa poll showed the Vermont senator leading the 2020 Democratic field by nine points just a week ahead of the state's Feb. 3 caucuses.

The Emerson/7 News survey released Sunday evening put Sanders at the top of the Democratic pack with 30% support, solidifying his status as frontrunner in the state. Former Vice President Joe Biden polled in second with 21% support and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) in third with 13%.

"Compared to the Emerson Poll of Iowa in December, Sanders has picked up the most support, rising eight points," noted Emerson data analyst Isabel Holloway. "Biden has lost two points, Klobuchar has moved up three points, and Warren has dropped one point. Buttigieg has lost the most support, falling eight points. Yang and Gabbard have each risen by three points, and Steyer has moved up two points."

Iowa Emerson College/@7News Poll:

Democratic Caucus:

30% @BernieSanders
21% @JoeBiden
13% @amyklobuchar
11% @ewarren
10% @PeteButtigieg
5% @TomSteyer
5% @AndrewYang
5% @TulsiGabbardhttps://t.co/KHKW9nZv49 pic.twitter.com/KJEF1fRQOz

— Emerson College Polling (@EmersonPolling) January 27, 2020

The survey, one of several strong early-state polls for Sanders in recent days, came as the Vermont senator rallied in Iowa alongside progressive Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), who officially endorsed Sanders before a crowd of tens of thousands in New York City last October.

During an event in Sioux City, Iowa Sunday evening, Sanders pointed out that President Donald Trump and the Republican National Committee are suddenly "talking about our campaign."

"I'm so excited to be here and share in this moment with you all, shoulder to shoulder. Because this is not just a moment, it's a movement. It's a true movement."
—Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
Ahead of Sanders' weekend rallies, Trump's reelection campaign sent an email to supporters describing Ocasio-Cortez's endorsement of Sanders as "problematic" and calling the Vermont senator "the godfather of her extreme agenda and socialist vision for America."

Trump and his Republican allies aren't the only ones nervous about the possibility of a Sanders nomination, the senator told the large crowd gathered in Sioux City Sunday night.

"Suddenly, we have the Democratic establishment very nervous about this campaign," Sanders declared to applause. "We got Wall Street nervous. We got the insurance companies nervous. We got the drug companies nervous. We got the fossil fuel industry nervous. We got the military-industrial complex nervous. We got the prison-industrial complex nervous. We got billionaires going on television crying that they're going to have to start paying their fair share of taxes."

"And they're starting to think, 'Could this really happen? Could there really be a political movement in America which brings together blacks and whites and Latinos and Asian Americans and Native Americans, gay and straight, to stand up as working class people fighting for change?'" Sanders said. "We are their worst nightmare."

Watch:

Our opposition is nervous.

They should be.

We are their worst nightmare. pic.twitter.com/lIuwJcvipu

— People for Bernie (@People4Bernie) January 27, 2020

Speaking at a rally in Ames, Iowa Saturday, Ocasio-Cortez emphasized the importance of large voter turnout in what she described as "one of the most consequential election years that we have had in recent history."

"Are we ready to caucus our hearts out?" Ocasio-Cortez asked the cheering crowd of Sanders supporters. "I'm so excited to be here and share in this moment with you all, shoulder to shoulder. Because this is not just a moment, it's a movement. It's a true movement."

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez speaking at Bernie Sanders rally in Ames, IA: "This is not just a moment, it's a movement. It's a true movement." pic.twitter.com/5axIGLCBbI

— The Hill (@thehill) January 26, 2020
Now, the polls have been all over the place and this is definitely an outlier from what we've seen so far, but definitely good news for Sanders, and an indication that his momentum is not slowing down heading into the first votes.

Also, its going to be fucking hillarious if Trump literally got impeached to undermine Joe Biden and then Bernie Sanders ends up being the nominee. :D
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"Trump admirers like @TuckerCarlson describe themselves as "nationalist." But their nationalism attaches not to the multiracial American nation... but to a multinational white race with a capital in Moscow"-David Frum

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by His Divine Shadow » 2020-01-28 11:50am

Sanders plummets to a 9 point lead!
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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by Gandalf » 2020-01-28 02:35pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2020-01-27 10:42pm
Also, its going to be fucking hillarious if Trump literally got impeached to undermine Joe Biden and then Bernie Sanders ends up being the nominee. :D
Then the Trump fans will just say that it was a super calculated move so he could face his optimal opponent in Sanders. But Trump fans are amusing like that.
His Divine Shadow wrote:
2020-01-28 11:50am
Sanders plummets to a 9 point lead!
"Can he survive this? Here's a panel of ex-Clinton staffers who think he can't, and should step aside for Biden."
"Oh no, oh yeah, tell me how can it be so fair
That we dying younger hiding from the police man over there
Just for breathing in the air they wanna leave me in the chair
Electric shocking body rocking beat streeting me to death"

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-01-28 10:10pm

I don't know if Trump wants to run against Bernie-I think he wants to use "Bernie or Bust" types to divide the Democrats, but of course nothing Trump himself says means anything here.

But its very obvious that Trump has been preparing to run against Biden, and that Biden's entire campaign is basically built on a circular argument of "He's electable because people think he's electable". He's a paper tiger, always has been, who's strength is built entirely on a shaky perception that he's strong. Whereas Bernie more than anyone else is the candidate with actual energy and enthusiasm behind him.

Meanwhile, Bernie's been warning his supporters to stay positive and avoid personal attacks:

https://buzzfeednews.com/article/rubycr ... hment-2020
ANKENY, Iowa — Across the room, sheets of paper taped to the wall reminded volunteers to organize with respect: “When you are tempted to make a statement,” one read, “ask a question.” Supporters gathered in the center of the room, waiting to knock on doors here in Ankeny, heard staffers speak of a welcoming movement. And Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez urged the crowd to stay “focused” on their own campaign — and be “happy” and “joyous” while doing it.

“Positivity is going to be what brings people into this movement,” the New York representative said.

Just eight days remain until the primary begins here in Iowa — and Sen. Bernie Sanders is leading the polls. For some Democrats, it’s a scenario they say they’ve dreaded and feared: waking up to the reality that the 78-year-old Vermont senator, an independent who has reshaped party policy and promised to bring a revolution to Washington, has a real shot at capturing the nomination. For the Sanders campaign, it’s been part rallying cry, part admonition: At events across Iowa this weekend, the candidate and his top surrogates repeatedly warned of a coming fight with forces that would try to stop them, at points celebrating the clash, at points cautioning supporters to stay positive.

With the series of polls showing Sanders at the top of the field in the first states — two more came out on Sunday alone, along with a national poll that has Sanders and Biden nearly tied — there is a feeling of palpable anticipation inside and around the campaign over what backlash, if any, might be coming.

“In these last eight days, things are gonna get crazy,” Ocasio-Cortez said on Sunday. “I don't even know what's gonna happen. And that's why we've gotta stay focused and committed as possible.”

“And let's make it joyous, y'all,” she said to cheers. “Let's make it joyous.”

Some rivals are already trying to capitalize on establishment anxiety. Pete Buttigieg asked supporters twice on Saturday to fend off Sanders by contributing to the mayor’s campaign.

“If things stay steady until the Iowa Caucuses in just nine days, Bernie Sanders could be the nominee of our party,” one fundraising email read.

And Amy Klobuchar is warning that having Sanders at the top of the ballot could hurt Democrats running in other races. "I don't come from a state as blue as Vermont," she said when asked about Sanders by reporters in Iowa.

“It looks like our opponents are pretty nervous that we’re going to win,” Sanders tweeted in response, along with an image of Buttigieg’s fundraising appeal. “Good! Let’s keep up the pressure.”

At a rally on Saturday night, a crowd of 1,400 people in Ames cheered Sanders on as he spoke of the concerns about his candidacy. “We are taking on the Democratic establishment, and all across the country, let me tell you that the big money interests are getting very nervous. They’re looking at recent polls in New Hampshire and in Iowa and they’re saying ‘Oh my god, Sanders can win,’” the senator said, feigning panic.

Michael Moore, the documentary filmmaker who joined Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez at seven campaign stops this weekend, told supporters, “The knives are out.”

He added, “The rich woke up this morning, and they read these articles and they're like, ‘Oh no, oh no, what are we going to do?’ So we'll see what they're going to do.”

A few days earlier, Moore told an audience that the Sanders campaign had been sending daily talking points to surrogates “admonishing us not to say one negative word about any of the other candidates.”

Moore, a voluble and aggressive surrogate on the campaign trail, arrived in Iowa prepared to rebut a range of potential attacks against the campaign. At his hotel on Sunday morning, he told crowds, he encountered a person who asked him why Sanders didn’t do more to help Hillary Clinton after she won the nomination in 2016.

“I said, ‘I’m glad you said that, because I happen to carry this with me,’” he said, brandishing two pieces of paper at the podium in a routine he has repeated from town halls to canvass launches.

On one sheet, he had written a list of 10 cities where he said Clinton held rallies for Barack Obama after she lost the nomination in 2008 — a gesture Moore praised at length. (Clinton held 46 events for Obama that year, according to a former Clinton campaign staffer who provided an accounting of her political events that year.) On the other sheet: a list of the 42 cities where Sanders held a rally for Clinton in 2016.

“If anybody says this to you,” Moore said of the claim that Sanders didn’t campaign for Clinton, “please point out how gracious she was to Barack Obama and how incredible — there are some days here when Bernie did four cities in one day for Hillary Clinton,” Moore said.

“These are the facts. I’ll post ’em on my site.”

In this campaign and his first presidential bid four years ago, critics have accused Sanders supporters of aggressive and insensitive online discourse. Earlier this month, Sen. Elizabeth Warren said she remembered Sanders telling her that he didn’t believe a woman could win the presidential election; in response, his supporters leaped to his defense online, calling her a liar and sending her a barrage of snake emojis on Twitter.

Sanders and his campaign staffers have urged his supporters to exercise respect and avoid any personal attacks. After one of his prominent supporters, former New York gubernatorial candidate Zephyr Teachout, wrote in an op-ed that Joe Biden had a “big corruption problem,” Sanders issued an apology and made a direct appeal to his followers.

“Please engage in civil discourse,” he said in a CBS News interview.

Sanders has still willingly feuded with Biden over policy, with his campaign continuing a days-long dispute over their social security records on Sunday night. “Joe Biden continues trying to hide his efforts to help Republicans cut Social Security,” Sanders' campaign manager, Faiz Shakir, said in a statement responding to the former vice president's comments that the Vermont senator has not been “consistent” on social security.

Here on Sunday, at the first of five stops with Sanders before he returns to Washington to participate in the ongoing impeachment trial, Ocasio-Cortez told volunteers that a positive campaign would welcome new voters.

“This should be about celebration,” Ocasio-Cortez said at the field office in Ankeny. “This is a celebration! We are establishing and reestablishing and reinvigorating our democracy here in this country. This is joyous. This is happy. That celebration of one another is what brings people in.”

The 11 candidates in the race have largely declined to attack Sanders directly.

The Buttigieg campaign’s email about Sanders didn’t come up at his town hall the next day in Des Moines. Asked by reporters if Democrats have underestimated Sanders, the former mayor said only, “It’s a terrible mistake to not take any candidate seriously.”

“This is the heat of competition,” said Buttigieg.
Smart move. We all know who really benefits from Democratic infighting. And its likely to get really nasty in the next couple weeks. Nastier than its been so far.

While some Centrists seem to be seeing the writing on the wall and making their peace with the prospect of a Sanders nomination, others are going to go down fighting. Expect utter panic if Bernie wins Iowa and New Hampshire, and a desperate, last-ditch, no-holds-barred bid to derail his campaign.

And I can guess what one of the talking points is going to be (besides yet more flogging of the "Bernie is misogynist/racist" narrative). They're going to claim that Bernie only surged because Trump's Ukraine conspiracy theories undermined Biden. There will be attempts to equate it to the 2016 election, and argue that Bernie won with Trump's help and this is no different than Trump winning with Russia's help. There will be more attempts to equate Bernie with Trump. There will probably even be some especially unscrupulous people who insinuate that Bernie "colluded" with Trump to undermine Biden.

This will be, of course, horseshit. Bernie has never engaged in such attacks on Biden, and there are many reasons for his surge, and I expect that most Democrats will support the nominee. But the danger is that there is a block of Democrats who are very hostile to him, and some of them may try to forment a "Never Bernie" movement, using as a pretext the argument that "Bernie is an illegitimate nominee because he only won with Trump's help". Keep an eye out for that.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"Trump admirers like @TuckerCarlson describe themselves as "nationalist." But their nationalism attaches not to the multiracial American nation... but to a multinational white race with a capital in Moscow"-David Frum

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-01-28 10:15pm

Personally, I suspect that any damage the impeachment case did to Biden via Trump's bullshit conspiracy theories is more or less canceled out by the fact that the trial has taken the majority of his serious rivals off the campaign trail for weeks right before Iowa and New Hampshire. So its probably a wash.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"Trump admirers like @TuckerCarlson describe themselves as "nationalist." But their nationalism attaches not to the multiracial American nation... but to a multinational white race with a capital in Moscow"-David Frum

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-02-01 10:05pm

Iowa caucuses on Monday- the first vote of the 2016 election, and probably the single biggest test of Bernie Sanders' viability as nominee, and whether he can continue building his recent momentum.

If Bernie wins, he will almost certainly take New Hampshire in a landslide, and with his opposition divided and a sweep of the first two contests, will be nearly unassailable going forward.

If he comes in second or third place, he'll probably still get some delegates and win New Hampshire, but there likely won't be a clear leader going into Super Tuesday (or possibly Biden will emerge clearly in the lead after winning Nevada and SC), and we're looking at a long and probably bitter primary again, and quite possibly a contested convention.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"Trump admirers like @TuckerCarlson describe themselves as "nationalist." But their nationalism attaches not to the multiracial American nation... but to a multinational white race with a capital in Moscow"-David Frum

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by Gandalf » 2020-02-02 08:08pm

There's some half dozen candidates still in it. I think it'll be down to 2-3 by Nevada; Biden, Sanders, and perhaps either Warren or Buttigieg.

Who the fuck knows, but these sorts of guesses are fun.
"Oh no, oh yeah, tell me how can it be so fair
That we dying younger hiding from the police man over there
Just for breathing in the air they wanna leave me in the chair
Electric shocking body rocking beat streeting me to death"

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-02-02 08:31pm

Gandalf wrote:
2020-02-02 08:08pm
There's some half dozen candidates still in it. I think it'll be down to 2-3 by Nevada; Biden, Sanders, and perhaps either Warren or Buttigieg.

Who the fuck knows, but these sorts of guesses are fun.
Bloomberg has basically ignored the early contests to bet everything on a massive ad buy in Super Tuesday states, so he's in at least until then, I think. Gabbard is in to disrupt, so she'll probably stick it out to the convention (I wouldn't put it past her to do an independent run to split the Democratic vote, either).

My guess is that, unless the early contests break down in an unexpected way (like Warren or Buttigieg wins Iowa or Nevada, keeping it a three-way race), it might be down to them, Biden, and Bernie before Super Tuesday.

If Bernie takes Iowa, he's pretty much a shoe-in for New Hampshire too, and he'll be very hard to challenge at that point, especially as that momentum may well push him over the top in Nevada and narrow Biden's lead in South Carolina. In that event, I can see this wrapping up shortly after Super Tuesday, although there might be a (likely futile) push to try to drag it out/rig the convention by a pathetically desperate and needlessly divisive Never Bernie movement.

If Bernie loses Iowa... like I said, I think we're in a for a long primary again, and possibly a contested convention. Hopefully it doesn't come to that.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"Trump admirers like @TuckerCarlson describe themselves as "nationalist." But their nationalism attaches not to the multiracial American nation... but to a multinational white race with a capital in Moscow"-David Frum

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by EnterpriseSovereign » 2020-02-02 09:25pm

This article nicely lists the potential candidates, some are far better known than others.
It's no use debating a moron; they drag you down to their level then beat you with experience.

Just because you have the attention span of a fruit fly doesn't mean the rest of us are so encumbered.

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Re: SUPERTHREAD: 2020 United States Elections

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-02-02 09:56pm

Honestly at this point I'm rooting for Bernie for two reasons:

1. He's the candidate with the most energy and the clearest vision behind him, and I think that gives him an edge competing with Trump.

2. I think a quick Bernie win in Iowa and New Hampshire (likely followed by Nevada) is the best chance to wrap this primary up as quickly as possible and avoid a long, bitter, divisive fight and possible contested convention.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"Trump admirers like @TuckerCarlson describe themselves as "nationalist." But their nationalism attaches not to the multiracial American nation... but to a multinational white race with a capital in Moscow"-David Frum

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