Remember the expression “plain as the nose on your face”?
Go ahead, accuse me of a sideways body slam. Yet these words fit the passel of Democrats who are running for president but can’t figure out that multiply-and-conquer doesn’t work in primaries or anywhere else.
Most worrisome is that these men and women claim the smarts required to dance on a world stage with career politicians yet don’t understand that funds won’t support so many efforts for the front-runner position.
Ordinarily, that might not matter. But this will be no ordinary election. The United States is engaged in a civil war of philosophies and words, of law and order vs. chaos. Of the attorney general against the Congress. Of the FBI playing defense. Where a solid “base” is blind and deaf to anything but what they want to see and hear since, we learned, lying to the public and the media is not a crime. Where the rabble has been roused and no holds have been barred.
Michael Bennet, 54, is the latest combatant. Ever hear of him? I hadn’t, except for a few fiery speeches a while back on gun laws and government shutdown. Michael Bennett is the senior senator from Colorado, which is where he belongs, being the very best senator possible for another 10 or so years. Because I seriously doubt that he will break enough piggy banks to make a debate feasible. But every new face bent on adding “presidential candidate” to her/his resume sucks another gulp of oxygen out of the race.
Race? The Democratic Party will require two or three heats if this keeps up.
Are you listening, Marianne Williamson, Andrew Yang, Seth Moulton, Wayne Messon? I have similarly strident ideas about diversity influencing the ballot: Sure, a woman or a person of color (not necessarily black) would be wonderful — a woman of color even better (you go, Kamala!), since that would invigorate the ancient trope “kill two birds with one stone.” But that candidate must have the qualifications and experience to carry out the job.
It’s a good sign that more women and persons of color have been elected mayors, state legislators, to Congress and other leadership positions where they practice the trade. It’s an even better sign that qualified diversity candidates are coming forward for higher office, sparking conversations. Hurrah for Time magazine, for putting Pete Buttigieg and his husband on the cover to test reaction, if nothing else.
But when push comes to vote, a crash course in presidenting doesn’t suffice, even for a willing student. Lordy, don’t we know what happens when a neophyte gets elected on bluster, hyperbole, prevarications, red baseball caps and promises to surround himself with “the best and the brightest” advisers, most of whom flamed out early?
I also question the judgment of wannabees participating in this crowded primary race. Notice please that while platforms are being built and T-shirts printed, Vlad and Un are becoming BFFs. As for ISIS, which in March the president declared “completely wiped out” in Syria … well, better check on that, Mr. President, in between tweets re V.P. Biden’s intelligence. And on that subject, how about releasing your SAT scores and college transcripts?
To finish upbeat, kudos to former Massachusetts Gov. William Weld for challenging Trump in the primary. He is the lamb sacrificed to bring forth opposition from within the Republican Party, perhaps to chide the president into answering tough questions or at least confront his follies.
I have heard commentators say the only issue in 2020 is defeating the incumbent. All the more reason to pick somebody likeable, relatable, and world-wise enough to put America back on the international awards podium. Maybe Oprah wasn’t such a bad idea, after all.
A MLB team has 25 players on its roster. Presidential hopefuls fielded by the Democrats number almost that. Enough, already. Retreat to the huddle, guys and gals, pick your best pitcher and hitter, trade the rest, and concentrate on winning the game.