Now that the primaries are about to kick off, I am going to take some time to discuss my top 5 Democratic candidates. I am going to begin by explaining my “ranking” here:
I don’t have one.
I like these candidates best. I will vote for anyone with a pulse who is not Trump. I don’t have a specific favorite among the democrats, I have elements I like about these 5 more than the rest. So to put some kind of order, I went with national polling per FiveThirtyEight.com as of 1/29.
Biden is still leading the pack with more than 25%. I like that he’s a moderate, I think it makes him more appealing to more people (if the left-extremists don’t decide to sit in the corner and pout again this cycle ’cause they didn’t get their guy). There are still somewhere between 15-25% of “undecided” and “independant” voters in key states who flip flop between the parties. I like his experience with international politics and negotiations. I think he would be good at getting us our allies back. Or at least making them a lot less pissed at us.
I don’t like his gaffs. He is awful and I can’t decide if he’s just lazy or sloppy or honestly a little dumber than the others. When I look at how he behaves and still gets taken seriously it makes me a little crazy – the women around him who are acting so much smarter than him are not given that kind of respect. AND OMG he’s creepy Uncle Joe and it bothers me so so much. I think he has been given way more grace than he deserves. Still. Better than Trump by a lightyardmile.
Sanders has dreams that sound really good. I like the idea of taking care of people – the sick, the poor, paying for education. These sound like excellent things to me and I really would like to see them worked on. I like how angry he gets when people are being selfish and the-worst-of-capitalism. I like how in-your-face he will be to his opponents.
I do not like Bernie-Bros. They sour my entire view of Sanders. Their “shock” in 2016 when the Democratic party didn’t jump on Bernie’s platform made me sprain my eyeballs they rolled so hard. OMG, you mean the man that was rude, derisive and snide about parties finally joined when he decided HE should be president and get that loyalty wasn’t embraced with open arms over the party-loyal-member who had spent her career campaigning on behalf of up-and-down-ticket candidates, fund raising, and overall supporting the party. Shocked I was. Just Shocked… It’s such privilege to think you can show up at the last minute and pass over the MORE QUALIFIED woman. Anyway. That was 2016 but they aren’t sounding much better this year.
AND, I like Sanders’ domestic agenda sure – but I don’t hear him making a good case on his ability to work with foreign nations. I don’t see his brash attitude working well with China or Putin or Duterte when we want to address human rights abuses. If what he cares about really is the domestic agenda, he needs to stay on the legislative side of the government. I absolutely hope he will be in a position to advise and guide and support the president, but all the things he wants to accomplish – ALL OF THEM – begin and middle in Congress. The president gets a final wave at them and that’s it.
Warren is probably, in my opinion, the smartest person on the field. And I love that about her. I love how organized and intelligent she is. I really admire her detailed plans even though I know it might hurt her because it gives so much ammo to the GOP. But with the dreams of Sanders and the elbow-grease of Warren I think we could have an American renaissance. And I think as much as she doesn’t have quite the level of experience internationally as someone like Biden – I also don’t think she would embarrass us.
Buttigieg is an interesting conundrum. I really like the idea of a Millennial president. I think he is very intelligent (just raw brains). I think he is highly electable and as far as “contrasting Trump in every way possible” – well, this might be the guy to do that. He’s a vet. He’s gay. He’s attractive (just don’t look up his laugh, it’s a little awkward). I really like that he actually has military experience (even if not a ton of leadership there).
I have some very strong qualms about his record on race as mayor (the whole police-chief firing thing does not look good) and I think he’s working on it, but since voter turnout is a huge issue for Democratic candidates and the latinx and black votes are crucial – this is a big deal and something to be very aware and concerned about. I don’t think he will embarrass us (intentionally) internationally, but I also am not confident he will build us back up where we need to.
Klobuchar wasn’t in my top 5 until my “true” top 2 candidates dropped out (I’ll let you guess who I really liked based on what I’ve shown through this post are the values I judge a candidate on). BUT, I think she would also be an excellent contender for VP. I haven’t seen her emote enough personality to think she wouldn’t be overpowered on a debate stage by Trump. I like the Klobuchar is a true moderate, her record looks good on a lot of the domestic and international issues. I think if any of the males get the top ticket they should absolutely put her very high on the list of running mates.
The domestic issues are real and serious, but for all of the things that these candidates are spending so much time talking about – it belongs in Congress. If we REALLY want to look at the changes to our healthcare, infrastructure, NASA, climate impact, etc – we need to be electing people to CONGRESS who are willing to do those things. Right now, that’s where the block is.
Then the important question is who do I want on the phone with Xi Jinping about building their own islands in the Pacific ocean to “expand” their control. Who do I want talking to Iranian and N.Korean negotiators to delay them building nuclear weapons (they will build them someday – they aren’t going to completely stop. The goal can only be to delay and support more stable/sane governments in those places).
We’ll see how the playing field looks in 3 weeks (after Iowa and New Hampshire). I think a few more candidates will drop out after that and then we’ll get the real break on Super Tuesday (March 3rd).