Face the Nation and the other Sunday Talking Heads news commentary shows talked about the softening of the Obama coalition, the daily NY Times “percentage” in August had Hillary ahead 90-10, now the “poll” gives Hillary a 75-25 lead; whatever that means.
The Nate Silver fivethirtyeight blog,”Chance of Winning,” has Hillary: 61.1% and Trump 38.8% and Gary Johnson at 8% with Hillary winning the electoral votes narrowly.
The next big moment will be the September 26th presidential debate; it will grab the attention of the American public. The Hillary erosion is among the millennials, the younger voters, young Afro-American males and the left leaning Bernie voters are all lukewarm on Hillary.
I was chatting with a nineteen year old – he had taken a leave from his college and worked for Bernie full time, and, told me he was voting for Gary Johnson.
“Oh, you’re voting for Trump.”
“No, I’m voting for Gary Johnson.”
“No, you’re voting for Trump.”
I was “parent-like” and a little harsh. “Your candidate lost, you’re angry and you’re letting your ego drive your vote – you want to ‘get even’ with Hillary so you’re voting for Trump.” He insisted he was voting for Johnson. “You’re pulling the Johnson lever (probably should have said bubbling in the Johnson box), you’re actually voting for Trump – be honest – vote for Trump.” He told me he could never vote for Trump, I insisted he was voting for Trump. Hopefully I planted a seed of doubt.
Diane Ravitch has written a number of blogs explaining why she is voting for Hillary and why it is so important. Her loyalist supporters immediately commented, they voting for Johnson or Stein.
“You can’t trust Hillary” (Can you trust Trump?)
Anthony Cody, a leader of the Network for Public Education wrote a superb essay on the importance of philosophical allies working together, “Don’t Attack your Allies When You’re Fighting Goliath.”
I appeal on a more pragmatic line – what will happen if Trump wins …
If, heavens forbid, the networks declare Trump a winner early on the morning of November 9th stock market numbers will tumble. The stock market operates 24/7 and even before the opening bell the Dow-Jones will dive and continue to dive – 1,000, 2,000, who knows, probably a dive never seen before. Stock markets fear uncertainty, fear instability, and in times of uncertainty and instability investors move their assets in the safest class of investments. A stock market spiraling downward drags down all boats. Trump would blame Obama, who, as a lame-duck president would have limited options. The 2008 economic recession could easily be child’s play compared to what awaits us. Pensions, Medicare, all in jeopardy.
Are these scare tactics or is this scenario a possibility?
This is a once in a lifetime election – we’ve never had a candidate “endorsed” by the Klu Klux Klan and Nazi organizations who accepts their support. We’ve never had a candidate who threatens to incarcerate a religious group. Trump supporters, and, yes, I speak with Trump voters, brush aside Trump’s bizarre pronouncements.
Back in 1972, after a bitterly contested primary election McGovern won the Democratic nomination. Many mainstream Democrats did not vote for McGovern, many crossed over and voted for Nixon. Nixon won 48 states. They weren’t Republicans, they were Hubert Humphrey supporters; the heart of the Democratic Party opposed the war in Vietnam and flocked to the polls across the nation to express their displeasure in the war by voting for McGovern. The mainstream Democrats were overwhelmed by the passion of the anti-war voters, and, expressed their frustration and anger by refusing to vote for the McGovern, the Democratic candidate.
Traditional Democratic voters felt the party had been hijacked by the anti-war faction, and, couldn’t bring themselves to go to the polls and support the anti-war McGovern.
We are facing a similar situation – Bernie voters cannot bring themselves to vote for Hillary. There is no issue similar to 1972. The positions of both Hillary and Bernie are quite similar. Bernie voters argue the election was stolen due to the inappropriate support of Hillary by the Democratic National Committee (DNC), as well as the impossible to define issue of “trust.”
Back in the days of school board elections I supported slates of candidates. Elections are about winning, and winning in the proportional representation style election required putting together slates. We didn’t always agree on all issues, we agreed on enough issues to paste together coalitions that assured we would win enough seats for a majority on the Board.
There is an opportunity to not only win the White House but to take over the Senate and erode the Republican majority in the House; an opportunity to actually pass progressive legislation.
It might be unkind; too many anti-Hillary voters are simply selfish and blind. Yes, your candidate might not prevail in a primary; we move on and work for the winner of the primary within our party. To sulk, to stay on the sidelines simply boosts the other side – in this election the “other side” could drag our nation into a catastrophic depression or worse.