The Democrats’ 2020 campaign officially launches this week. NBC and her sister networks will host two separate debates featuring ten candidates each on Wednesday and Thursday in Miami. The Democrats are confident this pair of debates will launch a candidate to defeat President Trump in November of 2020.
DNC Chairman Tom Perez said, “The candidates for president on our side are spectacular and all of them will have unprecedented opportunities to make their cases to the voters.” I understand Perez’s desire to be optimistic, but the quality of the Democrat candidates is suspect.
What should you expect if you choose to subject yourself to watching these debates?
Let’s look, first, at what will happen on both nights.
There will be a constant refrain that abortion rights must be protected and that President Trump, the right-wing, and evangelicals hate women. Though the twenty candidates who qualified to debate (four failed to meet the initial requirement) are divided into two groupings of ten, one thing that will be consistent across both nights is a call for abortion on demand.
At a Planned Parenthood forum in Columbia, SC, “twenty Democratic presidential candidates vowed to defend abortion rights under nearly any circumstance.”
There will be baseless bashing of President Trump and outright lies. According to the rules of the debate, each candidate may only get eight minutes of actual speaking time. I’m guessing that at least a quarter of that time will be spent lying about the president and trashing his record. We’ll hear of how the Trump administration is heartless regarding illegal immigrants. We’ll hear quite a few warnings about how the president is handling Iran. We will likely hear the lies about collusion, Russia and how the government is broken under the president. We’ll hear how we shouldn’t believe our eyes or our wallets. The economy isn’t so good, they’ll say.
Then, we’ll hear what they promise. Democrats in 2020 will be big on discussing reparations, the Green New Deal, free tuition (which only means someone else is paying for it), expanding Medicaid and trying to develop a single-payer health care system. We may even hear of the wonders of socialism, but they’ll likely call it something else.
If you intend to watch and can get past the stomach-turning aspect of these ideas, be sure to ask yourself, “And who will pay for all this free stuff?” To answer that question, just look in the mirror.
Now, for fun, let’s look at the lineup each night and consider what to look for. On the first night, we’ll see Sen. Elizabeth Warren, former Rep. Beto O’Rourke, Sen. Cory Booker, Sen. Amy Klobuchar, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, former HUD Secretary Julián Castro, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, Rep. Tim Ryan, and former Rep. John Delaney.
The key question will be: Can Elizabeth Warren stand out? She’s likely the favorite in this group. She’ll present herself as far left as she can and promise the world for free. I’m guessing Inslee, Castro, Gabbard, Ryan, and Delaney will all struggle for quality airtime and good questions. Governor de Blasio is my pick for the ridiculous statement of the night. For Booker, Klobuchar, and O’Rourke, this is their chance to land a few shots on a leader and elevate themselves into the first tier. They will all take a hard-left turn to try to appease the progressives.
Nothing we hear or see on Wednesday night will be good for America. Then, we’ll tune in again Thursday and it will be worse.
The Democrats roll out former Vice President Joe Biden, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, the 2016 runner-up, Sen. Kamala Harris, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Sen. Michael Bennet, former Colorado governor John Hickenlooper, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Rep. Eric Swalwell, activist Marianne Williamson, and entrepreneur Andrew Yang.
Four of the top five in the current polls are in this debate. The key question here is will Joe Biden survive? Biden is in hot water with his statements regarding his ability to work with segregationist Democrats in the 1970s. He’s not been as active on the campaign trail and has a ton of baggage that is likely to be discussed.
Who will be the one to take down Biden? Not sure if any will on this first night, but it is a chance for Harris, Buttigieg and, of course, Sanders. Buttigieg has his own troubles in South Bend and may not be a factor. Harris will be on the attack, though, and Sanders will reprise his grumpy, old socialist role.
Bennet, though a liberal, won’t be progressive enough. That same fate awaits Hickenlooper. Williamson and Yang are likely making their only appearance this season. Gillibrand will be as wildly left-wing as is possible, but no one will listen. Swalwell is my pick for the stupid statement of the night (though it will be hard to award this on the second night).
Finally, look for NBC moderators Savannah Guthrie, Lester Holt, Chuck Todd, Rachel Maddow, and José Diaz-Balart to bash President Trump in their questions and to fawn over all the liberals. The one exception might be what they do with Joe Biden. He may have fallen out of favor with the communications wing of the Democrat party known as the media and they may go after him.
That’s how I see the Democrats opening shot in the 2020 campaign. If you decide to watch, I hope you enjoy the circus.