The Wages of Apathy

Absurd “potty prefect” laws, eroded reproductive rights, increased voter suppression, etc. — Samantha Bee explains yet again why it’s not enough to elect good presidents:

In last night’s show, Bee also did an exposé (emceed by Patton Oswalt as Alfred Hitchcock!) on crisis pregnancy centers, the anti-choice propaganda outlets that masquerade as abortion clinics, luring young women in so religious nutjob charlatans can dispense heaping helpings phony statistics and guilt — at taxpayer expense in Georgia.

If you’re dialed into politics enough to hang out at this blog, chances are you vote in every single election. But as you lean on your more loosely affiliated friends, relatives and neighbors to get their asses to the polls this year to prevent the Trumpocalypse, maybe spare a moment to emphasize the importance of state, local and midterm elections too?






277 replies
  1. 1
    Yutsano says:

    My aunt actually works for one of those (actually she volunteers, there’s very few paid staff so they can avoid messing with their affiliated church’s tax status) and yes it’s a total sham. I’m aghast these even exist in Washington where reproductive freedom is in our state Constitution.

  2. 2

    On a shallower note, Sam Bee needs to ditch those awful skinny jeans. They are doing her no favors.

  3. 3
    Seanly says:

    Samantha Bee’s show is great. I am actually better able to keep up with the once a week format as opposed to The Daily Show which I quit watching a long time ago (though I had seen Samantha on it a lot). We also got HBO mostly so we could see Last Week Tonight.

  4. 4
    Miss Bianca says:

    These types of clinics make me crazy. In a nearby town – one of the few in the region that has a Planned Parenthood – there’s one of these “Pregnancy Resource Centers” right down the street from it. To give them credit, they do do *some* good along with the bad – they do try to point women towards resources to help them with their pregancies etc – but they also lean heavily on the misinformation and scare/fear/guilt-mongering.

  5. 5
    bystander says:

    I like Bee a lot more than I do Stewart. As much as the buzz is his “man-baby” comments about Trump, I found this reminder of his “both sides do it” crap painful:

    “The door is open to an a–hole like Donald Trump because the Democrats haven’t done enough to show people that government, that can be effective for people, can be efficient for people,” he said. “And if you can’t do that, then you’ve lost the right to make that change and someone’s going to come in and demagogue you.”

    So, it’s the Dems fault because we don’t have a real leadery leader who can lead all the people with real leadership. Give me Samantha any day of the week over that weak gruel.

  6. 6
    Mike J says:

    Nice to see Mr Oswalt working. I’m sure he still feels like just sitting at home.

  7. 7

    @bystander: Stewart was usually rude and nasty to Democratic office holders when they came on his show (see his interviews with Pelosi and Obama) and fawning when the likes of Rumsfeld and John Yoo showed up.

  8. 8
    Meyerman says:

    Is it just me, or does McCrory look a lot like the vicious warden in Shawshank Redemption?

  9. 9
    LAO says:

    @Miss Bianca: Sort of O/T. To go with last night’s motion to dismiss. Welcome to Cliven Bundy’s insane (and yet unfiled) lawsuit against EVERYONE. http://www.larryklayman.com/pd.....arro%20(1).pdf

  10. 10
    bystander says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: Glad it’s not just me. Whenever I listen to him, I keep thinking he’s what Dennis Miller wants to be.

  11. 11
    hamletta says:

    @Mike J: I think his bits were shot before his wife died. He tweeted last night about it seeming a lifetime ago. :-(

  12. 12

    @bystander: Jon Stewart was the hip David Broder. I remember he once had Brokaw on his show and they were both clucking their tongues on how divisive the Democrats were. I had stopped watching him at least a year before he went off the airwaves.

  13. 13
    WarMunchkin says:

    @bystander: Seconded. I don’t think Democrats’ failure is in what we do, it’s how we’re able to communicate what we do and what our limitations are, which isn’t 100% on us. It’s just awesome how great Sam Bee is. Also loved Michelle Branch.

  14. 14
    Betty Cracker says:

    @bystander: Yep. I’ll take Bee over Stewart any day.

  15. 15
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @LAO: Is there a 12-step program or something?

  16. 16
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @bystander: Democrats haven’t done enough to show people that government, that can be effective for people, can be efficient for people,” h

    spoken like someone who hasn’t had to worry about health insurance or paying for his kids’ daycare

  17. 17
    Miss Bianca says:

    @LAO: Oh, dear God…I’m not sure there’s enough hallucinogens in the world to make all this make sense.

    Are you now our resident Bundy pusher? Awesome… : )

    BTW: Stayed up till 1 am last night finishing Season 2 of The Fall. Da FUG??! I couldn’t even imagine that they’d spin it out after Spector got caught and confessed! Now I gotta wait for Season 3??

    ETA: hmmm…linky doesn’t seem to work. Not for me, anyway.

  18. 18
    Germy says:

    I like the interviews and stories Jessica Williams does. Especially when she interacts with various small-town conservative lawmakers and enablers.

  19. 19
    Brachiator says:

    There is good news from a recent Pew report, despite this nonsense

    The teen birth rate in the U.S. is at a record low, dropping below 25 births per 1,000 teen females for the first time since the government began collecting consistent data on births to teens ages 15-19, according to a new report from the National Center for Health Statistics.

    Nonwhite and younger teens have led the way in declining birth rates in recent years. Since the most recent peak in 2007, the birth rate among all teens has dropped by 42%. The declines among Hispanic (50%), Asian or Pacific Islander (48%) and black (44%) teens have outpaced this national average, while the decline among white teens (36%) has been somewhat more modest. Birth rates among younger teens ages 15-17 have also fallen faster – dropping by 50%, compared with a 39% decline among older teens ages 18 and 19.

    The rates are the lowest since data was first collected in 1940. Factors contributing to the decline may be the economy, and “less sex, use of more effective contraception and more information about pregnancy prevention.”

    It has got to help that you do not have a federal government that suppresses factual information or tries to substitute religious dogma for rational discourse.

  20. 20
    Germy says:

    I think Patton Oswalt was doing a late-career Orson Welles impersonation in the clip.

    1970s Welles, when he was hosting spooky TV documentaries to pay for his own independent projects.

  21. 21
    ruemara says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: when Stewart handed Obama a cup that Stewart had put to his own lips first, I was done with him. He’s now back – blaming Democrats for Trump. Which is why I don’t fawn over anyone, they’re fucking disappointing.

  22. 22
    Schlemazel Khan says:

    I do love Bee’s message in that video. We need more of this more often, particularly in ’18 when all those states will be up for grabs again. I assume they have gerrymandered the hell out of their states so it will be more a holding action till ’20 when we HAVE to take them back so Dems do the redistricting.

  23. 23
    rikyrah says:

    Trump gives away one of his strongest arguments
    05/10/16 11:20 AM
    By Steve Benen
    Billionaire media mogul Stanley Hubbard wrote checks in support of several Republican presidential candidates during the primaries, even contributing $10,000 to a political action committee devoted to defeating Donald Trump. Yesterday, however, Hubbard effectively surrendered, taking a leadership role at Great America PAC, a pro-Trump super PAC.

    On the surface, the reversal is an interesting story about a Republican mega-donor grudgingly throwing his support to a presidential candidate he actively dislikes. But just below the surface, a different kind of story emerges: Donald Trump has a super PAC? He’s relying on billionaire donors?

    What about all that stuff about “self-funding” his campaign?

    As it turns out, Trump is taking one of the best arguments in support of his candidacy and throwing it out the window. The New York Times reported overnight:
    Donald J. Trump took steps to appropriate much of the Republican National Committee’s financial and political infrastructure for his presidential campaign on Monday, amid signs that he and the party would lag dangerously behind the Democrats in raising money for the general election.

    Mr. Trump, who by the end of March had spent around $40 million of his fortune on the primaries, has said that he may need as much as $1.5 billion for the fall campaign, but that he will seek to raise it from donors rather than continue to self-finance.

    As recently as four days ago, Trump was still publicly claiming, “I’m self-funding my campaign.” Except, he isn’t. The presumptive Republican nominee could self-fund if he’s as exorbitantly wealthy as he claims, but Trump will instead run a more conventional operation, dependent on rich donors and a well-funded super PAC or two.

  24. 24
    LAO says:

    @Gin & Tonic: What can I say — it hits two of my interests — criminal prosecutions and crazy right wing nutcases. It’s like a match made in heaven for me. (And, yes, I know how crazy that makes me sound).

    @Miss Bianca: I still not sure what the point of season 3 is going to be about. But I will still watch it!
    And, yes — rather than send the info only to Dr. Silverman, I am passing it on directly to all of you. It’s been weeks since there was a Bundy/Constitutional Sheriff/Sovereign Citizen post. What’s a girl to do? ;(

  25. 25
    scav says:

    @LAO: arrg! already mistapeared, or can I rail at mr pad instead?!

  26. 26
    Germy says:

    @ruemara: I sort of lost respect after Jon’s disrespectful segment on Helen Thomas. Bill Mahr did one at the same time, and they were both vile.

  27. 27

    @ruemara: I missed that episode. I was more of a Colbert person in the waning years of the Stewarts’ Daily Show.

  28. 28
    MomSense says:

    @ruemara:

    MSNBC is doing it right now. “Jon Stewart is back with choice words for Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton”.

    Didn’t Jon quit to spend more time with his family? Please do that Jon. Please spend the next 7 months spending all your time with your family.

  29. 29
    ruemara says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: funny how the most convinced that Dems fail people, are the ones who never need the services we owe to Dems.

    Sam Bee is trying to do something to add more diversity to the writing room, but I don’t see the application form for it anymore. I could see me working for the Bee.

  30. 30
    Linnaeus says:

    @rikyrah:

    Thanks for sharing that. As I understand it, most of Trump’s “self-funding” comes in the form of loans to his campaign. Which really isn’t self-funding when you think about it, since those loans will need to be paid back. By donors to his campaign.

  31. 31
    Betty Cracker says:

    @ruemara:

    when Stewart handed Obama a cup that Stewart had put to his own lips first, I was done with him

    Wait, what?!?!? That’s just weird, not to mention rude.

  32. 32
    LAO says:

    @scav: Apparently, the Complaint is being filed today — so I should be able to locate a better link and post it later. It’s really quite humorous (and short).

  33. 33
    MattF says:

    @LAO: I used to read the Texas Republican Party platform just to savor the nutty aroma. Bring back the gold standard! Leave the UN! Abolish the income tax! I have to admit that it got less amusing when these… concepts… were picked up by actual (apparently human) Presidential candidates.

  34. 34
    rikyrah says:

    Why I am a Bull on This Election
    by BooMan
    Tue May 10th, 2016 at 10:48:58 AM EST

    …………………….

    I don’t like to repeat myself, but it’s my belief that the Republicans operate at a disadvantage because their policies are broadly unpopular. They are still able to succeed because they are extremely good at fighting each news cycle with a coherent and unified message that is carefully crafted to create an us vs. them narrative which basically tribalizes our elections and our political discourse. They simply cannot accomplish this task anymore because most of their thought leaders, from Erick Erickson at Red State, to many of their hate radio broadcasters, to the National Review, to most of their communitariat on television, to their foreign policy elite, to the Bushes, Romneys, and McCains, to the Speaker of the House and many congresspeople and senators, all refuse to sing from Trump’s hymnal. Trump also won’t be able to raise enough money to compete, and he won’t mobilize the leaders in the social conservative movement. He’ll also be fighting the president and his bully pulpit, who will have the advantage of not being a candidate.

    It’s not enough to say that the Republicans always win Georgia. You have to look at all the things they do that make winning Georgia easy for them. If they can’t do those things, then suddenly Georgia isn’t easy for them.

    I come at politics as an organizer with an organizer’s perspective, which means that I don’t put too much stock in what candidates say, but I look very carefully at what they build. The same is true of parties, which is why I identified Obama as an outlier eight years ago, because he was focused as much on building an organization to win as he was on winning rhetorical arguments with his opponents. The reason I early on concluded that Sanders had no chance at the nomination was as much about how late he got started and how little progress he made uniting elected progressives and progressive organizers as it was about his standing with the black vote. And the reason I am bullish on Trump collapsing is only partly about his staggering flaws as a human being. It’s mainly about his inability to get the GOP up and running the way a major party needs to be run in order to wage a competitive national election.

    I see no way that he can do it, and it doesn’t really matter if he can peel off some disaffected Rust Belt union Democrats. The Republicans cannot hold their own people in line without a unified and disciplined and tribalized message that is very well funded and never internally contradicted. The right doesn’t move as a Borg without this, and they cannot maintain their historical strength under these conditions.

  35. 35
    amk says:

    Ah, the 2010. Where her boss, the great, great jon stewart, held his bothsidesdoit why can’t we all get along ‘rallies’?

  36. 36
    GW says:

    @Germy: Patton was doing Orson Welles – but specifically him in his fake-documentary “F is for Fake”. He is dressed the same, has the same flourishes, and the segment is named “F is for Abortion”. Its actually a brilliant and appropriate use of the Welles film, if you are familiar with it.

  37. 37
    scav says:

    @LAO: whew on multiple counts. I can’t always struggle to the end, but I enjoy (see alternative definition) the effort.

  38. 38
    amk says:

    @bystander:

    Give me Samantha any day of the week over that weak gruel.

    Yup. She had always had more ‘balls’ than him, especially doing all those roadie interviews with the rw’ers.

  39. 39
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @rikyrah:

    He’ll also be fighting the president and his bully pulpit, who will have the advantage of not being a candidate.

    All of this bedwetting nonsense from our side is making me crazy. Just imagine what a shit show the GOP convention is going to be, then contrast it with what the Dems will look like coming out of our convention, with all the party lined up behind Hillary, and NFLTG Obama determined to have his legacy preserved. Please, just miss me with all of the OH NOES TRUMP!! Trump is not a threat, he’s an embarrassing joke to everyone not a racist dumbass.

    ETA: nothing should be taken for granted.

  40. 40
    Luthe says:

    @Brachiator: I think the rise of smart-phones and kids having their own computers is helping with this, too. Teens now can get sex-ed information without having to ask an adult, sneak a library book, search for sex info on the “family” computer, or depend on whatever crappy health education their local school district is giving them. The ability to look stuff up in private is a *huge* thing when you’re a teenager.

    Plus, for all the pornographic sins of the Internet, there’s also stuff like sites devoted to empowering girls to take control of their sexuality and YouTube videos explaining how to properly put on a condom. All of which add up to fewer pregnancies.

  41. 41
    Brachiator says:

    @rikyrah:

    What about all that stuff about “self-funding” his campaign?

    As it turns out, Trump is taking one of the best arguments in support of his candidacy and throwing it out the window.

    No one, not even Trump’s most devoted followers would expect him to spend up to $1 billion of his own money to finance a presidential bid.

    Trump loses nothing by accepting donations and official GOP support. And there might be at best three people in the country who would say, “I ain’t voting for you because you lied about not spending your own money.”

  42. 42
    Davebo says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    Stewart was usually rude and nasty to Democratic office holders when they came on his show (see his interviews with Pelosi and Obama)

    I have seen them both on his show and can only say WTF are you talking about!

    For instance, here’s Obama on the Daily Show in July 2015.

  43. 43
    trollhattan says:

    I, for one, want J-Stew back in the mix before the election. I badly miss the one-two punch of TDS-Colbert. Make it happen, HBO.

  44. 44
    Germy says:

    Things are getting tougher for political cartoonists.
    http://derfcity.blogspot.com/2.....inues.html

  45. 45
    LAO says:

    @MattF: I hear you. The most disturbing part of Ammon Bundy’s motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction, was his reliance upon the conduct of western Republican politicians as a means of normalizing his position, and representing his views as reasonable.

    It all becomes a little less funny.

  46. 46
    Brachiator says:

    @Luthe:

    I think the rise of smart-phones and kids having their own computers is helping with this, too. Teens now can get sex-ed information without having to ask an adult, sneak a library book, search for sex info on the “family” computer, or depend on whatever crappy health education their local school district is giving them. The ability to look stuff up in private is a *huge* thing when you’re a teenager.

    I hope what you say is true. You’re right that smart phones and other devices let teens find accurate information, but I wonder how often they actually do this.

  47. 47
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Brachiator:
    I am disappointed, kind of. I was hoping he’d spend that much of his own money and lose.

  48. 48
    bogart_83 says:

    @Germy: It’s 100% Orson Welles. It’s a riff on F for Fake, which is a just OK documentary about an art forger with a pretty great hook about 2/3rds of the way through.

    Seriously, it pains me that everybody is getting this wrong today.

  49. 49
    Miss Bianca says:

    @LAO: well, thanksfor picking up the torch and keeping us all illuminated on the Wacky Antics of the Bundy Bunch! I honestly don’t know whether I feel more like laughing or shuddering at this bad craziness – both, I guess.

  50. 50
    Germy says:

    @bogart_83: As soon as I saw that hat, I knew…

  51. 51
    Luthe says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Every time I come across a Purity Pony who doesn’t want to vote for Hillary (mostly online, a few IRL), I give them a lecture about showing up to vote at least for the down-ticket even if they can’t sacrifice their PRINCIPLES!!!111!!! to vote for Hillz. I’m going to be singing this aria until all the votes are counted.

  52. 52
    Mai.naem.mobile says:

    I know you go to election with what you got but jeezus I wish we had an Obama-like candidate for this year. We would have an old fashioned 64 like landslide with the longest freaking coattails ever seen. Donald Trump is a POS candidate and I am not underestimating him.

  53. 53
    Mai.naem.mobile says:

    @Luthe: there was a european study showing a decrease in teen pregnancy rates which they attributed to smart phones but not for sax ed but for the lack of time left for sax after spending all so much time on social media.

  54. 54
    Brachiator says:

    @rikyrah:

    I don’t like to repeat myself, but it’s my belief that the Republicans operate at a disadvantage because their policies are broadly unpopular. They are still able to succeed because they are extremely good at fighting each news cycle with a coherent and unified message that is carefully crafted to create an us vs. them narrative which basically tribalizes our elections and our political discourse. They simply cannot accomplish this task anymore because most of their thought leaders, from Erick Erickson at Red State, to many of their hate radio broadcasters, to the National Review, to most of their communitariat on television, to their foreign policy elite, to the Bushes, Romneys, and McCains, to the Speaker of the House and many congresspeople and senators, all refuse to sing from Trump’s hymnal. Trump also won’t be able to raise enough money to compete, and he won’t mobilize the leaders in the social conservative movement. He’ll also be fighting the president and his bully pulpit, who will have the advantage of not being a candidate.

    Sadly, I think that everything that BooMan writes here is wrong.

    The Republicans are falling in line behind Trump. They have no choice but to depend on him. And they will get political amnesia and claim they were on his side all along, and that Hillary and her liberal policies are the larger danger to the country, and so must be defeated. Social conservatives have nowhere to go, and as long as Trump mouths anti-abortion platitudes, they will be happy with him.

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne:

    All of this bedwetting nonsense from our side is making me crazy. Just imagine what a shit show the GOP convention is going to be

    Trump is meeting with GOP officials this Thursday to discuss some differences. By the time the convention rolls around, all will be forgiven. Yesterday Maddow noted that the vast majority of GOP politicians who previously had said that they could never work with Trump were now on record as supporting him.

    Cruz and Kasich promised a rough and tumble contested election. What happened with that?

    This is not to say that Trump has everything locked up. But people expecting a shit show forget that toilets can be flushed and cleaned out.

  55. 55
    Davebo says:

    @LAO:

    OK, that’s hilarious! I love the way JOEL F. HANSEN, ESQ. refers to all the defendants by their full names except for the president who is just “Obama”.

    And oddly there is no Joel Hansen listed among the attorneys at HANSEN RASMUSSEN’s website.

  56. 56
    JGabriel says:

    Betty Cracker:

    Absurd “potty prefect” laws …

    I’ve been calling them bladder control laws, as in: “It’s nice to know the anti-gun-control, anti-choice Republicans are at least strongly pro-bladder control.”

  57. 57
    I'mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet says:

    @ruemara: Stewart was disappointing at the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear in October 2010 in DC. He seemed desperate to show that somehow both-sides-do-it. He really misread the audience there.

    I had high hopes that that would have done some good. But the tone was off and it was probably too late by then anyway.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  58. 58
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Mai.naem.mobile: I don’t think we would have a ’64-magnitude landslide, not even if we had 10 Obamas with a side of Lincoln and FDR for dessert. This is an extraordinarily polarized country.

    That said, I still think people are underestimating the effect of having our first woman at the top of the ticket. It amazes me how little attention that gets, honestly. It’s a big fucking deal, and I think the numbers will ultimately reflect that — even more so since the first female candidate will be running against a 1940s-model misogynist pig — but within the parameters of our present polarized state.

  59. 59
    Brachiator says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    I am disappointed, kind of. I was hoping he’d spend that much of his own money and lose.

    He probably doesn’t have the money. He’s been dancing around the issue of his tax returns, which would likely show much less income than he claims. And even Forbes estimates that his net worth is at best less than half of what he claims it is, $4 billion instead of $10 billion. And he would have to liquidate a big chunk of his assets to self-fund a presidential campaign.

    Michael Bloomberg’s net worth is close to $37 billion. He could probably self-fund without breaking a sweat.

  60. 60
    cmorenc says:

    @Meyerman:

    Is it just me, or does McCrory look a lot like the vicious warden in Shawshank Redemption?

    Pat McCrory was for years prior to his 2012 campaign for governor, widely considered a prototypical example of one of the remaining genuinely “moderate” Republicans in the south – even by Democrats. In fact. for years he only had lukewarm support at best from more conservative factions within the NC GOP because of his relatively moderate record as mayor of NC’s largest city, Charlotte – and that was the side of him with which his co-workers at Duke Energy over many years were familiar with. However, McCrory was keenly ambitious to become the first Charlotte-area politician to win the governorship (long track record in NC of failed gubernatorial bids by Charlotte area mayors and pols) – and after his loss in the 2008 gubernatorial election to Democrat Bev Perdue, McCrory sold his political soul to North Carolina’s state equivalent of the Koch Brothers, uber-wealthy businessman Art Pope and Pope’s allies in the NC conservative movement, in order to win the critical wedge of hard-right support who had distrusted him up to that point. For the first couple of years of the McCrory administration, Pope served formally as top advisor to McCrory, with an office in the state Executive building.

    Classic example of a formerly decent (for a Republican) man who sold his soul to the Devil to fulfill his ambitions.

  61. 61
    Davebo says:

    Also in the Bundy lawsuit we learn that February 2016 came two years after May 2, 2016.

    That’s some top flight lawyering there!

  62. 62
    Germy says:

    @Davebo:

    refers to all the defendants by their full names except for the president who is just “Obama”.

    I surprised he didn’t just spit on the ground and grunt “THAT one.”

  63. 63
    LAO says:

    @Davebo: Larry Klayman wrote that sucker, his sticky paw prints are all over that Complaint.

  64. 64
    Germy says:

    @Davebo:

    That’s some top flight lawyering there!

    “He was wearing a suit! How were we to know?”

  65. 65
    WarMunchkin says:

    @Brachiator: I’m actually increasingly more worried about our convention being a shitshow. I maintain that it’s on balance good for Bernie to continue running (and building tooling and registering voters!), but the /r/BernTheConvention people are scaring the living daylights out of me. I want an election, not an ochlocracy.

    @Betty Cracker: This. I have some close friends from that fever swamp known as New Jersey (what? I’m from NY), who are a) conditioned to dislike liberals as a knee-jerk reflex, b) believe Christie did good things for their state and c) are women. They’re going to vote for Hillary because she seems smarter.

  66. 66
    JMG says:

    @Betty Cracker: I wish I didn’t, but I disagree. The visceral, sex-based dislike of many white men for Clinton is something I noticed long before Trump came on the scene. I believe it will account for more Trump votes than racism cost Obama in 2008 and 2012. At best, I think Clinton could win by a 2008 margin. At worst, she loses by one or two percent. The Senate will not flip no matter what. It would take an actual Trump presidency to alter the current polarization balance, a price too high to pay.

  67. 67
    Davebo says:

    @Davebo: Oops, Joel Hanson is indeed listed on their site.

  68. 68
    starscream says:

    This is starting to feel like it’ll be more 2012 than 2008, maybe even a bit closer.

  69. 69
    Cacti says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    Jon Stewart was the hip David Broder. I remember he once had Brokaw on his show and they were both clucking their tongues on how divisive the Democrats were. I had stopped watching him at least a year before he went off the airwaves.

    This.

    I never understood why the left thought Stewart was some great liberal voice in media.

  70. 70
    Germy says:

    @Cacti:

    I never understood why the left thought Stewart was some great liberal voice…

    It was after he went on bow tie man’s show and told him to stop ruining the country.

  71. 71
    bystander says:

    @I’mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet: I think it was then I realized Stewart didn’t really have a lot of depth, just mockery.

    Nope, don’t miss him.

  72. 72
    bystander says:

    @Germy: But even then, he blamed the Dem guy as well, which was b/s.

  73. 73
    Cacti says:

    @Germy:

    It was after he went on bow tie man’s show and told him to stop ruining the country.

    Called Tucker Carlson a dick, but was polite as a courtier to John Yoo.

    Based on Stewart’s reaction, you’d have thought that the former was the war criminal and the latter merely a nuisance.

  74. 74
    starscream says:

    According to TPM’s sidebar, Clinton is now +15 over Sanders nationally. Looks like the consolidation/unification is starting.

  75. 75
    MattF says:

    @LAO: For me, Larry Klayman will always be ‘the guy who sued his mother for $50,000.’ Now, maybe it was one of those ‘family drama’ things– but I somehow doubt it.

  76. 76
    Face says:

    then contrast it with what the Dems will look like coming out of our convention, with all the party lined up behind Hillary

    Uh….what? Have you just met Bernie Sanders? What about this cat makes you think he’s going to give up so easily?

    I predict the exact opposite. The GOP Convention will be all Trump dick-sucking, all the time. Meanwhile, the Dems will be furiously trying to tell BS to shut his fuckin pie hole and give it up. Which he wont, because he’s not really a Dem and doesn’t care.

  77. 77
    Mike in NC says:

    @cmorenc: Homophobe Art Pope was appointed as Budget Director by McCrory. Hence the massive cuts in the safety net. Has that changed?

  78. 78
    Germy says:

    @Cacti:

    Called Tucker Carlson a dick, but was polite as a courtier to John Yoo.

    Not scared of Carlson, scared of Yoo.

    @bystander:

    But even then, he blamed the Dem guy as well, which was b/s.

    He has a schtick and he ran with it. It took him out of being a mediocre standup comic to being a political satirist.

  79. 79
    Betty Cracker says:

    Regarding Stewart, the part of his shtick I found most valuable was calling out Fox News bullshit. He really was good at that.

  80. 80
    Cacti says:

    @Face:

    Uh….what? Have you just met Bernie Sanders? What about this cat makes you think he’s going to give up so easily?

    I predict the exact opposite. The GOP Convention will be all Trump dick-sucking, all the time. Meanwhile, the Dems will be furiously trying to tell BS to shut his fuckin pie hole and give it up. Which he wont, because he’s not really a Dem and doesn’t care.

    I agree that Bernie has dreams of making things 1968 part deux.

    Mostly because he’s intellectually and emotionally stuck in that decade.

  81. 81
    Just One More Canuck says:

    @Davebo: maybe he borrowed Obama’s time machine

  82. 82
    Davebo says:

    @Cacti: I never thought Stewart was some great liberal voice.

    Just a guy that made me laugh a lot pointing out some of the sillier things politicians and other do and say. And yes, sometimes those politicians were Democrats.

  83. 83
    CONGRATULATIONS! says:

    But as you lean on your more loosely affiliated friends, relatives and neighbors to get their asses to the polls this year to prevent the Trumpocalypse, maybe spare a moment to emphasize the importance of state, local and midterm elections too?

    Locals affect my family far more than anything else does, as my wife’s a teacher. I’ve been preaching it for years. One “Dear Leader” is about where most people’s understanding of politics begins and ends, and sadly that’s not getting better but worse.

    Nobody gives a shit about local politics except for the GOP faithful, who are just cleaning up at the local level here. It’s really frustrating. Our state government is firmly blue, but even in the bluest of areas all the low-level offices are GOP-owned and controlled – which is going to bite us hard in the ass one day.

    I’m not this kind of guy, my stints on my HOA have shown me I hate the actual “making the sausage” politics shit with a fury, but it’s gotten bad enough I’m going to pull papers for one of our local school boards next cycle.

  84. 84
    NR says:

    @Brachiator: Yep. Look at the latest PPP poll. Ignore the joke questions comparing Trump to head lice and whatnot. The poll shows that the same percentage of Republicans are supporting Trump as Democrats are supporting Hillary. Hillary’s lead is only 4 points, and she loses twice as many voters to third-party candidates as Trump does.

    But the election’s in the bag! Nothing to worry about here.

  85. 85
    The Other Chuck says:

    @bystander:

    So, it’s the Dems fault

    That’s not how I read it at all. He’s saying the dems do good, but have a marketing problem, largely (this is my own editorializing now) because they run away from their own achievements. Tell me where this is wrong?

  86. 86
    Chris says:

    @Brachiator:

    I don’t like to repeat myself, but it’s my belief that the Republicans operate at a disadvantage because their policies are broadly unpopular. They are still able to succeed because they are extremely good at fighting each news cycle with a coherent and unified message that is carefully crafted to create an us vs. them narrative which basically tribalizes our elections and our political discourse. They simply cannot accomplish this task anymore because most of their thought leaders, from Erick Erickson at Red State, to many of their hate radio broadcasters, to the National Review, to most of their communitariat on television, to their foreign policy elite, to the Bushes, Romneys, and McCains, to the Speaker of the House and many congresspeople and senators, all refuse to sing from Trump’s hymnal. Trump also won’t be able to raise enough money to compete, and he won’t mobilize the leaders in the social conservative movement. He’ll also be fighting the president and his bully pulpit, who will have the advantage of not being a candidate.

    Sadly, I think that everything that BooMan writes here is wrong.

    The Republicans are falling in line behind Trump. They have no choice but to depend on him. And they will get political amnesia and claim they were on his side all along, and that Hillary and her liberal policies are the larger danger to the country, and so must be defeated. Social conservatives have nowhere to go, and as long as Trump mouths anti-abortion platitudes, they will be happy with him.

    I also don’t think he’s right to say that Republican policies are broadly unpopular. Or rather, it depends which policies. I suppose most people would rather keep their Social Security and Medicare, but a phenomenal amount of their policies come down to hurting people who are nonwhite, non-native, female, gay, some other demographic like “unionized worker” or “federal worker,” or simply poor, and those are plenty popular. Less so with demographic shifts, but plenty of parts of the country are still white enough, and even those that aren’t have automatically flipped (i.e. Texas).

    The “narrative that tribalizes our elections” IS the policy, IOW.

  87. 87
    🌷 Martin says:

    Haven’t seen the video so not sure if Bee covers this, but California just passed a law that crisis pregnancy centers must inform patients of abortion options in their area.

    Two federal judges in California delivered a one-two punch to anti-choice activists at crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) last week by declining to block the state’s new reproductive disclosure law.

    The law, set to go into effect January 1, requires a public notice about access to abortion and birth control at pregnancy-related clinics statewide. CPCs have sought to block the California Reproductive Freedom, Accountability, Comprehensive Care, and Transparency (FACT) Act, arguing in a flurry of lawsuits that it violates their constitutional rights to 
freedom of speech, assembly, and free exercise of religion.

    So yeah, we’re not putting up with their shit here.

  88. 88
    Brachiator says:

    @WarMunchkin:

    I’m actually increasingly more worried about our convention being a shitshow. I maintain that it’s on balance good for Bernie to continue running (and building tooling and registering voters!), but the /r/BernTheConvention people are scaring the living daylights out of me. I want an election, not an ochlocracy.

    I think that Bernie is trying to milk public attention for his platform for all its worth, but I don’t know yet whether he is irrational. Right now, he probably cannot win based on delegates. He talks about a convention fight to get his views into the platform, but he is just one guy, there are few other Democrats who would back him. He has no inside political constituency.

    That leaves his supporters. I don’t think he is delusional or would try to unleash them to demand and disrupt, to bring on Ochlocracy if he doesn’t get his way. We shall see.

  89. 89
    JMG says:

    @NR: Trump has no more Republican rivals, Clinton still has Sanders. If you compare the two PPP head-to-heads, the narrower Clinton margin comes exclusively from Sanders supporters who call themselves independents who have yet to give up. Now, it’s possible those folks will NEVER give up, but if they don’t and Trump wins, Sanders will join Nader in disgrace and the Sanders wing of the party will never be allowed a lick of influence ever again. So I expect Bernie to do his best to carry his voters to Clinton in November.

  90. 90
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @I’mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet: @ruemara: Stewart was disappointing at the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear in October 2010 in DC. He seemed desperate to show that somehow both-sides-do-it. He really misread the audience there.

    he looked into the abyss and choked. What I remember was his giving a ‘medal of reasonableness” (excuse me while I gag) to a low-infor voter who criticized Obama and that stupid analogy about the Lincoln Tunnel.

    @Face: Have you just met Bernie Sanders? What about this cat

    is ’50s hepcat lingo the new handlebar mustache or affect-adora

  91. 91
    gene108 says:

    @Cacti:

    I never understood why the left thought Stewart was some great liberal voice in media.

    Because in 2003 and 2004 and 2005, he was one of the few voices with a media platform, who called BULLSHIT on the right-wing media and the Bush, Jr. Administration.

    When the MSM was falling all over themselves to demonstrate how loyally they could repeat the information given by Bush & Co., Stewart was mocking both the media and the politicians for how utterly foolish their positions were.

    Probably the only two people around at the time, who actually were critical of Bush & Co. were Stewart and Olbermann.*

    *Edit: with any kind of media reach.

  92. 92

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne: Many of the chicken-littles on this blog are Sanders supporters.

  93. 93
    starscream says:

    Nate Silver on twitter: “3. State polls are broadly consistent with that ~6% Clinton lead + noise + house effects. Not nearly enough data to say more than that.”

  94. 94
    D58826 says:

    @Brachiator: A lot of pixels have made the supreme sacrifice on this blog about what Bernie should do now that he has virtually no chance of beating Hillary. Well I have a suggestion. He doesn’t have to stop his campaign but after hitting the high spots in NJ in the next day or so, why not come back to NC and stump for the local democrats., We have a governor’s race, a senate race, a full set of house seats. not to mention state offices. Come back to NC hold one of his large rallies and appear with a couple of the top of the ticket democrats. He can challenge his followers to get out and vote for down ballot democrats in the fall since the revolution has to be at the state and local level as well as the federal. The down ballot candidates might not pass the purity pony test but he will need them in Washington if he hopes to get anything done. If he did something like that it would also go a long way to prove that he is a team player and has no intention of blowing up the convention.

    A politician may not always remember that you had his back but he certainly will remember if you didn’t. Bernie can build a lot of good will by campaigning for the down ballot candidates is the swing/battleground states. It will also guranttee him a spot on the sunday talkshows with McCain. Listeninmg to those two old curmudgeons shout at one another is worth the price of admission

  95. 95
    🌷 Martin says:

    @Betty Cracker: Stewart was never interested in advocating policy. He just wanted the public to not be lied to. He’s a strong liberal voice if you believe that Democrats are best served by an informed public. I happen to believe that is critical. Think of him as the ice cutter that clears a path for honest policy folks to follow.

  96. 96
    ruemara says:

    @WarMunchkin: Bernie isn’t building tools and registering voters. The empirical results demonstrate that he isn’t. At best, his shenanigans are at least keeping people engaged, even if it’s by making them angry at Democrats in general, HRC in particular. Sadly, how he walks that back to say they should now support Clinton after bilking them and spoon feeding them the dumbest of propaganda, I don’t know.

  97. 97
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Betty Cracker: i think when he was true to himself he was great, when he made a conscious effort to Broderize, he was weaker. I remember a segment from the 08 campaign when he was trying to gin up outrage about something Obama did and the audience was flat, because it was so inside-baseball nobody could possibly have cared, and he broke from the speech to say “you know, it’s okay to laugh at him”. It just wasn’t funny

  98. 98
    CONGRATULATIONS! says:

    As recently as four days ago, Trump was still publicly claiming, “I’m self-funding my campaign.” Except, he isn’t. The presumptive Republican nominee could self-fund if he’s as exorbitantly wealthy as he claims, but Trump will instead run a more conventional operation, dependent on rich donors and a well-funded super PAC or two.

    @rikyrah: Trump’s entire life has been making bets with other people’s money. That was never going to change, and sure won’t hurt him any among the toad-lickers that think he’s a Good Idea.

    FWIW, Trump, save the (probably necessary to get votes) racism, is the GOPs last hope to stay relevant as a national party. He’s chopped the Social Cons off at the knees and had their balls turned into jewelry for his wives, took the Bush dynasty out back and given them the “Ol’ Yeller” treatment, and the Randian granny-starvers are next. And all these things have to happen for the GOP to stay competitive with a majority of voters. He can have the inevitable “racism is bad, sorry, my bad” conversion later, after he’s done murdering the careers of Paul Ryan and the “Freedom Caucus”. You’d think the GOP could at least thank him for doing them a favor, but they won’t. Hopefully he gets his clock cleaned by Hillary and the survivors double-down and go with Cruz in 2020.

  99. 99
    Betty Cracker says:

    @WarMunchkin: I am not a Matt Yglesias fan, but he lays out a pretty good case for why Sanders will support Clinton wholeheartedly here:

    Thanks to the primaries, Sanders has emerged as a substantial factional leader inside the Democratic Party — someone whose statements and tweets will garner media attention, whose email list will be coveted and envied by other Democrats in Congress, and whose support or opposition to a measure will matter to a national constituency. That gives him, potentially, considerably more influence over national affairs than he’s had in his previous 25 years in Washington. But essentially all of that influence hinges on Clinton winning the election in November.

    Even if you think Sanders is a vainglorious asshole who is on a power trip (and for the record, that is NOT my view), it behooves him to make sure Clinton wins in the fall if she’s the nominee.

  100. 100
    Michael G says:

    @bystander: I agree. Stewart, to my thinking, was not funny; his mannerisms were puerile; he rolled over for far right loons (McCain, et alia); and he seemed narcissistic.

  101. 101
    mr_gravity says:

    @Brachiator: Strongly disagree. A large part of Trump’s support is from people who believe that he is self-funding and therefore not beholden to special interests.

  102. 102
    NR says:

    @JMG:

    Now, it’s possible those folks will NEVER give up, but if they don’t and Trump wins, Sanders will join Nader in disgrace and the Sanders wing of the party will never be allowed a lick of influence ever again.

    And in that case, the Democrats will never win an election ever again. Which in the long term will be a good thing, because it means the party will die and a party that actually represents the 99% can take their place, but it’ll suck badly in the short term with Republicans winning everything.

    If the Democrats lose because they nominated an incredibly unpopular candidate, they have two choices. They can either try to correct that mistake in the future, or they can play out the revenge fantasy you described against the people who didn’t want to vote for said unpopular candidate. We’ll have to wait and see what choice they make.

  103. 103

    @🌷 Martin: He sings in the choir of both-sides-do-it, that’s what’s annoying. I couldn’t care less that he is not a Democratic partisan. His tongue-bath of Rumsfeld and other torture enablers when they were pimping their books on his show was quite nauseating too. Also see his interview with Petraeus squeeze, Paula Broadwell,

  104. 104
    Mike J says:

    Woke Jim VandeHei ‏@DougJBalloon 1h1 hour ago
    “Only Bernie can beat Manson/Shkreli” by H. A. Goodman

  105. 105
    Brachiator says:

    @NR:

    Yep. Look at the latest PPP poll. Ignore the joke questions comparing Trump to head lice and whatnot. The poll shows that the same percentage of Republicans are supporting Trump as Democrats are supporting Hillary. Hillary’s lead is only 4 points, and she loses twice as many voters to third-party candidates as Trump does.

    But Clinton still leads.

    Hillary Clinton leads Trump 42-38, with Libertarian Gary Johnson at 4% and Green Party candidate Jill Stein at 2%. In a match up just between Clinton and Trump, her lead expands to 47-41. That’s because supporters of Johnson and Stein would prefer her over Trump 36-18.

    And Sanders leads as well in a matchup against Trump. It is not smooth sailing for the Democrats, but it ain’t the Titanic yet.

    And as poster JMG noted, Trump has no rivals while Clinton still has Sanders.

  106. 106
    Germy Shoemangler says:

    just saw this on LGM:

    Ted Cruz floated the possibility of restarting his presidential campaign if he wins Nebraska’s GOP primary on Tuesday and avoided saying whether he supports Donald Trump’s bid for president.

    Cruz, who suspended his White House run last week, said he does not expect to win Nebraska’s primary but is leaving the door open.

    “We launched this campaign intending to win. The reason we suspended our campaign was that with the Indiana loss, I felt there was no path to victory,” he said Tuesday on conservative host Glenn Beck’s radio program.

    “If that changes, we will certainly respond accordingly.”

  107. 107
    starscream says:

    There are a LOT of BernieBros who think Hillary literally supports the same policies as Trump and that she’s just as dishonest (the emails thing is big amongst the ‘Bros I know). St Bernard has his work cut out for him.

  108. 108
    Immanentize says:

    @Betty Cracker: I know I am not the republican voter demographic and will never understand them — but what do democrats find offensive about Hillary? She is smart, funny, warm, real, tough (and toughened),experienced and thoughtful. Did I mention smart? And an amazing person who happens to be the first ever party-nominated woman candidate for president! I just do not get all these recent concern-troll stories and radio pieces about how she doesn’t have a punchy slogan and she really needs a branding makeover, etc. That is what will make me crazy this election season.

  109. 109
    The Other Chuck says:

    @NR:

    And in that case, the Democrats will never win an election ever again. Which in the long term will be a good thing, because it means the party will die and a party that actually represents the 99% can take their place, but it’ll suck badly in the short term with Republicans winning everything.

    Und nach Hitler, Uns.

  110. 110
    Brachiator says:

    @mr_gravity:

    Strongly disagree. A large part of Trump’s support is from people who believe that he is self-funding and therefore not beholden to special interests.

    There is nothing, no poll, no reporting, nothing, that indicates that Trump’s support has dropped over the self-funding issue. Let’s see what happens down the road with this.

  111. 111
    CONGRATULATIONS! says:

    So yeah, we’re not putting up with their shit here.

    @🌷 Martin: I was born here. I could have left California at any time in my life. I never have. And it’s laws like this (that, and the ocean view) that insure I never will. God knows we have our problems and the conservative part of our state would terrify a Texan, but we have a history of doing it right far more often than wrong.

    Thanks for posting that.

  112. 112

    @Immanentize: The right wing has thrown a lot of nonsense at her since 90s, some of it has stuck.

  113. 113
    NR says:

    @The Other Chuck: If the Republicans are so dangerous, maybe we shouldn’t be nominating massively unpopular candidates to run against them. Just a thought.

  114. 114
    starscream says:

    @Immanentize: A 25 year old today literally doesn’t remember a day when the right wing (and many in the media) didn’t absolutely hate Hillary. So many years of hearing one thing are hard to overcome. Especially when you have other Democrats saying she’s corrupt.

  115. 115
    Cacti says:

    @NR:

    because it means the party will die and a party that actually represents the 99%

    The presumptuous idea that any candidate or party speaks for 99% of the population is demonstrably false, and needs to die an ignominious death.

  116. 116
    cmorenc says:

    @Mike in NC:

    @cmorenc: Homophobe Art Pope was appointed as Budget Director by McCrory. Hence the massive cuts in the safety net. Has that changed?

    Nope.

  117. 117
    Chyron HR says:

    @NR:

    Are you aware that all the voices in your head only get one vote total?

  118. 118
    Davebo says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    I always assumed that once the dust settles Sanders’ email database would end up at the DNC. How else do they compile their massive voter database?

  119. 119
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @Brachiator:

    It’s not the lack of falling in line among the Republicans that will be the convention’s problem – it’s that they’re going to be lining up to highlight and endorse Donald Fucking Trump in all his egomaniacal, boastful, ignorant, ugly, sexist, racist, brassy, inappropriate vainglory, in the worst possible way. There’s just simply not enough lipstick in the world to put on all those pigs. The press will try, but even they won’t be able to hide the contrast between what each party has to offer this country.

    Also, there will be more focus on Melania, and her… pubic profile. Will all those Trump followers just overlook the fact that she has a very very thick Russian accent, in addition to crotch shots? When it comes down to it, I think that will be a bridge too far.

  120. 120
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Cacti: the numbers do not seem to indicate that Bernie Sanders has 99% support

  121. 121
    Davebo says:

    @srv: That is some very troubling polling.

    If you believe every Democrat supporting Sanders is as dickish as you are.

    Somehow, I doubt it.

  122. 122
    starscream says:

    Everyone read this and stop being idiots

    Starting with, “1. For fuck’s sake, America. You’re going to make go on a rant about general election polls — in May?”

  123. 123
    Cacti says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    In the Dem primary, he’s the candidate of the 43%.

  124. 124
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Davebo: I don’t know how it works but my sense from the way people talk bout it is that individuals pols and campaigns of all stripes are pretty careful with who they give their lists to, the evidence of my junk mail folder overflowing with begs from candidates I’ve never heard of (and their children… help my mom! sign my dad’s birthday card! WTF) notwithstanding

  125. 125
    Immanentize says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: @starscream: I know, but the one thing that has me most upset about the current Sanders campaign is that he is working hard to reinforce those myths. It is sad to see one so certain in their ideas that they are willing to peddle such dreck. But that is what The Prince and the Discourses was all about, no? Except for the part where I don’t really understand Bernie’s ends anymore, although his means are obvious.

  126. 126
    Emma says:

    @starscream: A certain subset of the Democrats seem to have decided that every number coming from every half-arsed polling outfit means the world is ending. Sigh.

  127. 127
    Immanentize says:

    @srv: I’m awake. Does Trump have a primary opponent? Does Hillary? Do head to head polls mean a whole bunch before the conventions? Not so much. Is this the only data point in the world of polling? No.

  128. 128
    chopper says:

    @Germy:

    Hutz: i move for a…’bad court thingy’

    Judge: you mean a mistrial?

    Hutz: yeah! that’s why you’re the judge and i’m the law-talking guy.

    Judge: the lawyer.

    Hutz: right.

  129. 129
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @Immanentize:

    I don’t really understand Bernie’s ends anymore

    Sanders is a fucking asshole, with as big an ego and as stuck on himself as Trump. If he were at all interested in the outcome of this election, he’d be doing what Liz Warren, Al Franken etc. are doing to Trump, and saying things to signal to his followers who the real enemy is – and guess what, Bernie, you fucking fuck, it’s not Hillary and the Democrats. Instead, it’s all about him, like everyone who’s had to try and work with him will tell you over and over and over.

  130. 130
    Brachiator says:

    Quinnipiac brings a dose of reality:

    FLORIDA: Clinton 43 – Trump 42; Sanders 44 – Trump 42
    OHIO: Clinton 39 – Trump 43; Sanders 43 – Trump 41
    PENNSYLVANIA: Clinton 43 – Trump 42; Sanders 47 – Trump 41

    I was just about to mention this early poll. It is not the end of the world or anything, but shows that the Democrats have some work to do.

    A gender issue is significant this early on. I think it may be overstated, but still troubling and noteworthy:

    [In Florida] “Republicans’ weakness among minority voters is well known. But the reason this race is so close overall is Clinton’s historic weakness among white men. In Florida, she is getting just 25 percent from white men,”

    What the hell is wrong with these people?

  131. 131
    Davebo says:

    @srv:

    Well, if the Bros are swayed by a prominent vocal and financial supporter of Republican candidates for over 20 years then they should pull the lever for the Trumpster.

  132. 132
    Trollhattan says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: There was some of that to be sure, but his “correspondents” took the lead role of pitbull-on-meth, not J-Stew himself. And that stabilizing role went out the window after he announced his retirement and then went hammer-and-tongs after wingnuts from that point on, perhaps a tell.

    We have no way of t knowing what reins Viacom held on him. I think it’s safe to say given John Oliver’s show that HBO’s rules will consist of: “get viewers” in their entirety. His potential is rooted a more than paper-thin understanding of politics and policy and his loathing of lying, lazy media. Maybe we’ll find out by November, I have my doubts it can come together by then.

  133. 133
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Immanentize: That’s one that I can’t figure out either. I think plain old misogyny is more at the root of it than some folks want to admit – and boy, if you want to ignite a new “liberals are the real racists for pointing out racism” flame war, just try pointing out *that* inconvenient notion in certain circles – yes, even here at BJ. It has happened. (“What! how dare you call me a misogynist, you b*tch!” would be funny, if it weren’t so depressing.).

  134. 134
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    TPM LIVEWIRE
    Cruz Won’t Rule Out Jumping Back Into Presidential Race

  135. 135
    starscream says:

    @Immanentize: Bernie’s whole history is doing what it takes to get and stay in power (accepting Hillary’s filthy Wall Street money in 2006, supporting F-35 construction in Vermont, wanting to dump radioactive waste in minority communities in TX, gun votes to appease the NRA, having antiwar protesters arrested, etc). This election is no different.

  136. 136
    D58826 says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: And so far none at Bernie.

    But Bernie keeps trying to make it hard to believer he is a team player. Turns out that Hillary’s embrace of the public option is a step in the right direction but still not good enough. So he continues to sound like his way or the highway.

  137. 137
    Emma says:

    @Brachiator: And yet in South Florida at least one in five Republicans say they’ll vote for her. And the Spanish language radio stations are all no-Trump 24/7. We have a long ways to go before November.

  138. 138
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Brachiator: from Jamelle Bouie’s twitter feed, which is one of the most useful out there (those inclined and scroll through the Marvel stuff)

    Alan Abramowitz ‏@ AlanIAbramowitz 6h6 hours ago
    Q Poll Ohio sample is 4 pts. more white than 2012 Ohio exit poll; PA sample is 3 pts. more white and FL sample is 2 pts. more white.

    Alan Abramowitz ‏@ AlanIAbramowitz 6h6 hours ago
    Q poll swing state samples show smaller Hispanic and black electorates in 2016–this is highly unlikely.

  139. 139

    @D58826: Bernie is our Trump and similarly untethered from reality.

  140. 140
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @starscream: one the interesting things about St Bernard and guns, if there’s one issue (others include immigration, infrastructure, shutdown gamesmanship, anti-gay laws…) that undermine his simplistic argument about the Billionaire Class!, it’s guns, but he doesn’t see it.

  141. 141
    starscream says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Valuable to know, but I don’t want to go too far down that road, lest we become the left’s version of the Unskew the Polls Guy from 2012.

  142. 142
    Brachiator says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne:

    Also, there will be more focus on Melania, and her… pubic profile. Will all those Trump followers just overlook the fact that she has a very very thick Russian accent, in addition to crotch shots? When it comes down to it, I think that will be a bridge too far.

    What is wrong with you? Why would you even try to make this an issue? How does this separate you from people who demonize some people as non-American, or sexists who dismiss women over trivial bullshit?

    The press will try, but even they won’t be able to hide the contrast between what each party has to offer this country.

    Check out the current Quinnipiac poll: “Clinton, Trump ‘dead even’ in Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.” Despite all his negatives, Trump is finding traction in some places.

  143. 143
    NR says:

    @starscream: Nate Silver’s track record during the primary doesn’t inspire much confidence in anything he says at this point.

  144. 144
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @starscream: I am just campaigning to keep mattresses dry. And Quinnipiac has had a recent history of overweighting whites

  145. 145
    Immanentize says:

    @Brachiator: 25% WM seems low even for Florida. That said, looking at the racism generally trumps sexism line of analysis, Obama won Florida by only 1% and got less than 40% of the white vote which mean he probably got around 25% OR LESS of the white male vote. Just aren’t as many of those guys as there once were….

  146. 146
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @NR: whereas your ten year history of willful ignorance and childish tantrums has built you an enormous following on the internet

  147. 147
    Trollhattan says:

    This is pretty funny.

  148. 148
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @Brachiator:

    Why would you even try to make this an issue?

    Not me, you idiot – Trump’s orc army – the same people who screamed about Michelle Obama’s bare arms at the SOTU.

  149. 149

    @Brachiator:

    I think that Bernie is trying to milk public attention his supporter’s pocketbooks for his platform for all its they’re worth

    FTFY. His campaign has passed the point of trying to get the message out and gone on to be primarily about the grift.

  150. 150
    Immanentize says:

    @NR: WT F’in F? This is such a classic fact free statement — 538 is a site that analyses polling aggregates. They do not get things right or wrong. Missed math class much?

  151. 151
    NR says:

    @Emma: Hillary’s favorability and honesty numbers have been consistently terrible for months.

  152. 152
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    As a Stealth Canadian, Samantha Bee’s probably better grounded in the whole “good government” thing and the idea that you vote in the non-glamorous elections. Oh, and that it’s abnormal for voting to differ so massively from state to state and even precinct to precinct, and that it’s especially abnormal for government in an ostensibly democratic nation to hate free and fair elections.

  153. 153
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Brachiator: Does that poll take the Sanders-supporting white men into account? My guess is that once Sanders concedes and endorses and campaigns for Clinton, most of his supporters, including the white dudes in Florida who support him (like my husband), will vote for Clinton. White men will still vote for Trump in huge margins, but not 75%.

  154. 154
    Immanentize says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: I’m a slightly overweight white — do I get counted? More than once? What about Cole?

  155. 155
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    MSNBC going to give more airtime to the coal miner who ‘took on’ Hillary Clinton, presumably the one who thinks God put the goal in West Virginia to support him and his family.

    Joe the Miner

  156. 156
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    My guess is that once Sanders concedes and endorses and campaigns for Clinton

    Be prepared for that not to happen, FYI. My bet is that he’s going to signal that his “principles” just simply won’t allow it. He’s got nothing to lose by playing spoiler/gadfly.

  157. 157
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    And the revisionism on Stewart is sort of weird and misses the point. TDS was always harshest towards the news media, because they weren’t doing their basic job of holding people in power to account, in part because the leading figures of the news media had become people in power. It wasn’t meant to be a fucking replacement for them. That’s why the whole rally thing was weird and didn’t work.

  158. 158
    Brachiator says:

    @Emma:

    And yet in South Florida at least one in five Republicans say they’ll vote for her. And the Spanish language radio stations are all no-Trump 24/7. We have a long ways to go before November.

    Absolutely. As I noted, this is an early poll.

    And some of the other material in the poll of Ohio and Pennsylvania suggests that the Democrats may benefit by hammering at the issue of Trump’s temperament, inexperience and unsteadiness over foreign policy.

  159. 159
    NR says:

    @Immanentize: Nate predicted that Trump would not get the Republican nomination, and he predicted that Sanders would get much less support than he did. He blew the primary, period.

  160. 160
    NotMax says:

    The Wages of Apathy

    20 bucks an hour.

    But recipients never galvanized to cash the check.

  161. 161
    Betty Cracker says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne: He’s got nothing to lose except every bit of respect and influence he’s gained by an unexpectedly strong run.

  162. 162
    D58826 says:

    Like Trump, the Patriot Movement’s surge is due partly to fear and the perceived indifference of political leaders to places that didn’t recover from the 2008 crash

    Trump may lose in November but Trumpism looks like will hang around for a bit
    http://www.theguardian.com/us-.....ction-2016

  163. 163
    Aimai says:

    @Betty Cracker: I really doubt this is true. I’m pretty dure that shen Bernie stops running he will completely stop having any influence except on right wing tslk shows shere he will be brought on to attack HRC znd the dems. I think the majority of his voters will look bzck on his campaign like a summer romance. To the extent they are active voters their information will Lready be with the dems. As for the angriest followers they are raging jndividualists and totalizing, catastrophizing thinkers. If they dont like the way bernie dismounts they will turn on him. If they still like him they will indulgently listen to him but they wont donate or work or even vote for ordinary democratic campaigns. They will give money to wage ceaseless primary campaigns against incumbent ddms without regard to the possibility of throwing the seat to the republicans, though. So:no. Bernie is not going to be a powerful force in the new democratic party.

  164. 164
    Immanentize says:

    @NR: Based on reading a bunch of other people’s polls. You have been in the world of the glorified pundit class for far too long. But there is time to save yourself! Use the tools that are produced as appropriate and avoid anthropomorphizing data.

  165. 165
    ruemara says:

    Stop. Fucking. Braying. About. Quinnipiac. It oversamples the white electorate for that result. It’s been brought up several times. What is so hard about that? Hell, what’s so hard about reading the metrics on the poll? What’s so hard about looking at the calendar and saying, it’s fucking May, I’m gonna ignore this and contact my local party to register some voters.

  166. 166
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    I have zero faith that he won’t squander any good will he currently has outside of Vermont and his unreliable voter base of white independents.

  167. 167
    Brachiator says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Does that poll take the Sanders-supporting white men into account? My guess is that once Sanders concedes and endorses and campaigns for Clinton, most of his supporters, including the white dudes in Florida who support him (like my husband), will vote for Clinton. White men will still vote for Trump in huge margins, but not 75%.

    This part of the poll appears to match up only Clinton and Trump and seems to assume that Sanders is no longer a factor.

    I noted that I think that this white male anti-Clinton sentiment is too severe. I would like to see this tracked in other polls. And I think that much will change once we get to the actual conventions, see who the running mates are, etc.

    I think this can also change significantly if Clinton can get, and keep, the younger vote.

  168. 168
    Immanentize says:

    @Betty Cracker: I still say that Elizabeth Warren will be the key to the future. She has already started eclipsing Sanders.

    ETA — eclipsing him as a spokesperson for the lefty dems. She is a fighter who is willing to mix it up against real enemies. If Sanders doesn’t take that path, we will be talking about Hillary as President, Sherrod Brown (maybe) as V.P. and Majority Leader Warren (OK, unlikely until the passing of Shumer either into retirement or otherwise) in January. A boy can dream….

  169. 169
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @pseudonymous in nc: I don’t think it’s revisionism so much as he changed some time around that rally, became much more interested in ‘tone’ and “Reasonableness”, his term. And he had a chip on his shoulder wrt Obama that seemed to come down to “he promised to change the tone in Washington”

  170. 170
    Brachiator says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne:

    Trump’s orc army – the same people who screamed about Michelle Obama’s bare arms at the SOTU.

    Trump’s supporters are going to make Trump’s wife an issue. Right.

  171. 171
    gwangung says:

    If you want to divine the election future by using polling, use ALL of the polls. They each have different models which have their effect, but the central tendencies tend to come out by using all of them. Using just one means you buy into their biases.

    If you don’t like Silver, there’s Wang over at Princeton…

  172. 172
    Miss Bianca says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne: Yeah, but he also doesn’t have anything to gain. And he could, if he were shrewd (oh, what am I saying, but go with me there a moment) potentially gain himself – and his causes – some nice perks. A cabinet post, for example. Much as I’m so-not-impressed by the guy and his purity posturing, I’m sort of hoping that he’ll be old-fashioned (ie, conventional) enough a politician not to wilfully court going back to complete political irrelevance – worse, pariahdom – if he doesn’t wise up and play nice eventually. His most rabid fanboiz/girlz, I dunno about.

  173. 173
    Emma says:

    @NR: So what? Part of this election is not going to be about Hillary. it will be about Trump. My father, the uber-republican, told me today he would vote for her or sit out the election. Trump disgusts him. He’s not the only one. Besides, the hammering Trump is getting in the Spanish-language radio stations will play a significant factor here.

  174. 174
    starscream says:

    @Immanentize: It is amazing how quickly she became a beloved national figure on the left, whereas nobody had heard of Bernie despite a career in politics.

  175. 175
    The Other Chuck says:

    @NR: You really are a crazed berniebro. You voted for Nader, didn’t you?

  176. 176
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @Brachiator:

    I can easily imagine the hardcore nativist bible thumpers having second thoughts. The white supremacists won’t care.

  177. 177
    Immanentize says:

    @gwangung: I like Wang a lot — but he tends towards too optimistic where as Silver’s analysis tends toward too conservative (this explains both his early readings of both Trump and Sanders chances). But really, I don’t want to dispel anyone’s “truly held belief” that Silver is an anti-Bernie hack and corporatist shill….

  178. 178
    WarMunchkin says:

    @ruemara:

    @WarMunchkin: Bernie isn’t building tools and registering voters. The empirical results demonstrate that he isn’t.

    Voter registrations in California have surged; if you want to attribute that to general interest rather than anything the Sanders campaign is doing, that’s fine I guess. Sanders’ digital tooling has expanded significantly, mainly, I bet, because they have access to a greater talent pool of software engineers and mobile developers willing to work for their campaign (tech industry people seem to go Sanders). Their basic web tooling is great, too – detailed maps, rally locations, events and organizing tools. HRC’s campaign hasn’t even come close to developing the mobile capability required for activating bases of younger voters.

    @Betty Cracker:
    I agree with that – Sanders I think will do his job. But I don’t really think he has much control over the dead-enders; they are their own breed and have already metastasized. I see Sanders as just some guy they were able to latch on to. I think in the end he’ll drop it, but he’s not self-aware enough to understand what a sustained national campaign whose central message morphed into defeat the corrupt Democrats can do long-term.

    @NR:

    Which in the long term will be a good thing, because it means the party will die and a party that actually represents the 99% can take their place

    If you believe that the path to prosperity is the destruction of the Democratic Party, then I don’t think it’s possible to object to the idea that the fastest way to bring it about is to vote Republican, consistently. So I guess you’re a Republican now.

  179. 179
    rikyrah says:

    @Germy Shoemangler:

    Ted Cruz floated the possibility of restarting his presidential campaign if he wins Nebraska’s GOP primary on Tuesday and avoided saying whether he supports Donald Trump’s bid for president.

    Cruz, who suspended his White House run last week, said he does not expect to win Nebraska’s primary but is leaving the door open

    He’s still shook. He can’t believe all his socipathy didn’t pay off.

  180. 180
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Immanentize: No to Brown as VP. No to any sitting Senator as VP.

  181. 181
    D58826 says:

    @Immanentize: Warren seems like she is playing the inside game and building the progressive structure that Bernie and the Bros talk about as the coming revolution.

  182. 182
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    Has he ever wised up and played nice? Has there been one anecdote from one of his colleagues that indicated that he’s a team player, at all? Every single person who has said anything about him, said they’ve never had a conversation with him – he does not listen, he alienates and scolds. Why would he start behaving differently now? He’s 74 years old.

  183. 183
    cleek says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:
    my wife says that every time we watch.

  184. 184
    Immanentize says:

    @starscream:

    It is amazing how quickly she became a beloved national figure on the left

    She earned that by 1) fighting racist smears and sexist taunts with wit and passion and 2) by raising boat-loads of campaign cash for other democrats around the country in blue, purple and red areas. I heart her.

  185. 185
    Immanentize says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I hadn’t seen it from that angle. I was thinking: Male, progressive, Ohio. But you are right that she may want to leave the Senate out of it.

  186. 186
    dww44 says:

    @rikyrah: thanks. It’s nice to see Booman positive on Dems for a change, certainly a lot more so than the commenters at his place. Enough to get a person depressed. Which is also like all the GOP’ers on my TV these days. The world is going to hell in a handbasket, don’t you know? Again, it’s because they aren’t in control that accounts for their oh so negative world view these days. Seems to me they’ve forgotten that they so loved Reagan because he wasn’t a doomsayer, like his predecessor Carter. Certainly that’s what they all said to me then.

  187. 187
    Germy says:

    @rikyrah: Possibly he felt he had to say something to stop those tears in Glenn Beck’s eyes.

  188. 188
    Miss Bianca says:

    @D58826: Man, that is one scary as frak article. Geez, if the Bernie movement does nothing else, could it please activate a wave of progressives at state and local levels to push back against this wave of crazy? Because that could be really useful. If he started using his bully pulpit to start talking about how nutsola and unproductive this kind of anti-tax, anti-government thinking is, I would love it.

  189. 189

    @cleek: Skinny jeans need a longer top if you are not stick thin and have a woman’s curves. Those pants make her middle look a lot wider than it is. The booties just accentuate that effect.

  190. 190
    NR says:

    @WarMunchkin: Actually I think you guys would be more comfortable in the Republican party. Y’all hate liberals way more than any conservative I’ve ever met.

  191. 191
  192. 192
    Brachiator says:

    @Immanentize:

    25% WM seems low even for Florida. That said, looking at the racism generally trumps sexism line of analysis, Obama won Florida by only 1% and got less than 40% of the white vote which mean he probably got around 25% OR LESS of the white male vote.

    In 2012, Obama got 33 percent of the white male vote and 41 percent of the white female vote.

    By comparison, Obama got over 90 percent of the black vote, men and women. But he also got 58 percent of the Latino male vote and 61 percent of the Latino female vote.

    The Qunnipiac poll is early and traditionally not one of the best polls, but I still was surprised at the low number, 25 percent white male vote, for Hillary.

    ETA: I’m not going to get deep into the Latino vote, but do want to point out that non-Cuban Latinos make up a larger portion of Florida voters than Cuban Latinos.

  193. 193
    nutella says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne:

    a very very thick Russian accent

    Slovenian accent. Melania’s from Slovenia.

    On the other hand, we know her shit don’t stink, according to her husband, so that’s a point in her favor.

  194. 194
    Cacti says:

    @WarMunchkin:

    Voter registrations in California have surged; if you want to attribute that to general interest rather than anything the Sanders campaign is doing, that’s fine I guess. Sanders’ digital tooling has expanded significantly, mainly, I bet, because they have access to a greater talent pool of software engineers and mobile developers willing to work for their campaign (tech industry people seem to go Sanders). Their basic web tooling is great, too – detailed maps, rally locations, events and organizing tools. HRC’s campaign hasn’t even come close to developing the mobile capability required for activating bases of younger voters.

    And yet, somehow, he trails by more than 3 million votes.

    Strange.

  195. 195
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    I’m not gay, but I’d be gay with young Sophia Loren.

  196. 196
    chopper says:

    @starscream:

    these guys are gonna be fucking that “unlikeable!” chicken long after hilz is in the WH.

  197. 197
    chopper says:

    @NR:

    LOL, with the melodrama. oh, boo hoo.

  198. 198
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @nutella:

    Her accent is like Natasha Badinoff’s on steroids, and we know how open to discussing the nuance of ethnic differences raging racist wingnuts are.

  199. 199
    Betty Cracker says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne: Sanders jumped up and down and agitated for single payer during the ACA sausage-making session — and pissed off many Obama supporters in the process who thought (rightly) that single payer wasn’t politically feasible at that time. But when it became clear the Republicans were going to use Sanders’ alternate bill as a way to stop the ACA, Sanders jumped on board the Obamacare train. That’s much more representative of his career than the idea that he’ll try to take the party down for nominating someone else.

  200. 200
    chopper says:

    @rikyrah:

    for a guy who long considered himself the smartest guy in the room, he sure doesn’t know what the hell he’s doing.

  201. 201
    Miss Bianca says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne: I can see that.

    @Betty Cracker: Yeah, that’s what I’m hoping.

  202. 202
    Betty Cracker says:

    @WarMunchkin: Agree about the dead-enders, but I don’t worry about them much because I suspect most of them weren’t Democrats in the first place. They’re the same people who were telling us in 2012 that they were going to vote for Jill Stein because Obama wasn’t liberal enough. In other words, morons.

  203. 203
    Cacti says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    That’s much more representative of his career than the idea that he’ll try to take the party down for nominating someone else.

    The male ego is as fragile as a robin’s egg, and nothing sends it to pieces like the idea of “getting beat by a girl”. Even for ostensibly progressive males.

  204. 204
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    I hope you’re right and I’m wrong, I really do. We can use all the help we can get. But I don’t trust him, at all.

  205. 205
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Cacti: I’d offer a friendly wager payable to your / my favorite charity when Sanders delivers / fails to deliver an impassioned, rousing speech endorsing Clinton at the DNC and exhorting the youngs who voted for him to turn out for Clinton, knock on doors, etc., to stave off the Trumpocalypse and elect our first woman president. But you’d just insist there was coded dudebro language no matter what Sanders said anyway. So never mind.

  206. 206
    Chris says:

    @Immanentize:

    but what do democrats find offensive about Hillary?

    The fact that she voted for the Iraq AUMF in 2002 when a lot of Democrats had enough sense not to, the fact that she supported an intervention in Libya that many Democrats see as being in the same vein (and according to an article approvingly sent my way by one of her supporters, her response when asked about the current mess in Libya was something along the lines of “it’s not a disaster, it’s just still sorting itself out!” e.g. exactly the too-cute response that the Bush administration was making from 2003 through 2006), and the fact that she burst onto the national political scene as part of an administration (Bill’s) that personified the “Third Way” and whose president said “the era of big government is over.”

    Some of the above isn’t fair, and/or is more complicated than the elevator-speech answer I just gave. And obviously I think Sanders has more negatives attached to him, otherwise I wouldn’t have voted for her in the primary. But I’m equally baffled that a good chunk of her supporters just can’t imagine how any Democrat could possibly find her problematic.

  207. 207
    NotMax says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne

    Boris Badenov. Natasha Fatale.

    /nitpick

  208. 208
    NR says:

    @Betty Cracker: You know Cacti is a Trump supporter, right?

  209. 209
    Trollhattan says:

    @NotMax:
    Get moose and skvirrel!

  210. 210
    Cacti says:

    @NR:

    You know Cacti is a Trump supporter, right?

    As is anyone who disagrees with your take on why Bernie is the one true progressive savior.

    Thanks for letting us know who the true Scotsmen are, sunshine.

  211. 211
    Betty Cracker says:

    @NR: No. He’s just got a ranging case of Sanders Derangement Syndrome that matches your case of Clinton Derangement Syndrome in scale. I don’t expect either of you to make much sense on primary election topics.

  212. 212
    Cacti says:

    @Chris:

    The fact that she voted for the Iraq AUMF in 2002 when a lot of Democrats had enough sense not to

    Define “a lot of Democrats”.

    29 of 50 Senate Dems vote for the Iraq AUMF, including such stalwarts as Joe Biden and John Kerry.

  213. 213
    D58826 says:

    @Chris: The last revolutionary that did not have any warts they nailed to a tree about 2000 years ago. Push comes to shove I’ll take Hillary warts and all over ANY of the ones on the pack of GOPPERS

  214. 214
    I'mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet says:

    @Betty Cracker: Plus, he’s probably going to need help retiring campaign debts. People who give “$27” can only be tapped so many times, and normal people don’t usually give to a candidate after they’ve conceded.

    I expect that Bernie will be on board, but I wonder how much he’s going to help others on the ticket. I got an e-mail a while back saying he supported 3 House candidates (Teachout, Flores, and Jayapal), but that was in mid April and that was it. I hope he’ll do more, but I have no evidence that he will.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  215. 215
    D58826 says:

    @Cacti: And I think Bernie signed on the one about Afghanistan. And in spite of his complaints about the 1990’s crime bill, he voted for that also.

    They all have warts. get over it. Let the GOP tie itself in knots looking for the purity pony. And make no mistake in spite of many imitators there is ONLY ONE GOP PURITY PONY. They just haven’t found it yet.

  216. 216
    aimai says:

    @Chris: What a straw man! A “good chunk of her supporters” are very well aware of why some people find HRC hard to support. Anyone who has been alive long enough remembers just how much shit the woman has had lobbed at her and how much even democrats have allowed to stick. As for the specific charges, like everything else aimed at HRC when you drill down to it the reality is quite different from the hyped up hysteria of the far left. So, no, I think HRC’ voters get that lots of people, including democrats who should kow better, are opposed to her on a number of grounds. But why should we accept those grounds as valid if we know better? Or if we don’t agree with the premises–premises like making Hillary’s AUMF vote identical to a vote for war, and apparently the only one that mattered when, as people keep pointing out, Biden and Kerry both voted for it too. Or making Libya seem like Iraq redux, when its not, or blaming her for a variety of other decisions that were, in fact, made by Obama or made after she left SOS.

  217. 217
    D58826 says:

    @WarMunchkin: Registration in Calif. might be surging amoung Latinos in order to vote in the general against Trump. Might not be just a Bernie thing.

  218. 218
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @Cacti:

    Sanders supporters always conflate the AUMF with “voting to invade Iraq”. All of those Democrats who voted for the AUMF can only be faulted for trusting Bush (and Colin Powell to a lesser degree) to not be as big an incompetent lying hack as he turned out to be, which as it turns out was an unprecedented scale of mendacity and ineptitude that even Nixon wasn’t guilty of.

  219. 219
    Betty Cracker says:

    @D58826: That would be my guess.

  220. 220
    WereBear says:

    @Luthe: I highly recommend Scarleteen.com, which bills itself as “Sex Education for the Real World.”

  221. 221
    Chris says:

    @Cacti:

    Yeah. So, two fifths, which is non-negligible. And if you take it into the House of Representatives which you were good enough to leave out of the equation, it turns to 126 nays versus 82 yeas. So yeah, a lot of Democrats.

    @D58826:

    Absolutely, I agree and will too. But that wasn’t the question. The question was what warts Hillary might have.

    @aimai:

    Well, one person at least apparently wasn’t. Hence the answer.

  222. 222
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @nutella: Let’s say “Slavic accent.” There are real differences in pronunciation & usage among the Slavic languages (Russian, Latvian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Slovenian, Serbian/Croatian/Bosnian/Montenegrin*, Bulgarian/Macedonian*, Ukrainian, etc.) but they’re subtle & tend to get smeared out when native speakers learn English.** Since the Rooskies were our numero-uno adversaries during the Frigid Conflict & therefore got a lot of air play as the standard baddies in the black ushankas, we tend to lump them all together.

    – – – – – –
    * Many authorities remain unconvinced that the tongues joined by the slashes are in fact separate languages.

    ** One thing all the Slavic languages I know of (except Bulgarian) lack is articles, definite or indefinite(& even in Bulgarian the definite article is a suffix, e.g. prva [first] => prvata [the first]). It’s really hard for a native Slavic speaker to learn their proper use in English, & omitting articles (cf. Boris Badenov’s “Moose & Squirrel”) is the most basic part of faking a Slavic accent.

  223. 223
    gwangung says:

    @D58826: Anyone who DIDN’T at least think of Latinos and California would seem to be not quite tuned in…..

  224. 224

    @gwangung:

    If you want to divine the election future by using polling, use ALL of the polls.

    This. It’s very important not to freak out when a few bad polls come out or get complacent when some good ones do, especially when the election is still 6 months away. The polls immediately before the ones people are freaking out about had Clinton ahead of Trump by 13 in Florida (AIF, 4/25-4/27), 3 in Ohio (PPP, 4/26-4/27), and 15 in Pennsylvania (NBC/WSJ/Marist, 4/18-4/20). There’s obviously a lot of noise in the numbers, so it’s foolish to get caught up by single unfavorable polls.

  225. 225
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    re: AUMF: I tend to agree that a lot of Dems trusted that Uncle Brent and Uncle Colin would pull Junior back from the edge, but I think by then there was plenty of evidence that he never should have been trusted with the authority. IIRC, the “Fuck Saddam” story, Richard Clarke’s testimony about Bush wanting evidence linking Iraq to 9/11, and a lot of rhetoric doing just that, that it was a mistake to give it to him. As “I’ve said I tend to trust her on domestic policy, a little skittish about FP, and Bernie Sanders would be a disaster on a national ticket.

  226. 226
    liberal says:

    @aimai:

    …premises like making Hillary’s AUMF vote identical to a vote for war…

    It was, in all essentials, a vote for war. I can understand Hillary apologia, but I don’t understand the need to debase oneself in this manner.

  227. 227
    Gelfling 545 says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: what kind of pants was Patton Oswalt wearing?

  228. 228
    Trollhattan says:

    @D58826:
    California passed automatic voter registration last year.

  229. 229
    gwangung says:

    @Chris: Personally, I think 25 years of CDS has magnified her warts to way beyond reasonable concerns. With any other figure, these faults (which are very real) would be forgiven or at least taken with a bit more nuance.

  230. 230
    Chris says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne:

    Sanders supporters always conflate the AUMF with “voting to invade Iraq”

    This trope did not start with Sanders supporters. Obama supporters were equally happy to use it in 2008. And the rationale in both cases was that it should have been pretty obvious that the Bush administration had made up its mind and was going to use it as an authorization for war no matter what. You mileage may vary.

  231. 231
    gwangung says:

    @Trollhattan:

    California passed automatic voter registration last year.

    Oh. That might be a large factor.

  232. 232
    liberal says:

    @aimai:

    Or making Libya seem like Iraq redux, when its not…

    No reasonable critic would claim that it’s “Iraq redux,” insofar as the stakes are much lower (Libya being much smaller in population, being further from the center of the Middle East, etc etc). But it was nonetheless a disastrous mistake, and HRC is partly responsible.

  233. 233
    Chris says:

    @gwangung:

    I’d agree with that, yes. Although I don’t even really care. The only question I have is whether she has fewer warts that anyone else, and as far as I’m concerned, she does. At the end of the day that’s the same reason I voted for Obama and will ever vote for any politician since, as noted above, all of them have warts.

  234. 234
    D58826 says:

    @Chris: I’m sure there might be a few more out there but after 30 years on non-stop investigations I suspect they have most of them. Larry Klaymnan at Judicial Watch has made a career of filing FOIa and lawsuits involving the Clintons.

    The big thing now is the e-mails. The considered opinion of the non-GOP lawyers is that it is a nothing burger. But with the FBI poking around never can tell. Now given the impact of a negative report, even if it stops short of a recommendation for an indictment, I would think that FBI would have given DOJ a heads up. DOJ would have given POTUS a heads up and he would have suggested to Hillary, off the record of course, that Bill hasn’t been looking well recently and maybe she should drop out of the race for ‘family’ reasons. A negative report last September/October is one thing but in mid-May with most of the primaries complete it will have the same impact as the asteroid that did a number on the dinosaurs.

  235. 235
    liberal says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne:

    Sanders supporters always conflate the AUMF with “voting to invade Iraq”.

    LOL. Of course, the AUMF didn’t say “you must invade Iraq”; it said ” you may invade Iraq.” So? A vote in favor was still terrible.

    All of those Democrats who voted for the AUMF can only be faulted for trusting Bush (and Colin Powell to a lesser degree) to not be as big an incompetent lying hack as he turned out to be, which as it turns out was an unprecedented scale of mendacity and ineptitude that even Nixon wasn’t guilty of.

    Oh, fuck off—now you’re playing the usual right-wing card of “I’m [a Senator] not responsible for my actions.” Anyone above the age of 16 with an IQ above 95 knew that Bush was going to invade Iraq, and that the AUMF was approval of the intent to invade.

    As for Bush being worse than Nixon, that’s hardly clear. Anyone with a modest knowledge of history knows you don’t trust executives in this situation.

  236. 236
    Chris says:

    @D58826:

    Oh, yeah. This was one of the arguments one of my Clinton supporting friends made in 2008, in fact. “Of course we should run her! She’s been dragged through every kind of mud that every Republican could think of for the last sixteen years straight! What more can they throw at her?”

  237. 237
    Cacti says:

    @Chris:

    Yeah. So, two fifths, which is non-negligible. And if you take it into the House of Representatives which you were good enough to leave out of the equation, it turns to 126 nays versus 82 yeas. So yeah, a lot of Democrats.

    Why would I include the House vote when she was a member of the Senate? And as you astutely noted, 3/5 of the Senate Democratic caucus voted yea. Not a plurality, a clear majority. On a party line vote, the measure would have been defeated in the Senate, but the final tally was nothing close to a party line vote.

    Clinton voting nay changes the final tally from 77-23 to 76-24.

    The majority of the most high profile Dem Senators voted the same way (Daschle, Reid, Schumer, Feinstein, Baucus, Edwards, Lieberman, etc.). And yet, none of them have ever really had their “aye” votes held against them with the same vehemence as Clinton.

    Why?

  238. 238
    liberal says:

    @D58826:

    And I think Bernie signed on the one about Afghanistan.

    So? There was a reasonable casus belli in the case of Afghanistan. There wasn’t in Iraq.

  239. 239
    D58826 says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: No evidence but given the mind set in the WH, at DOD, and the neocon lust to get Sadam, I think they would have invaded Iraq if Congress had voted 535 to 0 to NOT authorize the war. Remember at this time John Yoo was writing memos that said the president as command in chief had plenary powers, i.e. absolute power, to do what he da**ed well pleased.

    I think the formal term was unitary executive. SCOTUS shot it down but by then it was to late.

  240. 240
    VFX Lurker says:

    @The Other Chuck:

    You really are a crazed berniebro. You voted for Nader, didn’t you?

    You can’t spell “NR” without “NADER.”

  241. 241
    liberal says:

    @Cacti:

    Why would I include the House vote when she was a member of the Senate?

    LOL.

  242. 242
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @liberal:

    The AUMF was passed one week after 9/11, while the buildings were still smoking. It most definitely was not common belief that Bush had already decided to use that authority to invade Iraq, since Colin Powell’s speech was not until Feb. 2003.

  243. 243
    Chris says:

    @Cacti:

    Did I say “a majority of Democratic senators?” No, you did, just now. I said “a majority of Democrats.” A majority of Democrats who voted on it, if you prefer (I have no idea which of the two was more representative of the constituents). The House and Senate aren’t so impermeable to each other that the House vote doesn’t deserve to be taken into consideration.

    The majority of the most high profile Dem Senators voted the same way (Daschle, Reid, Schumer, Feinstein, Baucus, Edwards, Lieberman, etc.). And yet, none of them have ever really had their “aye” votes held against them with the same vehemence as Clinton.

    Why?

    Maybe because almost none of them ever came as close to the White House as Hillary Clinton, with all the added and nation-wide scrutiny that implies? The only one who’s in the same league as she is is John Kerry, and his “aye” vote was held against him – it was by no means the only problem with his campaign, but it’s certainly a big reason why he made such a poor critic of Bush’s foreign policy.

  244. 244
    Gelfling 545 says:

    @Cacti:

    1968 part deux

    Well, that is sort of Crispin’s Day to us old hippies. .

  245. 245
  246. 246
    WereBear says:

    @Betty Cracker: Even if you think Sanders is a vainglorious asshole who is on a power trip (and for the record, that is NOT my view), it behooves him to make sure Clinton wins in the fall if she’s the nominee.

    I completely agree: he caucuses with the Democrats reliably, and he certainly has no common ground with Republicans.

  247. 247
    Cacti says:

    @Chris:

    You actually said “a lot of Democrats”.

    A lot of Democrats voted for and against the Iraq AUMF. It was hardly a case of broad party consensus one way or the other.

    ETA: In March 2003, public approval of the Iraq invasion stood at 72% for vs. 22% against. So again, suggesting that there was broad public opprobrium against it at the outset is just straight up revisionist history.

  248. 248
    Immanentize says:

    @Chris: This has always interested me — I know a lot of people (myself included!) thought voting for the AUMF was a bad move for a bunch of reasons that seemed obvious to me (but clearly not to everyone). I guess if war is your one issue, then that would be a defining point of disagreement. Understood. That said, if war is the issue (and not just that one vote about that one war) I never saw Bernie as the peace candidate. Yes he voted against that particular intervention, but I do not think he is running as a military isolationist, is he? From his site:

    Kosovo Crisis: The decision to bomb Serbia was a complex one, and Bernie ultimately voted to take action to prevent further genocide.

    Libya Intervention: In 2011, the United States and other NATO countries launched strikes against Libya. Bernie expressed wariness regarding the human and fiscal cost then, and now, as civil war rages on in the country.

    Anti-Expansion: Bernie is against the expansion of NATO because it provokes unnecessary aggression from Russia. Moreover, he believes European nations should fund more of the costs of an alliance primarily intended to protect their continent.

    Wow — he had wariness! He is no peacenik, although many supporters seem to suggest he is. He is acting for so many primarily like a leftist Rorschach most of the time rather than an actual candidate with actual positions….

  249. 249
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @Chris:

    Ah, you’re right. My bad. The first AUMF was almost unanimous I think.

  250. 250
    Chris says:

    @Cacti:

    Correct. Sorry and my bad. (As I said I have no idea which of the two represented the most “Democrats” in the nation at large, which is why I didn’t say “a majority of Democrats” in my initial post).

  251. 251
    D58826 says:

    @liberal: Well that wasn’t what the Bushes were saying at the time. Remember WMD. mushroom clouds. Should the democrats have seen thru the smoke, probably but with 9/11 still fresh in everyone mind who wanted to take the chance. The thing that might have pushed me to vote yes if I had been a criter was the intelligence community had missed how far along Sadam was in 1991 to a nuclear weapon, so assurances that he didn’t have one in 2003 might have been viewed with some skepticism. Obviously once Sadam did the unthinkable and let the inspector back in the whole process should have been put on hold till the inspections were complete. A follow up vote should have been taken to see if Congress was still in favor of war. Of course both of those actions would have required a president and a GOP controlled congress acting in good faith.

  252. 252
    Cacti says:

    @Immanentize:

    This has always interested me — I know a lot of people (myself included!) thought voting for the AUMF was a bad move for a bunch of reasons that seemed obvious to me (but clearly not to everyone). I guess if war is your one issue, then that would be a defining point of disagreement. Understood. That said, if war is the issue (and not just that one vote about that one war) I never saw Bernie as the peace candidate. Yes he voted against that particular intervention, but I do not think he is running as a military isolationist, is he? From his site:

    I was against the Iraq invasion and occupation from the outset. It certainly wasn’t a popular position to hold in late 2002/early 2003. Public opinion didn’t turn decisively against it until 2-3 years in.

  253. 253
    Immanentize says:

    @Chris: I was reading that list of who voted for the resolution and saw Max Cleland’s name…. That memory of his shameful treatment by Saxby Frickin Chambliss always depresses me and reminds me why I will support and work for the imperfect candidate over any republican anytime.

  254. 254
    Chris says:

    @Immanentize:

    I’m not sure what the hell Bernie is running as on foreign policy – one of my biggest beefs with him was that he seemed to be a one-trick pony who, at worst, tended to bring everything back to his one pet issue of economics, and at most, thought it was much less important than economics. (It got more attention when he was doing this with race relations and other “social issues.”)

    And no, I don’t think he’s much of a peacenik.

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne:

    Yeah, I think it was. Sanders voted for it, as no less a source than feelthebern.org informs me.

  255. 255
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Chris:

    This trope did not start with Sanders supporters. Obama supporters were equally happy to use it in 2008.

    Agreed. It was the main reason I chose to support Obama over Clinton in 2008; I thought he displayed better judgement on that important issue. That said, I never thought HRC’s AUMF vote made her a warmongering monster. (I know you never suggested it did; just putting that out there.)

  256. 256
    Chris says:

    @Immanentize:

    Interestingly, as someone just coming to political awareness at the time (teenager), that was one of the very first things I noticed that made me go “Republicans are full of shit” – the treatment of veterans like Cleland and Kerry by draft-dodgers like Chambliss and Bush. In Tom Clancy novels, Donald Bellisario television and Stallone movies, it might have been hippies and Democrats who “spit on the returning veterans” and ran away from their duty, but in the evidence of my lying eyes, it was quite the opposite.

  257. 257
    Chris says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    I think that’s why a hell of a lot of voters picked him over her. Iraq might have been the defining issue of the election, at least until late in the game when 1) the financial crisis happened and 2) McCain lost what little was left of his mind and picked Sarah Palin (both after the primaries were over).

  258. 258
    D58826 says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne: If I remember correctly the initial Bush position in 2002 was that he had all of the authority he need to invade Iraq and an new resolution was not needed. There was enough public/political push back that they went for the second AUMF

  259. 259
    Chris says:

    @Cacti:

    Missed your ETA:

    Jesus. “Broad public opprobrium” is again not what I said, nor what I “suggested.” I said that a sizable portion of the Democrats in Congress (a majority in one chamber, a minority in the other; both sides were very well represented in both cases) had enough sense to vote against the damn AUMF, even in the face of what was at the time broad public opposition to their views. The fact that Hillary Clinton was not one of these people is something that is absolutely fair game to hold against her.

  260. 260
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @D58826:

    Egads what a dark time that all was. This is the part of Clinton’s candidacy I was dreading, but I feel better now about her FP chops and the stuff she’s learned from recently being in the rooms with world leaders discussing policy at high levels, and her ability to learn from the past. Unlike Trump or Sanders who are just flat out uninformed.

  261. 261
    D58826 says:

    @Betty Cracker: What I found so depressing about that entire period and the run up to the war was the number of people who were old enough but seemed to forgetten the Gulf of Tonkin resolution that became the legal justification for a war that Johnson had already decided to fight. Johnson may or may not have been a reluctant warrior. JKF may or may not have pulled out of Vietnam. Decisions may or may not have been made based on Johnson didn’t want to lose Vietnam like Truman lost China. But the resolution was based on a pack of lies. And in 2002 very few people were willing to stand up and say we have seen this movie before, I want more answers before I vote yes. And those that did were labelled traitors and terrorist lovers. Even Gen. Shinseki was forced to retire, not because he opposed the war but because he said it would take more time and troops than Rummy and Bush were telling the public.

  262. 262
    Cacti says:

    @D58826:

    What I found so depressing about that entire period and the run up to the war was the number of people who were old enough but seemed to forget the Gulf of Tonkin resolution that became the legal justification for a war that Johnson had already decided to fight. Johnson may or may not have been a reluctant warrior. JKF may or may not have pulled out of Vietnam. Decisions may or may not have been made based on Johnson didn’t want to lose Vietnam like Truman lost China. But the resolution was based on a pack of lies. And in 2002 very few people were willing to stand up and say we have seen this movie before, I want more answers before I vote yes. And those that did were labelled traitors and terrorist lovers. Even Gen. Shinseki was forced to retire, not because he opposed the war but because he said it would take more time and troops than Rummy and Bush were telling the public.

    I think there were a fair number of elected Dems who were genuinely doing the “rally round the President in time of war” thing for the good of the country. Unfortunately, that instinct can be abused, and the cause that was rallied around can blow up in everyone’s faces.

    I believe John Kerry is thoroughly honorable man, and thought he was being a good soldier, only to have his previous high-mindedness tied around his neck like an anchor in 2004.

  263. 263
    Chris says:

    @Cacti:

    I think there were a fair number of elected Dems who were genuinely doing the “rally round the President in time of war”

    I did think it was very revealing that when a Republican president was faced with a major crisis (that occurred on his own watch and as such that he may or may not have had some responsibility for) in the form of 9/11, the overwhelming response of the Democrats was to “rally around the flag” in the name of national unity – if anything, the mistake many of the made was sticking to that flag-rallying effect for too long. And that when a Democratic president was faced with a major crisis (that emphatically did not begin on his watch and in which his only possible responsibility was the cleanup) in the form of the financial crisis, the overwhelming response of the Republicans was “I hope he fails” and “our number one priority is to make Barack Obama a one term president.”

    Makes a very eloquent statement in terms of who does and doesn’t rally around the flag in the name of country above party.

  264. 264

    @Cacti:

    In March 2003, public approval of the Iraq invasion stood at 72% for vs. 22% against.

    And that was different from approval for the Iraq AUMF*. The Iraq AUMF was passed in October of 2002 at a time when Iraq was acting very suspicious around the issue of WMDs, having kicked out the UN weapons inspectors. Bush presented the AUMF as a threat to get Iraq to let the weapons inspectors back in. The invasion happened about 5 months later, after Iraq had actually complied and let the weapons inspectors back in.

    I remember at the time thinking that the AUMF was reasonable but the invasion was not. We probably did need some kind of plausible threat to get Iraq to let the inspectors back in, and the AUMF was effective in getting them to do so. OTOH, once the inspectors were back in Iraq, there was no imminent threat of them developing WMDs, and hence no need for an attack to get them to stop. I’m sure I can’t be the only person who felt that way, so it seems likely to me that the AUMF was more popular than the invasion.

    *Because there seems to be some confusion, it seems worth pointing out that there were two AUMFs, one for the war on terror and one for Iraq.

  265. 265
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Chris: Ain’t that the damn truth! And if people in general weren’t so goddamned stupid and oblivious, the Republican Party would cease to exist for that reason alone.

  266. 266
    Librarian says:

    @Chris: Yes, but most of those who voted against it probably didn’t have presidential ambitions like Clinton and Kerry did. Considering the political climate at the time, she probably thought voting against it would be political suicide.

  267. 267
    D58826 says:

    My conservative sister doesn’t know who to vote for in November. She thinks both Trump and Hillary are equally dangerous. When I tried to put the whole election and the Clinton derangement syndrome (along with its cousins the Bush/Reagan and Obama version) into some perspective, I got this reply.

    I don’t trust Hillary and the Clinton machine. I can’t forgive Benghazi. Sorry we lost an ambassador and that cold have been Kelly. The email problem-she won’t be prosecuted no matter what the FBI/DOJ finds. Obama says no prosecution and it doesn’t happen- and he had power over her forever. He can demand to be a SCOTUS Judge or any position he wants and she can’t say no. Trump is scarey as you pointed out. I don’t know what to do. Also, if Trump loses the election the GOP will probably lose the Congress And Hillary can do whatever she wants🙈🙉🙊

    Kelly is my niece who works for state. Why in the hell does Hillary have to be forgiven for Benghazi? She didn’t attack the compound. And yet she completely ignores the Marines and diplomats killed in Beirut under Reagan. Hillary will do what she wants if the GOP loses Congress. I had to reminder her that might happen only if the democrats reach 60 votes, which is very unlikely. I really do not understand this idea that a democratic president has some Green lantern power to prevent all evil in the world but hates the US so much that he doesn’t use it. Yet a republican, like Bush, can sleep through the summer of 2001 ignoring multiple warnings about a pending attack and the loss of 3000 lives is just one of those things. And probably Bill Clinton’s fault any way. The degree that both Clinton and Obama are such unrepentant monsters. is amazing. I didn’t like Reagan but at the time I though his decision to send the troops into Beirut was justified and I told her that at the time. Maybe Reagan could have done things differently but sometimes shit just happens and the only ones to blame are the perpetrators. I didn’t want to rub salt in the wounds by adding that Ben Laden listed the cut and run out of Beirut as one example of the US being a ‘weak horse’. I knew my BIL was totally unreaponable on thye subject but I thought my sister still had a bit of the common sense that she had before she got married.

  268. 268
    Chris says:

    @Librarian:

    Virtually everybody was running against “the political climate,” whether or not they were running for president, in most cases including the potential for career suicide. Heck, plenty of the Republicans who voted for it probably knew it was crap and just wanted to keep their seats, and at least some of these wanted to be president. We don’t give them a pass for blowing it on the biggest foreign policy blunder since Vietnam.

  269. 269
    joel hanes says:

    @WarMunchkin:

    Voter registrations in California have surged

    Brown and black people, and especially brown and black women,
    are making sure that they are ready and able to vote against Trump,
    and for Sec. Clinton.

  270. 270
    joel hanes says:

    @NotMax:

    Boris Badenov

    Play on the title of a famous Russian novel, Boris Gudenov

  271. 271
    I'mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet says:

    @D58826: Yup. W was determined to go in, inspectors or no inspectors, vote or no vote. He had convinced everyone, including himself, that the 9/11 AUMF gave him enough authority to do whatever he wanted.

    Here’s Hillary’s comments from the Senate floor at the time of the Iraq vote (in full):

    The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. JEFFORDS). The Senator has 42 minutes.
    Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, I do not intend to hold the floor much longer. How much time will the Senator from New York, Mrs. Clinton, wish me to yield to her?
    Mrs. CLINTON. Twenty minutes.
    Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, I yield 20 minutes to the Senator, and I reserve the remainder of my time.
    The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from New York is recognized.
    Mr. McCAIN. Will the Senator from New York just yield for a second to me?
    Mr. BYRD. And I yield to the distinguished Senator whatever time he needs.
    Mr. McCAIN. I point out the distinguished chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee has not had an opportunity to speak. In all due respect, I would like to give the chairman of the Foreign Relations
    Committee the respect he deserves.
    Mr. BIDEN. I thank the Senator. I am delighted to wait in line, and I will wait until after the Senator has finished.
    Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, how much time do I have remaining?
    The PRESIDING OFFICER. Forty-one minutes.
    Mr. BYRD. I yield 20 minutes to the Senator from New York, Mrs. Clinton, and I yield 20 minutes, leaving myself 1 minute, to the Senator from Delaware, Mr. Biden. I thank the distinguished Senator from Arizona for reminding me the Senator from Delaware had been waiting very patiently. I thank all Senators.
    Mr. BIDEN. No problem.
    Mrs. CLINTON. Mr. President, I thank the Senator from West Virginia for his courtesy. By far beyond that, I thank him for his leadership and his eloquence and his passion and commitment to this body and to our Constitution. I join with the remarks by both the Senators from Michigan and Maryland, expressing our appreciation for the way in which he has waged this battle on behalf of his convictions. It is a lesson to us all.
    Today, Mr. President, we are asked whether to give the President of the United States authority to use force in Iraq should diplomatic efforts fail to dismantle Saddam Hussein’s chemical and biological weapons and his nuclear program.
    I am honored to represent nearly 19 million New Yorkers, a thoughtful democracy of voices and opinions who make themselves heard on the great issues of our day, especially this one. Many have contacted my office
    about this resolution, both in support of and in opposition to it. I am grateful to all who have expressed an opinion.
    I also greatly respect the differing opinions within this body. The debate they engender will aid our search for a wise, effective policy. Therefore, on no account should dissent be discouraged or disparaged. It is central to our freedom and to our progress, for on more than one occasion history has proven our great dissenters to be right.
    I believe the facts that have brought us to this fateful vote are not in doubt. Saddam Hussein is a tyrant who has tortured and killed his own people, even his own family members, to maintain his iron grip on power. He used chemical weapons on Iraqi Kurds and on Iranians, killing over 20,000 people.
    Unfortunately, during the 1980s, while he engaged in such horrific activity, he enjoyed the support of the American Government because he had oil and was seen as a counterweight to the Ayatollah Khomeini in
    Iran.
    In 1991, Saddam Hussein invaded and occupied Kuwait, losing the support of the United States. The first President Bush assembled a global coalition, including many Arab States, and threw Saddam out after 43 days of bombing and hundreds of hours of ground operations.
    The United States led the coalition, then withdrew, leaving the Kurds and the Shiites, who had risen against Saddam Hussein at our urging, to Saddam’s revenge.
    As a condition for ending the conflict, the United Nations imposed a number of requirements on Iraq, among them disarmament of all weapons of mass destruction, stocks used to make such weapons, and laboratories
    necessary to do the work. Saddam Hussein agreed and an inspection system was set up to ensure compliance. Though he repeatedly lied, delayed, and obstructed the inspectors’ work, the inspectors found and destroyed far more weapons of mass destruction capability than were destroyed in the gulf war, including thousands of chemical weapons, large volumes of chemical and biological stocks, a number of missiles and warheads, a major lab equipped to produce anthrax and other bioweapons, as well as substantial nuclear facilities.
    In 1998, Saddam Hussein pressured the United Nations to lift the sanctions by threatening to stop all cooperation with the inspectors. In an attempt to resolve the situation, the U.N., unwisely in my view, agreed to put limits on inspections of designated sovereign sites, including the so-called Presidential palaces–which in reality were
    huge compounds, well suited to hold weapons labs, stocks, and records which Saddam Hussein was required by U.N. resolution to turn over.
    When Saddam blocked the inspection process, the inspectors left. As a result, President Clinton, with the British and others, ordered an intensive 4-day air assault, Operation Desert Fox, on known and suspected weapons of mass destruction sites and other military targets.

    In 1998, the United States also changed its underlying policy toward Iraq from containment to regime change and began to examine options to effect such a change, including support for Iraqi opposition leaders within the country and abroad. In the 4 years since the inspectors, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al-Qaida members, though there is apparently
    no evidence of his involvement in the terrible events of September 11, 2001.
    It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capability to wage biological and chemical warfare and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons. Should he succeed in that endeavor, he could alter the political and security landscape of the Middle East which, as we know all too well, affects American security.
    This much is undisputed. The open questions are: What should we do about it? How, when, and with whom?
    Some people favor attacking Saddam Hussein now, with any allies we can muster, in the belief that one more round of weapons inspections would not produce the required disarmament and that deposing Saddam
    would be a positive good for the Iraqi people and would create the possibility of a secular, democratic state in the Middle East, one which could, perhaps, move the entire region toward democratic reform.
    This view has appeal to some because it would assure disarmament; because it would right old wrongs after our abandonment of the Shiites and Kurds in 1991 and our support for Saddam Hussein in the 1980s when he was using chemical weapons and terrorizing his people; and because it could give the Iraqi people a chance to build a future in freedom.
    However, this course is fraught with danger. We and our NATO allies did not depose Mr. Milosevic, who was responsible for more than a quarter of million

    [[Page S10289]]

    people being killed in the 1990s. Instead, by stopping his aggression in Bosnia and Kosovo, and keeping the tough sanctions, we created the conditions in which his own people threw him out and led to his being in the dock and being tried for war crimes as we speak.

    If we were to attack Iraq now, alone or with few allies, it would set a precedent that could come back to haunt us. In recent days, Russia has talked of an invasion of Georgia to attack Chechen rebels. India has mentioned the possibility of a preemptive strike on Pakistan. What if China should perceive a threat from Taiwan?
    So, for all its appeal, a unilateral attack, while it cannot be ruled out, is not a good option.

    Others argue that we should work through the United Nations and should only resort to force if and when the United Nations Security Council approves it. This too has great appeal for different reasons. The United Nations deserves our support. Whenever possible we should work through it and strengthen it, for it enables the world to share the risks and burdens of global security and when it acts, it confers a legitimacy that increases the likelihood of long-term success. The United Nations can lead the world into a new era of global cooperation. And the United States should support that goal.
    But there are problems with this approach as well. The United Nations is an organization that is still growing and maturing. It often lacks the cohesion to enforce its own mandates. And when Security Council members use the veto on occasion for reasons of narrow national interest, it cannot act. In Kosovo, the Russians did not approve the
    NATO military action because of political, ethnic, and religious ties to the Serbs.
    The United States, therefore, could not obtain a Security Council resolution in favor of the action necessary to stop the dislocation and ethnic cleansing of more than a million Kosovar Albanians. However, most of the world was with us because there was a genuine emergency with thousands dead and a million more driven from their homes. As soon as the American-led conflict was over, Russia joined the peacekeeping effort that is still underway.
    In the case of Iraq, recent comments indicate that one or two Security Council members might never approve forces against Saddam Hussein until he has actually used chemical, biological, or God forbid, nuclear weapons.
    So, the question is how do we do our best to both diffuse the threat Saddam Hussein poses to his people, the region, including Israel, and the United States, and at the same time, work to maximize our international support and strengthen the United Nations.
    While there is no perfect approach to this thorny dilemma, and while people of good faith and high intelligence can reach diametrically opposing conclusions, I believe the best course is to go to the United Nations for a strong resolution that scraps the 1998 restrictions on inspections and calls for complete, unlimited inspections, with
    cooperation expected and demanded from Iraq.

    I know the administration wants more, including an explicit authorization to use force, but we may not be able to secure that now, perhaps even later. If we get a clear requirement for unfettered inspections, I believe the authority to use force to enforce that mandate is inherent in the original 1991 United Nations resolutions, as
    President Clinton recognized when he launched Operation Desert Fox in 1998.

    If we get the resolution the President seeks, and Saddam complies, disarmament can proceed and the threat can be eliminated. Regime change will, of course, take longer but we must still work for it, nurturing all reasonable forces of opposition.
    If we get the resolution and Saddam does not comply, we can attack him with far more support and legitimacy than we would have otherwise.
    If we try and fail to get a resolution that simply calls for Saddam’s compliance with unlimited inspections, those who oppose even that will be in an indefensible position. And, we will still have more support and legitimacy than if we insist now on a resolution that includes authorizing military action and other requirements giving other nations
    superficially legitimate reasons to oppose Security Council action. They will say, we never wanted a resolution at all and that we only support the U.N. when it does exactly want we want.
    I believe international support and legitimacy are crucial. After shots are fired and bombs are dropped, not all consequences are predictable. While the military outcome is not in doubt, should we put troops on the ground, there is still the matter of Saddam Hussein’s biological and chemical weapons. Today he has maximum incentive not to use them or give them away. If he did either, the world would demand his immediate removal. Once the battle is joined, with the outcome certain, he will have maximum incentive to use weapons of mass destruction and give what he can’t use to terrorists who can torment us with them long after he is gone. We cannot be paralyzed by this possibility, but we would be foolish to ignore it. According to recent reports, the CIA agrees with this analysis. A world united in sharing the risk at least would make this occurrence less likely and more bearable and would be far more likely to share the considerable burden of rebuilding a secure and peaceful post-Saddam Iraq.
    President Bush’s speech in Cincinnati and the changes in policy that have come forth from the administration since they first began broaching this issue some weeks ago have made my vote easier.
    Even though the resolution before the Senate is not as strong as I would like in requiring the diplomatic route first and placing highest priority on a simple, clear requirement for unlimited inspections, I take the President at his word that he will try hard to pass a United Nations resolution and seek to avoid war, if possible.
    Because bipartisan support for this resolution makes success in the United Nations more likely and war less likely, and because a good faith effort by the United States, even if it fails, will bring more allies and legitimacy to our cause, I have concluded, after careful and serious consideration, that a vote for the resolution best serves the
    security of our Nation. If we were to defeat this resolution or pass it with only a few Democrats, I am concerned that those who want to pretend this problem will go way with delay will oppose any United Nations resolution calling for unrestricted inspections.
    This is a difficult vote. This is probably the hardest decision I have ever had to make. Any vote that may lead to war should be hard, but I cast it with conviction. Perhaps my decision is influenced by my 8 years of experience on the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue in the White House watching my husband deal with serious challenges to our Nation. I want this President, or any future President, to be in the strongest possible position to lead our country in the United Nations or in war. Secondly, I want to ensure that Saddam Hussein makes no mistake about our national unity and support for the President’s efforts to wage America’s war against terrorists and weapons of mass destruction. Thirdly, I want the men and women in our Armed Forces to know that if they should be called upon to act against Iraq our country will stand resolutely behind them.
    My vote is not, however, a vote for any new doctrine of preemption or for unilateralism or for the arrogance of American power or purpose, all of which carry grave dangers for our Nation, the rule of international law, and the peace and security of people throughout the world.
    Over 11 years have passed since the UN called on Saddam Hussein to rid himself of weapons of mass destruction as a condition of returning to the world community.
    Time and time again, he has frustrated and denied these conditions. This matter cannot be left hanging forever with consequences we would all live to regret. War can yet be avoided, but our responsibility to global security and the integrity of United Nations resolutions protecting it cannot.
    I urge the President to spare no effort to secure a clear, unambiguous demand by the United Nations for unlimited inspections.
    Finally, on another personal note, I come to this decision from the perspective of a Senator from New York who has seen all too closely the consequences of last year’s terrible attacks on our Nation. In balancing the

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    risks of action versus inaction, I think New Yorkers, who have gone through the fires of hell, may be more attuned to the risk of not acting. I know I am.
    So it is with conviction that I support this resolution as being in the best interests of our Nation. A vote for it is not a vote to rush to war; it is a vote that puts awesome responsibility in the hands of our President. And we say to him: Use these powers wisely and as a last resort. And it is a vote that says clearly to Saddam Hussein: This is
    your last chance; disarm or be disarmed.

    It was a good speech and an understandable. Her mistake was in trusting Bush.

    It’s not the speech of a war-monger.

    FWIW.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  272. 272
    D58826 says:

    @I’mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet: Yep. I had seen excepts of the speech. Sounds like someone who was trying to think it thru and considered the consequences, anticipated and unanticipated.

  273. 273
    Brachiator says:

    @joel hanes:

    Play on the title of a famous Russian novel, Boris Gudenov

    A play by Alexander Pushkin, and the later opera by Modest Mussorgsky.

    But Boris Badenov is definitely a play on words suggestive of these originals. I never knew about it and laughed out loud in the library when I ran across the original when researching Pushkin.

    When I was a kid I had guessed that the name was just a fake Russian play on “Bad guy.” I had a rudimentary idea of punning, but no idea how deep it could go.

  274. 274
    joel hanes says:

    @Brachiator:

    thanks for the correction

    I _knew_ I should look it up before hitting [Submit].

  275. 275
    🌷 Martin says:

    @Trollhattan:

    California passed automatic voter registration last year.

    Passed but not implemented. Won’t be until after the election. The registration surge is real.

  276. 276
    The Lodger says:

    @Betty Cracker: Doesn’t the President have his own taster?

  277. 277
    J R in WV says:

    @D58826:

    Maybe if the FBI takes Hillary Clinton away in chains to Gitmo, Gen. (Ret) Shinseki would be willing to take her place atop the Democratic ballot! All he did was tell the truth about the strategic resources necessary to prosecute the war with any sign of success.

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