Yes, I’m a concern troll. I’m no Democrat, nor am I a Republican. But I would really, really, really like to see the Democratic Party nominate a viable candidate for President of the United States this year.
Why? In a word, gridlock — or at least what passes for it in this age of unrestrained “unitary executives.” Checks and balances ain’t what they used to be, but it gets worse when one party controls both houses of Congress and the White House at the same time. The last time that happened, we got ObamaCare. The time before that, the war in Iraq.
Since it’s unlikely that the Republican Party will lose control of either the Senate or House of Representatives, it’s important to me that the presidency go to a candidate of another party. In a perfect world, that would mean a Libertarian moving in at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Unfortunately, the least bad LIKELY outcome is Democratic victory.
But Democrats don’t seem interested in winning. In fact, they seem to be going out of their way to throw the fight.
The “inevitable” Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, was “inevitable” in 2008, too. Remember how that came out? She placed second in the Iowa caucus and would have placed third if John Edwards had flamed out a little earlier. Barack Obama pretty much ran the table. “Inevitable.” Yeah, right.
This time last year, an NBC News/Marist poll had Clinton at 68% and Bernie Sanders at 7% in Iowa. By Monday, that lead had evaporated. Clinton eked out a “victory” in the caucus on the basis of six coin tosses for tiebreaker delegates. Some “victory.”
When Bernie Sanders — an “independent social democrat” whose picture appears in the dictionary next to the word “gadfly” — comes back from a 61-point deficit to hand you your head in Iowa and outpolls you nationally versus likely GOP candidates, you are not a strong contender for the presidency and you SHOULDN’T be treated as a strong contender for the Democratic Party’s nomination.
Two decades of “inevitable” talk aside, Hillary Clinton is a lemon, a jinx, a Jonah. Everything she touches falls apart. Even if she manages to make it to the convention with a majority while avoiding a criminal indictment, we will almost certainly end up with Republican monopoly government for at least two, and more likely four, years. That won’t be on Hillary Clinton. It will be on Democratic caucus and primary voters.
Tip to Democrats: Stay fractured until convention time, then draft Joe Biden. I’m not just saying that because I have ten bucks riding on him in a prediction market. He’s really your only shot.
Tip to voters: Vote Libertarian. Train wreck and clown car are not your only options.
Thomas L. Knapp is director and senior news analyst at the William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism (thegarrisoncenter.org). He lives and works in north central Florida.
- “Election 2016: The Incredible Evitable (AVOIDABLE) Hillary Clinton,” by Thomas L. Knapp, Ventura County, California Citizens Journal, 02/03/16
- “Election 2016: The incredible evitable Hillary Clinton,” by Thomas L. Knapp, Muscatine, Iowa Journal, 02/04/16
- “Election 2016: The incredible evitable Hillary Clinton,” by Thomas L. Knapp, Davenport, Iowa Quad-City Times, 02/04/16
- “Election 2016: The incredible, evitable Hillary Clinton,” by Thomas L. Knapp, Fayette, West Virginia Tribune, 02/08/16
- “Election 2016: The Incredible Evitable Hillary Clinton,” by Thomas L. Knapp, Uintah Basin, Utah Standard, 02/09/16
- “Election 2016: The incredible evitable Hillary Clinton,” by Thomas L. Knapp, Richmond, Virginia Legacy, 02/09/16
Also published on Medium.