Is it just me, or are the discussion about the Democratic candidates in the 2020 election feel 1) counterproductive and 2) WAY too early? Hey, if you’re excited by a candidate, then fine. Go work for her or him.
But too much of the rhetoric I’m seeing seems to tear down people before the race has even started. By this standard, NO ONE is qualified to be the nominee. One can write off everyone who’s running, or thinking about it, as too old, too shrill, too corporate, too Harold Stassen, throws things, is wrong on one issue or the other. Trump wins in 2020 against a fractured Democratic party.
Yeah, dissect the candidates on the issues, but not on personality quirks, which the incumbent will surely exploit. I’m not willing to say that someone ought not to run. The announced candidates, shockingly, are imperfect, but are infinitely better than the current occupant of the White House. I’m unconcerned about Starbucks’ Howard Schultz launching a third-party candidacy; early signs suggest he won’t last.
As Mark Evanier noted last month: “The Democratic National Convention to select their next presidential nominee will take place July 13-16, 2020. Someone might have a lock on it before then but maybe not too far before then. In any case, 7/13/20 is 1 year, 5 months… from now. I do not have to start thinking about whether I want it to be Bernie or Beto or Elizabeth or Kamala or any of the 7,244 others who will toss their chapeaus into the ring or be seriously mentioned.”
I’m an old poli sci major, but right this moment, I can’t be too concerned. “I can wait to see who else becomes a possibility and what all the contenders have to say, even about issues that do not yet exist. I can wait until the debates and — most of all — the inability to raise money whittles the field down to a dozen or so.” Yeah, maybe there will be 23 or 37 people in the first half of 2017, but that won’t be the case six months from now.
When I say “I don’t care yet” about the 2020 election, that’s not 100% accurate. I follow the announcements and the reaction to the same from the left and right. It’s that I’m not all that interested in talking about it yet. Give me until September 2019 when the landscape becomes clearer.
On a related matter, a good friend floated the suggestion that perhaps Presidential and Vice-Presidential contenders need to run as a team right from the declaration of intent, rather than AFTER the selection of the Presidential candidate. I oppose this, in part because if one goes down in a scandal, real or imagined, it taints them both. Imagine if John Edwards had agreed to partner with Barack Obama in 2008. Edwards’ behavior would have sunk them both.