Trump Now Admits He Sent Giuliani to Ukraine
Democrats Take Aim at Bloomberg
Biden Leads Field In Georgia
Trump to Attend $580K per Couple Fundraiser
Houston Mayor Endorses Bloomberg
Who Stole Your Vote?
• Where to From Here?
• Wall Street Doesn't Fear Sanders as Much as It Did
• Culinary Union Trashes Sanders
• The Accidental Rivals Face Off
• Patrick Throws in the Towel
• Stone's Case May Affect Giuliani's Fate
• Georgia Senate Race Turns Nasty
There were exit polls after voters cast their ballots in New Hampshire and they give some clues to which blocs of voters supported and opposed each candidate. Here is a summary of the results showing each candidate's key supporters in decreasing order of support:
|Candidate||Group 1||Group 2||Group 3||Group 4||Group 5|
|Sanders||Ages 18-29||Very liberal||Income <$50K||M4A fans||Ages 30-44|
|Buttigieg||Income >$100K||Oppose M4A||Top issue: climate change||Late deciders||Trump haters|
|Klobuchar||Seniors||Religious voters||Oppose M4A||Republicans||Moderates|
|Warren||Very liberal||M4A fans||Democrats||College grads||Ages 30-44|
|Biden||Top issue: foreign policy||Religious voters||Oppose M4A||Somewhat religious voters||Seniors|
The way to read the table is that each candidate's top supporters are listed in group 1. For example, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) got 47% of the vote from 18 to 29 year olds. The kids love the geezer. Among voters who described themselves as very liberal, 46% went for Sanders (Group 2). Group 5 for Sanders is the 30-44 year olds, where 39% supported him.
Pete Buttigieg's biggest supporters were the people making over $100,000 per year. About 34% of them voted for him. His second biggest group of supporters was people who oppose Medicare for All (M4A), with 30% of them voting for him. His #5 group was the people whose biggest concern was beating Donald Trump. He got 28% of their vote.
The article also slices and dices the voters in many other ways. For example, it also shows which groups were least supportive of each candidate. Here is a list of demographic groups that gave the least support to each candidate.
|Candidate||Least supportive||2nd Least||3rd Least||4th Least||5th Least|
|Sanders||Top issue: Foreign policy||Oppose M4A||Republicans||Seniors||Religious|
|Buttigieg||Very liberal||Income <$50K||Top issue: Inequality||Ages 18-29||Conservative|
|Klobuchar||Ages 18-29||Very liberal||Ages 30-44||Late decider||Income <$50K|
|Warren||Republicans||Conservative||Moderates||Top issue: foreign policy||May not vote for a Dem|
|Biden||Very liberal||Ages 18-29||Issues first||Ages 30-44||Never church|
For example, only 9% of the voters whose top issue is foreign policy voted for Sanders. And only 9% of the people opposed to Medicare for All voted for Sanders. Republicans, seniors, and people who go to religious services every week were also not big fans of the Vermont senator.
Going on down the line, liberals don't like Pete Buttigieg, young voters aren't charmed by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (DFL-MN), only 3% of Republicans voted for Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and strong liberals have no interest in Biden.
In summary, Sanders' base is low-income liberals under 45 who want Medicare for All. Buttigieg's base is well-off Trump haters who are worried about climate change and are happy with their current health insurance. Klobuchar's base is older church-going moderates and Republicans who don't want Medicare for All. Warren's base is liberal college-educated Democrats who want Medicare for All and are 30-44. Biden's base is older churchgoers who care most about foreign policy and don't want Medicare for All.
When looking at the data, it is also useful to think about the general election. Do Democrats want to go it alone or try to peel off some Republican voters? Numerous surveys have shown that about 2/3 of Democrats think that defeating Trump is more important than policy issues. In other words, they would prefer a candidate who can beat Trump, even if that person wouldn't carry out policies they like once in office. For these voters, Klobuchar and Buttigieg are probably the best bet. However, 1/3 of the Democrats want specific policy issues implemented and are willing to gamble on the possibility of Trump getting a second term, hoping that their bet pays off and they have a shot of getting those policies implemented. Sanders and Warren are the best candidates for those voters. Biden is strong with religious voters who care most about foreign policy. (V)
Usually the one-two punch of Iowa and New Hampshire is pretty good at separating the sheep from the goats. This year it didn't work. There are lots of sheep and goats still milling around among the donkeys. Yes, we now know that Andrew Yang, Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO), and Deval Patrick (see below) aren't going to grab the brass ring, but anyone who has seen a newspaper or watched a news show on TV in the last three months already knew that. No scenario seems especially plausible now, but in 6 months, the one that actually played out will seem obvious. So what does the future look like for the main survivors of the Iowa-New Hampshire mudfest?
- Bernie Sanders: Many pundits are already calling Sanders the front runner.
That's like saying the home team is in like Flynn after the first visiting batter strikes out in the top of the first
inning. Sanders twice barely edged out someone whom nobody outside of South Bend, IN, had ever heard of 6 months ago.
Furthermore, everyone has treated him with kid gloves for a year. Even the unions, who should be his greatest allies,
are not so sure about him (see below). We know that 25-30% of the Democrats will walk over broken glass barefoot to
shake his hand, but if he can't expand his base beyond young people and some blue-collar men, he's unlikely to get the
nod. This is his real test and by March 4th, we'll know if he did it.
- Pete Buttigieg: Buttigieg is an old white person's vision of what a nice young man should
be. He did well in school, works hard, can debate well, and is polite to his elders. Fortunately for him, Iowa is full
of nice old white people, so he came in first or second in Iowa. Some day we may even know. That bounce propelled him to
second place in New Hampshire, another nearly-all-white state. The next two states are larger and much less white.
Nevada is heavily Latino and 60% of the Democrats in South Carolina are black. Few of them care a whit for him. If he
tanks in both states, he may have to scale back his goals a bit and start thinking about challenging Sen. Todd Young
(R-IN) in 2022.
- Amy Klobuchar: Klobuchar is running as a nice Minnesota moderate. She
didn't get much traction until Tuesday, but coming in an unexpected third in New Hampshire is going to bring in lots of
money and attention. She's not exciting and the Democrats want a candidate to fall in love with. As the
"Once in love with Amy, always in love with Amy," but the Democrats aren't in love with her (yet). If enough other
candidates flame out, though, she could emerge unscathed because nobody strongly dislikes her. However, her popularity
with minorities isn't any better than Buttigieg's, so she has her work cut out for her the next two weeks.
- Elizabeth Warren: In politics and stand-up comedy, timing is everything and
she peaked too early. Her fourth-place finish in New Hampshire has to be very disappointing to her supporters since New
Hampshire has always been kind to New Englanders. Previous winners have included John Kennedy (MA, 1960), Edmund Muskie
(ME, 1972), Michael Dukakis (MA, 1988), Paul Tsongas (MA, 1992), and John Kerry (MA, 2004). In the other years, no
serious New Englander was running. Exit polls from New Hampshire show that Klobuchar cut deeply into Warren's base of
college-educated voters, especially women, and now Klobuchar has momentum and Warren doesn't. Also, for people who are
not too keen on septuagenarians, Klobuchar is more than a decade younger than Warren. If the voting had started three
months earlier, Warren might have won, but now she has a steep uphill climb.
- Joe Biden: For a while he expected to win Iowa and use that as a springboard to finish a
whisker behind the locals in New Hampshire. Note to Joe: Pete and Amy are not from around New Hampshire. There is no way
to describe his performance other than deplorable. Oh, wait. Hillary has a trademark on that word. How about "crummy?"
If he finishes in the middle of the pack in Nevada, then ekes out a small win in South Carolina with Tom Steyer
breathing down his neck, it's probably too little, too late. Did Trump's campaign to get dirt on Hunter Biden hurt? We
don't know yet, and may never know, but politics ain't bean bag.
- Michael Bloomberg: If the race is just as muddled on Super Tuesday as it is today, Bloomberg could be a serious contender. He is moving up in the national polls and benefits from the lack of a clear opponent. While Democrats generally don't like billionaires, on a number of key issues, especially abortion, gun control, and climate change, he is not so different from the other Democrats. He has even said he wants to raise taxes on the rich. One shouldn't forget that some of the most beloved Democrats of all time, like Franklin Delano Roosevelt and John F. Kennedy, weren't exactly paupers. And Democrats are surely aware that the financial resources he would throw into his campaign would dwarf anything Trump could manage, especially with the Koch network sitting out the presidential race this time (again). Who knows, Charles Koch might even welcome a business-friendly billionaire who supports free markets and might help out. From Koch's point of view, a president who favors free markets and a Republican Senate might be the best possible outcome.
In other words, what a mess. But there are two elections and two debates before Super Tuesday, so we may have some clarity before 14 states vote on that day. (V)
Some pundits see Bernie Sanders as the front runner, but the S&P 500 closed at an all-time high yesterday, which suggests that investors and traders aren't all that concerned that he will win. If he were to win, taxes on rich people and corporations would surely go up and maybe spook the market. That doesn't seem to be a worry, though.
Nevertheless, some stock analysts are looking more closely at what a Sanders administration might mean for the markets. For banks and insurance companies, it would be rough going. No doubt about that. But some people are beginning to realize that big companies pay billions of dollars a year to cover the health insurance of their employees. If Medicare for All is enacted, that expense might vanish. However, although Sanders hasn't explained how Medicare for All will be financed, Elizabeth Warren has, and her plan is to tax companies for the amount they currently pay for employees' health insurance. If Sanders were to adopt the same scheme, for big companies, it would be a wash and not affect profits one way or another.
Another factor that Wall Street is starting to understand is that Sanders' plans would transfer money from rich people, who tend to buy stocks or save it, to poor and middle class people, who tend to spend it. That would increase the demand for goods and services, which is clearly good for business. A Sanders administration would also start a large number of big infrastructure projects to create jobs, and that would benefit companies in the construction business and their suppliers, as well as the workers on the projects, who would then spend the money on other goods and services. In other words, while taxes would certainly go up for rich people and big companies, the impact on the actual economy might be positive rather than negative, and markets definitely respond to that. (V)
Bernie Sanders needs to count on strong union support going forward. Many of his policies, like a $15/hr minimum wage, are popular with unions. However, they have one beef with him and that is central to his campaign: Medicare for All. The influential Culinary Union in Nevada, the next state up, has distributed a flyer warning members that Sanders' plan would end the excellent private healthcare plan that the union won for its members. That plan covers 60,000 union members, including many hotel and casino workers and their families. About 130,000 members and dependents would lose their insurance if Sanders' plan is enacted, and they would be trading a known quantity that they like for something whose benefits and costs (possibly in the form of higher taxes) are not known yet. Other unions have also won good health-care plans after tough bargaining, and their members may also have some hesitation about trading in something they know is good for something they don't really understand.
The flyer minces no words. It says: "We have fought for 85 years to protect our healthcare. Why would we let politicians take it away?" That's not exactly a ringing endorsement for Sanders' plan. The flyer goes on to add: "We will not hand over our healthcare for promises."
While Sanders is not named in the flyer, only two candidates are pushing Medicare for All: Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, and the latter is trying to back away from it as fast as she can. The union has not endorsed any candidate yet and has not said whether it will before the caucuses on Feb. 22. (V)
If you had asked Bernie Sanders three months ago who his main Democratic rival might be, he would have probably named Joe Biden, or if he were completely honest, maybe Elizabeth Warren. Pete Buttigieg would not be on his list. But here we are. Buttigieg beat him in Iowa and tied him in New Hampshire in terms of delegates won. And Buttigieg probably never expected to face off with Sanders. The current situation is certainly a surprise to both of them.
As William Faulkner pointed out and Buttigieg is about to discover, the past isn't dead. It isn't even past. Especially with the Internet. In 2000, Buttigieg won the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Essay Contest with an essay about committed individuals who run for office to benefit their fellow Americans. His essay contained this sentence: "One outstanding and inspiring example of such integrity is the country's only Independent Congressman, Vermont's Bernie Sanders." Oops. But that wasn't a youthful indiscretion; in 2017, Buttigieg was interviewed by Barack Obama's top strategist David Axelrod, and praised Sanders for his "conviction politics."
Buttigieg will now have some 'splaining to do. He is trying to weasel out from under his previous statements by saying it is Sanders' tenacity that he admires, not the actual policy positions he takes. Even in politics that happens sometimes. For example, some Democrats admired the late senator John McCain for his bravery and guts, even though they may not have liked his policy positions. Another way for Buttigieg to get around what he wrote and said before is to say that Sanders was a fine man for his time, but that time has come and gone and the country needs to turn over the reins to a new generation. He is certainly going to use that line, too, and it may work with some voters who are hesitant about voting for a 78-year-old who just had a heart attack. (V)
Former Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick conceded the obvious yesterday: There was no way he was going to get to 15% in any primary and thus no way he was going to get any delegates (much less nearly 2,000 of them). So, he quit the race. It was pointless from the very beginning.
Yes, he is a left-of-center younger-than-70 black man, but that doesn't make him Barack Obama, who is an exceptionally gifted politician. Patrick should have known better. He knew very well that Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), who is also a left-of-center younger-than-70 black man, wasn't going anywhere, so why did he think he would do better? Probably because all politicians think they invented gunpowder. Or the Internet. The problem begins in kindergarten. Teachers need to stop telling all the kids they can grow up to be president. They can't all be president. Sorry about that. Maybe tell them that if they work really hard and are also very lucky, they might be able to get elected to the local city council. (V)
Investigators who are looking into Rudy Giuliani's affairs to see if he committed any crimes may be disheartened by the Justice Dept.'s attempt to try to let Roger Stone off the hook after being convicted of a slew of offenses. While no one is willing to admit it, it is obvious to everyone that AG William Barr's decision to push for a much shorter sentence for Stone is a result of Donald Trump's tweeting that the original proposal (7-9 years) was much too tough for his friend. The four prosecutors in Stone's case were all so miffed by Trump's interference that they withdrew from the case, and one of them quit his job.
The prosecutors in Giuliani's case will no doubt get the message since it is plain as day. If you prosecute my buddies and win, I will get the Justice Dept. to ask for a minimal sentence, so why are you even bothering? Rebecca Roiphe, a former federal prosecutor, said this: "When you have active interference like this, it makes prosecutors think twice about being aggressive or crossing him [Trump] in any way." Another former federal prosecutor, Anne Milgram, said: "The whole idea of keeping politics and law enforcement apart is to maintain the rule of law so that every citizen believes they'll be judged fairly based on the evidence and the law." A third former federal prosecutor, Ryan Fayhee, said: "I've lived through hiring scandals and political litmus tests, but a direct intervention in an individual case is different."
None of this means that Giuliani will get off scot free, and even he would be humbled if he got 6 months in prison, but now that it is clear that Trump is fully prepared to directly intervene in specific cases involving his allies, Giuliani's prosecutors will have to make a tough decision about how much effort they will put into the case, knowing that if they win, they may very well still lose. (V)
When Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA) decided to enter the race for the seat that former senator Johnny Isakson recently gave up for health reasons, the die was cast. A very nasty fight was inevitable, and now that is happening. After Isakson left the Senate, Gov. Brian Kemp (R-GA) appointed wealthy businesswoman Kelly Loeffler to his seat because: (1) she can self fund her campaign to keep the seat, and (2) she might appeal to suburban women, certainly a lot more than the fire-breathing Collins, who is one of Trump's staunchest defenders in the House.
Now the NRSC is trying to quietly take down Collins by telling consultants, pollsters, and vendors that if they help Collins, they can forget any future business from Republican candidates. As a consequence, Collins' pollster John McLaughlin won't work with him on the Senate campaign. McLaughlin's digital strategy firm, Convergence Media, also won't sign up to work with Collins. No doubt the Representative is going to have trouble signing up top operatives, which will hurt his chances, which is precisely what the NRSC wants. And remember, they are doing this to someone who was 100% for Trump during the impeachment hearings and defended him in every way possible and attacked the Democrats mercilessly throughout the process. The message is clear: "Even if you are entirely on Team Trump with no reservations whatsoever, when we don't need you anymore, prepare to see the underside of a bus."
Collins is not taking this lying down (under the bus or otherwise). His campaign spokesman, Dan McLagan, said: "The Senate committee doesn't want any pesky voters getting involved in their version of democracy." Then the NRSC fired back: "Collins is everything Georgians hate about Washington. He is a swamp creature that claims to be conservative." Now remember, back in December, Republicans high and low were praising Collins for his tenacity and loyalty to Trump. But that was then and this is now.
Most Republicans in Georgia are backing Loeffler, even though she is less conservative than Collins and certainly less aggressive. But other groups aren't so sure. Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List, has attacked Loeffler for serving on the board of a major hospital in Atlanta that performs abortions. Dannenfelser said: "That alone should disqualify her."
But you can't beat somebody with nobody. The Democrats have a number of candidates, too, including Rev. Raphael Warnock, Joe Lieberman's son Matt Lieberman, and former U.S. Attorney Ed Tarver. The Democratic establishment is behind Warnock, but the others are not giving up, so this race could be nasty as well. As a reminder, the special election is jungle-style, with all of the candidates appearing on the November ballot. If any one of them gets 50% of the vote, he or she is elected. Otherwise, there will be a runoff on Jan. 5, 2021, featuring the top two vote-getters. Obviously, if there are two or three or four serious candidates on each side of the contest, the odds of anyone getting 50% are pretty slim.
Another Republican contest that could get messy is the one in Kansas for the Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS) in January 2021. One of the candidates there is Kris Kobach, who managed to lose a gubernatorial election in 2018 to Gov. Laura Kelly (D-KS), which is not an easy feat in a state as red as Kansas. The entire Republican party has turned on Kobach and will do everything it can to destroy him, despite his years of service trying to rig elections for the GOP. Their fear is that he is so far out that he could hand the Democrats a Senate seat they haven't been able to win in nearly 100 years. The Party bigwigs hope that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will enter the fray, even though he already said he won't. But the filing deadline is in June, so he could still easily change his mind. (V)
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---The Votemaster and Zenger
Feb12 New Hampshire Claims Two Victims
Feb12 DOJ is 100% in the Pocket of DJT
Feb12 Bloomberg's Achilles Heel Shows Itself
Feb12 Powell Issues Warning to Congress
Feb12 CIA Scheme Finally Sees the Light of Day
Feb12 AOC Has a Primary Challenger
Feb11 Things Are Getting Interesting in New Hampshire
Feb11 Today's Ratfu**ing News
Feb11 Bloomberg Ascending?
Feb11 Iowa Results Are Finalized...Maybe
Feb11 Smear Campaign Against Romney Commences
Feb11 Update on All the President's Crooks
Feb11 RBG: No ERA
Feb10 Sanders Leads in New Hampshire
Feb10 Democrats Are Worried that the Nevada Caucuses Will Also Be a Disaster
Feb10 Steyer Surges in South Carolina
Feb10 Klobuchar Raised $2 Million Since Friday
Feb10 Giuliani Is Still Digging for Dirt on the Bidens
Feb10 Trump Blew Up the Electoral Map
Feb10 Which Political Theory Is Right?
Feb10 Trump Abandons Promise on the Deficit
Feb09 Sunday Mailbag
Feb08 The Reaping Has Begun
Feb08 Friday Night Lights
Feb08 Life Hasn't Been Good for Walsh
Feb08 Saturday Q&A
Feb07 Final Iowa Results Are In...Kinda
Feb07 In Spiking Poll, Selzer Made a Wise Decision...and a Mistake
Feb07 If You're A Presidential Candidate, Don't Believe Your Hype
Feb07 Sanders, Buttigieg Polling Well in New Hampshire
Feb07 Warren Gets Unhappy News in Nevada
Feb07 Democrats Debate Tonight
Feb07 Trump Commences Victory Lap
Feb06 Senate Acquits Trump
Feb06 Nadler: House Likely to Subpoena Bolton
Feb06 Will Anyone Ever Honor a Congressional Subpoena Again?
Feb06 Iowa Results Are Still Dribbling In
Feb06 Pelosi Dumps on Trump in a Private Meeting after SOTU
Feb06 Sanders Leads in New Hampshire Poll
Feb06 New Hampshire Becomes Even More Crucial Now
Feb06 Biden Still Hasn't Addressed His Son's Job at Burisma
Feb06 Cummings' Widow Loses House Primary
Feb05 The Results Are In...Mostly
Feb05 So, What Happened in Iowa, Exactly?
Feb05 Did the Iowa Results Contain Secret Bad News for the Democrats?
Feb05 Trump Delivers State of the Union
Feb05 Impeachment Acquittal Right on Pace
Feb05 Trump Gets Highest Ever Approval from Gallup
Feb05 Most Farmers Are Sticking with Trump