Saturday, March 30, 2019

Endorsements-- Do They All Help?


Is there any nice way to turn down an endorsement?

Obama's endorsement is going to be meaningful for the 2020 primary. If, as I think is likely, he decides not to endorse, it looks like a slap in the face to Status Quo Joe. If he endorses Biden, it will be something but... not that much because... didn't he have to? But if he endorses someone else-- whoa! Game-changer/ Imagine if he were to say, "It's time for some real change; I endorse Bernie (or Elizabeth Warren or Mayor Pete)... now that would be an endorsement that won an election. But, truthfully, if endorsements meant much, Hillary might be president now. Virtually the entire Democratic establishment in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Iowa and Michigan endorsed her and she lost those swing states-- and the election.

FiveThirtyEight has a fun little project-- The 2020 Endorsement Primary-- which tracks and puts a value on endorsements. Yes, fun, but... utterly worthless for much of anything else. Look who's in the lead: Cory Booker and Kamala Harris, the former lucky to be above the one percent club and the latter, barely in double digits. Booker's on top because New Jersey is the most machine state in the union and the machine is backing booker so... so are all its creatures and anyone who doesn't want to be on its bad side. On the other hand, seeing Donald Norcross on a list of endorsers... What kind of a message does that send? Is Booker running on a platform of being swampier than Trump? Kamala ties him (at 55 points), because she managed to corral lots of California elected officials, most of whom are worthless names on a list. Exceptions: Barbara Lee and Ted Lieu... but does it help her more to have their names or hurt them more to be associated with her?

Amy Klobuchar-- a one-percenter in the polls-- is in third place and has more points (44) than Iowa supporters. It's basically a bunch of Minnesota politicians (including Walter Mondale who was a former VP and therefor worth 10 points). The one non-Minnesota pol on the list is establishment crook Ed Rendell and, again, that oner sends a bad message. Most people are probably wondering when he'll endorse Biden.

Bernie's next (with 21 points) and a couple of people who might have names that could sway a few voters: Ro Khanna, San Juan Mayor Caren Yulin Cruz and Nina Turner (who brings no points but something less tangible for a list like this.

Biden's next with 18 points, 3 very conservative senators, the two schmucks from Delaware (worthless at best) and Dianne Feinstein, an excellent argument for opposing Biden.

Elizabeth Warren is a point below him and the big name is Joseph Kennedy III... but, come on, who really gives a crap other than a bunch of really old people who are probably going to vote for Biden anyway.

Beto has 14 points and 3 of the worst members of Congress, Stephanie Murphy, the chair of the Blue Dogs, and then 2 ultra-unsavory New York New Dems, Kathleen Rice and Sean Patrick Maloney. The only Texan he managed to lasso was his old El Paso City Council pal Veronica Escobar, now sitting in his House seat.

Julian Castro is next with 12 points, 3 of which come from his twin brother's endorsement and 6 more points come from 2 other mediocre congressmen, Blue Dog Vicente Gonzalez and New Dei Colin Allred.

John Delaney should have refused to play. Both his endorsers are embarrassments, crackpot New Dem Juan Vargas, a psycho Zionist who wants all the Jews to move "back" to Israel so Jesus can come and bring all the good people to Heaven; and David Trone, the multimillionaire he sold his Home seat to.

There's nothing notable going on for the other candidates other than the fact Kirsten Gillibrand's only endorser, Carolyn Maloney, is one of the worst Wall Street shills in Congress.

According to the way 538 plays the game, there are 10 super-endorsements (worth 10 points each) out there to get: Pelosi, Schumer, Hoyer, Dick Durbin, Tom Perez, Jim Clyburn, Jimmy Carter, Obama, Bill Clinton and Al Gore.

As a former presidential nominee, Hillary's endorsement is worth 5 points-- but so is Joe Lieberman's and Debbie Wasserman Schultz's... and a whole slew of lobbyists, like Richard Gephardt, Tom Daschle and Howard Dean. The embarrassment of being endorsed by Rahm Emanuel is worth 3 points. In fact most of these names have negative connotations or no meaning at all. Very few will bring any votes with their endorsement, although I suppose some bring good donor lists.

No points if Michelle Obama endorses you but that's probably worth more than any 10 of the ones who do brings points. And trusted organizations like DFA or the Sierra Club or the Justice Democrats must be a lot more valuable in the real world than... Debbie Wasserman Schultz or Steny Hoyer. I mean wouldn't you at least hesitate to vote for someone who was backed by Wasserman Schultz and Hoyer?

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At 10:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, endorsements don't all help. I will look at those who are favored by certain commentators because I trust the judgement of the commentators, but I will not lock myself into support if I find positions that I don't agree with. I will make my own decisions based on my own positions.

At 7:01 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Clearly 538 is speaking to the most brain dead of the intellectually dormant left.

To sentient beings, most of these endorsements would be millstones instead of boosts.

endorsements from obamanation, either Clinton, DWS, Pelosi, hoyer, Clyburn, scummer or anyone else in office except the half dozen who are not worthless corrupt whores would tell me to never, ever vote for that pos.

It would break my heart if Jimmy Carter endorsed anyone except Bernie or Elizabeth, even though I probably can't actually vote for either one due to 2016. An endorsement for anyone else would lessen his legacy noticeably.

In fact, if Jimmy Carter would repudiate the party entirely and become independent, my esteem for him would triple.


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