As of today, Hillary Clinton has 596 delegates to Bernie Sanders’ 407 (not including Super Delegates, because fuck them they don’t count). That is a 59.4 to 40.5 percent split. Over the next two weeks, By March 15, nearly half the delegates will have been awarded. By all indications, Clinton will expand that delegate lead.
If she doesn’t, and Bernie Sanders overperforms expectations and the polls, then congrats to him, this primary continues! But if he continues to fall short, the math becomes prohibitive. If your state hasn’t voted, don’t sweat it! You can still vote for whoever you want when it’s your turn. But don’t get upset that your vote doesn’t matter. That’s the way the primary calendar works. Iowa and New Hampshire’s votes matter the most for no rational reason, and everyone else gets to pick among the scraps until the scraps are gone and the math is determinative. It’s a bullshit system, but it’s what we’re stuck with. We can all work to change it next time around.
To reiterate, if Sanders eats into Clinton’s big delegate lead by March 15, then we carry on. But if he doesn’t, then on March 15 this site officially transitions to General Election footing. That means, we will focus our attention not just on Donald Trump or his rivals, but also on the Senate, the House, and state-level races. If you want the most liberal government possible, we aren’t going to get that this cycle in the White House, but we can keep building the bench down the ballot so that come 2024, we have lots of great liberals to choose from.
But it does us no good to keep fighting over something that is already determined. People have voted, and the numbers are the numbers. It’s time to move on and focus on what binds us together.
There is much to unite us: There is near-universal hatred on the site, from all camps, for Debbie Wasserman Schultz and her mismanagement of the Democratic National Committee. Her resignation is a priority.
There is strong agreement that our primary process is broken and must be reformed—caucuses are a travesty of democracy (and both sides won their share, so it’s not a partisan issue), and a calendar that gives Iowa and New Hampshire dibs on winnowing the field, while most Democrats won’t have a real say, cannot continue. It does no one any good.
There is strong agreement that we need to reform the Super Delegate system. The idea that a group of party elders could overturn the will of the party voter is deeply offensive and undemocratic. (Add to that, I’d close all primaries, because why should non-Democrats have a say in who the Democrats nominate? But I get that’s a more controversial position.)
Do you know what else we all agree on? The Supreme Court… Even assuming the worst crazy shit people say about Clinton, fact is the next president will get to determine the Supreme Court’s direction for at least a generation, if not longer than that. It will be a new liberal Supreme Court that will overturn Citizens United, that will protect voting rights, that will protect labor unions, that will end partisan gerrymandering, that will undo the myriad roadblocks to citizens participation in our democracy—the very roadblocks that are keeping the Republican Party nationally relevant when they should be a rump regional party.
Clinton critics like to cite the presidency of Bill as evidence of her various horrible traits, yet it was Bill who gave us Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer, and I dare any of you to find reasons to criticize either of those two judicial heroes. If Hillary is like Bill (and she’s not, but let’s assume), why wouldn’t her Supreme Court justices follow suit?
There’s too much at stake in this election, both in the short and long terms. People’s real lives are at stake today, tomorrow, and 30 years from now. You may not give a shit because whatever whatever oligarchy, but I do, and l’m not alone. Daily Kos will be an organizing and rallying point for those fighting for a better America, and the choices this fall are clear. It’s not even remotely close.
So here’s what happens on March 15:
I will no longer tolerate malicious attacks on our presumptive presidential nominee or our presidential efforts. What does that mean?
No attacks on Hillary Clinton using right-wing tropes of sources. She’s had 30 years of bullshit flung at her from the Right, there’s no need to have Daily Kos give them an assist.
Constructive criticism from the Left is allowed. There’s a difference between constructive and destructive criticism. Do I need to spell it out? It’s the difference between “We need to put pressure on her to do the right thing on TPP” versus “she’s a sell-out corporatist whore oligarch.” In general, if you’re resorting to cheap sloganeering like “oligarch” or “warmonger” or “neocon”, you might want to reframe your argument in a more substantive, issue-focused and constructive matter. Again, I’m not interested in furthering the Right’s hate-fueled media machine. If that’s what you want, might I suggest Free Republic?
Saying you won’t vote, or will vote for Trump, or will vote for Jill Stein (or another Third Party) is not allowed. If that’s how you feel, but have other places in which you can be constructive on the site, then keep your presidential feelings to yourself. Those of us who care about our country and it’s future are focused on victory. If you aren’t, then it’s a big internet, I suggest you find more hospitable grounds for your huffing, puffing, and stomping of feet.
If you are going to be pessimistic, you better support it. There’s a difference between “Clinton can’t beat Trump” and “Clinton can’t beat Trump in Alabama”. There is also a difference between the blanket “Clinton can’t beat Trump” and “Looking at the polling, I’m worried that Clinton is falling behind Trump because X, Y, and Z”. Obviously, that also applies to races and issues down the ballot, not just the presidential. If you are going to be a Debbie-Downer, you better have a damn good reason to justify your pessimism. Rank, unsupported pessimism is anathema to our data-driven, reality based culture.
No re-litigating the primary. I don’t give a shit what Clinton or Sanders said in the primary anymore. It’s over. Move on. Again, if it’s not over on March 15 because Sanders has narrowed his delegate deficit, then this doesn’t apply. But once this primary is over, it’s over. Anyone who is interested in keeping our primary divisions open and festering can go do that somewhere else (and be as relevant as the 2008-vintage PUMAs were).
Battle “the establishment” where it makes sense. So you are angry at the establishment? Go stick it to the man in downballot races where there good anti-establishment candidates on the ballot, like the Maryland Senate race and Donna Edwards. To be clear, Daily Kos will depart from recent practice by endorsing all Senate candidates that want our help, because the Supreme Court is just that important. But you, as individuals, have choices, and you can direct your energy and money to those candidates who are more closely aligned with your values. And we will battle the establishment together on things like the primary calendar and superdelegates. But we pick our battles, and in many places, the establishment will be our allies. Or to paraphrase some dumbfuck, we go to election season with the party we have, not the one we wish we had.
We are really in this together. I know there have been rough fights, and some community members have been terrible to each other. But consider this a sorts of amnesty period. Let bygones be bygones. Don’t bring in comments from past battles into new ones. Wipe the slate clean, and let’s move forward together as allies, not enemies or, at worst, frenemies.
After Clinton is elected, we’ll all have plenty of reasons to be upset at her and criticize her actions. That’s what would happen even if Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren got elected, because no one can ever live up to any good liberal’s hopes and expectations. Politics is messy and requires compromises and decisions that will never match our ideal. But hey, we’ll push Clinton hard when it requires, and we’ll keep working for a more inclusive and democratic Democratic Party.
But now, we’ve got to start focusing on the immediate task at hand, making sure we keep the White House, win back the Senate and maybe even the House, and lock down the Supreme Court for a liberal generation. Sound good?
So work hard for your primary choice, and vote for whoever you want when it’s your time to vote, but the countdown clock is ticking and we have a long, hard, critical task ahead of us.
[Update] I thought this was implied in several bullet points above, but let me make this crystal clear: If you are a Clinton supporter, spiking the football in the face of Sanders supporters isn’t a productive way to move us forward. After March 15, “relitigating the primary battles” and “we are really in this together” bullet points make such spiking bannable, but you could start early and help ease the transition to March 15.