In which I know nothing, but talk anyway

More politics! More politics!

What can I say, it’s been that kind of week.

So here’s the thing: it is impossible– completely, flatly impossible– to get the Democratic nomination without substantial support from the African-American community, and in particular without support from black women. Go ahead, if you like, and look through my posts about the 2016 primary: you will discover, as I quickly did, that one of the reasons Hillary Clinton’s nomination was damn near inevitable after a while was that Bernie reliably lost any state that had fewer than (if I remember right) 60% or so white voters. The only exception to this rule was Hawai’i, which is heavily nonwhite but is heavily Asian and Pacific Islander and not so much as black and Latino as the rest of the country.

It’s no secret that Buttigieg’s base is well-off white liberals. This is not, in and of itself, bad– that was actually Obama’s base when he started his presidential run too, and look how that turned out. But while Obama definitely had to convince black voters of his viability, he was never literally polling at zero percent with them. Pete is, at least in South Carolina, and I suspect in a whole lot of Super Tuesday states as well.

So obviously what he really needed right now was to mishandle it when a racist cop murdered a black person in South Bend.

(Don’t bother arguing with me about this. No body cam means the cop is guilty. If I end up sitting on the jury you can talk to me about bias. Until then, fuck this guy. Cops lie, and I am going to be 100% on the side of the dead people for the foreseeable future until America’s police forces clean house.)

So Pete’s done. It’s all over but the shouting at this point. Much like Sanders, his path to the nomination is basically closed without black support and statistically speaking he doesn’t have any. I do not, at this point, see that changing. He hasn’t put in the work and he keeps shooting himself in the foot.

What about Biden?

Joey Jo-Jo Junior Shabadoo is currently commanding the lion’s share of the black vote, much like he’s commanding the lion’s share of the polling in general. I went on a tear trying to find a Biden supporter yesterday and eventually managed to find one person who admitted after two tweets that he was her #1 choice but she couldn’t name anyone else running as a Dem.

I’m not actually criticizing this person. There’s a long goddamn time until any voting starts, and frankly it’s probably smarter to tune all of the nonsense out right now. No grief from me about this. But it really makes me wonder how soft Biden’s support actually is. And he spent yesterday saying all sorts of nice things about segregationists and how they never called him “boy.”

Candidates who they would have called “boy” had some things to say about that, as well you might fucking expect.

This is what I meant, yesterday, when I said that Biden has done his level best since deciding to run trying to erase any goodwill I ever felt for him. We can’t just Kumbaya our way to governance, no, we have to choose some of the worst possible examples we possibly can of literally evil Senators who he got along with just fine. The man has the instincts of a headless turkey and given that he’s run for office several times before on his own and never gotten close to the nomination I have to feel like he’s going to continue fucking up and voters are going to start looking elsewhere. And if you want to fuck up your numbers with the black community, there are probably a few ways more effective than telling everybody how well you got along with people who praised Emmitt Till’s murderers but you’re gonna have to work at it a bit.

The interesting question: assuming the voters do flee, where do they end up? Obviously I’d hope they end up with Harris or Warren, but anything can happen. There’s always the electability argument, which I think is mostly bullshit (Biden is polling best against the Current Occupant for the same reason he’s on top of the primary polls: everyone knows who he is) but has the advantage of being simple and truthy.

Only seventeen more months of this shit to go, y’all!

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Luther M. Siler

The author of SKYLIGHTS, THE BENEVOLENCE ARCHIVES and several other books.

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