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A political tragedy is now unfolding here in America, the self-immolation of the Democratic Party. It is happening.
The first primary of the season begins Tuesday in New Hampshire. Like all political leaders, Democrats in Washington sought to control the outcome of this whole process to the degree that they could. And they wrote a detailed script almost a year ago.
Joe Biden was the designated leader of this kind of revolution. It’s a little hard to believe, now that we say it out loud — now that Biden is in danger of finishing fifth on Tuesday in New Hampshire.
But that’s what they really thought — that Biden could do it, and they said so right on TV.
David Axelrod, CNN senior political commentator: Well, he just decided to bypass the primaries and go right to the main event, and kind of consign everybody else to the kiddie table.
Jamie Gangel, CNN special correspondent: That is Joe Biden at his best. That is someone who is authentic. It’s the reason he connects with people.
Brooke Baldwin, CNN host: Today, the man who has been a senator, a Vice President and a big fan of aviators — he is joining the race.
Gangel: The aviators are back. There they are. There the aviators, and he loves this. He is having fun. This is not heavy lifting for Joe Biden.
Chris Matthews, MSNBC host: I thought that message today was very, very thrilling to me. I thought it was very American. Now, that was great.
Man, we’re glad we saved the tape. They wish we hadn’t. Biden is going to win. He’s got cool sunglasses — aviators — just like Steve McQueen. He’s on fire, in fuego! Everyone else is at the kiddie table. Biden has got this in the bag. That was their view.
And then Biden started running, which meant talking. Not the usual paid speeches to investor conferences in Dubai, but actual in-person campaign events where there’s no teleprompter, and people can ask you whatever they want. Things quickly collapsed.
Joe Biden, 20230 presidential candidate and former vice president: No man has a right to raise a hand to a woman in anger other than in self-defense, and that rarely ever occurs.
And so we have to just change the culture. Period. And keep punching at it, and punching at it and punching at it.
.I love this place. Look, what’s not to like about Vermont in terms of the beauty of it and what a neat town.
Play the radio, make sure the television — excuse me, make sure you have the record player is on at night.
Poor kids are just as bright and just as talented as white kids.
We choose science over fiction. We choose truth over facts.
See. The answer to domestic violence – more punching because they’re just as bright as talented as the white kids are. And if you don’t believe me, turn on the record player.
Every day, a new disaster all chronicled on social media, and still, the prognosticators assured us that Joe Biden was the inevitable winner. He had to be.
Oh, but the South Carolina primary is coming up. Biden has got a lock on African-Americans, they told us. Black people love him.
Whatever you say cable news geniuses. We just got the new Quinnipiac poll. It shows Biden dropping 22 points among black voters in just two weeks. Mike Bloomberg, meanwhile — Mr. Stop and Frisk — he is up 15 points among those same voters.
What does it prove? It proves that in politics, as in life, you never really know. Better to be honest about that. But of course, they never are.
Keep in mind, these people, the ones you just saw get huge salaries to do what? To predict the future. Yet they’re virtually always wrong. Frustrating? Yes. It’s frustrating. We still remember when they were telling us to buy condos in Vegas a week before the 2008 Real Estate collapse.
On the other hand, their consistent idiocy — and it is consistent — does create a potentially lucrative investment opportunity for the rest of us.
Stop Bernie. That is the focus right now and in Democratic circles in Washington, that’s really all they’re thinking about. They fear Bernie more than Trump.
Every time someone on one of these MSNBC panels — you know, The Washington Post editorial writer seated next to the retired C.I.A. analyst across from the former federal prosecutor and the fake Democratic strategist who has never run a campaign — that group — every time that group agrees that something momentous is just about to happen, bet against it. And go all in when you do. Take a mortgage out on the house again. Get a loan from your brother-in-law in Boca Raton. Collect the dimes from under your couch and send it all to your broker. Go long against the consensus on cable news, and you will get rich.
We don’t know what the future holds, obviously, but we can be certain of at least one thing in the world: When everyone in Washington says it’s true, it’s not true. The opposite usually is true.
Apparently, Joe Biden hasn’t quite figured this out yet, which is why he is still running. As of this hour, he is still making candidate-like noises out there on the campaign trail, by in turn, charming and baffling the shrinking number of New Hampshire voters who come out to see him.
Here’s his latest exchange.
Biden: That’s a good question. Number one: I was at a Democratic caucus — you have been to a caucus? No, you haven’t. You’re a lying dog-faced pony soldier. You said you were, but now, you’ve got to be honest. I’m going to be honest with you.
Take that, you lying dog-faced pony soldier! It’s going to be hard not to miss Joe Biden when he drops out.
In the meantime, here’s a line he can use the next time some voter dares to ask him why he is losing.
Steve Martin from 1986’s “Three Amigos”: There you slime eating dog. You scumsucking pig.
You sons of a motherless goat.
You could just hear Biden saying that. Hopefully, he will get to that in South Carolina and Nevada.
Let’s hope though, in the end, his political obituaries aren’t too mean to Joe Biden. It’s not really fair to blame him for this mess. Shallow people with rapidly declining faculties shouldn’t be running for president in the first place.
Soon, probably very soon, Biden will be safely in Florida wearing white knee socks and enjoying the 4:30 prime rib special. He’ll be a lot happier then. But the people who encouraged him to run, despite the evidence, and predicted his victory, we should remember their names. They’ve got no excuse. They’re not senile. They’re just stupid.
To be fair, though, there are still some voters out there who sincerely believe Joe Biden can win it all and somehow their enthusiasm seems even more hurtful than the attacks of his enemies. In the latest spasm of Biden support from New Hampshire, supporters could be heard singing, “Biden’s back!”
Let’s be honest, the Democratic contest, as of now, is now between Mike Bloomberg and Bernie Sanders. That’s a disaster for Democrats. The party can either nominate Bernie and go full socialist, or steal the nomination from Bernie and face some sort of real cataclysm at the convention in Milwaukee and beyond Milwaukee.
Biden’s back, all right. Ever seen anything sadder than that? Not since the last Peaches and Herb reunion tour played the Wichita County Fair. Time is the cruelest critic of all. Biden himself seemed uncertain of what to make of all the praise. He had that vacant, slightly confused look like he just been told to blow out the candles on his 90th birthday cake.
None of this amuses Democratic officials in Washington. They know their party is in danger of not having a nominee at all by the time that convention arrives.
Here’s the difference. Most Republican primaries award all or most all delegates to the winner of the state, but not so on the Democratic side. Thanks to changes that Bernie Sanders demanded after the last election, many delegates are distributed on a proportional basis on the Democratic side. And that means if there are three or more viable candidates in the race after Super Tuesday, there will almost certainly be a brokered convention — and a bitter one.
That is very bad news for Democrats. The people who thought they ran the Democratic Party here in Washington are starting to figure that out, and they’re upset.
James Carville, veteran political strategist: If there is a certain part of the Democratic Party that wants us to be a cult, I’m not interested in being in a cult. If some people in this country want a revolution, I want disruption. You know, I don’t know what — they always scream at people.
They go and bully people and I don’t know how you want to lecture them — 78 years old standing up screaming at the microphone about the revolution. But you’ve got to give people an alternative.
Yes, so, at the end, you heard what it’s really about. Their main fear is Bernie Sanders.
Now rich liberals will put up with almost any amount of social engineering, in case you haven’t noticed — non-binary bathrooms, check; woke self- abasement, fine. But they tend to be completely humorless on the subject of money, especially when it means handing over some of their money to the people below them. They’re not into it at all.
They get hysterical, and they start ranting about public executions.
Chris Matthews: I have my own views of the word “socialist,” and I’ll be glad to tell them — share them with you in private, and they go back to the early 1950s.
I have an attitude about them. I remember the Cold War. I have an attitude towards Castro. I believe that Castro and the Reds had won the Cold War, there would be executions in Central Park and I might have been one of the ones getting executed. And certain other people would be there cheering, okay, so I have a problem with people who took the other side.
I don’t know what Bernie supports over these years. I don’t know what he means by socialism. Why don’t we become Denmark? We’re going to be like Denmark. Okay, that’s harmless.
That is basically a capitalist country with a lot of good social welfare programs. Denmark is harmless.
Chris Hayes, MSNBC host Pretty clearly in the Denmark category, yes.
Matthews: Is he?
Matthews: Are you sure? How do you know? Did he tell you that?
Stop Bernie. That is the focus right now and in Democratic circles in Washington, that’s really all they’re thinking about.
They fear Bernie more than Trump. But the question is, how do they stop him? It is still a democracy after all.
Probably not with Amy Klobuchar. So that leaves two former mayors to get the job done, one from of a mid-sized Midwestern town, the other of America’s largest city.
Now, a lot of donors in New York and Los Angeles would rather go with the former, Pete Buttigieg, former mayor of South Bend. For one thing, he was never a Republican, unlike Mike Bloomberg.
But there are questions about Pete Buttigieg. The main one is not can he become president? The main one is, is he actually human? Does he leave footprints? Has he ever cast a shadow? Or is this so-called Pete Buttigieg exactly what he appears to be –a c orporate hologram designed by the HR Department at Google for instructional purposes?
Well, who knows? But it’s possible that AI is now so sophisticated that we’re looking at our first robotic presidential candidate.
You’ll notice, for example — not to be a conspiracy nut, but it’s true — every word Buttigieg utters is perfectly synchronized with the official view from Silicon Valley and the finance world.
Now, what are the chances of that occurring in nature? This may be the new frontier in automation, ladies and gentlemen.
The other candidates clearly don’t know what to make of the whole thing. Biden took the first swing at Buttigieg in a nasty new television ad. When Joe Biden calls you unaccomplished, it stings.
Voiceover in Biden ad: When President Obama called on, Joe Biden helped lead the passage of the Affordable Care Act, which gave healthcare to 20 million people.
And when park-goers called on Pete Buttigieg, he installed decorative lights under bridges giving citizens of South Bend colorfully illuminated rivers.
Under threat of a nuclear Iran, Joe Biden helped to negotiate the Iran Deal.
And under threat of disappearing pets, Buttigieg negotiated lighter licensing regulations on pet chip scanners.
Okay, Joe Biden, but can we be honest for one moment? Which would you actually rather have? An Iran deal or a chip scanner that helps find your last dog? I mean, really.
It is an interesting question anyway. Biden left it unanswered.
Nevertheless, at Friday’s debate, the other candidates followed his lead and pushed a similar theme.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn: We have a newcomer in the White House and look where it got us. I think having some experience is a good thing.
Tom Steyer: We need people with experience. That’s why I’m worried about Mayor Pete. You need to be able to go toe to toe with this guy and take him down on the debate stage or we’re going to lose.
Sen Bernie Sanders: Unlike some of the folks up here, I don’t have 40 billionaires, Pete, contributing to my campaign coming from the pharmaceutical industry, common from Wall Street.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.: I don’t think any billionaire ought to be able to do it, and I don’t think people who suck up to billionaires in order to fund their campaigns ought to do it.
Says the lady who just got off a private plane the other day.
The whole thing seems a little unfair if you think about it for a minute. There was Tom Steyer, who is currently suffering through one of the worst midlife crises in recorded history. He has never been elected to anything and never will be. He was attacking Pete Buttigieg for not being accomplished enough? Irony is definitely dead.
On the other hand, so is Pete Buttigieg’s presidential campaign, no matter what they’re claiming on television. Buttigieg is too fake. He’s too unnervingly programmed. He’s not going to win.
And anyway, if you’re looking for a tiny, finance-friendly, former mayor, we’ve already got one for you, who by the way, has tens of billions of dollars to spend on the race. Let’s be honest, the Democratic contest, as of now, is now between Mike Bloomberg and Bernie Sanders.
That’s a disaster for Democrats. The party can either nominate Bernie and go full socialist, or steal the nomination from Bernie and face some sort of real cataclysm at the convention in Milwaukee and beyond Milwaukee.
Those are the options. Either way, the Democratic Party will never be the same after Tuesday, not even close. The past is officially over for the Democrats.
Adapted from Tucker Carlson’s monologue on “Tucker Carlson Tonight” on Feb. 10, 2020.