The Phony Campaign

2019-11-24 Update

So Mayor Pete is maintaining his phony-hit lead on President Bone Spurs. Interesting!

But meanwhile in the more quantitative columns of our table, Senator Liz continues her quick slide among the folks wagering their own money on the election outcome. This, combined with a modest Biden gain, puts VP Wheezy out in front among Democrats, probability-wise.

The big percentage-point gainer was Mayor Mike, though. His odds remain long, I can't imagine the scenario where he'd be the nominee… well, maybe I can: Biden commits a super-gaffe that finally does him in, and people decide that they need someone with executive experience running a polity with a lot more than 100K people.

But (as anyone who has read this blog for a while can tell you) I have a lousy prediction record.

Candidate WinProb Change
Pete Buttigieg 8.9% -0.6% 5,730,000 -1,510,000
Donald Trump 40.5% unch 2,240,000 +250,000
Hillary Clinton 2.8% -0.2% 930,000 -19,000
Bernie Sanders 7.8% +0.8% 594,000 +56,000
Joe Biden 12.7% +2.3% 497,000 +57,000
Elizabeth Warren 9.5% -3.5% 312,000 +92,000
Michael Bloomberg 4.8% +2.7% 124,000 +43,200
Andrew Yang 2.0% -0.1% 46,900 +6,800

Warning: Google result counts are bogus.

  • The big fake news for Mayor Pete this week, as described at the Washington Examiner: The Intercept exposes Pete Buttigieg for touting fake black endorsements for his ‘Douglass Plan’. The "Douglass Plan" being a multi-pronged sop to African-American voters, among whom Mayor Pete doesn't poll well.

    Now, though, the Buttigieg’s rollout of the Douglass Plan has once again shown the painful whiteness, and tone-deafness of his wannabe woke campaign. Buttigieg touted the fact that, supposedly, 400 South Carolinians endorsed his plan, and an open letter was released that highlighted prominent black leaders among the 400. By implication at times, and explicitly at others, the campaign presented the list as if it contained 400 black supporters.

    Turns out, many of the names listed as "endorsements" were neither black nor even Buttigieg supporters.

    Investigate journalist Ryan Grim of The Intercept exposed this sham, highlighting that the Buttigieg campaign had told people they had to “opt-out” of endorsing the plan. That’s right, they basically said: Email us by the end of today and let us know if you don't want your name to be included. Suffice it to say this is not normally how endorsements are collected.

    South Carolina's is an important early primary, and polls show VP Wheezy with about a 20 percentage-point lead over second-place Liz. And about thirty points ahead of Mayor Pete.

  • We still look at the don't-know-they're-dead candidates now and then. The Free Beacon noted one of them touting a vice as if it were a virtue: Kamala Harris Brags About Never Having Private Sector Job.

    Harris attempted to take a shot at South Bend, Ind., mayor and presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg's (D.) private-sector experience by highlighting how she has never earned a single dollar that was not provided by American taxpayers.

    "For my entire career, I've only had one client: The People," Harris wrote.

    Forbes estimates Public Servant Kamala's net worth at $6 million, approximately 60 times larger than Mayor Pete's.

  • Oh yeah, there was a debate this past week. The Free Beacon also noted a nice bit of phoniness: Elderly Candidate Thinks Debate Already Over, Claims Victory.

    Former vice president Joe Biden's campaign sent out a post-Democratic debate fundraising email about six hours before the debate is set to start.

    "I'm leaving the fifth Democratic debate now. I hope I made you proud out there and I hope I made it clear to the world why our campaign is so important," the email reads. "We need leadership. We need to be ready on day one to get the country back on track and clean up Donald Trump's mess."

    I'm sure VP Wheezy didn't send that out, or even write it, himself. But that means that someone on his staff is as loosely tethered to chronological reality as he is.

  • Candidates are smooth operators, of course. They wouldn't be politicians if they weren't. But (again) the Free Beacon observes that sometimes extends to actual smoothness: Bernie Sanders Flaunts Suspiciously Smooth Forehead at Democratic Debate. Their tweet:

    Q: Who makes Botox? (A: Apparently anyone can, and does.) Will it be covered under Medicare for All, Bernie?

  • And of course, we have this week's phoniness from Senator Liz, as reported by the Federalist: Elizabeth Warren Lies To School Choice Advocate About Sending Her Son To Private School.

    2020 Democratic candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., was confronted by a school-choice activist group that takes issue with her plans to eradicate charter schools.

    Sarah Carpenter, the leader of the protests from Powerful Parent Network, spoke with Warren at the end of Warren’s rally at Clark-Atlanta University, a historically black college.

    During the conversation with Carpenter, Warren lied, claiming that her children went to public schools.

    “I read that your children went to private schools,” Carpenter said.

    “No, my children went to public schools,” Warren responded.

    Politifact: strangely silent. Although they did give her a Mostly False rating on some student loan nonsense she spouted.

  • At the NY Post, Rich Lowry wondered: What’s behind Liz Warren’s humiliating retreat on ‘Medicare for All’?.

    It should have been foreseeable that proposing a ruinously expensive, enormously coercive health program would present political problems. Even Democratic primary voters aren’t fully sold on a Medicare for All plan that eliminates all private insurance.

    Besides, it defies the approach that has worked for the party for decades, which is rejecting politically perilous wholesale changes to health care in favor of salami-slice increases in government ­involvement.

    Sanders has gotten away with it because socialism is his brand and conviction. He hand waves away questions on the specifics — what do they matter, when the revolution will make all things possible?

    By contrast, Warren let the critics get into her head, just as she did over her purported Native American heritage, and stumbled into a messy, self-destructive ­response, just as she did with her DNA test earlier in the year. Democrats have to be wondering, over and above her struggles with the Medicare for All, if this is really who they want to send up against the endlessly combative and needling President Trump next year.

    The prez must be sad that she's fading so fast; I think he'd rather run against her than Wheezy.