Biden Philly Rally Keeps Positive Coverage Going
Another weekend of momentum gets frontrunner 72 hours closer to Iowa unscuffed.
My take: News coverage of presidential campaigns is driven much more by poll results than any other factor. Biden’s growing lead propels analysis that implicitly says, “Biden is ahead, therefore Biden’s strategy and positioning must be very smart — including an emphasis on electability and unity and a willingness to stand up to the progressive wing of the party on some key issues.”
That analysis will be considered right — until it isn’t. But the chances are high that all the other 20+ candidates can do is position themselves to take advantage of a potential series of serious Biden errors or failures (such as if his third-quarter fundraising proves weak). The field is too large, Biden’s lead too big, and the former vice president’s strategy too geared to holding on to his lead by not engaging with his party rivals for anyone to overtake him simply be doing well on their own.
Buttigieg Wows in Fox Town Hall
South Bend topper jousts with Chris Wallace, holds his own on tough topics including abortion, wins standing ovation at close of televised session.
My take: This event shows why Buttigieg has risen so high so fast — he’s smart, appealing, self-possessed, and seemingly unafraid of the incumbent president. We have seen this before — Fox is not filling the audience with strident Fox viewers, producing town hall questions and a vibe that allows Democrats home court advantage over the channel’s hosts. No wonder the president is annoyed.
Sanders Asks to Be Interviewed by New York Times
Then he says this to reporter:
“I think Sydney, with all due respect, you don’t understand a word that I’m saying.”
My take: Vermonter pulls no punches with defense of Cold War-era foreign policy stances, and shows his textbook impatience with the media. This interview will inspire many of his supporters — and draw the attention of opposition researchers laying in wait.
Right now, a more immediately important question than who can overtake Biden is, can anyone gain traction as a super-progressive candidate seen as more electable than Sanders?
Which of these can hurt the president politically?
Alabama abortion law seen as extreme by many in GOP?
My take: None of those will hurt him immediately, but they are all ticking time bombs for re-election. Many of the Democratic presidential candidates are offering themselves up as the antidote to a world spinning out of control. Trump and the circumstances around him are making him look more and more like the chaos candidate and the Perils of Pauline president. It the economy hits a rough spot in the next year, the “I am more stable than Trump” message could be the winner.
The Big Four