The results from New Hampshire are in, and the Granite State has succeeded in narrowing the Democrats’ presidential race to a more manageable number—four. Joe Biden is toast. Elizabeth Warren is toast, as are the other candidates who never made it into the double digits. Left standing are Bernie Sanders, Pete Buttigieg, and Amy Klobuchar.
And, oh yes, the $62 billion elephant in the room—Michael Bloomberg.
The lists of winners and losers in New Hampshire are not the same, however, as what you saw on the election board tallies.
Winners in New Hampshire: Donald Trump, Michael Bloomberg, Pete Buttigieg, and Amy Klobuchar.
Losers in New Hampshire: Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Joe Biden.
President Trump won because there is no clear front-runner among the Democrats, and their nominee will probably not be decided until the Democratic convention. The party is in for a protracted fight between its “progressives” and its “moderates” (faulty media-invented labels, but let’s stick with them for a while). The president is already benefitting from a booming economy, the fizzling of the Russia hoax, and the Democrats’ gargantuan overreaches on the Kavanaugh nomination and Trump impeachment. Now he can look forward to running for re-election against a seriously divided opposition party. And if the Democrats’ candidate is Bernie Sanders, he might win almost as many states as Dick Nixon won against McGovern. (I’ll concede Vermont and California for Sanders.)
Michael Bloomberg won because he needed a clear field against Sanders for the nomination, and he’s almost there with Biden and Warren out of serious contention. I have no idea whether he can succeed in buying the Democratic nomination. That didn’t work for Tom Steyer—but $1.6 billionaire Steyer is no $62 billionaire Bloomberg (and Steyer started with no political experience and no name recognition). Bloomberg is now the Democratic Establishment’s most promising bulwark against a Sanders takeover of the party.
Pete Buttigieg won because at least New Hampshire kept his name in contention. But demographically Iowa and New Hampshire should have been two of his best possibilities for a win, and if he can’t win in them, how will he do in Nevada and South Carolina and all the other non-whitebread states? Plus he’s becoming a bore. A smart bore, yes, but nevertheless a bore full of platitudes. Plus the appellation of “Mayor Pete” has morphed into “Wall Street Pete,” and that’s no help in getting the Democratic nomination. The Democrats like to pretend they’re “the party of the people” (pardon my guffaws), but if they’re going to sell out, they will sell out to a high roller like Mayor Mike.
Bernie Sanders lost in New Hampshire, despite winning the popular vote, because his margin of victory was so small and the combined “moderate” opposition (Buttigieg, Klobuchar, and Biden) got some 52% of the total vote, while “progressives” Sanders and Warren combined got only 35% of the vote. The progressives may have the most enthusiastic followers, but those primary night numbers do not bode well for an easy “progressive” victory. Instead they point to a long, drawn-out fight to the convention, where Bloomberg can demonstrate the power of green.
So, how did Amy Klobuchar win in New Hampshire?
All of these caucuses and primaries are a “bread and circuses” distraction to keep us from noting how the real winners, no matter who wins in the elections, are the titans of Wall Street and Silicon Valley and K Street. But that’s another story. Here the distraction is the complete focus on the presidential nomination. Nobody considers who the eventual presidential nominee will pick as his or her vice president. I’m about to do that, however, and will show why that is potentially very important.
Have you ever wondered why so many people become candidates when they have no realistic chance of getting the presidential nomination? One reason could be to get national name recognition, and perhaps lightning will strike and they demonstrate enough support to be considered as the party’s vice presidential nominee. And once on that national stage, who knows what might follow?
Amy Klobuchar was such a candidate. She had minimal national name recognition before this presidential race. The odds of her defeating Biden, Sanders, and Warren seemed overwhelmingly against her. Yet she persisted. And now she has enough of a demonstrated following to make her the logical vice presidential choice of either Sanders or Bloomberg.
Let’s face it. Sanders and Bloomberg are both old white men in a party that worships at the alter of diversity. Sanders is 79 years old and would be 80 when taking office, 84 if he runs for a second term. (Plus he’s had a recent heart attack.) Bloomberg is only a year younger. Granted, both of them seem more energetic than “Sleepy Joe” Biden, age 77, but then Rip Van Winkle would outshine Biden if he were around today.
The Democrats drastically need a splash of diversity. There’s no prominent African American or Latino American waiting in the wings, and what they really need is a woman on the ticket, to energize that distaff majority of the party.
And that leads us to Amy Klobuchar.
She is the only woman left standing in the race. Kamala Harris the prosecutor was like Hillary Clinton on steroids—dangerous. Elizabeth Warren was like a college professor version of Hillary Clinton—boring and grating. Thanks be to the gods that they are out of the race. Tulsi Gabbard, my favorite, never had a chance—the Democrats are now the party of the Deep State.
Besides, unlike Hillary and Kamala and Pocahontas, Amy gives the appearance of being as authentic as a politician can be. She hasn’t taken pot shots at the other candidates, so she has no real enemies. And her closing statement at the last Democratic debate was the most electrifying moment of the debate season so far, and undoubtedly contributed to her good showing in New Hampshire. Indeed, I could see her as the party’s presidential candidate except for the fact that this may be the last stand of the old white men in the Democratic Party, and they won’t give up power easily.
Her positioning as a “moderate” from the Heartland also makes Amy a logical choice. Socialist Bernie would need a centrist like her to unite the party, if it can be united. That leaves out Warren, not to mention the bad blood between Sanders and Warren. And why would Bloomberg want to hook up with a loser like Warren when he can have the ascendant Amy, who also has working knowledge that he lacks on how the Swamp operates.
So, you heard it here first—Amy Klobuchar will be the Democratic candidate for Vice President in 2020.
Look, this isn’t my first rodeo. And I’ve had enough wrong calls in my lifetime to where another won’t change the meter very much. But if I were a betting man (and I’m not), I would put my money on Amy Klobuchar.
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