Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Digital Editor of Ms. Magazine Calls for Death of Jewish Trailblazer and for Vandalism of His Grave

Three times in the past month, digital editor Carmen Rios of feminist magazine Ms. has openly wished for the death of Senator Bernie Sanders, who in 2016 became the first Jewish presidential candidate to ever win a primary of a major party in the US.

"Rejoice, for one day Bernie Sanders will... die," proclaimed Rios, who is COO and managing editor of Argot, which describes itself as a publication that "aspire[s] to be a safe space that centers the feminine narrative -- especially the experiences of those at the margins -- and to foster community."

In reference to the daughter of former presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, against whom Sanders sought the Democratic nomination last year, Rios vowed to "write in Chelsea Clinton 'til Bernie dies." 

The brazenly misandrist Rios, who is a contributing writer at Everyday Feminism, additionally promised to "build a monument for all the women who were right" and to "erect it on top of Bernie Sanders's grave."

That statement came within three months of the desecration of several Jewish cemeteries in the US.  On multiple occasions when Sanders has reaffirmed his Jewish identity, he noted his father's family was murdered in the Holocaust.  As Sanders attempted to become the first Jewish chief executive of this country, he was the subject of numerous anti-Semitic attacks by supporters of Clinton.

Gloria Steinem, who co-founded Ms., declared Sanders "an honorary woman" as she campaigned for his re-election to the House of Representatives in 1996 against a female Republican.  In his bid for the White House, Sanders offered stronger support for reproductive freedom than Clinton did.

Writer and broadcaster Katie Halper asked Steinem and Ms. to address Rios's remarks.  This entry will be updated if there is a public response to Halper's request.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Dems Avoid Self-Help, Continue to Scapegoat for Self-Defeat

In a "fireside chat" on February 8 about continued work of her party, former Green presidential nominee Jill Stein MD briefly discussed a status that appeared the previous day on her account on Twitter.  In the interim, several hacks in media seized upon the "tweet" in order to describe the graduate of Harvard Medical School as "dumb" and an "a**hole in every respect" who should feel so much "shame" as "to shut the f**k up."

"Betsy" DeVos
(Committee on Health,
Ed., Labor & Pensions)
In reference to the vote on confirmation of Elisabeth DeVos for secretary of Education, the status stated there was "a tie on such an egregious nominee... [b]ecause Democrats serve corporate interests."  (Via a vote to confirm, Vice President Michael Pence broke the tie.)

Approximately eight minutes into the chat, Stein acknowledged the error.  "[T]hat the Democrats unanimously voted against... the... nomination was a real achievement...  [A] tweet... not reviewed by me... was a bit confused...  It was kind of a non-sequitur," she said.

Although that episode is two months old, those attacks on the former member of the faculty at Harvard Medical School were not a demonstration of genuine concern for accuracy.  Rather, the tweet was used as one of countless excuses to do what many people who backed ex-senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY) as the Democratic presidential nominee continue to do:
  • try to discredit those who, from outside of or within the Democratic Party, work to reverse its rightward march, which has made it -- on some issues -- more conservative than Pres. Trump is, and which has -- in the elections from 2010 to the present -- caused the party to lose so badly as to defy precedent.
  • deflect responsibility Clinton should accept for her loss to Trump, like prior nominees rightly took blame for their defeat.  For example:
"I take responsibility for my own loss.  I don't look to [my] party as responsible [for it]."
Ex-governor Mitt Romney (R-MA) on his bid to unseat Pres. Obama
Quoted in Collision 2012 by Dan Balz
The premise of such deflection to Stein and her backers is:  Had the electorate limited itself to the two most unpopular presidential candidates in at least 64 years, then (almost) everyone who voted for Stein would have voted for Clinton, who would then have won in the critical trio of states: Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin.

That premise is falseAmong Stein's voters, under the hypothetical limitation, 61% would have abstained, ≈25% would have picked Clinton, and 14% would have chosen Trump.  Clinton would have had to beat Trump among Stein's voters by nearly 21 percentage points in MI, over 73 in WI, and nearly 89 in PA.

Pence (Gage Skidmore)
People who say most or all votes for Greens would otherwise go to Democrats tend to also say most or all votes for Libertarians would otherwise go to Republicans.  However, some corporate media suggest at least half the ballots for ex-gov. Gary Johnson (R-NM) -- who was the Libertarian nominee -- would have been for Clinton under said limitation.  Yet, among his voters, 55% would have abstained, 25% would have picked Clinton, and 15% would have chosen Trump.  Clinton would have had to beat Trump among Johnson's and Stein's voters by nearly 5 points in MI, over 16.5 in WI, and over 22.5 in PA.

Apparently, the state-by-state breakdown of what Johnson's and Stein's voters would have done in that scenario is excluded from all published data from the exit poll.  But even if the undisclosed numbers from WI and PA show statistical deviations that favor Clinton and are drastic enough to evince she would have won the presidency in said scenario, these questions remain:  Why should any party, or duo of parties, be deemed entitled to anyone's vote?  Why should citizens of a republic not be -- and feel -- free to vote for whichever candidate they deem best, especially a candidate who, like Stein, advocates for what most of the public wants and needs?

The response from ardent supporters of either major party is that we must prevent pluralities for the nominees of the other major party.  The best counter-response is the proposal for instant-runoff voting (IRV), a.k.a. ranked-choice voting (RCV), which is used for public elections in a few countries and in numerous jurisdictions across the US, was adopted by the electorate of Maine on Election Day, and is under consideration by several other states.  (Information on how to help enact RCV is here.)

Many Democrats and Republicans oppose that idea because both of their parties would be vulnerable to alternatives that could no longer be branded as potential "spoilers."  In fact, the Senate of ME successfully requested -- by a vote of 24-10, with seven Democrats in favor -- for the highest court in the state to hear a challenge to RCV.  Attorney General Janet Mills (D-ME) and Secy. of State Matthew Dunlap (D-ME) filed briefs in opposition to RCV.  Oral arguments in the case were delivered yesterday.

The vulnerability of the Democratic and Republican parties is evinced by more than the efforts to besmirch and obstruct endeavors to break their duopoly.  To wit, surveys that were commissioned by CNN to measure favorable and unfavorable views toward the major parties date back to 1992.  Said data conclude both of those parties are -- but were never prior to 2010 -- simultaneously viewed more unfavorably than favorably.  Surveys by Gallup conclude the rate of self-identification with neither major party was 15% in 1945 but is 44% now.

Moreover, a higher percentage voted against the duopoly in the latest presidential election than in any other presidential election after 1996.  That development is due partly to deepened support for a leftist agenda.  Last year, the number of ballots cast for the Green ticket tripled for the second consecutive time.  Meanwhile, write-in votes for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) -- who is a democratic socialist, sought the Democratic nomination, was not on the ballot anywhere for the general election, and asked his supporters not to cast write-in votes for him in it -- amounted to 5.7% in Vermont, 0.7% in Rhode Island, 0.6% in New Hampshire, 0.6% in California, and 0.1% in PA.  Those are the only states in which write-in votes for Sanders were tallied.

The ex-representative and his supporters have endured many attacks between then and now, but mostly not because of write-in votes.  Instead, Sanders's erstwhile campaign is used as another excuse for why Clinton lost.  Myriad fans of hers, still averse to the values Sanders espouses, seek to discredit him as his influence rises.  He is

The aforementioned Clintonites have egg on their face.  Throughout the primary season, they -- in contradiction to the statistical data -- insisted Clinton was the most electable Democratic candidate.  Such propaganda was very effective among the voters of the Democratic primaries/caucuses who prioritized ability to win the general election.


Not only did the polls consistently demonstrate Clinton was weaker against Trump than Sanders would have been, but both of the final two polls to test Sanders versus Trump and test Clinton vs. Trump found
  • Sanders was ahead by 11 points; Clinton was ahead by 3
  • Sanders had a net favorable rating of at least 12 points
  • Clinton had a net unfavorable rating of at least 9
  • Sanders outperformed Clinton among liberals, youths, men, women, whites, people whose annual income is below $50,000, people whose annual income is above $50K, independents, and Republicans.
Among most of those demographics, come Election Day, there was considerable room for improvement by the Democratic Party.  In the contrast between 2012 and 2016, the Democratic ticket's margin over the Republican ticket shrunk by a point among liberals, by 5 points among people under age 30, and by 11 points among people whose family's income the previous year was below $50K; and the Republican ticket's margin over the Democratic ticket grew by 5 points among men, by a point among whites, and by a point among independents (who, in this piece, include members of third parties).

Trump received 2.1 million more votes than Romney did.  But Clinton received 62K fewer votes than Obama did in '12.  Sanders likely would have generated a higher turnout for the Democrats than Clinton did.


Here are statistics from each state in the critical trio.
  • Clinton lost WI by 0.8%.  There, in the last three polls to test Sanders vs. Trump and test Clinton vs. Trump, Sanders won by -- in chronological order -- 4, 7 and 15 points more than Clinton did.
  • Clinton lost PA by 0.7%.  There, in each of the last three polls to test Sanders vs. Trump and test Clinton vs. Trump, Sanders won by 5 points more than Clinton did.
  • Clinton lost MI by 0.2%.  There, in the last three polls to test Sanders vs. Trump and test Clinton vs. Trump, Sanders won by -- in chronological order -- 6, 8 and 14 points more than Clinton did.
Additionally, polls and pundits often underestimated Sanders.



After the election, some people in corporate media retrospectively acknowledged Sanders would have been the stronger nominee against Trump.  However, many who had contended Clinton would win and Sanders would have lost now say the incorrectness of the former prognostication should not cast doubt upon the latter.  Let us scrutinize both premises of that argument.

Luján, D-NM (Jette Carr/
Dept. of the Air Force)
The first premise is the alleged worthlessness of polls taken as early as the last ones that tested Sanders.  Clintonites posited their candidate would establish a solid lead over Trump after she attained the nomination.
"The head of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee [is] Rep. Ben Ray Luján...[, who] said Clinton's numbers will improve as she faces... Trump.  'I welcome the contrast between... Clinton and... Trump as we get into... November...,' Luján said."
The Auditor (whoever that is), "The Other Side is

Rooting for Donald Trump," NJ.com, 2 May
"[Y]ou can expect Clinton's numbers to improve... when Sanders bows out..."
Jake Miller, "Twenty-Sixteen by the Numbers:
Hillary Clinton vs. Donald Trump?" CBS, 4 May
Toni Monkovic, editor"Against Trump in polls, Sanders does better than Clinton does.  But it is not nearly so simple."
Nate Cohn, elections analyst:  "...Sanders's supporters are a big reason why Clinton does worse...  Presumably, most of [them] will... get behind Clinton..."
Monkovic:  "How much would Clinton be damaged if he were to endorse her only halfheartedly?"
Cohn:  "I think she would ultimately be fine."
"Bernie Sanders Does Better vs. Trump?  Wouldn't Be
Prudent to Assume That," The New York Times, 23 May
"The latest poll by NBC News and The Wall Street Journal shows Clinton with a... lead over Trump, 46% to 43%.  But if Sanders were out of the race, the NBC News political unit estimates, her lead would likely be much larger, perhaps... 51% to 43%."
Dante Chinni, "Clinton's Lead Over Trump Would

Grow Without Sanders in the Race," NBC, 29 May
"Obama's rise in popularity has not immediately transferred to Clinton, whose favorability rating has fallen... as... she has been under fire from Sanders and Republicans...  'Her numbers will drift back up.  The president's popularity will help it happen faster and, I think, make it more enduring,' said Democratic strategist Steve McMahon..."
Mike Dorning, "Popularity of Sitting President is Linked

to Choice of Successor," The Seattle Times, 30 May
Clinton bested Trump by two points in the popular vote -- one fewer than in the couple of polls detailed above.  Both were conducted sometime between June 2 and June 8.  Let us examine the non-tracking polls conducted at least partially during the equally long span that, in the given year, was the same distance from Election Day.
Out of those polls, the margin most different from the one that would materialize on Election Day was off by six points.  If, in relation to the last two polls to test Sanders, he would have underperformed by six points on Election Day, he nonetheless would have won the popular vote by more than twice as many points as Clinton did.  In that case, he all but certainly would have won in the Electoral College.

G. Johnson
("Democracy Now!")
The second premise is the allegedly unmatched vulnerability of Sanders to attacks.  We are told the Republicans would have exposed explosively scandalous information about the senator, which the media and Clinton's campaign did not discover or were so nice as to let slide.  Come the general election, Sanders supposedly would have helplessly been sunk by more baggage than either Clinton or Tr-- Alright, let's try not to laugh.

For several months after Sanders began to run for the White House, neither the corporate media nor Clinton's campaign deemed him a serious threat.  His national reputation was thus crafted mainly on his terms.  By the time the potential of his bid was understood by the elites, they were unable to bury it.  Yet, many Clintonites assert Sanders would have been so negatively redefined by Republican attacks if he had been nominated, he would have replaced Clinton as the second-most unpopular -- or replaced Trump as the most unpopular -- presidential candidate since 1952 or earlier.

A pillar of that claim falsely states Sanders would have been blindsided.
Mitchell:  "Are you braced for the onslaught that could come your way...?"
Sanders:  "Yes, we [on my campaign] are...  We'll be attacked by corporate America.  Anyone who takes on the establishment anticipates those attacks."
Andrea Mitchell Reports, MSNBC, 31 August 2015
According to another such pillar, VT is naturally ideal political territory for Sanders, his candidacies were all easily victorious against opponents who never attacked him, and he is thus inexperienced in political defense.  That is all false.

In 1981, Sanders's initial bid for mayor of Burlington ended in a recount in which he edged the then-incumbent, 43.4% to 43.3%.  As Sanders sought re-election in 1983, the Republican campaign attacked his socialism and claimed he would raise joblessness and the cost of electricity.  Sanders won amid turnout that was 42% larger than in '81.

In 1986, Sanders placed a distant third for governor.  In 1988, he placed second for the lone seat VT has in the House of Representatives.  In a rematch in 1990, the Republican incumbent depicted Sanders as favorable to the late autocrat Fidel Castro of Cuba and bound to be uncooperative in Congress.  Sanders prevailed, even while a Republican was elected governor.  At that time, every Republican presidential nominee had carried VT except in 1964, when incumbent Lyndon B. Johnson rode a transformationally liberal domestic agenda (the Great Society, which had begun to be enacted) to the largest percentage ever drawn in the popular vote and to 90.3% of the Electoral vote.


In fact, VT is of the only two states Pres. Franklin D. Roosevelt lost all five times he was on the national ticket, even when he, as a nominee for a second term, rode a transformationally liberal domestic agenda (the New Deal, nearly all of which was enacted in his first term) to the second-largest percentage ever garnered in the popular vote.  In the Electoral vote, Roosevelt drew 98.5%, which is second only to the unanimous elections of George Washington.


At the Democratic Nat'l Convention of 1940, which was the year when Roosevelt would win a third term, conservative delegates waged a serious but unsuccessful challenge to his choice of then-Secy. of Agriculture Henry Wallace for vice president.  When the challenge was underway, Roosevelt -- who had received but not yet accepted the presidential nomination -- drafted a message he thought he might need to send to the delegates in order for Wallace to prevail and in order for Roosevelt to want to be on the ticket.  The message read in part as follows.  (All boldface in this entry is added.)
"In our century, the Democratic Party has received the support of the electorate only when the party, with absolute clarity, has championed progressive and liberal policies and principles of government.  The party has failed consistently when it, through political trading and chicanery, has fallen into the control of... interests that think in terms of dollars rather than in terms of human values.

"The Republican Party has made its nominations this year at the dictation of those who... always place money ahead of human progress...  Until the Democratic Party... makes overwhelmingly clear its stand in favor of social progress and liberalism, and shakes off all shackles of control fastened upon it by the forces of conservatism..., [the Democratic Party] will not continue its march of victory...

"It is best not to straddle ideals...  [T]here can be no connivance with the kind of politics that has internally weakened nations abroad...  The party must go wholly one way or wholly the other.  The party cannot face in both directions at the same time."
Wallace (US Senate
Historical Office)
Similarly, in a speech to Americans for Democratic Action on 17 May 1952, Pres. Harry Truman stated:
"Mark Twain said..., 'Always do right.  It will please some people and astonish the rest.'  We did that in 1948.  We astonished the pollsters, the sabotage press and the opposition candidates...  The results were good for the country even though they set back, for a generation, the science of political forecasts.  I hope it was set back forever...  The best time of my life was to go up and down this country and tell the people the truth.  When they found out what the truth was, you know what they did.

"When a man in politics -- if he is a leader -- has the right ideas, the people are willing to listen to him...  [W]hen a candidate goes out and says what is good for the people, they believe him...  When the Democratic candidate allows himself to be put on the defensive... for the New Deal and the Fair Deal, and says he really does not believe in them, he is sure to lose...  If the choice is between a genuine Republican, and a Republican in Democratic clothing, the people will choose the genuine article every time.  In other words, they will take a Republican before they will take a phony Democrat...  But when a Democratic candidate goes out and explains what the New Deal and Fair Deal are, when he stands up... and sets the issues before the people, then Democrats can win, even in places where they never won before.  It has been proven time and again.

"We receive many suggestions to... water down our platform and abandon parts of our program.  Those suggestions are Trojan horse ones...  [N]ever throw away a winning program.  This is so elementary, I suspect the people who hand out th[ose suggestions] are not really well-wishers of the Democratic Party.  More than that, I don't believe they have the best interests of the American people at heart.  Involved in our program is something more important than the mere success of a political party is.  The rights and welfare of millions of Americans are involved...  Those... interests must not be betrayed...  I am sure the liberal faith is the political faith of the great majority of Americans.  Circumstances sometimes combine to deny its expression.  But the faith is there, and the reactionaries can never hope to have any but temporary advantage in this country."
Truman
(Library of Congress)
When Sanders sought re-election to the House in '96, his Republican opponent hired an investigator to probe Sanders's life.  The only damage that resulted was to the Republican nominee when the public learned said investigator dug (in vain) for personal details about Sanders's previous marriage.

In 2006, Sanders was elected to the Senate over a Republican who had not pursued office before but who touted experience as a corporate CEO and who negatively campaigned.  (Does that seem familiar?)  Said nominee was Richard Tarrant, who was the wealthiest Vermonter at the time, ran the most expensive campaign in the history of the Green Mountain State, and painted Sanders as
  • insensitive to victims of rape and to families of fallen troops.
  • soft on terrorists, pedophiles, and drug-dealing immigrants.
  • against AMBER Alert and favorable to excessive taxation/expenditures.
  • extremely hostile to business and devoid of actionable proposals.
Sanders decisively defended himself and prevailed in the election by more than he had in any survey in the final four months of the race.

L. Johnson (LBJ Library)
The other pillar is what the attacks on Sanders could have been.  As some media stated, the Republicans could have
  • said he is a socialist, 1) as if the media (and surrogates for Clinton) had not repeated it ad-nauseam and 2) as if Sanders does not have decades of experience in how to explain his philosophy to a nationwide audience.  In October 2015, Trump described Sanders as a "maniac" and a "communist."  That month, Trump and Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) alleged Sanders proposed a tax of 90% on all incomes.  Those absurd charges gained no traction.  In another attack on him, The National Review conflated democratic socialism with national socialism.  That disinformation instantly failed as well.
  • said he voted for nuclear waste to be stored in the poor and Latino hamlet of Sierra Blanca, Texas.  Last year, that charge was spread by backers of Clinton despite her support for nuclear energy and despite his opposition to it.  In reality, the bill in question did not designate Sierra Blanca, and the waste was stored elsewhere.  Plus, even though Clinton's husband signed the bill, Trump never mentioned it.
  • said Sanders was on unemployment insurance in 1971.  The publication of that fact by Politico in July '15 was swiftly met with a nationwide yawn.
  • said Sanders "stole electricity from a neighbor."  So says Kurt Eichenwald of Newsweek.  He provides no evidence of that claim but does brag about when -- in person at an airport -- a stranger praised Eichenwald for his work, then revealed himself to have voted for Stein, and Eichenwald replied, "You're lucky it's illegal for me to punch you in the face.  Go f**k yourself."
  • said Sanders "violated campaign finance laws."  So says Eichenwald, who offers no proof but likely intends to deceive with regard to letters in which the Federal Election Commission 1) notified Sanders's campaign its reports included apparent errors, and 2) requested amendments to those reports in order for all errors to be corrected.  In some cases, the listed total of money from a given person was above the limit imposed by law.  Either the listed total was erroneous or the campaign had accepted installments it did not realize were excessive.  In other cases, a given donor seemed unqualified to donate.  Such mistakes are common for large campaigns and were thus no surprise with regard to Sanders's as it received an historic 8.2M donations from 2.5M individuals.  That campaign, which was never found to have violated the law, made 15K refunds, which totaled $5.2M.  Clinton's campaign made 32K refunds, which totaled $6M.  Trump's campaign made 815, which totaled $1.4M, and was -- for other reasons -- in much deeper trouble with the FEC than Clinton's campaign was or Sanders's campaign was.  By the way, Clinton's laundered money.
  • said Sanders's fiscal and economic policies would be ruinous.  Business executives made that claim in 1981.  But the results of his mayoralty can be summarized by these distinctions near its end, which was in 1989: Burlington tied for the award by the US Conf. of Mayors for most livable city with a population <100K, Inc. Magazine named Burlington the best Northeastern city in which to grow businesses, and US News & World Report named Sanders one of the 20 best mayors in the US.  Trump's record is different.  Moreover, in Feb. '16, an ad by a right-wing super-PAC quoted Sanders out of context about taxation and made false claims about what the effects of his proposals on that and on wages would be.  Those attacks did not stick.
  • restarted the media frenzy that occurred in late autumn of '15 when a data breach that was the fault of the Democratic Nat'l Cmte. was spun -- by its then-chairperson, namely Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), and by Clinton's campaign -- as theft by Sanders's.  Back then, The Los Angeles Times stated the episode "threaten[ed] to derail" Sanders's candidacy.  In what The NY Times called a "Stinging Attack" on 7 Feb. 2016, Clinton's husband rehashed said episode.  Two days later, Sanders won the primary in NH by the largest margin ever for a Democratic candidate with serious opposition in that contest. 
  • restarted the media frenzy that occurred in the spring of '15 about a piece Sanders wrote in 1972 that questioned why many Americans of both sexes fantasize about dominance by men over women.  Although his candidacy was apparently unharmed by said frenzy, we are told a rehash of it would have put him at a disadvantage against a nominee who claimed to have repeatedly committed sexual assault.  (By the way, former secretary of the Navy Jim Webb, as the Democratic senatorial nominee in Virginia in 2006, unseated a Republican incumbent who, 11 days before that election, slammed Webb for sexually graphic passages in novels by him.)
  • cleaned up among the supposedly critical bloc who, à la "Dr. Arthur Harmon" of Maude, were (or would have been) just appalled to learn Sanders wrote a column in 1969 that stated society should permit children to see each other nude.  The contrast between such heresy and Trump's puritanism would have devastated Sanders's chance to win, we are to believe.
"Maude was right.  Yeah, I do have a little, you know, hangup
about sex.  No, no, it's true, Walter.  See, my mother and father were both raised in Vermont."
Conrad Bain as Arthur in season 1, episode 2: "Doctor, Doctor"
Sanders
(Gage Skidmore)
Supposedly, Clinton was so loath to risk alienation of Sanders's supporters, she never attacked him.  That is false, as indicated by the (short-lived) apology by David Brock, who headed the super-PAC that coordinated with Clinton's campaign.  That super-PAC was ironically named "Correct the Record" and released anti-Sanders videos in the primary season.  However, their lameness underscored the paucity of useful material it could obtain about himMost of them repeated aspersions by corporate media, included deceitfully selected tidbits, and/or included quotes that lacked contextThe portrayals by those videos were easily debunked and, in some cases, easily proved hypocritical.

Clinton's campaign itself, like the media, exhaustively researched Sanders but discovered no potent ammunition to use against him.  Desperate to hit him, however, Clinton and her surrogates along with her allies in media dishonestly said/implied he
  • is sexist, racist, xenophobic, an ally of gun-manufacturers, uncritical of George W. Bush, and unconcerned about reproductive and other rights, sought to strip health care coverage from tens of millions of people, was absent from the effort in 1993 to reform health care coverage, favored the intervention in Libya, and -- despite all of that -- is an "extreme" leftist.
  • is unaccomplished; is insufficiently knowledgeable about domestic and foreign policy and how government works.  (Nevermind he had a fellowship at the Kennedy School of Gov't at Harvard.)
  • proposed, despite his position as ranking member of the Cmte. on the Budget, a budget that did not "add up."
  • lied about donations Clinton accepted from the fossil-fuel industry.
  • accepted $200K in donations from firms on Wall Street.
  • opposed the bailout of the auto industry, and plotted voter-fraud.
  • fabricated his participation in the Civil Rights Movement.
  • is a fake grandparent, and might be or definitely is an atheist.
  • ran the most negative Democratic presidential campaign ever.
  • may have violated rules of ethics when he spoke about the election to reporters in the US Capitol.  But at that moment, in that building, congressional Democrats and Clinton met expressly for the purpose of her campaign.  There are additional examples of when space at the Capitol was used in ways that came at least as close to electioneering as Sanders's remarks did.  None of those uses prompted action by the Cmte. on Ethics of either house of Congress.
By the primary in NH, Sanders was in the swing of self-defense.  When he accepted victory there, he referred to critics of him.
"They're throwing everything at me except the kitchen sink...  [T]hat sink will come pretty soon...  But our campaign is about thinking big, not small.  It is about the courage to reject the status-quo."
Roosevelt (FDR Library)
Naturally, aforementioned libel and slander added to the distrust and resentment Clinton had already earned from pro-Sanders voters.  But rather than try to improve her image among them, she and her gang maligned them as
That strategy somehow failed to persuade Sanders's backers to switch to Clinton.  Perhaps one reason why was the ease with which those portrayals were rebutted:
  • Many of them clearly were recycled from attacks waged in 2008 against Obama and his supporters.
  • There had been many times when Clinton demonstrated racial insensitivity and many times in the cycle of 2008 when she or one of her then-surrogates race-baited.  (A bit more on that later.)  Additionally, on race, Clinton's record is inferior to Sanders's.
  • As secretary of State, Clinton approved the sale of $4.2M worth of weapons made by Remington Arms, which manufactured the semi-automatic rifle with which the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, was perpetrated.  On 21 March 2016, Clinton's campaign held a fundraiser co-hosted by a lobbyist for the Nat'l Rifle Association.  Clinton had favored and opposed the idea of a national registry of guns.
  • Nicholas Silitch, as a delegate for Clinton, assaulted Moumita Ahmed, who was a delegate for Sanders.  Jerry Ogle, as a delegate for Clinton, assaulted Amanda Kruel, who was a delegate for Sanders.
  • The Washington Post scanned >52K tweets that mentioned Clinton and were published during the primary in NH.  The Post found 0.1% of them were attributable to pro-Sanders men and included any of 30 sexist slurs.
  • Clinton's super-PAC paid harassers of Sanders's supporters online.
  • A poll of likely voters found 30% viewed the online behavior by Clinton's backers as very aggressive.  In that poll, 16% of respondents viewed the online behavior by Sanders's backers that way.
  • Some backers of Clinton waged anti-Semitic attacks on Sanders, sexist attacks on his wife and on more of his female supporters, and racist attacks on his nonwhite supporters.
  • There was an online attempt to trick Sanders's supporters into death or severe injury.
  • Donations from people who each gave -- to the given campaign -- a total of $200 or less, $201 to $999, $1K to $2,699, and the maximum of $2,700 respectively constituted 44%, 38%, 14% and 4% of the money Sanders's campaign raised, and 24%, 21%, 15% and 40% of the money Clinton's campaign raised by the end of June, which was the last month in which primaries/caucuses were held.
  • In the Democratic contests in which exit/entrance polls were conducted, affluent voters clearly preferred Clinton over Sanders.

As for the alleged burden that sexism placed on Clinton's bid for the nomination, exit polls for five Democratic primaries asked voters whether a major factor in their decision was which sex each candidate was.  All five polls concluded Clinton's womanhood was a substantial net-advantage for her, unlike in 2008.  Given the amount of people who publicly said their decision to vote for the former first lady in '16 was made via discrimination on account of sex, these statistics should be no surprise.


After Sanders ended his quest for the presidency, and even after the general election, Clintonites in media and in the political establishment continued to blast him and his supporters.  For example, pro-Sanders women were accused of self-hatred.  Additionally, Sanders and his supporters were blamed for Clinton's (chance of) failure.  However, those among them who declined to vote for Clinton were justified in refusal to tolerate her conservatism and her disdain, which had been underscored by
Stein
(Stein '16 campaign)
Some pro-Sanders people voted for Stein, who was falsely depicted as a candidate who garnered support from privileged classes at a higher rate than from others.  Yet, she and Green vice presidential nominee Ajamu Baraka drew the votes of
  • 4% of LGBT people, 1% of the rest; 1% of each sex.
  • 2% of blacks, 2% of Latinos, 2% of Asians, 2% of other nonwhites, 1% of whites.
  • 1% of immigrants, 1% of born citizens.
  • 2% of people whose family's income in 2015 was <$50K.
  • 1% ... was $50K-$200K.
  • 0% ... was >$200K.
  • 1% of people whose family's financial status was worse than in 2012.
  • 1% ... was the same as in '12.
  • 0% ... was better than in '12.
Stein received a much larger share of the vote than of the free coverage provided by the media to the nominees.  Similarly, in the primary season, Sanders received a much larger share of the vote than of the free coverage provided by the media to the Democratic candidates.  Those facts, and the oversized platform the media recklessly gave to Trump throughout his bid, are reasons enough for the public to no longer turn to corporate media.


That Stein drew 1.06% of the popular vote is yet more remarkable when we consider the amount of negative propaganda that passed for coverage of her candidacy.  Rather than inform the public about her platform, media
On Nov. 22, New York Magazine reported Clinton was "urged by a group of prominent computer-scientists and election-lawyers" to seek recounts in the critical trio due to what the group deemed as, in reporter Gabriel Sherman's words, "persuasive evidence" of manipulation.  He noted a "senior advisor to Clinton said" Obama did "not want for Clinton to challenge the election result."  We could have guessed so, given Obama persuaded Clinton to concede as early as she did.

Washington
(Gilbert Stuart)
On Nov. 23, with no decision from Clinton and with two days until the deadline to file for a recount in WI, Stein -- who originally declined to seek any recounts -- announced she would file for them if the money necessary would be raised.

Clinton eventually became a party to those recounts, from which she had nothing to lose and everything to gain.  Allies of hers in media nevertheless baselessly implied Stein's effort to collect the aforementioned funds was a scam to retire her campaign's (virtually nonexistent) debt, funnel money to her party, enrich herself, and/or pursue some other ulterior motive.
Jeffrey Toobin, senior legal analyst for CNN:  "[For] Stein -- who did a significant amount to help elect Trump -- to suddenly sort of take Clinton's side is pretty rich.  I think Trump has a point when he talks about how Stein is fundraising, making a heck of a lot more money off of this futile gesture than she ever made during the campaign."
Anderson Cooper, Vanderbilt: "Right, and... she is building a mailing list."
Carl Bernstein, former real journalist:  "She is a bad actor and might have cost Clinton the presidency."
Anderson Cooper 360°, CNN, 28 Nov.
Though the DNC actively helped Trump win his nomination, Stein never sought to build up his candidacy.  After the election, she did not "sort of" -- or otherwise -- side with Clinton.  Rather, Stein sided with the goal of accurate tabulation.  Furthermore, Trump did not have a point.  Reports to the FEC by Stein's campaign document it paid
  • $3.5M to file for a recount in WI.  The State of WI confirmed receipt.
  • $973K to file for a recount in MI.  The State of MI confirmed receipt.
  • a total of $2.2M to retain representation by Emery Celli Brinckerhoff & Abady LLP, which confirmed its representation of the campaign. 
  • $100K to retain representation by Goodman Acker PC, whose representation of the campaign is confirmed in a document made public by the State of MI.
  • $35,200 for consultation with said firm.
Trump, Obama (White House)
According to reports to the FEC by Stein's campaign, it -- between Nov. 9 and December 31 -- raised $7.67M and spent $7.62M.  As law required, the campaign created an account that was used solely for all money raised for the recounts.  The payments that are listed above total $6.81M.  Documented in the rest of the reports to the FEC are additional expenditures related to those efforts.  Such expenditures were for staff, administration, communications, compliance, observers, etc.

Due to governmental overestimation, the said account will receive a substantial refund from the State of WI.  Ever since Nov. 23, Stein vowed any remainder in that account would be donated to efforts to strengthen the integrity of elections in this country.  That money cannot legally be pocketed by Stein or spent on other costs of her campaign.

The federal judiciary prevented a recount in PA and halted the one that had begun in MI.  The partial recount revealed various errors -- mechanical and human.  The completed recount in WI revealed errors with regard to how more than 11K presidential votes had -- or had not -- been tallied.


More blame for Clinton's loss is deflected to the decades-long history of Republican attacks on her.  However, her favorability rating was 67% in January 2013 but 42% in Oct. '16; she led Sanders 75%-15% in June '15 among Democratic primary voters but defeated him 56%-44% in the popular vote of the primaries/caucuses; and she led Trump 59%-35% in June '15 among registered voters.  In short, Clinton began her campaign with a tremendous advantage but blew it.

More blame for Clinton's loss is deflected to the Russian government, which Clintonites allege obtained the e-mails of the DNC and of Clinton's campaign that were passed to WikiLeaks, which published those e-mails and thereby educated the public about unethical practices in the establishment of the media and of the Democratic Party.  Some of those practices were by supposedly impartial people to undermine Sanders's campaign.  Furthermore, the allegation against Russia is yet unproven despite the intelligence community's much-hyped "assessment" of the matter.

Comey (FBI)
More blame for Clinton's loss is deflected to Director James Comey of the FBI because of his conduct in the criminal investigation of how Clinton mishandled classified information.  There are two premises to this particular deflection: 1) the public did not deserve to know whether a former secretary of State had been, in Comey's words, "extremely careless" with classified information, and 2) responsibility for the political harm Clinton suffered as a result of her own misconduct belongs not to her but to the head of the bureau that investigated it.

On Oct. 28, Comey sent a letter to the chairperson of and ranking member of each of several congressional committees.  Because the majority of each house of Congress was Republican, so was each chairperson.  But therefore, each ranking member -- i.e. the highest-ranking member from the minority party -- was Democratic.  His testimony that stated the investigation was complete was no longer accurate, the letter disclosed.

As the public soon learned, an investigation by the FBI about ex-rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) -- who was (and is) married to an aide to Clinton -- led it to numerous e-mails from Clinton to that aide.  The bureau opted to determine whether any of those e-mails contained classified information.

Before Comey sent the letter, he notified then-Atty.-Gen. Loretta Lynch about it.  She could have ordered him not to send it.  However, she chose not to issue such an order.  Perhaps that choice was because the public was aware that
  • she, for a half-hour on the night of June 27, had a private and officially unethical meeting with Clinton's husband, the occurrence of which was intended to be kept secret.
  • on July 4, The NY Times reported it was told by people close to Clinton that she, if elected, might allow Lynch to remain AG.
  • on July 5, Comey announced he, despite "evidence of potential violations [by Clinton] of the statutes that regard how classified information is handled," would recommend against prosecution.
  • on July 6, Lynch accepted that recommendation.
  • on July 12, Lynch refused to rule out service as AG under Clinton.
Baraka
("Democracy Now!")
In reaction to news of the letter, Clinton falsely asserted it was originally sent only to Republicans.  Two days before Election Day, another letter from Comey stated the examination of the e-mails in question was complete and it uncovered nothing that would prompt him to change said recommendation.

More blame for Clinton's loss is deflected to Weiner due to his conduct that landed him under investigation.

More such blame is deflected to laws that were enacted after 2012 to arbitrarily restrict the ability to vote.  But there were no such laws in PA or MI, and there is no statistical basis on which to believe such laws in other states altered the outcome of the election.

More such blame is deflected to xenophobia, Islamophobia and racism.  But Clinton lacked the credibility to forcefully counter Trump's exploitation of those sentiments, which Clinton previously helped stoke.  Unlike Sanders, she had
  • supported the presidential bid by the late Sen. Barry Goldwater (R-AZ), who had voted against the Civil Rights Act.
  • advanced the false and racist theory of "super-predators" in order to raise support for mass incarceration.  Even last year, she refused to deny the racist intent in her use of that term.
  • used racist dog-whistles against recipients of welfare.
  • fueled xenophobia against Obama, Islamophobia against Obama, and racism against Obama.
  • stated she is "adamantly against illegal immigrants."
  • voted for the fence along the US-Mexico border.
  • supported raids to deport children who had fled a Central American crisis she illegally helped create.
  • reacted snappishly to questioners from Black Lives Matter.
  • said, after BLM gained prominence, "all lives matter."
  • supported illegal invasions of countries with a Muslim majority.
  • supported unconstitutional mass surveillance, which often, on the basis of religious affiliation, targets Muslim Americans not suspected of criminality.
  • politically embraced ex-mayor Michael Bloomberg (R-NYC).  The billionaire had implemented a practice of "stop-and-frisk" that was heavily biased against blacks and Latinos, and said it did not target those groups enough.  He also implemented surveillance of entire Muslim communities.
  • made false allegations of racism.  They minimized real racism.
G.H.W. Bush, G.W. Bush and
Clinton's husband (Eric Draper / WH)
Also, the plan by the DNC to "acquire the Hispanic consumer" and "own the Hispanic loyalty" generalizes Latinos as "unforgiving" and was leaked in July.  Plus, Clinton's campaign largely took the Latino vote and the black youth vote for granted.

In the contrast between '12 and '16, the Democratic ticket's margin over the Republican ticket shrunk by seven percentage points among blacks, by eight among Latinos, by 11 among Asians, and by one point among other nonwhites.  Trump drew the votes of
  • 17% of opponents of the idea of a wall between the US and Mexico.
  • 22% of people who knew the crim. justice system is unfair to blacks.
  • 31% of immigrants.
  • 34% of people who thought most undocumented workers should be allowed to apply for a status that would protect them from deportation.
Trump's backers have been generalized as racist.  Nevertheless, 10% of people who approved of Obama's performance in office voted for Trump.  Moreover, some people who voted for Trump had voted for Obama.  In response to that fact, a few Clintonites argue a crucial segment of racist whites voted for Obama due to economic desperation but voted for Trump because the economy had improved so much that those voters felt free to indulge their racism.

The truth is: the economy, even for whites in the critical trio, was not better in 2015 (the last year for which statistics on poverty and on income are available) than when Obama was elected president.  For example:

Bloomberg
(Dept. of State)
White poverty in
  • MI was 10.8% in 2008 and 11.9% in 2015.
  • PA was 9.1% in 2008 and 9.4% in '15.
  • WI was 8.1% in 2008 and 9.0% in '15.
White median income, in 2015 dollars, in
  • MI was $57K in 2008 and $55K in '15.
  • PA was $59K in 2008 and $60K in '15.
  • WI was $60K in 2008 and $59K in '15.
Yes, there was an increase in PA, but the national average income within the top 1% rose from -- in 2015 dollars -- $990K in 2009 to $1.4M in 2015.  Let us also note the unemployment rate that includes the underemployed and the long-term discouraged unemployed, although a breakdown of this rate by state or color is unavailable.  Nationwide unemployment was around 17% in Oct. 2008 but was 22.9% in Oct. '16.

As Clinton's husband said on Oct. 3 in reference to the "Affordable Care Act,"
"[T]he current system works for people who are eligible for Medicaid..., are on Medicare, or get enough subsidies on a modest income...  But the people who are being killed in this deal are owners of small businesses or are individuals who make a little too much money to get... subsidies.  [That is b]ecause th[ose people] are unorganized [and] have no power to bargain with insurance companies...

"[T]he people who [work], sometimes for 60 hours a week, wind up with doubled premiums and halved coverage.  It is the craziest thing in the world...  [Insurers] overcharge just to make sure and, in good years, just make a profit from the people who are least able to pay.  It makes no sense. The insurance model does not work [in health care]."
No wonder Trump drew the votes of
  • 78% of people whose family's financial status was worse than in '12.
  • 47% of people who were more concerned about the economy than about immigration, terrorism, or foreign-policy.
  • 23% of people who wanted policies that are more liberal than Obama's were.
  • 18% of people who thought the ACA should go further.
On a related note, Clinton -- unlike Trump and Sanders -- opposes protectionism.  That fact helps explain why Trump drew the votes of
  • 65% of people who knew free-trade causes a net-loss of jobs in the US.
  • 43% of people whose household included a member of a labor union.

Clinton
(Gage Skidmore)
More blame for Clinton's loss is deflected to sexism.  But on that issue also, Clinton lacked the credibility to forcefully counter Trump, who drew 42% of the female vote.  That lack was due in part to her
  • coziness with regimes that notoriously oppress women.
  • laughter about her successful defense of a man she evidently deemed guilty of the charge, i.e. rape of a girl.
  • endorsement of a candidate the public already knew had tried to conceal sexual assaults on women.
  • alliance with Brock, who had libeled Professor Anita Hill in order to discredit her testimony about sexual harassment of her by Justice Clarence Thomas.
  • six years on the board of Walmart; contempt for pro-Sanders women.
  • false allegations of sexism.  They minimized real sexism.
Last week, Clinton faulted sexism for the fluctuation in her favorability rating, which she theorized was 1) so high in Jan. '13 because she still held an office to which a man had nominated her, and 2) so low in '16 because she was a woman in electoral politics.  But that theory does not explain why she was usually viewed favorably by most of the public when she held elected office, including as she waged her first bid for chief executive.

The enormous incompetence that was evident in public displays of Clinton's latest campaign also existed in its internal operations.  Examples:
  • The campaign did little to canvass, process data that canvassers collected, produce literature, or distribute lawn-signs.
  • The campaign forbade contact between the DNC and state-level chapters of the Democratic Party.
  • The campaign estimated it spent roughly 3% as much money in MI and WI as in FL, OH and North Carolina.
  • Clinton never appeared in WI after she lost its primary.
  • At the direction of then-interim-chairperson Donna Brazile of the DNC, millions of dollars from the campaign were spent to help Clinton attain a popular mandate via efforts to turn out voters for her in IL, whose Electoral votes she definitely would win, and Louisiana, whose Electoral votes she definitely would lose.
  • Approximately 10 days before Election Day, officials of the Service Employees Int'l Union realized the futility of its Iowan pro-Clinton operation and thus redirected its volunteers to MI but were then ordered by Clinton's campaign to reverse course.
  • The campaign rejected Clinton's husband's advice to do more to appeal to white workers, and did not heed the "haiku" that guided his successful presidential campaign a quarter-century ago:
Change versus more of the same
It's the economy, stupid
And don't forget health care
Kaine
(Peter Souza / WH)
In 2008, Obama ran the most skillful presidential campaign in a lifetime.  His bid for re-election was also impressive, given his approval rating in 2012 was often below 50%.  On Nat'l Public Radio on Dec. 15, the then-president acknowledged some of the reasons why Clinton's campaign -- which was overdependent on personal attacks on Trump and had no message -- failed.
"[A] substantial number of people... voted for me twice, support me now, and also voted for... Trump...  [T]here are entire states -- and big chunks of states -- where, if we [Democrats] don't show up and make an argument, we will lose and can lose badly.  That happened in this election...  There are clearly... failures on our part to -- in rural areas or in exurban areas -- [convince] people... that we fight for them or are connected to them...

"[P]art of the importance... to engage with and listen to people is it builds trust and gives [to the politicians] a better sense of how to talk about issues in a way that feels salient to and meaningful to people...  Part of why I was elected president twice and still have pretty strong support in a lot of those communities... is... I ran for the US Senate in [Illinois, which] has a lot of rural communities.  Its downstate typically is suspicious of Chicagoans...  [In] living rooms, in VFW halls, and at fish fries, [I] listened to people.  Then, I traveled Iowa for months to hear people's concerns.  They heard me and sensed I understood them...

"[At every level,] I think we [Democrats] have not done it as well as we must...  [T]he Republicans... have very systematically built from the ground, up.  They communicate with state legislators and fund campaigns for school boards and for public utility commissions...  I think we [Democrats] are biased toward national and international issues, and consequently have ceded too much territory.  I take some responsibility for that."

The deflections by and excuses by many Democrats are not the only indicators of the party's refusal to change.

For the last 14 years, the highest-ranking Democrat in the House has been Nancy Pelosi of CA.  On Nov. 30, the Democrats of the House re-elected her to lead them.  Days later, she said she does not "think people want a new direction" for her party.  But they do.


At a meeting of the Democratic Party of MI on Dec. 3 to elect members of the DNC, pro-Sanders Democrats who objected to the secrecy with which candidates for the DNC were nominated were forcibly removed from the room.

Shortly after Election Day, the public learned Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) -- who co-chairs the Congressional Progressive Caucus -- would seek to chair the DNC.  But a campaign of Islamophobia, of racism and of character-assassination began against him even before he declared candidacy.
"Democrats, after their loss of the... Rustbelt to... Trump, could have recruited an industrial-region populist like Rep. Tim Ryan...  But... Sanders... quickly backed... Ellison, who is black, Muslim and an ardent progressive."
Carl Hulse, Julie Hirschfeld David, Alan Rappeport and Maggie Habermann
"...Schumer Backs Keith Ellison to Head of [sic] the DNC," The NY Times, 11 Nov.

"Defeated, Dems could have tapped a populist from the Rustbelt...  Instead, [will they pick a] black, Muslim progressive from Minneapolis?"
Jonathan Weisman of The NY Times, in a tweet about the quoted article, 11 Nov.
How can a person's color and/or religious affiliation mean he is not a populist?  How could populism and liberalism be mutually exclusive?  And how is residence in Minneapolis a negative attribute?  Although that city is in Minnesota, which is the only state that has gone Democratic in each of the last 11 presidential elections, it is not exactly secure for the Democrats.  Clinton carried it by only 1.5%.
"[Is Ellison] really the guy we need now, as we try to persuade all of those disaffected, white, working-class people to rally around our message of economic equality?"
An unnamed, longtime political ally of Obama
Quoted in "Keith Ellison's One-Man March" by Glenn Thrush, Politico, 20 Dec.
Ellison
("Democracy Now!")
What message of economic equality?  Anyway, Ellison's district is 63% white, and 44% of its households have income and benefits that total less than $50K annually.  Ellison has won in that district six consecutive times with 56% to 74% of the vote.

The Anti-Defamation League issued this statement Dec. 1.
"New information... raises serious concerns about whether Rep. Ellison faithfully could represent the Democratic Party's traditional support for a strong and secure Israel...  [He said,] '...A region of 350M all turns on a country of 7M.  Does that make sense?  ...When the Americans who trace their roots back to those 350M become involved, everything changes.'
"Rep. Ellison's remarks are both deeply disturbing and disqualifying.  His words imply US foreign policy is driven by special interests that are based on religion or on national origin rather than simply by America's best interests...  [I]ntentionally or not, his words raise the specter of... stereotypes about Jewish control of our government.  That poisonous myth... has no place in open societies like the US.  Those comments sharply contrast with the [DNC's] platform, which states, 'A strong and secure Israel is vital to the [US] because we share overarching strategic interests and the common values of democracy, equality, tolerance, and pluralism.'
"...[B]ipartisan support for Israel... is crucial to continued engagement with our most important ally in the region.  That ally is a democracy [that places an] emphasis on equality and on commitment to the rule of law...  Those shared values are the bedrock for the longstanding relationship between the US and Israel.  Whoever the next head of the Democratic Party will be, we hope he will have fidelity to those timeless ideals at all times."
US policy in the Middle East is indeed driven by pro-Israel special interests in a way that makes no sense and undermines the security of the US.  Contrary to the insinuation of anti-Semitism, such special interests reflect the sentiments of Evangelical Christians more than of Jews.

Ryan, D-OH
(Robert Barko Jr./
Dept. of the Air Force)
As for whether Ellison advances "stereotypes about Jewish control of our government," let us consider his endorsement of the presidential bid by Sanders, who is the only Jew who has ever won a presidential primary of a major party.  To the credit of the ADL, it condemned NPR for its uncritical acceptance of -- and confrontation of Sanders with -- a list that falsely alleged he is a dual citizen of Israel.  Yet, Sanders was pestered by other arbitrary notions about Jews in US politics.  Specifically, some corporate media suggested he is unsatisfactorily Jewish.

The ADL's defense of "open societies" is at odds with its condemnation of Ellison's encouragement of political participation by more Americans of Middle Eastern descent.  And in spite of the Democratic platform, the US and Israel are not models for democracy, equality, tolerance, pluralism or lawfulness.
"[T]hat Keith Ellison is a Muslim is a non-issue...  [H]is positions, his papers, his speeches, and the way he has voted [show] he is clearly an anti-Semite...  Ellison would be a disaster for the relationship between the Jewish community and the Democratic Party."
Billionaire Haim Saban, forum at the Brookings Institution, 2 Dec.
At said forum, until that comment, there was no reference to Ellison's religious affiliation.  So why did Saban mention it if he did not wish to make an issue of it?  Anyway, he did not cite any vote, speech, paper or position.  But his opposition to Ellison carried exceptional weight because Saban and his wife had donated a total of nearly $12M to the DNC, over $8.2M to the pro-Clinton super-PAC "Priorities USA Action," and over $2.4M divvied between the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Cmte. and the DCCC.  Additionally, the Sabans had donated profusely to campaigns of individual Democratic candidates and to other Democratic organizations.  Alas, news of Saban's defamation informed the DNC its potential election of Ellison would jeopardize future donations from that couple to the party.

Pelosi, Perez (Dept. of Labor)
Obama recruited then-Secy. of Labor Thomas Perez to run against Ellison.  Perez declared candidacy on Dec. 15.  CNN Tonight hosted this exchange on Feb. 24.
Prof. Alan Dershowitz["Ellison] made anti-Semitic statements and associated with virulent anti-Semites...  [A]fter he worked closely with [Louis] Farrakhan, who called Judaism a 'gutter religion'... [and] said the Jews were majorly involved in the slave trade, Ellison said he did not know Farrakhan was an anti-Semite...  Why would the [DNC] pick someone who is so extreme?  ...[T]he Democrats tried... with moderate leftists like McGovern and Dukakis.  They got few Electoral votes..."
Nomiki Konst of The Young Turks:  "How could the Democrats ever be worse off than they are now?"
Dershowitz:  "They won the popular vote...  So they could be much worse off."
Konst:  "That is how to win elections?"
Dershowitz:  "No..."
Konst:  "...In the last eight years, the Democratic Party raised more money than ever before but lost over 1,000 seats...  Members of the DNC have forwarded to me libelous e-mails about Ellison...  Hundreds of millions of dollars have gone to national contracts for eight major firms, many of whose members are on the DNC...  There is a conflict of interest..."
Dershowitz:  "...[W]hen Ellison was in law school, he told someone because she is a woman and a Jew, he could not respect her and she should not have been in law school...  I would like for you... to show to me anything I have said about him -- I wrote two pieces... today -- that is not documented.  I quote when he said Jews have too much power over American foreign policy...  Why pick someone who... would stop contributions from Haim Saban, alienate much of the base of the Democratic Party, and ruin it...?"

Konst:  "...[T]he Democratic Party has been hemorrhaging membership.  The majority of voters under age 40 are independents...  The Democrats... are at their lowest point since 1920...  [Y]our mention of Saban is indicative of the problem with the DNC...  It is beholden to a few major donors...  [A] conversation in the DNC is about why they... fund consultants who lose elections for them.  None of the state-level chapters of the Democratic Party have money to organize, recruit, train and activate...  Yet, we converse about a slanderous attack...  Perez has conflicts of interest...  He is propped up by five major consulting-firms.  This is verified in FEC documents..."
Dershowitz:  "...We must unite the party and bring the Rustbelt back.  Ellison will not do anything for that..."
Konst:  "About unity: Perez is the only candidate who does not have endorsements from
supporters of Clinton and supporters of Sanders...
Don Lemon, host:  "Alan, will you come back?  I want for you to come back...  You can see the hypocrisy on both sides."
Schumer (Glenn
Fawcett / Customs
and Border Protection)
Neither in that segment, nor in the one op-ed piece by Dershowitz I could find from that day, nor in any article to which the piece links, is any anti-Semitic remark by Ellison quoted.  One such article is by CNN and reports, "None of the reviewed records [include] any anti-Semitic comments by Ellison."

Dershowitz's piece paraphrases -- but does not quote or name -- the woman who supposedly told him of the remark Ellison allegedly made to her.  Lemon did not specify what "hypocrisy" is supposedly on both sides or invite Konst to return. 

Jews who endorsed Ellison's bid include Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY, minority leader), Sen. Alan Franken (D-MN), Rep. Janice Schakowsky (D-IL), Rep. Alan Lowenthal (D-CA), Atty. Gen. Eric Schneiderman (D-NY), American Federation of Teachers president Randi Weingarten, the Jewish Caucus of the Young Democrats, and Bend the Arc Jewish Action.

Dershowitz, in his piece and on CNN, argued the Democratic presidential nominees of 1972, 1984 and 1988 -- namely then-Sen. George McGovern (D-SD), former vice president Walter Mondale and then-Gov. Michael Dukakis (D-MA), respectively -- lost because they were too "far to the left."

As a previous entry explains, McGovern's liberalism was not among the several biggest (or perhaps any) factors that contributed to his loss to incumbent Richard Nixon.  One such factor, I now add, was the choice by McGovern to ignore attacks on him.  Furthermore, if the policies espoused by Nixon had been popular, he would not have refused to debate McGovern or, in 1968, to debate Vice Pres. Hubert Humphrey.

In the election of 1972, the Democrats gained two seats in the Senate for a total of 57 of 100, lost 12 seats in the House but kept 243 of 435 there, and gained one governorship for a total of 31 of 50 governorships.

In the Democratic presidential race of '84, there was plenty of space to the left of Mondale, who proposed to increase the already-excessive budget of the military and create no new social programs.  Said space was occupied mostly by Rev. Jesse Jackson and somewhat by McGovern.  Jackson garnered 21% of the popular vote and took his candidacy to the convention, which adopted a platform that conceded almost nothing to him.  The bid by McGovern began under vast derision but earned great respect and lasted through the first 15 contests, the earliest of which was that of IA, where he placed third of eight.  McGovern withdrew after he placed third of five in Massachusetts.

Mondale, Reagan
(Ronald Reagan Library)
If Mondale had been too liberal to win the presidency, he would not have led incumbent Ronald Reagan in a poll in July of that year, Mondale would not have challenged Reagan to six debates, Reagan would not have agreed to only two, Mondale would not have decisively won the first, and Reagan's campaign along with corporate media would not have made false allegations of tax-evasion by then-Rep. Geraldine Ferraro (D-NY), who was the Democratic vice presidential nominee.

Reagan was a former actor, charismatic, telegenic and a winsome speaker.  Media and voters often used those traits as excuses to overlook problems with his policies and overlook his usual avoidance of public discourse about details of them.  Reagan would have lost a campaign of substance.  In fact, the victory he eked out in his final debate was apparently due to his delivery of a joke, which obviously had been rehearsed and was unrelated to policy.  Furthermore, Reagan's most potent criticism of Mondale on policy was deceptive: Reagan attacked Mondale's acknowledgement of the need to raise taxes but had recently raised them and would raise them again after the election.

In the election of 1984, the Democrats gained two seats in the Senate for a total of 47, lost 15 seats in the House but kept 254 there, and lost one governorship for a total of 34 governorships.

In the Democratic presidential race of '88, there was enough room to Dukakis's left for Jackson to receive 29% of the popular vote and for then-Sen. Paul Simon (D-IL), who championed the ideals of the New Deal and of the Great Society, to wage a serious bid.  Jackson again took his candidacy to the convention.  Simon quit after the first 40 contests but had placed second of six in IA and won in IL.

If Dukakis had been too liberal to be elected president, a poll in July of that year would not have found him 17 points ahead of his Republican opponent -- namely Vice Pres. George H.W. Bush, whose means to close that gap was not to honestly discuss policy.  He, with help from the corporate media (which, almost by definition, have always been conservative on the whole), ran the vilest presidential campaign anyone alive at the time had witnessed before '16.  What ultimately sunk Dukakis's candidacy was not the calumny toward him but was his choice not to respond to it until too late in the race.

Jackson ("Dem-
ocracy Now!")
In the election of 1988, the Democrats maintained 55 seats in the Senate, gained two seats in the House for a total of 260 there, and gained one governorship for a total of 28 governorships.

According to conservative Democrats, their party was saved by its rightward shift, which was stimulated by the nomination of Clinton's husband in '92.  That year, although the Democrats won a presidential election for the first time after 1976, their performance down-ballot was nothing special.  They gained one seat in the Senate for a total of 57, lost nine seats in the House for a total of 258 there, and gained two governorships for a total of 30.  Furthermore, that pickup in the Senate was undone shortly afterward because Clinton's husband nominated then-Sen. Lloyd Bentsen (D-TX) for secretary of the Treasury, Bentsen was confirmed, and the seat he thus vacated was won by a Republican.

The rightward shift by Democrats led them to a crash in the election of 1994.  They lost 54 seats in the House and thus became the minority there for the first time since 40 years prior.  In the episode that consisted of 1) the election of '94 and 2) two defections that soon followed, the Democrats lost 10 seats in the Senate and were thus the minority there for the first time since eight years prior.  The Democrats in each chamber, except for less than two years in the Senate, remained the minority until the results of the election of 2006 took effect.  The Democrats lost 10 governorships in '94 and thus held a minority of governorships for the first time since 25 years prior.

After eight years of the presidency of Obama -- who in 2012 acknowledged his policies would have made him a Republican in the 1980s and who is a proud admirer of Reagan -- and after the election in which Secy. Clinton was the standard-bearer of the Democratic Party, it now has 48 seats in the Senate, 194 seats in the House, and 16 governorships -- the fewest governorships since 1922.  So which philosophy is ruinous for the party?  The following was told to The NY Times in Jan. '16.
"I can tell you, as someone who ran the Democratic Governors Association, that candidates... would face serious problems [if Sanders were at the] top of the ticket."  -Then-Gov. Jack Markell (D-DE)
"Here in the heartland, we like for our politicians to be in the mainstream.  [Sanders] is not...  [With] him at the top of the ticket, [Democrats] would [suffer] a meltdown all the way down the ballot."
Then-Gov. Jeremiah "Jay" Nixon (D-MO)
"To have [a presidential nominee] who is identified more as a socialist... than as a Democrat would make [the election] impossible for Democrats in a state like Missouri...  [and] very difficult for Democrats in states like Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida.”
Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO)
Ferraro
(Laura Patterson / LOC)
In '15, McCaskill 1) said young pro-Sanders women fail to "understand what having a woman as president would mean," 2) said Sanders's proposals of Medicare-for-All and expanded Social Security are "extreme," and 3) falsely claimed he opposes trade and does not care about the national debt.  She now has the gall to ask Sanders's backers for help if she is challenged from her left in a primary as she seeks re-election in 2018.  So let us note the extreme incorrectness of McCaskill's argument about electability.
  • In FL, where Obama prevailed twice:  The final poll to test Sanders vs. Trump found Sanders did better against him than Clinton did.  On Election Day, she and the Democratic senatorial nominee lost.  
  • In OH, where Obama prevailed twice:  The final poll to test Sanders vs. Trump found Sanders did better against him than Clinton did.  On Election Day, she and the Democratic senatorial nominee lost.
  • In PA:  Clinton was the first Democratic presidential nominee to lose after '88.  In '16, the Democratic senatorial nominee lost.  How Sanders would have performed there is addressed above.
  • In MO:  The last poll to test Sanders vs. Trump found the socialist ahead of Trump but Clinton behind him.  On Election Day, the entire Democratic statewide slate -- which spanned seven races -- was vanquished as Clinton received a lower share of the Missourian vote than any other Democratic presidential nominee did after '72.  Also last year, the Democrats lost in six of eight congressional districts by 52, 40, 40, 40, 40 and 21 points, and failed to attain even three-tenths in either house of the state legislature.

Clinton's bid for the nomination of '16 was endorsed by Perez, who supported the proposal for the Trans-Pacific Partnership and wrote these e-mails to the chairperson of her campaign.
"[T]he current storyline [says Clinton] does not connect well with young voters...  Nevada is far more demographically representative of America [than IA and NH are]...  When we do well [in NV], the narrative will change from 'Bernie kicks ass among young voters' to 'Bernie does well only among young white liberals.'"  -5 Feb. 2016

"I... look forward to my appearance on Telemundo tomorrow...  I can trumpet her strong support among Latinos and put a fork once and for all in the false narrative about Bernie and Latinos."  -2 March 2016
Simon in 1991 with "Al"
Franken, who had portrayed
him on "Saturday Night Live."
(Jamie Howren / LOC)
I searched in vain for that appearance.  We are nonetheless able to ascertain what Perez probably meant.  For months, Clinton's campaign and its allies in media had referred to the nonwhite vote as her property "firewall."  It was supposed to halt Sanders's candidacy when caucuses were held in NV, whose large population of Latinos is why NV is the third state on the road to the nomination.  However, between the quoted pair of e-mails,
  • Sanders prevailed among nonwhites in NH.
  • Clinton's campaign, nervous about Sanders's increased chance to win in NV, falsely described its electorate as short on racial diversity.
  • Sanders carried the Latino vote there.
Rather than admit a setback, Clinton and her gang falsely disputed the latter development.  Nick Merrill, as a press secretary of Clinton's campaign, went so far as to publicly call the survey of Latinos by the entrance poll "utter bullsh**."

Thus, Perez likely meant he would echo said disputation.  But on 15 March 2016, Sanders carried the Latino vote in IL.  Similar disputations came in reaction to the landslides Sanders achieved on 26 March 2016 in Washington, Alaska and Hawaii.
  • Although WA is in the least white half of states, Nia Malika-Henderson of CNN alleged WA is "very white."
  • Although AK is the 14th least white state, Priscilla Alvarez of The Atlantic alleged AK is "largely white."
  • Maeve Reston of CNN wrote WA and AK are "predominantly white."  But 11 weeks earlier, her network reported "the country's three most diverse census tracts are all in Anchorage," which is the most populous Alaskan city.
  • The Wash. Post branded WA, AK and HI as "Whiter."  But whiter than what?  HI is 22.9% white and is the least white state in the Union.
  • Ronald Brownstein of CNN, Dan Carney of USA Today and Michael Tomasky of The Daily Beast described WA, AK and HI as "mostly white."  Although WA and AK do have a white majority, merely four states do not.
  • Amy Chozick of The NY Times wrote WA and AK are "largely white."
  • Chris Moody of CNN and Julie Kliegman of The Week described AK, WA and HI as "largely white."
When we ignore (or, at most, make fun of) the propaganda and examine the data, we see the falsehood of the narrative that says the whiter a state was, the better Sanders performed there.


Throughout the stretch of primaries and caucuses, exit/entrance polls were conducted in 27 states: 20 of the 28 Clinton won and seven of the 22 Sanders won.  An analysis of such polls from 25 states -- 20 Clinton won and five Sanders won -- concluded Sanders, in the aggregate of those 25 states, was the victor among blacks under age 30.   An analysis of exit/entrance polls from both major parties' contests in 21 states -- 17 Clinton won and four Sanders won -- concluded Sanders, in the aggregate of those 21 states, garnered far more votes among people under age 30 than did Clinton and Trump combined.   Hence, contrary to the wishful prediction by Perez, Sanders can be accurately said to have kicked ass among youths overall.


The public pro-Clinton pitch by Perez was to propose pursuit of only small dreams, imply "revolution" means the opposite of what it does mean, and falsely imply Sanders's campaign addressed merely one issue.
"I appreciate the idealistic vision Sen. Sanders articulates.  But we are a nation of dreamers and doers.  The folks to whom I talk who want to adjust their status want results, not revolutions...  Secy. Clinton speaks to all the issues.  We are not a single-issue nation."
Perez to Business Insider, 14 April 2016
On Feb. 8, Perez acknowledged "the process was rigged" by the DNC against Sanders in '16.  But Perez retracted that remark the next day.  With no discernible plan to change the course of the DNC, he was elected by it on Feb. 25.  Afterward, reminiscent of a series of sketches on Saturday Night Live, Dershowitz continued to attack Ellison.

Schumer and Pelosi chose ex-gov. Steven Beshear ("Proud Republican and Democrat" of KY) -- an anti-environmentalist whose argument against marriage equality was laughed out of court -- to deliver the response on behalf of the Democratic Party to Trump's address to Congress on Feb. 28.


Let us conclude with the words of a Texan journalist.
"I spent much of the first three months of this year on the unemployment line...  [W]hat I understand about this political year in a way I would not have otherwise appreciated as much and as deeply as I do is: people are genuinely angryThey are, about politics, cynical and disgusted to an extent that is frightening and is quite possibly dangerous...  [U]nless we see a great change, we will see... more candidates created by television who have no base or allegiance...

"[I]n this country, the rich became much richer, the poor became poorer, and the middle class shrank.  If this were a banana republic, we would all say, 'That is a recipe for revolution.'  ...[P]eople say, 'I'm not interested in politics.'  ...[T]hat is like saying, 'I'm not interested in what happens to my life or to my children... [or] with my money.'

"...We are perilously close to pissing away the most magnificent political legacy any people has ever received.  The ideas that comprise the legacy we have as Americans still resonate around the world.  People die for them today...  And in this country, the majority of people don't vote.  The dream is dying of inanition and corruption...

"The problem is money.  The oldest saying in politics is, 'You got to dance with them what brung you.'  ...If you go into politics, you will dance with... the people who will have paid to put you into office...  [T]he bulk of... the money that puts people into office comes from organized corporate special interests.  The result is: we have government of, by and for the corporate special interests...  This is a system of legalized bribery and is rotting this country...  Unless and until we change how campaigns are financed..., nothing else we try will make any difference...

"I knew [of Bill Clinton,] ...particularly of his membership in the Democratic Leadership Council: an organization of politicians designed to recapture the White House for the Democrats by becoming more like Republicans, which I always thought was a really bad idea."

-The late Molly Ivins, 22 September 1992