Traditionally, even in presidential years, this is the slowest time of the year for political news. Congress is on their August recess, and most vacations are over with, or just wrapping up. Parents are just finishing up last minute back-to-school shopping, or are collapsed on the couch with the little monsters safely back under somebody else’s watchful eye, and the President himself is somewhere away from the office, giving us our summer reprieve. Thus close to Labor Day, normally the summer blockbuster movie season is winding down. All of the alleged monster hits having already been released when there are more people likely to park the kids in a dark place for a couple of hours. But even in a summer movie season as bereft of really good fare as this one was, all of a sudden, there are several political thrillers that could be box office blowouts, all looking to come out around the same time. Keep an eye out for these. Escape From Mitch Mountain – Everybody thought that it was hysterical when Joe Scarborough of MSNBC seriously tagged Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell with the oh, so elegant moniker of Moscow Mitch. The cherry on the sundae was the way that the nickname drove Yertl McTurtle absolutely insane, forcing him to the floor of the Senate to piss and whine about how his oh, so honorable name and integrity were being impugned by a bunch of vicious lefties. We’re now starting to see just why McConnell went to Defcon 5 so quickly. Several newspapers, along with Rachel Maddow of MSNBC are starting to lay out a very clear timeline of Moscow Mitch’s Machiavellian interference in ensuring that sanctions against Putin aligned aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska were lifted, despite overwhelming bipartisan support for them to stay in place. Within days, Deripaska’s company ponied up $200 million for a new aluminum plant in the most distressed part of Kentucky. This is blowing up in everybody’s faces. The Kentucky legislature is now royally pissed at the way the state’s Governor deceptively marketed the plan to the legislature in the closing hours of the session, some now claim under false pretenses. The machinations of former Senator David “The Hooker Magnet” Vitter as a go between, and a federal appeals court slot for his totally fruitcake wife are just adding fuel to the fire. This could end up leaving McConnell himself with a full omelet on his face. Deripaska’s company has already threatened that any scrutiny of the deal could cause the company to pull out. Well, the deal is now getting more scrutiny than a new strain of virus, from the media to the KY legislature. McConnell is going up against a female former marine fighter jock, with in state popularity of 32%. If this thing mushroom clouds on him, especially if Deripaska bails out leaving him holding the bag, we could see a Crying Game ending, with McConnell tearfully bitching that everybody in Washington is being mean to him, taking his shriveled old balls, and going home. The Hunt For Beto October – Normally, campaign reboots, especially this early are not a good sign for a campaign. A campaign 2.0 is normally a dead-in-the-water signal flare, and a campaign 3.0 reboot means that the bow just slid under the water. We’re now in the opening credits of Beto 3.0, […]
This should be interesting. One of the kind of neat ancillary benefits of the way that the DNC chose to populate the stages for the early debates is that it’s a new show every week. In choosing the rosters by lot, the DNC ensured a different line up every time, with different interplay and power struggles. That is certainly true in this upcoming round of debates. While Joe Biden will still have Kamala Harris on one shoulder, he’ll now have Cory Booker to contend with on his other flank. And while Bernie Sanders is no longer next to Biden, he’s finally getting his mano-a-womano shot at Elizabeth Warren. But at least Beto O’Rourke won’t have Julian Castro throwing shit at him all night over his immigration stance. And of course, Marianne Williamson will be floating around somewhere over the stage on a magic carpet. While there will be several noticeable differences in this debate, the most obvious one should be fluidity and intensity. The first debates were spring training. While Biden and Sanders have previous Democratic primary debate experience, it was virgin territory for most of the others, and they had opening night jitters. Those should be gone now. Also, as I like to say, tempus does fugit. A month has passed since the first debates, and with it has come plenty of polling, both internal as well as external, to let the candidates know what they have to do. And most of them have to do it soon. Joe Biden needs to step up, and he knows it. Both Biden and his campaign have signaled that he will be more focused and assured onstage. Biden doesn’t need to punch down, he is the front runner, and will very likely still be the front runner after these debates. He doesn’t need to attack, but he must be more effective at defense. One way to do that is to remind everyone that it was a different world, both politically as well as socially, when the votes he’s being criticized for were held. Of course he would vote differently if those votes were held today. And while he doesn’t need to punch down, nothing says he can’t use legitimate contrast to pop a few ego and record balloons. But another piss poor performance could put his lead in jeopardy. Oddly enough, both male front runners, and their closest female detractors, face a gender issue. While women frequently and justifiably complain that they have to show more than men to prove themselves, Warren and Harris have to be careful how they do it. If Harris or Warren even appear to be personalizing their attacks against Sanders or Biden, they risk coming across as bitchy, something they obviously wish to avoid. And the same is true for Sanders and Biden. In politics, for some reason everybody likes to pretend that chivalry isn’t dead. If either Sanders or Biden is too sharp, they could come off as “pounding on a woman,” not a good thing. Biden knows this, since in 2008, he had to be careful to show proper respect, even against a mental lightweight like Caribou Barbie. Both Harris and Booker face a problem with attacking Biden on his civil rights record. Harris can’t hit Biden again over segregationist senators and forced busing again, or she’ll risk looking like a one-trick-pony. And […]
Lllllllet’s get reeeeeeady to RRRRRRRRUMBLEEEEE!!! Michael Buffer Everybody off of the phone from their final calls to their caterer for their debate watch party buffets? Ya know, maybe it’s just my “old codger” showing through, but I don’t remember the same kind of intensity four years ago, surrounding the first mass cattle call debates on […]
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