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Old 04-12-2015, 10:58 PM   #41
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I'm speaking from the Bible which is the ultimate moral Authority.
Leviticus 19:19

Thou shalt not sow thy field with mingled seed: neither shall a garment mingled of linen and woollen come upon thee.

You best not be planting mixed gardens or wearing clothes made from more than one thread m8.
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Old 04-12-2015, 11:00 PM   #42
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Jesus Christ you're a pack of fucking retards.
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Old 04-13-2015, 12:30 AM   #43
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So about that Clinton, eh?
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Old 04-13-2015, 12:40 AM   #44
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... I'm going to regret joining this thread, aren't I?

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I kind of like Rand Paul, but at this point I'm just thinking "anyone but Hillary Clinton."
I'd like to hear your reasons. While I'm bias toward the left, I'm not a rabid defender of Clinton. I'm just curious.

I'll keep an open mind about the other candidates, Democratic and Republican, but I'm personally set on Hillary Clinton, as most left-wing people probably are. She's not perfect, of course, but I absolutely believe she'd make a great president. Not because her husband could help her out (he'll probably be really busy with his foundation, anyway), but because of everything she's accomplished and experienced since (and I'm not saying it hasn't been without a few bumps—or potholes—in the road). If there's any candidate from either side that has the best resume in terms of experience, it's Hillary.

Also, I don't think the presidency should just be about the policies of the Democratic Party vs. Republican Party or this candidate vs. that candidate. Let's face it, there's no wild change in action or policy when a new president enters office. Sure, they'll try to and will accomplish different things, but there's normally no dramatic shift; nationwide change tends to be very incremental. I could argue that all modern Democratic presidents correlate with a better economy (higher GDP and GDP per capita growth, among other good things), but there's little evidence that it's impacted directly by the presidency or the structure of Congress (from what I've been able to find, that is, like this study. Here's a quick overview of it). So what I want to focus on is what we're saying to the world. That's largely what the president is. An effigy of what we strive for.

Obama represented our willingness to change our ways from the Bush era, he was our olive branch to the world. And he pushed racial boundaries, obviously.

Voting in Hillary would represent our commitment to strengthening ties to the rest of the world, and our determination to bridge the gender gap in government representation. You know, it's pretty interesting that a black male became president before a woman. History repeats. Black males were able to vote before women in America, and now we witnessed the minorities—>women pattern play out again on a smaller scale. I mean, no woman has been president yet. But if not Hillary, than some other woman will eventually make it, this coming election or the following ones. This will actually be the first presidency I'm able to vote in and it's exciting, as a female, that a woman is widely considered to be a shoe-in for the Democratic candidacy, if not the presidency.

As for the Republicans... To be blunt, I personally don't like what America would be signaling if we were to vote in any of the running Republicans. It'd be like telling the nation and the world that all the progress we made the last eight years didn't matter. But, like I said, I'm determined to keep an open mind, so I'll just have to wait and see if any Republican candidates show a willingness to accept the growing social changes that are really starting to effect the country. I'll admit I haven't diligently scrutinized the candidates yet, so I won't go into my views of the guys already running.

But I'm just going to go out and say that I think, regardless of my own standings, the next president will probably be a Democrat, Hillary or not. No, I don't think America would collapse immediately if a Republican got the job, but the Republican Party has so many fractures and such a reputation that it's almost unthinkable that they'd win. While the final candidate for both parties tend to be rather moderate, people care about what party they're affiliated with. Despite the majority of people never reading party platforms, they get the gist from news articles. The more extreme and inflexible the platform is, the less of a chance swing voters will go for that party. The Republican Party Platform is pretty damn regressive (and contradictory) in my opinion, and that's how at least half the country views it, and the swing voters proved last election that they're swinging left unless the right makes a change. Add that on top of everything the Republicans have and haven't done in Congress these past years, and the presidency appears to be very far from the reach of the right. Can conservative DLPers expand on why they think Republicans have a chance for the next presidency? Other than the general historical pattern of parties switching hands after two terms.

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As for local versus federal? I fundamentally believe that the farther away you get from a situation the more likely you are to be out of touch with the situation on the ground. The President in Washington DC does not know the best policy for a small little town in Alaska...or a city in Texas...etc.

Our government is based on representation and democracy. When you have millions of people voting, your vote has less power. With local governments having more power, so does the citizen.
I don't want to hop on the futile religious debate. On the legal side, I'm with Banta. The president shouldn't be concerned with a single town, the president should be concerned with the nation as a whole. And concerning gay marriage, the 10th amendment says that power not expressed or implied in the Constitution is given to the states. Marriage gender equality does fall under the federal government's concern because of federal taxes and shit that combined finances would have to deal with. And because it's about equality, it's almost certainly unconstitutional to say that gay marriage is illegal. It's either every consenting adult can get married to whomever, or no one can. 14th amendment:
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All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
There's four pending Supreme Court cases for gay marriage, so we'll see what happens.

And I'd like to point out that our electoral college gives even less power to people, yet it's a strong stance of the Republican Party to keep the electoral college. From their party platform:
Quote:
The Continuing Importance of Protecting the Electoral College (Top)

We oppose the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact or any other scheme to abolish or distort the procedures of the Electoral College. We recognize that an unconstitutional effort to impose “national popular vote” would be a mortal threat to our federal system and a guarantee of corruption as every ballot box in every state would become a chance to steal the presidency.
Not saying the Democratic Party is against the electoral college, I'm just pointing out that it's odd that Republicans are so for states yet believe a popular vote is "... a guarantee of corruption as every ballot box in every state would become a chance to steal the presidency." But I suppose they had to take that stance because of George W. Bush.

If the election was decided by popular vote, Bush wouldn't have been elected in 2000. It's just one reason why it should be abolished. When ranked against the other presidents on competence, perception, and positive influence of presidents, surveys consistently put him far lower than any other modern president. There's also a possibility of electors deciding, "No, no, I don't like that guy you voted for," and picking the other (though that hasn't actually be used). The electoral college was (debatably) a good idea way back when the populace wasn't educated and we weren't fully formed, but it has little reason in today's world except for the vague assertions that it maintains stability. I'd like to hear DLP's take on why we still keep it around (an explanation other than 'we always had it so it's hard to get rid of it').

... Damn, this is so long. I might as well throw in the growing concern of families in the presidency. Let's talk about this.

People who would vote for Hillary Clinton are wary because her husband was already president. Then there's Jeb Bush who's brother and father were president. "This is not a monarchy!" people say. In my opinion, if we were okay with voting GWB in after his father, Hillary should get a pass. However, three Bushs is pushing it. If Hillary makes it and Chelsea Clinton decided to run later down the line, I'd say the same thing. Two looks alright, but three stinks little of a dynasty. Maybe we should have a rule of two. Two terms for a president, two family members for the presidency. Not saying we should (they're different people after all), but what do you guys think about that?

And does the performance of the pervious members of the family matter in this particular election? It does a bit, I think, however wrong that may be. Bill Clinton is largely considered a good president, blowjob scandal aside. The two Bushs, on the other hand, don't have as good a track record. Especially since many believe GWB went into Iraq to avenge GHWB. I don't think it's quite that simple, but the possibility still impacts people's perceptions of GWB and his brother.

TL;DR: I think what we want to signal to the nation and the rest of the world is more important that the nuances of the candidates, and I think Hillary would send a good signal. I think it's unlikely Republicans will win 2016. Gay marriage is the business of the federal government because of combined finances. Old news, the electoral college is pretty wack. People may be wary to elect Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush because their families were already in office.
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Old 04-13-2015, 01:04 AM   #45
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The electoral college was (debatably) a good idea way back when the populace wasn't educated and we weren't fully formed, but it has little reason in today's world except for the vague assertions that it maintains stability. I'd like to hear DLP's take on why we still keep it around (an explanation other than 'we always had it so it's hard to get rid of it').
Inertia is definitely the biggest factor. Abolishing the electoral college would take a constitutional amendment, and amending the US Constitution is hard. Constitutional amendments generally only happen when there's a very strong popular desire for change, and right now that isn't around.

That said, the electoral college does have some arguable advantages. For one, if it were abolished the "flyover states" would lose what little political relevance they have (Which is also another reason getting rid of the EC would be hard). It would also shift the general focus of presidential campaigning to major cities/densely populated areas, which would leave a lot of rural/small town voters feeling like their voices were no longer heard. Though personally, I would say that the current model where only battleground states get attention while safe ones are neglected isn't really any better.
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Old 04-13-2015, 01:16 AM   #46
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I'd like to hear your reasons. While I'm bias toward the left, I'm not a rabid defender of Clinton. I'm just curious.

I'll keep an open mind about the other candidates, Democratic and Republican, but I'm personally set on Hillary Clinton, as most left-wing people probably are. She's not perfect, of course, but I absolutely believe she'd make a great president. Not because her husband could help her out (he'll probably be really busy with his foundation, anyway), but because of everything she's accomplished and experienced since (and I'm not saying it hasn't been without a few bumps—or potholes—in the road). If there's any candidate from either side that has the best resume in terms of experience, it's Hillary.
I'm not a rabid Clinton opponent, but I would like to ask, what accomplishments of hers do you admire? I ask because I literally cannot think of any major milestones either as a senator or a Secretary of State that serves as a feather in her cap.

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Inertia is definitely the biggest factor. Abolishing the electoral college would take a constitutional amendment, and amending the US Constitution is hard. Constitutional amendments generally only happen when there's a very strong popular desire for change, and right now that isn't around.

That said, the electoral college does have some arguable advantages. For one, if it were abolished the "flyover states" would lose what little political relevance they have (Which is also another reason getting rid of the EC would be hard). It would also shift the general focus of presidential campaigning to major cities/densely populated areas, which would leave a lot of rural/small town voters feeling like their voices were no longer heard. Though personally, I would say that the current model where only battleground states get attention while safe ones are neglected isn't really any better.
I would argue that both of those are good things. The Constitution is hard to amend because it should only be changed for things that really matter and have overwhelming support.

As for politicians spending more time in swing states, I don't necessarily think that's a bad thing. It might be annoying that they spend all of presidential season in Colorado, Ohio, and Florida, but I think that's a much better demographic cross-section of the country at large than NYC, Chicago, and Los Angeles. Most of the swing states are in different parts of the country and between them there's a good mix of rural and urban.

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Old 04-13-2015, 01:25 AM   #47
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I'd like to hear your reasons. While I'm bias toward the left, I'm not a rabid defender of Clinton. I'm just curious.
Because the only thing she's ever actually accomplished in her career is getting cuckolded by her husband in front of the entire world, fanning the flames of the Benghazi scandal and doing nothing to prevent this neo-Cold War we've got going with Russia. Sorry, but I don't think "She has a D next to her name and she has a vagina" is a good reason to elect anybody.

This is besides the fact that I have absolutely no desire to see the godawful "progressive" agenda pushed further than it already is in my country, which it no doubt would be under Clinton's administration, and would actually like to see the damage it's done repaired. I don't have much faith in any politician, but just from what I've glanced over, which isn't much, Rand Paul seems the most in line with what I like. Maybe I'll wind up liking someone else more down the line. (Probably not Jeb Bush though.)
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Old 04-13-2015, 01:38 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by Chengar Qordath View Post
That said, the electoral college does have some arguable advantages. For one, if it were abolished the "flyover states" would lose what little political relevance they have (Which is also another reason getting rid of the EC would be hard). It would also shift the general focus of presidential campaigning to major cities/densely populated areas, which would leave a lot of rural/small town voters feeling like their voices were no longer heard.
This video succinctly describes how the math doesn't jive with your argument, along with how the electoral college is broken.
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Old 04-13-2015, 01:41 AM   #49
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Rand Paul?

This Rand Paul?
http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/elec...orders-n298821
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Old 04-13-2015, 01:41 AM   #50
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Disclaimer: I'm only going to offer information/opinion in this thread. This one has the potential to raise my blood pressure if I offer debates.
Debate implies the use of reason. Demanding that others accept your position because of your faith is not debate, it's an ultimatum. As such, you wouldn't really be debating at all, even if you thought you were.

Now that is out of the way.

Disclaimer: This is my field. I'm occasionally more of a dick here than I am elsewhere. With that said, I called the Senate races on this board with as much accuracy in 2014 as Nate Silver did in 2012, so go fuck yourself.

What do I think of Hillary running? I don't, and I won't until her campaign has a message other than: "I'm Hillary and I'm running for President." Until that happens, I'll view her campaign as vulnerable to a challenge from the Republican field. In order to win in the general she will need to listen to Bill's speech at the 2012 Democratic Convention on loop, and replicate those economic arguments. Bullet point for bullet point. Word for word.

The Republicans are going to try to advance a narrative consisting of the following charges: The Clinton's play by a different set of rules, the Hillary only cares about advancing herself/her power/runaway ambition, and a more subtle appeal to sexism in the electorate veiled as 'concerns' about her health (remember when she was hospitalized for exhaustion/head trauma.) They'll then attempt to peel leaning Clinton voters off with various issues that fit in (the State Department emails, even though Colin Powell did a similar thing during his tenure, for example and also Benghazi Classic.) You can also expect to hear more than a few stories about Chelsea's husband's hedge fund (the trial balloon was floated in March), and then a few more about Marjorie Margolies' (Chelsea's mother-in-law) shady tax history, campaign finance history, and a very suspicious real estate deal.

You'll notice that I have not said a word about the Democratic field besides Hillary. That's because, right now, there isn't one. Martin O'Malley, former Governor of Maryland, is certainly running, but in order to win he needs to define himself to Clinton's left. The problem is that his tenure as Maryland's governor actually put him to her right on almost every substantiative issue of the day.

Jim Webb, former Senator from Virginia, has an exploratory committee. He has no name ID, no money, a history of horrifically sexist comments, and an Op-Ed arguing against Affirmative Action in the Wall St. Journal to his name. The Progressive Left still has fond memories of when he knocked George Allen off in the 2006 Senate race, but those feelings will evaporate as soon as Hillary's campaign starts firing back.

Lincoln Chafee also declared. He's someone who I'd probably support, if he had a snowball's chance in hell. As a Republican turned Independent turned Democrat, I don't really see which constituency he inspires within the Party or where he'll get his money.

Last, and least, we have Bernie Sanders. The Socialist Senator from Vermont. The Progressives will read poetry for him, but nothing else will happen. He'll take the 10-20% of the vote that a protest candidate can expect, but beyond that he's not going to get much traction. Why? Well, for starters, he's not actually a Democrat. That thing tends to matter to party members who vote in primaries. However, even if he were, he doesn't have a path to raising enough money to be competitive.

Honorable Mention: Elizabeth Warren, who is completely serious when she says she's not running. The Senate is where she'll be more influential in shaping the policies she cares about.

* * *

Now for the Republican field. I'm going to divide it into tiers, because such things exist.

Tier I

Jeb Bush:

The frontrunner, regardless of what the other candidates might want you to believe. For some reason he formed an exploratory committee instead of taking a savvier approach, but mos maiorum. He's here because he's locked down more than a few of the traditional GOP Super Donors, along with some of their more talented operatives. The other candidates are playing with the B-League (more on that when we talk Ted Cruz.) He'd be the most dangerous candidate in the general if not for his last name. However, since he does have that last name, he'll get tarred with that brush. Still, he should be able to take Florida, and that alone puts him head and shoulders above the rest of the Republicans in the general.

As to his weak spots, expect the Democrats to hit him very hard on his waffling stance on a boat load of issues in April - May once it becomes obvious that he's going to take the nomination. Then, when he's limping along because he shot his first money-wad getting through the primary, expect to see Hillary's campaign make his shady financial dealings and shady business dealings front and center.

He's going to have a lot of trouble dealing with those charges, and Hillary's goal is to make him spend the same amount of time that Romney did in 2012 answering them. Once we've done that, his pushback of "Clinton's play by different rules" will be muted, since he also has a private email server problem, and "Jeb Bush stole the presidency for his brother" will appear in some form or another before this is all said and done.

Ted Cruz

This one was the hardest for me, because I really don't think of Ted Cruz as a top tier candidate. I've heard a bit about what other Republicans think they have on him, and I'm pretty sure that Hillary and her entire opposition research team will all need an entire new wardrobe full of underwear to replace the ones that they collectively ruin. With that said, fundraising numbers don't lie, and 31 million in a single week is impressive. How impressive it will be later is yet to be determined. His path through the Republican primary runs through the Evangelical Christians who Rand Paul tried to lock down (but made a few missteps in the courting process.) If he can secure himself as the candidate overwhelmingly loved by the @Pasta Sentient's of the world, except to see him combine that group with the Tea Partiers not committed to Rand (there are more than a few.)

He's the candidate I would most like to see in the general. He's like a walking billboard for political hypocrisy, and Clinton will tear him to shreds on it. He rails against the Affordable Care Act; his whole family is insured through the exchanges. He's the pro-freedom candidate; he forced his crowd to attend or face a fine when he announced. In addition, his campaign is not even a little bit ready for prime time. How do I know this? His website was on a Wordpress platform when he announced. He's poised make the same sort of digital and media buying mistakes that Romney made in 2012.

Scott Walker

The dark horse of the first tier. He is the candidate that I can see the Republican base unifying around, provided he doesn't manage to trip himself up talking about how unions are like ISIS as he did at CPAC. He's the rare politician who acts as his own political consultant and who hasn't failed as a result. I also see him as the most dangerous Republican candidate. He channels and thrives off of white resentment unlike any politician I've seen since Reagan, and he is very good at making himself sound and appear moderate while introducing extreme stances. Out of Pennsylvania, Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin, I can see him carrying three of the four.

His problem is that, like Bobby Jindal in Louisiana, Republicans at the State House here hate him. He has a very simple view of political justice: To reward one's friends and punish one's enemies. The problem is that if enough of those in your political tribe feel that they are being treated as enemies because of failure to adhere 100% to your program, you start to face political revolt. While his problem will never be as bad as Jindal's, it will still be pretty bad. With that said, Presidential campaigns are when the nation talks policy, and he'll get hit hard for Wisconsin's stagnation in the general. During the primary, while he walks the line between the wings of the party, he's not really a fully-fledged member of the Christian nut jobs or the people who masturbate to Atlas Shrugged. Other candidates are, and there's already an establishment candidate with a lot less drama in the race (Jeb Bush.) He'll have a tough time making it through.

Tier II

Rand Paul

Rand was an early frontrunner, but his unsuccessful courtship of the Evangelical leadership left him exposed on the libertarian flank that supported his father's many campaigns. Those are the committed activists he needs in order to carry himself through. With he and Cruz pulling from the same pool of voters, and with Cruz flying a lot higher, his campaign is in serious trouble. There's also the inconvenient timing of the whole thing, as he's up for re-election in Kentucky this year and won't be able to appear on the ballot twice (which he wants to do.) Expect to see the Aqua Buddha thing reappear (kidnapping a girl in college and forcing her to do drugs will not play well with a national audience.) More seriously, expect his proposed "budgets" from 2012, 2013, and 2014 to get a lot of press. Vox has already done some preliminary coverage, but those documents are absurdly radical. If Paul Ryan got wrecked for a document that looks like a Communist 5 year plan in comparison, what do we think will happen here?

Marco Rubio

Had an amazing reception at the Koch Brothers' donor networking meeting, and has drawn comparisons to Bill Clinton for his ability to translate policy-wonkery into relatable outcomes. If Jeb Bush weren't running he'd be a prohibitive favorite. As it is, he's relegated to the second tier. If the eventual winner is smart, they'll vet his finances thoroughly, and then make him the VP if the swirling rumors turn out to be unfounded.

Tier III

Ben Carson

The Republican Party's black friend. A policy lightweight who would do well with the Christian Fundamentalists if he could answer a single question about something other than surgery or his belief that being gay is like raping babies.

Bobby Jindal

Every single person in Louisiana hates him, and also he once performed an exorcism.

Chris Christie

The only other "Establishment" Republican in the race. Also, destined for jail. Seriously, that GW Bridge shutdown was a dumb (and easily traceable) move.

Lindsay Graham

Running because he thinks we should bomb more places, and because one day he wants his obituary to read "one time Presidential candidate Lindsay Graham." Total vanity run, and also because he is after the job of Secretary of Defense.

Susana Martinez

Not running, but she's being vetted for VP by the RNC already.

Some loose ends:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pasta Sentient View Post
Hillary was thought to be a sure win for the Democrats until Obama came out of left field.
This is the dumbest narrative of the cycle. I've heard it here and I've heard it dozens of other times. Obama didn't come from nowhere and the Iraq war vote was huge for the Democratic Primary electorate in that primary. Please do yourself a favor and stop repeating it: It makes you sound foolish.

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Originally Posted by Pasta Sentient View Post
It's not the irrational "Sarah Palin" Stereotype that the media is going to try and plaster him with. He has about the same experience as Obama did coming into the Race
Have you noticed how well having no experience worked out for Obama specifically and the Democratic Party in general? The media isn't going to try to plaster him with anything. He's done that to himself by reading Green Eggs and Ham during a Senate filibuster to keep the Government shutdown he organized going. That shutdown cost us billions of dollars, achieved nothing, and forced all "essential" Federal employees to work for free.

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Originally Posted by Pasta Sentient View Post
Personally I think less time in congress is actually a boon in this coming election. The general populace has a growing discontentment with our government.
No. It's a boon because he would theoretically not have a long and complicated voting record to be exploited by the opposition research team working at American Bridge. Unfortunately, when you make an ass out of yourself as spectacularly as he did, there's no real need for a voting record.

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The interesting thing for me at this point is that of everyone we've heard is interested in running from the Republican side, I can't recall any serious religious right candidates. I mean they all talk about God, sure, and some of them some pretty socially conservative positions, but there aren't any Santorums or Huckabees who talk about that and have the fiscal and national security parts of their platforms almost as an afterthought. It is early and someone in that camp might come forward, but I wonder if that says something about where the Republican electorate is at in 2016.
The leadership on the God-flank is pretty split between Cruz and Paul from what I've gathered. Huckabee would be running away with the nomination this time around if he hadn't been completely and totally broke after the 2008 primary. However, since he was, he took a TV job and now there's way too much video of him saying stupid shit for him to mount a successful campaign. No one is going to come forward as a protest candidate as their issues are largely incorporated into the platforms of other viable candidates.

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Like, I was planning on voting Republican but the candidate has views at all similar to yours I'll have to vote Democrat.
They do have views similar to his, though most of them stop short of Iranian-style Theocracy (they're content to merely write laws which mandate obedience to Christian dogma.)

EDIT: Got infinitely ninja'd while typing this up. All I really have to say is lawl.
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Old 04-13-2015, 02:05 AM   #51
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Edited: @Warburg, Do I believe that the Bible is true? Yes, I do. Do I believe I should force others to follow it? To an extent, yes I do.
This makes you a different shade of ISIS.
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As far as I can tell, Sree is some kind of racist joke.
Civilization, in fact, grows more and more maudlin and hysterical; especially under democracy it tends to degenerate into a mere combat of crazes; the whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, most of them imaginary. - H. L. Mencken
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Old 04-13-2015, 02:10 AM   #52
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@Giovanni is pretty much the only person with any real idea of the political realities of this election and the way it will develop up to and including my extensive body of Bernie Sanders-based poetry.
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Old 04-13-2015, 02:12 AM   #53
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Okay, back on topic now. Further derailment will result in bans.
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Old 04-13-2015, 03:13 AM   #54
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The most interesting thing to me so far is the contrast between Republicans and Democrats right now-- Democrats have one serious candidate who's incredibly dominant, while Republicans have a hilariously open field with a variety of people who could realistically win.
@Giovanni
You laid in awesome detail everything above, but do you think there's some deeper reason for why there's such a contrast right now?

Why is the Republican field so competitive compared to Democrats?

Is there maybe some parallel to other elections in American history where one party had a much more competitive primary than another?

Honestly, it almost feels like Hillary is an Incumbent running instead of a normal candidate, that's how recognized she is.
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Old 04-13-2015, 03:53 AM   #55
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I agree with Giovanni about Christie- as someone from New Jersey, I can tell you that he hasn't won any friends here his last few years in office. Hell, he got a decent amount of teachers who traditionally followed Union-lines and voted Dem to vote for him- up until he took money out of their pension fund. Still hasn't put any back in.

If he decides to run, he's gonna get hit with so much shit his head will spin. He should have run in 2012 when he was still riding the Sandy high in terms of political love.
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Old 04-13-2015, 04:43 AM   #56
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Why is the Republican field so competitive compared to Democrats?
There's a number of reasons really and personally I'd lay most of it on the star power of Hillary and how clear it is that she's going to run. Say what you will about her lack of particular achievements, she's a politician of the absolute heaviest weight class when it comes to name recognition it is impossible to beat her. The average person has heard of Hillary for years while most of her competition (unless Warren ran) would be completely fresh faces to people not intimately familiar with politics. While this may work against her on some avenues, its incredibly daunting to have to potentially face a candidate with her amount of star power, experience, and sheer cash. If you are seriously considering running and aren't going to die in the next eight years, its a far better bet to wait.

In addition the Dems are currently a bit of a hodgepodge party that still lacks the particular distinctions of the Republican factions. The Reps can be broken down into supporting blocs such as the Libertarians and Evangelicals, but in contrast the Democratic divisons (Progressives and Environmentalists, for example) aren't nearly as powerful within the Dems. The Democrats are currently a sort of umbrella party called "The Lesser Evil" and while they may share a lot of general sentiments (pro-welfare and social spending, etc.) their unifying banner is really "Don't Let Republicans Win" under which a good half-dozen or more political ideologies can be found. This means that only middle-of-the-road mildly-left politicians really stand any chance of being agreeable enough to get the grugding endorsement of every aspect of the party and when one such candidate (Hillary) is already in place and in a strong position there's few candidates with a unique enough platform to differentiate themselves or the staying power to out do them.
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Old 04-13-2015, 02:06 PM   #57
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Oh wow Pasta. I just... I have no words and I am thoroughly convinced I'm getting myself deservedly banned if I even try to address what you just said, so I'll stick to this:

GOGO HILLARY!
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Old 04-13-2015, 02:30 PM   #58
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Including my extensive body of Bernie Sanders-based poetry.
I was referencing this hilarious quote from an Emmanuel advisor to the NY Times shortly before the Chicago Mayoral election.

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"Unless they get the crazy lefty money machine going nationally, it's not going to matter that there's a resurgent left," said an adviser to Mr. Emanuel who did not want to speak publicly about strategy. "The liberals at Heartland Cafe in Rogers Park can think great thoughts and read poetry for Chuy, but nothing else will happen."
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@Giovanni
You laid in awesome detail everything above, but do you think there's some deeper reason for why there's such a contrast right now?

Why is the Republican field so competitive compared to Democrats?

Is there maybe some parallel to other elections in American history where one party had a much more competitive primary than another?

Honestly, it almost feels like Hillary is an Incumbent running instead of a normal candidate, that's how recognized she is.
Garden, no one is lining up to run against Hillary because she and Bill have been figures in the National party for nearly 30 years by now. Campaigns are primarily about relationships, and the Clintons have them with everybody who is anybody (and most of the people who aren't.) Those relationships predate (in many cases) the political careers of anyone who could conceivably challenge them. As a result, no one who really wants to be President is going to be running this time around. Hillary is helped by the fact that Governors are usually the people the parties nominate, and the Democratic gubernatorial bench has been devastated during the tenure of Barack Obama, so she's not going to get a huge push from that direction.

Otherwise, there are plenty of parallels. Just usually with the parties reversed and the Republicans being the 'fall in line' party and the Democrats being the 'fall in love' one.

@apoc: There are plenty of strong internal divisions within the Democratic Party. We just learned the very hard way during Bush's time in office not to voice them publicly due to the strength of the 'Republicans United/Democrats Divided' media narrative. Also, many of the electoral standard bearers for the socially conservative pro-union wing of the party, and the fiscally moderate socially liberal wing, got wiped out in the 2010 election. What's left is the party's center in the House and not much more in the Senate.
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Old 04-13-2015, 02:37 PM   #59
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Relevant?

The consensus in my area is that all Democrats are bad, m'kay, (to be fair, my company's owner is a Republican Senator) although I've yet to see a viable alternative to the hoss that is Clinton. Face it, a woman in power is sexy in the year 2016. Other than that the whole 8 years of Obama thing, and the Benghazi shit, and her ex-President husband, and the fact that she's a controlling harpy and all the mainstream hatred of her...

Ted Cruz does interest me, but I still think being attached to (expletive) Tea Party will hurt him in the long run. Plus he's supposedly surprisingly anti-immigrant. Not sure where to stand on most Republican candidates at the moment, so I'll defer to the rest.
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Old 04-13-2015, 02:38 PM   #60
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Man, reading Gio is like listening to an episode of Scandal, only it makes sense.

I remember learning about the American electoral system in high school, and comparing it to the British/Canadian system, and thinking it made no goddamn sense whatsoever. But, then someone said it sounded like the people vote within their state, and it's the states themselves that elect the president (through the Electors) and that made more sense.

In Canada, you don't really have any choice but to be a little interested in American elections - 3/4s of our media content is American, and as each other's historical largest trading partners, American elections invariably affect us, particularly economically.

I think the Electoral College is flawed, but I also think it seems to work for the Union. (A word I use ironically, because if there is one word you can use to describe that country, it is definitely not 'United'.)

I honestly wonder if a first past the post system would work in the States, or if there is another system that could better preserve the separation or legislative and executive power. Running two separate and expensive elections seems inefficient, when I look at the parliamentary system where one election covers both.

Is the EC simply inviolable?
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