During the run-up to the 2008 presidential election, I managed to anger many friends (and some foes alike) by stating, even after it was clear that Barack Obama was going to win the nomination, that he should step aside and allow Clinton to become the Democratic candidate and become her vice-president. My logic was as simple as it was accurate: The white backlash against gender — against having our first female president — would not have been as strong as it proved to be against having a black president.
Obama seriously thought that he could win much of the far right over by being a great commander-in-chief. But what he discovered was that even if he had been able to walk on water, he was not going to win over bigoted Americans. The rise of the Tea Party was a direct result of a black man occupying the White House.
Why he — and others — couldn’t see this coming still amazes me, and yes, I accurately predicted the backlash, which is why I wanted him to serve as VP for eight years first, to allow the country more time to get used to the idea of a black man as president. Alas, no one listened, thinking I was crazy.
Just think of it: Hillary could have easily won against McCain with Obama as her VP, and after eight years of her and Bill expertly manipulating the levers of power in Washington (as no one else could come close to adroitly doing) while moving the country forward, Obama could have easily ascended to the presidency in 2016 and the country would have been spared the clown/shit show we now have under tRump.
But the Dems were simply too shortsighted. We can only hope and pray progressives are not similarly lacking in vision again in 2020.
Make no mistake that tRump will have no compunction against “wagging the dog” — in other words, starting a war with Iran simply because he knows that Americans are extremely reluctant to turn a president out of office during a time of war. So, while he might look easily beatable for the nonce, he probably won’t be when the election rolls around. He’s a real gutter fighter.
The best strategy for Dems at this point is to rally behind Joe Biden (warts and all) as long as he names the ablest politician in the country as his VP: Elizabeth Warren. And he should assure progressives that she will not just sit on the sidelines, but have a very active role and a virtually free hand in shaping the national policy agenda.
A Biden/Warren ticket would be the best team to beat the clown currently occupying the Oval Office, and, additionally, assure that in 2028 the country would, at last, have its first female president, something that the electorate simply isn’t quite ready for just yet. But after Warren serves eight years as VP the country would then be willing to come into the modern political age and finally elect a woman to the highest office in the land.
The only problem is, this strategy simply might make too much sense for Democrats to embrace. The 20 candidates might simply tear each other to shreds during a bruising Primary, thus turning off much of their base. This is a party that’s not known for playing the long game.
As Will Rogers once so accurately stated, “I’m not a member of any organized party … I’m a Democrat.”
From CoolCleveland correspondent Mansfield B. Frazier mansfieldfATgmail.com. Frazier’s From Behind The Wall: Commentary on Crime, Punishment, Race and the Underclass by a Prison Inmate is available in hardback. Snag your copy and have it signed by the author at http://NeighborhoodSolutionsInc.