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Author Topic: In your honest opinion, who do you think has the best chance of becoming POTUS?  (Read 26431 times)

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Offline TheGlyphstone

Why would you say she 'sold out' the country in those cases? That phrase, for me, usually is associated at minimum with some sort of personal profit or advantage, and unless someone's uncovered Clinton taking bribes from Libyan terrorists, it seems stretchy to use the term. I sure as hell don't trust her (or really most/any politicians) either, but I can't see any way for her to have been blamed for the actual Benghazi attacks. The email thing just amounts to, IMO, terminally stupid sloppy record-keeping - not something you want on a President's resume, but also not the smoking gun of conspiracy that the GOP tried to make it out as.

EDIT: Try listening to The Cure with the lights dimmed for a few hours. That'll trigger your reflexive angst antibody production.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2016, 09:26:09 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline ReijiTabibito

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Hillary and Trump, yuck. Well, holding out hope for Warren next time around (whether it be 4 or 8 years from now). One of these days we'll get it right.

When you say 'we,' do you mean the American people, the voting populace?  Or do you just mean America in general?  Because if you're talking about the former, then I think the voters did get it right.  It's just that our right decision was refused recognition.

And Kasich is out as well.

This is going to get ugly.

Good.  Maybe finally when all the dust settles, the people responsible for all this will wake up and say 'What have we done?'

On the flipside, both sides will be able to focus attacks now.  Which might actually mean we get a Sanders v Trump contest.

Offline TheGlyphstone

It's very unlikely Bernie's going to swing a nomination at this point, sadly, unless he can somehow cause a mass defection of Hillary's pledged superdelegates in July. As the numbers currently stand, he needs 982 of the remaining 1,159 delegates available, or an overall win of 84% across the remaining 10 primaries. Hillary, thanks to her supers, only needs 178 more delegates to cinch the nomination - 37% of the votes from California alone would lock it in for her.

As much as I want a Sanders vs. Trump general, I'm fully expecting and preparing for Clinton vs. Trump.

(Random side figure, Hillary has a lead of 1.235 to 1 in popular delegates over Bernie, and a 13.38-to-1 advantage in superdelegates.)
« Last Edit: May 05, 2016, 05:10:08 AM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline ReijiTabibito

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Here is a question, though, about the supers.  Do supers officially count towards the delegate total needed to secure the nomination?  Example: Trump needs 1237 delegates to secure the nomination.  Once he has those 1237, he will officially be the nominee, because they're locked in to voting for him. 

Now, supers are free to pick whoever they like when they vote at the convention, so while they may declare who they are supporting, the support is not set in stone, they can change their mind.  In essence, if one of the Democratic candidates wanted to ensure they would win at the first convention vote, they would need the number of required delegates in non-supers.  If that's the case, then Hillary would need 600 more non-superdelegates - there's only 1159 left, and I'm not sure how many of those are supers.

Back to the original thing.

Whether or not that mass defection happens is going to depend, most likely, on the party looking at the general election polls and making a decision.  Do they want to:

A. Pick the candidate who stomps any of the opposition flat, at the possible cost of some party influence, because he may not care about the party's agenda?

B. Pick the candidate who will look after the party's interests, at the possible cost of losing the election, or being impeached/indicted?

The rationalist in me says that if the party has their head on straight, they'll do the sensible thing and pick Bernie, even though it means they abandoned their golden girl, and thus will fail to gain the 'first female President' award this time around.  (Though realistically, the Dems have nothing to worry about that.)

The cynic says that they don't care about actually improving the country, they just want to hold onto what they've carved out for themselves in the political landscape.


Offline Far eyes

So just as a question of curiosity because i do not know the US system that precisely what happens if the delegates split or some vote or do not and neither gets the necessary amount? 

Offline ReijiTabibito

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It's technically called a contested, or open, convention.

The idea is, if no one candidate has enough votes secured on the first round to gain the nomination, then after the first round, delegates are freed up to choose who they want to vote for, and another round of voting happens.  This continues until one person gains the number of delegates required.

It's a bit similar to how a new Pope is elected by the College of Cardinals.

Offline TheGlyphstone

Here is a question, though, about the supers.  Do supers officially count towards the delegate total needed to secure the nomination?  Example: Trump needs 1237 delegates to secure the nomination.  Once he has those 1237, he will officially be the nominee, because they're locked in to voting for him. 

Now, supers are free to pick whoever they like when they vote at the convention, so while they may declare who they are supporting, the support is not set in stone, they can change their mind.  In essence, if one of the Democratic candidates wanted to ensure they would win at the first convention vote, they would need the number of required delegates in non-supers.  If that's the case, then Hillary would need 600 more non-superdelegates - there's only 1159 left, and I'm not sure how many of those are supers.

Back to the original thing.

Whether or not that mass defection happens is going to depend, most likely, on the party looking at the general election polls and making a decision.  Do they want to:

A. Pick the candidate who stomps any of the opposition flat, at the possible cost of some party influence, because he may not care about the party's agenda?

B. Pick the candidate who will look after the party's interests, at the possible cost of losing the election, or being impeached/indicted?

The rationalist in me says that if the party has their head on straight, they'll do the sensible thing and pick Bernie, even though it means they abandoned their golden girl, and thus will fail to gain the 'first female President' award this time around.  (Though realistically, the Dems have nothing to worry about that.)

The cynic says that they don't care about actually improving the country, they just want to hold onto what they've carved out for themselves in the political landscape.

Superdelegates tend to be clustered within the 'conservative' wing of their party, so to speak, and especially among the Democrats, they tend to favor Washington insiders. One reason I quoted the relative delegate numbers above is to show that those superdelegates could make a case, to themselves and others at the convention, that Hillary better represents what the Democratic voter base wants. She's got a larger margin of primary popular votes so far, and she still holds a polling lead over Trump, even if her margins are much slimmer than Bernie. (cite: http://heavy.com/news/2016/05/bernie-sanders-vs-donald-trump-polls-better-than-hillary-clinton-independent-vote-democratic-nomination-how/). So if they can get what they think is a best-of-all-worlds - a candidate who can be said to represent a (slim) majority of Democratic voters, and is projected to win the general election, and will protect the party interests, there's very little reason for them to take a long shot on one of those criteria at the cost of the other two.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2016, 07:43:53 AM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline CuriousEyes

So just as a question of curiosity because i do not know the US system that precisely what happens if the delegates split or some vote or do not and neither gets the necessary amount?

I might get some of these details wrong as I'm a bit fuzzy on it with time.

In the first round of voting at a convention you have delegates - who are bound to vote in respect to state primary results. Most Democratic states distribute proportionally - ie if a state had 10 delegates and was decided 60/40, Candidate A gets 6 votes and Candidate B gets 4.

Each state also has superdelegates, who vote for who(m?)ever they like with no explanation/methodology needed. A candidate could get 70% of a states vote and none of its superdelegates.

If between the delegates and superdelegates no candidate can reach 2,383 total after the first vote you have a brokered convention. I believe most/all of the delegates are then allowed to act more like supers and vote as they like. They basically vote and revote until someone reaches 2,383 with whatever sundry promises are needed to secure enough votes.


Important note: there's a next-to-zero chance that happens. Far more likely Hillary Clinton goes into the convention leading in delegates, superdelegates, and the popular vote and it gets wrapped up in a single round.

She then (oh, I hope) curbstomps Donald Trump into the ground in a general election.

I'll have to come back for my thoughts on some of the other sensationalism being thrown around here later.

Offline ReijiTabibito

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Superdelegates tend to be clustered within the 'conservative' wing of their party, so to speak, and especially among the Democrats, they tend to favor Washington insiders. One reason I quoted the relative delegate numbers above is to show that those superdelegates could make a case, to themselves and others at the convention, that Hillary better represents what the Democratic voter base wants.

I won't contest you on the issue of the regular delegates - 1.235 to 1 shows that yes, Hillary is marginally higher than Bernie.  But I will contest you on the supers - 13.38 to 1?  Yes, that could mean that Hillary better represents what the Democratic voter base wants.  It also could mean the party insiders are dutifully lining up behind the person who they know will protect their interests, or anticipating being able to call in favors for their state from the Oval Office.  Or it might be repayment for the money given to them by the Hillary Victory Fund.

The superdelegates are helping to keep Hillary afloat - consider the following.  In the most recent primary in Indiana, as well as the primaries in Michigan, Rhode Island, and Wyoming, Bernie won the state - he possessed the bulk of the Democratic voting cast.  Yet, when the delegates were tallied, Hillary ended up with more delegates than he did.  So, Bernie had more of the voter base, but according to your logic (or my incomplete understanding of it), because more delegates voted for Hillary, she somehow better represents what the voters want.

This trend magnifies if you look at states where either the vote was close, but the delegate split was not close to 50/50; or states where Bernie stomped Hillary flat but somehow failed to gain significant numbers of delegates over her - MA, IL, MO, and NY for the former; NH, MN, and HI for the latter.  Depending on your margin of error, you could expand that, but those are definite examples where the superdelegates' movement to support Hillary are clear.

She's got a larger margin of primary popular votes so far, and she still holds a polling lead over Trump, even if her margins are much slimmer than Bernie. (cite: http://heavy.com/news/2016/05/bernie-sanders-vs-donald-trump-polls-better-than-hillary-clinton-independent-vote-democratic-nomination-how/).

She holds the lead now.  The election is in 6 months, a lot can change in that time.  For one, Hillary's gotten off easy with Bernie as an opponent - he's refused to use attack ads, and only marginally mentioned her political corruption (the only time I can think of it is that one time in a debate).  Trump will not be so kind.  Trump has been attack everything.  "Little Marco."  "Blood coming out of her whatever."  "Lyin' Ted."  If I'm Trump, I start hammering her for her flip-flopping - it's half of how Obama got Romney last cycle - and I never let up the pressure.  I tell the American people this is a woman who will do whatever is best for her.  Clinton may fire back, but Trump's been as tough as Teflon when it comes to weathering such attacks.

For second, Hillary has made clear that she has no strategy to win over Sanders voters.  Her attitude is basically "Well, are you really going to vote for a Republican?"  That's insulting; it's condescending to the Independents, who have largely voted for Bernie, and are historically the smartest and most informed voters.  It's being presumptive that all the Bernie supporters are going to line up like good little children and vote for someone who has maligned them.

Finally, Hillary has enjoyed the benefit of internal politics set up in her favor from the very start.  It's no secret that the head of the DNC, Wasserman-Schultz, is a Clinton supporter.  A few months back, Tutsi Gabbard, Vice Chair of the DNC, resigned her position there because she stated that her support for Bernie caused a conflict of interest with her duties as Vice Chair.  Where's the similar action - or even the call to - on Schultz' part?  There will be no such benefit in the general election.

So if they can get what they think is a best-of-all-worlds - a candidate who can be said to represent a (slim) majority of Democratic voters, and is projected to win the general election, and will protect the party interests, there's very little reason for them to take a long shot on one of those criteria at the cost of the other two.

Democratic voters alone don't win you the election.  For as bad as it was, Romney's 47% statement was correct in one aspect - there are people who will, no matter what, vote for their particular party.  But at this time, neither of those diehards - Democrat or Republic - are enough to secure victory all by themselves.  You need independents, you need the people in the swing states.  Bernie has the bulk of the Independents on the Democratic side.  You don't want the candidate who will win the people that vote blindly.  You want the candidate that wins the people who don't.

Trump is already making overtures to Sanders voters, to get them over to his side.  Keep in mind, depending on your study, anywhere from a quarter to a third of Bernie supporters have already said "I'm not voting for Hillary."  And this was last fall, before the Clinton campaign started talking down to them and Trump started suggesting that Bernie was being treated unfairly.

What the DNC is doing right now is a death-or-glory attack in supporting Hillary: either they win, and get everything they want, or they lose, and get nothing.

Offline Far eyes

After looking into the american voting method again just to freshen up my understanding of it...  i have to say maybe you guys should tray an actual democracy. Because that is so convoluted you might as well build a house of Lords and just call it what it is.   ::)

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If the Clinton campaign is smart they'll wait until after the DNC to go after Sanders' supporters if Clinton gets the nomination.  That is a bloc of voters you don't want to alienate and perhaps lose because you attacked their favorite.  They may not vote Republican in the general election but you don't want to push them into not voting at all.


Offline TheGlyphstone

I won't contest you on the issue of the regular delegates - 1.235 to 1 shows that yes, Hillary is marginally higher than Bernie.  But I will contest you on the supers - 13.38 to 1?  Yes, that could mean that Hillary better represents what the Democratic voter base wants.  It also could mean the party insiders are dutifully lining up behind the person who they know will protect their interests, or anticipating being able to call in favors for their state from the Oval Office.  Or it might be repayment for the money given to them by the Hillary Victory Fund.

The superdelegates are helping to keep Hillary afloat - consider the following.  In the most recent primary in Indiana, as well as the primaries in Michigan, Rhode Island, and Wyoming, Bernie won the state - he possessed the bulk of the Democratic voting cast.  Yet, when the delegates were tallied, Hillary ended up with more delegates than he did.  So, Bernie had more of the voter base, but according to your logic (or my incomplete understanding of it), because more delegates voted for Hillary, she somehow better represents what the voters want.


Yeah, I don't think you understand what I'm saying at all. The 13-to-1 ratio is overall, current, and not really contestable. I brought it up as a point of comparison - she is currently receiving a vastly disproportionate amount of superdelegates relative to her popular vote. Of course they are lining up behind the insider, that's exactly what the number means.

What I am trying to say is that if you look at this whole election from the point of the superdelegates, instead of as a Bernie supporter, Hillary looks like the safer bet, which is why they are lining up behind her. She's leading the total popular vote, she's got a polling lead over Trump, and she is 'safe' in terms of their interests. Bernie is behind in the popular vote and absolutely not 'safe' for their interests, even if his Trump advantage is larger. They're not cackling away in their smoke-filled rooms and high-fiving each other over cigars with how they've successfully evaded answering to the people yet again - they're (half) old white rich men who avoid change or risk-taking and have a strong basis for convincing themselves that this is the correct way to secure the White House in November; from their PoV, Bernie would be the death-or-glory option.

Are they right? Maybe, maybe not. I personally think Trump's wacky antics and attack-dog style campaigning will hurt him more in the independent and swing crowd in the general election than they have in the Republican primaries, where everyone is some flavor of crazy. I want Bernie as President, but I don't think his odds are good to secure a nomination, unless he can pull off a major upset with the superdelegates, and I think Hillary will still hold a dominant lead over Trump if they go head-to-head. It'll be a Democrat in the WH next year, the question is which one. To make it Bernie, he needs to pull ahead in the popular vote, thus undercutting the justification superdelegates currently have for siding with Hillary, and by sufficient margin that the odds of losing the general become scarier to them than whatever he will do as President.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2016, 10:31:57 AM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline Cycle

What I am trying to say is that if you look at this whole election from the point of the superdelegates, instead of as a Bernie supporter, Hillary looks like the safer bet, which is why they are lining up behind her.

They also care about the fact that most democratic voters think Hillary's simply flat out better on the issues than Bernie.

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Hilary is a know quantity and Bernie is a variable.


Offline CuriousEyes

If I could just throw this out there - the superdelegates are getting undue credit for the state of the race.

Clinton has received about 57% of the popular vote.

If you pretend superdelegates didn't exist, she leads pledged by about 320. If you pretend that voting completely flips the entire rest of the primary (57% of all remaining votes in every state going to Bernie), the race would end with Clinton leading the delegate count by about 200. In this fantasy world where supers dont exist, I suppose that means she won.

How about we bring back supers but change their thinking. Say they voted in line with the popular vote (57% Clinton/43% Sanders) regardless of the margins in any state. That would boost Sanders, but he'd still trail by 400 votes based on states that have voted to date.

If you pretended supers voted proportionate to results in their home states, Clinton's lead would be about 350.

And with the imaginary flip of all future states (57 Sanders/43 Clinton), if supers voted proportionately she'd still cross 2,382 and clinch.

If you're curious, that math holds out to about 65/35 margins the rest of the way. Beyond that it's either contested or Sanders wins.


Ultimately the idea of supers "deciding" the nomination feels dishonest to me. They're just firing artillery at a field the srmy's already cleared. Barring credible evidence that Clinton's campaign is actively cheating, she's winning as fairly as a debatably broken system can be won.

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"Bernie Sanders said yesterday that he intends to do everything he can to prevent a Donald Trump presidency, though I don't know what he can try that Donald Trump hasn't tried already." ~ Seth Meyers on Late Night 5/5/16

I think that means that Trump would get elected in spite of himself.

Offline TheGlyphstone

They also care about the fact that most democratic voters think Hillary's simply flat out better on the issues than Bernie.

Yes, by a 1.23 to 1 margin, or roughly 57%. You've said exactly what I already did, but with less accuracy and more hyperbole.

Online Cassandra LeMay

What I am trying to say is that if you look at this whole election from the point of the superdelegates, instead of as a Bernie supporter, Hillary looks like the safer bet, which is why they are lining up behind her.
And yet her approval ratings are a record-setting low (or would be if Trump didn't set an even lower record).

The only thing that (in my opinion) makes a candidate with such low approval ratings a safe bet is the partisanship of American politics. Even a candidate with such a low approval rating as Trump or Clinton is guaranteed votes just because they run on the ticket of a certain party. Even if one of the two big parties nominated a ham sandwich it would probably still get enough votes to win the election.

Offline TheGlyphstone

And yet her approval ratings are a record-setting low (or would be if Trump didn't set an even lower record).

The only thing that (in my opinion) makes a candidate with such low approval ratings a safe bet is the partisanship of American politics. Even a candidate with such a low approval rating as Trump or Clinton is guaranteed votes just because they run on the ticket of a certain party. Even if one of the two big parties nominated a ham sandwich it would probably still get enough votes to win the election.

Well yea. The polarization and partisanship that has transformed our political scene into what it is is an ugly, ugly beast.

Offline Far eyes

I guess its kind of the effect of having to rent one of two cars, both are awful but you really absolutely have to have one

Offline TheGlyphstone

That's what it looks like from the outside. From the inside, though, I suspect it's much more like the groupthink that leads to stuff like the Hatfield-McCoy feud, or on a less violent note traditional sports-team rivalries like Yankees vs. Red Sox. When you have A Team and are loyal to it, by definition your team's chief rival must be the Antichrist. And it gets worse and worse over time, as the cycle reinforces itself with echo chambers and feedback loops. It's like a big Venn Diagram of political opinions:

A) people who think Hillary is great, and Trump is bad.
B) People who think Trump is great, and Hillary is bad.
C) People who think both of them are bad.

A) and C) overlap to create an extra-large Trump Is Bad zone, as to B) and C) for Hillary, though A()C is larger than B()C.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2016, 12:36:38 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline Far eyes

I think Hillary is less likely to screw things up, i dont actually think she is a grate choice but at least she is a 'professional' and has some grasp on the effect of the dumb shit she dos and sais, unlike trump who deals in simple solutions and strong man rhetoric. Both of them like his imaginary Mexican financed wall are not happening and bad to start with   

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Looking at it from the point of view of a Republican Congress versus a Democrat in the White House Hillary has history and knows where many of the bodies are buried as well as which closets have what skeletons in them.  She isn't naive about the workings of government and I think she would be better able to work with the Senate and House in a way that Obama couldn't and Trump (unless he changes his game plan drastically) and Sanders would be able to.

She may not be the most likeable candidate for some but she would be the most stable and could hit the ground running rather than have to go through a learning period.

Offline Merah

Looking at it from the point of view of a Republican Congress versus a Democrat in the White House Hillary has history and knows where many of the bodies are buried as well as which closets have what skeletons in them.  She isn't naive about the workings of government and I think she would be better able to work with the Senate and House in a way that Obama couldn't and Trump (unless he changes his game plan drastically) and Sanders would be able to.

She may not be the most likeable candidate for some but she would be the most stable and could hit the ground running rather than have to go through a learning period.

Stable, yes. But many American voters (myself included), don't want 'stable'. I don't mean we want revolution or calamity, of course, just that we want an END to the status quo.

Hillary embodies the status quo in every way possible (aside from the fact that she happens to be a woman). That said, yes, I'll vote for her over Trump, who I believe would bring the bad kind of 'unstable'.

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Chinese factory building up a stockpile of thousands of party-time masks of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton

Absolutely hilarious video report. Those guys are expecting a good return from sales to the US when the main election gets closer.