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Author Topic: In your honest opinion, who do you think has the best chance of becoming POTUS?  (Read 26379 times)

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Offline Cassandra LeMay

Lately I have read a good bit of speculation who the VP candidates of the various presidential candidates might be, and I had a funny thought about Trump's potential VP. It may sound pretty odd, but I'd like to hear from those who know the American constitution better than me if it would actually be possible.

Here's how it goes: To make America great again, America needs the best leadership. Trump is the best at pretty much everything he does. To have a really great leadership team the VP should also be the best at what he does. As Trump is the best at everything imaginable, he is clearly the best choice for VP.

I know it sounds crazy, but it would fit with Trumps rhetoric; it would guarantee him massive news coverage when he makes the decision; it would give him extra air time during the VP debate; it would mean he doesn't have to listen to anyone but himself for advice. As far as Trump might be concerned that's a win-win-win situation.

But would it be (legaly) possible? I am not sure, but at first glance I can't find anything that explicitly rules it out. Or am I overlooking something?

Online Oniya

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I don't see anything preventing it either - but there is the awkward fact that the VP's duties include attending to situations when the President is unable (for whatever reason) to deal with them personally.  For example, a VP might visit another country for a diplomatic meeting while the President is dealing with other matters of state.  Or, of course, should the President fall ill and be unable to perform the duties of the office for a time.

Online CuriousEyes

I don't think it's explicitly stated, and it would be funny. But I think it's strongly implied/generally understood that the President/VP are expected to be separate individuals with unique responsibilities. To say nothing of the chain of succession. Most likely it would be stamped out in a court immediately.


It does harken back to the mid-2000s Clinton nostalgia though. I remember reading passionate arguments about how Bill Clinton could get a 3rd term by being chosen as a VP for a candidate who would promptly resign office after inauguration.

Offline TaintedAndDelish


I could be wrong, but I think a president can only serve for a maximum of 10 years. It's an interesting question, though. Regarding Trump bring P and VP, I wouldn't expect that from someone who's worked in a large institution or business.

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I could be wrong, but I think a president can only serve for a maximum of 10 years. It's an interesting question, though. Regarding Trump bring P and VP, I wouldn't expect that from someone who's worked in a large institution or business.

Two terms - 8 years, normally, but a technicality such as being VP to a President who dies very early in their term, followed by two regular terms could bring that closer to 12.  There is no limit to how many years a VP can serve. 

Now there's a potential spy-thriller for you: VP takes over for a murdered president, then gets re-elected twice.  Then arranges to become the VP for the next candidate.  When the newly-elected president is assassinated mere months into his term, an intrepid senior reporter and a college computer whiz start piecing together a web of conspiracy that could topple the nation!

Offline persephone325

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Two terms - 8 years, normally, but a technicality such as being VP to a President who dies very early in their term, followed by two regular terms could bring that closer to 12.  There is no limit to how many years a VP can serve. 

Now there's a potential spy-thriller for you: VP takes over for a murdered president, then gets re-elected twice.  Then arranges to become the VP for the next candidate.  When the newly-elected president is assassinated mere months into his term, an intrepid senior reporter and a college computer whiz start piecing together a web of conspiracy that could topple the nation!

>.>

Oniya... Why would you say such a thing?! I'm already so behind on my games! lol

Offline Beguile's Mistress

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Keep in mind that the Vice President is also the President of the Senate.  Trump would not be able to preside over Senate session and carry out POTUS duties at the same time.


Something really dumb:  Lately any time I see the name Trump printed somewhere my mind reads Turnip.

Offline TaintedAndDelish


Found this. Forgive me if there is more to it. I'm not big on all this legal stuff. It makes me cringe a little.

22nd Amendment:

Section 1. No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office of President, or acted as President, for more than two years of a term to which some other person was elected President shall be elected to the office of the President more than once. But this article shall not apply to any person holding the office of President when this article was proposed by the Congress, and shall not prevent any person who may be holding the office of President, or acting as President, during the term within which this article becomes operative from holding the office of President or acting as President during the remainder of such term.

Interaction with the Twelfth Amendment

There is a point of contention regarding the interpretation of the Twenty-second Amendment as it relates to the Twelfth Amendment, ratified in 1804, which provides that "no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice President of the United States."

source:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-second_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution

Online TheGlyphstone

You know what would be scary? If Trump offers Bernie Sanders his VP slot. I can actually see Trump doing it, though I can't imagine Bernie ever accepting (even if he saw it as mitigating the damage of an otherwise inevitable Trump presidency), but at least in theory it'd be a really strong, if schizophrenic, support base.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2016, 06:15:33 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline TaintedAndDelish


If Bernie accepted VP, he would make only $230k and retain his ability to tout his poverty creds. As president with a $400k salary, he would loose that for the most part. He would actually become part of the nefarious, oppressive regime otherwise known as "they", "them" or the "One Percent."

Perhaps then, we could continue the discussion about how if one person has more resources than others ( especially if they are a one percenter ), then obviously, someone else is getting screwed and those resources need to be redistributed to make things fair. I'll be waiting for my check.



Online TheGlyphstone

If Bernie accepted VP, he would make only $230k and retain his ability to tout his poverty creds. As president with a $400k salary, he would loose that for the most part. He would actually become part of the nefarious, oppressive regime otherwise known as "they", "them" or the "One Percent."

Perhaps then, we could continue the discussion about how if one person has more resources than others ( especially if they are a one percenter ), then obviously, someone else is getting screwed and those resources need to be redistributed to make things fair. I'll be waiting for my check.

ZedSanders: You're no longer part of the System. You're above the System. Over it. Beyond it. We're "them." We're "they." We are the Men in Black One Percent.

JayTrump: You know what the difference is between you and me? I make this look GOOD.

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I can't see T-Rump doing it.  And considering the 180-degree difference between their opinions on many social issues, I wouldn't see Bernie taking it.

(Seriously - Bernie talks about 'a path to citizenship' and visits the fence that separated families use as a meeting place. 
Bernie Sanders at Friendship Park, between San Diego and Tijuana


T-Rump talks about building a wall to rival Berlin.)

Online TheGlyphstone

To clarify, I could totally see Trump doing it as a publicity stunt, like everything else he's done, knowing Bernie would never accept the offer but still using it as a lever to try and get Bernie-voters onto his side against Hillary.

Offline Beguile's Mistress

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I wonder if Trump remembers that if elected he has to divest himself of all holdings in public and privately owned companies and all foreign entities in order to avoid conflict of interest.

Who will he put in charge?

Offline TaintedAndDelish

I doubt delegating that responsibility would be a hurdle for him. I believe Mike Bloomberg did something similar when he became mayor of NYC. Could he put his kids in charge?



Edit: Found this article afterwards:

Donald Trump's 500 businesses would pose 'unprecedented ethical dilemma'
http://money.cnn.com/2016/03/16/news/companies/donald-trump-ethics/
« Last Edit: June 01, 2016, 07:00:46 PM by TaintedAndDelish »

Offline Beguile's Mistress

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I don't doubt that he could do it but I don't think he would want to give up the control and he'd try to sneak his way out of or around it or just go behind the scenes and cheat.

Online CuriousEyes

So it seems that some sources are projecting that Clinton has enough pledged delegates that, combined with her assumed superdelegate lead, put her over the top for the nomination.

Obviously the supers aren't ironclad, which is Sanders entire argument to stay in the race at this point. But they've been loyal thus far, and considering the lead in regular delegates and the popular vote have little legitimate reason to change from their current leanings. It is a formality at this point - barring some surprise footage of Clinton at a KKK rally or something to that effect.

I know a lot has been made of the nominating process as unfair or otherwise favoring Clinton. Looking back at it really the most merit I can give to anything is that the pledging of superdelegates early and often might have looked indecent.

Were I the Democratic party I might consider a change in timing - maybe forbid superdelegates from openly committing to a candidate until after the state they represent has held its caucus/primary?

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Not that it will affect this election, but a number of states have passed measures to eliminate the SD's all together.

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The problem isn't with the timing of when superdelegates declare who they're going to be voting for - if you understand that anything a superdelegate says about who they'll be voting for doesn't actually matter until the convention, then that issue disappears.  I could be a superdelegate, and claim I would be voting for Hillary for the entire time between the state contest and the national convention, but I then change to Sanders minutes before the vote is held.  What I say doesn't matter, only what I do.

The problem with superdelegates is that, quite simply, they exist at all.  Superdelegates are basically an authoritarian measure by party insiders and elites to ensure that they control the nomination process.  Because, you know, the will of the voting populace is nice and all, but that doesn't help to win elections.  Which is the goal for politicians - Democrat or Republican - these days.

If you look at the history of how superdelegates came to be, it's not a bridge too far to see that.  After the 1968 election, the Democratic Party changed its modus operandi when it came to candidate nomination.  Hubert Humphrey - the 1968 candidate - had not run in a single primary or caucus, which caused real friction with the average Joe Blow voter when he was announced as the nominee. 

The McGovern-Fraser Commission mandated that all delegates be chosen via options available to every Democrat.  The Democrats complied.  The result?

George McGovern (he of the previously mentioned Commission) got roundly defeated by Nixon in the 1972 election (only for Watergate to torpedo him the following year).

Jimmy Carter won in 1976, but that's because a lot of the country was feeling divided over Watergate, since Nixon's former VP, Gerald Ford (who had pardoned Nixon for his role in Waterfate), was the Republican candidate, and Carter was running - much like Sanders or Trump today - as the Washington outsider.  What Carter did during his administration proved so unpopular that not only did he lose his re-election campaign in a landslide versus Ronald Reagan, but he actually faced serious opposition from his own party in running again: he won re-nomination against Ted Kennedy, but only by the barest of margins - 51.13% of the vote - when all subsequent Democratic nominees have carried at least 70%.

It was in the aftermath of the 1980 defeat that the Democratic Party met again and revised - once more - the nomination process.  The Hunt Commission came up with the basics of how the Democratic nomination process of today works - though it's worth saying that at the time, the Hunt Commission originally wanted 30% of all delegates to be supers - so party insiders would control close to a third of all persons involved in the process.  Now, that didn't happen - the result was that supers originally only constituted 14% of the electorate, which has slowly increased to the now 20% of today - but if you consider the original numbers, that would make it almost impossible for a candidate to secure the nomination without the assistance of party insiders.

Which is, of course, the entire point - party elites want someone that they know will follow the party line, will serve the party's interests - which may or may not be in line with the interests of the country as a whole.

It's also worth pointing out that this is not the first time this has happened - in 1984, the two big Democratic runners were Gary Hart and Walter Mondale.  Hart represented - at the time - a 'new ideas' breed of Democrat, whereas Mondale was the establishment candidate.  Mondale led Hart by only a small margin when it came to regular delegates, but he garnered almost all of the support from superdelegates and won the nomination.  (Not that that helped, since Reagan crushed him in '84.)

Last thing I want to say to round out the post: the DNC should be worrying right about now if they'll be able to win the election.  Hillary's poll numbers have dropped to where Trump is within striking distance of her, especially since he won't be playing nice like Bernie has and will go after her with everything he's got.  This would be less worrisome if, historically, Hillary could stage a comebackShe can't.  In both of her races for her New York senate seat, she never managed to win more of the voters than she started out with.  Example - in 2000 she ran against Rick Lazio.  As of 1 year before the election, Hillary had 56% of the vote, whereas Lazio had only 23%.  On election day, Hillary won with only 55% of the vote, and Lazio garnered 43%.  In other words, a whole year of campaigning did nothing to increase Hillary's lead, whereas her opponent nearly doubled his portion in that same block of time.

Or just look at her last presidential run - in September of 2007, she led Obama by 33 points.  By January of next year, that lead had dropped to just 5 points.  Obama emerged by mid-February with a small lead, which turned into a double-digit win by the time the convention came around.  Now, maybe Donald Trump won't be the usual candidate that Hillary has to face - we already know that he is an unusual candidate in many ways - but historically, the odds are not looking good.

If the DNC cares about winning - about averting all the claims they've been making about Trump destroying the country, ruining everything they've built - then there's not really much choice then, is there?

Not that it will affect this election, but a number of states have passed measures to eliminate the SD's all together.

Good.  Though, part of me wonders which states those are...

Offline Beguile's Mistress

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Polls are only as good as the raw data collected and the statistical analysis used to give you the answer you want.  This year the poll results have been all over the map and predictions blow out of the water with amazing regularity.  This, in effect, has been leveling the playing field by giving the voters the feeling that their votes do count. 

Coming out ahead in votes in most primaries does not give the candidate the state.  They only get part of it.  53% of the vote in a state with 100 delegates only gives you 53 delegate votes at the convention while the opponent gets the other 47 assuming no one else is running in that state.  The smaller the number of voters in that particular primary the more important your vote is and when the number of voters increases more votes are needed to make a difference so your vote is still equally important.

Super delegates may skew that but if popular vote gives one candidate an overwhelming lead the super delegates are not as important and it might be even easier to change their minds. 


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Good.  Though, part of me wonders which states those are...

Maine and Wisconsin are the ones I found on a quick search.  Minnesota appears to be considering it as well.

Online CuriousEyes

Last thing I want to say to round out the post: the DNC should be worrying right about now if they'll be able to win the election.  Hillary's poll numbers have dropped to where Trump is within striking distance of her, especially since he won't be playing nice like Bernie has and will go after her with everything he's got.  This would be less worrisome if, historically, Hillary could stage a comebackShe can't.  In both of her races for her New York senate seat, she never managed to win more of the voters than she started out with.  Example - in 2000 she ran against Rick Lazio.  As of 1 year before the election, Hillary had 56% of the vote, whereas Lazio had only 23%.  On election day, Hillary won with only 55% of the vote, and Lazio garnered 43%.  In other words, a whole year of campaigning did nothing to increase Hillary's lead, whereas her opponent nearly doubled his portion in that same block of time.

Or just look at her last presidential run - in September of 2007, she led Obama by 33 points.  By January of next year, that lead had dropped to just 5 points.  Obama emerged by mid-February with a small lead, which turned into a double-digit win by the time the convention came around.  Now, maybe Donald Trump won't be the usual candidate that Hillary has to face - we already know that he is an unusual candidate in many ways - but historically, the odds are not looking good.

If the DNC cares about winning - about averting all the claims they've been making about Trump destroying the country, ruining everything they've built - then there's not really much choice then, is there?

Maybe I'm misunderstanding - you seem to be advocating (or at least hinting around) the idea that Superdelegates should "defect" en masse to vote for Saders at the convention? I'm just confused because that would seem to be the exact subversion of the will of the people that you say Supers represent - handing a nomination to the candidate who trailed in delegates and the popular vote.

Which granted, is the function of supers - to try to stabilize the nominating process to help ensure the candidate who is (ideally) most aligned to party politics while being generally electable. But it just seems like trying too much to have it both ways?

Offline White Wolf

Maybe I'm misunderstanding - you seem to be advocating (or at least hinting around) the idea that Superdelegates should "defect" en masse to vote for Saders at the convention? I'm just confused because that would seem to be the exact subversion of the will of the people that you say Supers represent - handing a nomination to the candidate who trailed in delegates and the popular vote.

Which granted, is the function of supers - to try to stabilize the nominating process to help ensure the candidate who is (ideally) most aligned to party politics while being generally electable. But it just seems like trying too much to have it both ways?

You actually touched on something here that I think is worth mentioning. I'm not sure how the delegate math stacks up today; if Sanders wins every single primary today, will be have more pledged delegates than Hillary?

If he does, then what you said becomes null and void - he wins the popular vote, superdelegates will be acting against the people if they put Hillary over.

But that's beside the point because realistically, it's not likely Sanders will secure more pledged delegates than Hillary by the time the polls close today. And that brings up another issue.

Hillary Clinton beat Bernie Sanders in the Democratic Primary, by popular votes cast. Democratic voters up and down the United States picked the foreign policy hawk with Wall Street ties over the social democratic dove.

What that implies, by any political yardstick, is that the Democratic Party is a right-wing party by default. And that's fine - a right-wing party should certainly have a right-wing candidate.

But it does mean that liberal Democrats need to make a move. America needs a left-wing and liberal third party to oppose the Democratic and Republican status quo. If Bernie's movement or revolution or whatever you want to call it is to mean anything at all, liberals need to leave the Democrats in droves following the Convention. Clearly, the Democratic Party has nothing to offer them.

Online CuriousEyes

You actually touched on something here that I think is worth mentioning. I'm not sure how the delegate math stacks up today; if Sanders wins every single primary today, will be have more pledged delegates than Hillary?

I did some math on this a page or so ago - at the time Sanders needed to run around 67% of the remaining vote to flip the delegate count (I think). Now its probably higher since that was several contests ago and he didnt win at those margins. As you said, very unlikely.

Quote
What that implies, by any political yardstick, is that the Democratic Party is a right-wing party by default. And that's fine - a right-wing party should certainly have a right-wing candidate.

I actually agree with your conclusion that the US needs a viable third party - albeit I think my reasoning might be a bit different than yours ( although Id be speculating on your politics a bit). But, this statement was horribly hyperbolic for my tastes.

If anything, at least in the context of American politics, the Democratic party aggregates to center/center-left. Just because many Democrats (self included) can accept Clinton with her warts does not qualify them/us as right wing. Even if they don't align perfectly, there is much more in common between Clinton and Sanders re: items like reproductive rights, gender equality, the minimum wage, affordable health care, LGBT protections, social security, immigration, etc. etc. than there is between Clinton and any Republican who ran for the nomination this cycle. To suggest that Clinton and her supporters are to the right of Sanders on some topics (even big ones) equates to them being to the right in American politics..

/shrug

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Maybe I'm misunderstanding - you seem to be advocating (or at least hinting around) the idea that Superdelegates should "defect" en masse to vote for Saders at the convention? I'm just confused because that would seem to be the exact subversion of the will of the people that you say Supers represent - handing a nomination to the candidate who trailed in delegates and the popular vote.

Which granted, is the function of supers - to try to stabilize the nominating process to help ensure the candidate who is (ideally) most aligned to party politics while being generally electable. But it just seems like trying too much to have it both ways?

Let me elaborate on what I mean.

The person who is presented as the candidate for the general election should be the person who carries the popular vote.  Full stop.  Who a given party's candidate is should be dictated by the people who vote - one person, one vote (which is the thing that makes elitists mad, because that means Billy Bob Colon Blow McJunior III, living in backwoods Mississippi, registered KKK member and owner of the most assault rifles in the county, is just as important to the election process as them).  There is absolutely no reason for superdelegates to exist other than for party insiders to control the process and ensure that insurgent candidates like Sanders, or Hart, or McGovern, face an uphill battle against the establishment.

To use this election as an illustration.

Let's say we come to the end of the primaries, and Hillary has carried 68% of the popular vote, compared to Bernie's 32%.  Then, yes, Hillary is the nominee, she was more popular, that's legit.

Flip the scenario, though.  Let's say Bernie wins with 56% of the popular vote to Hillary's 44%...but the superdelegates all vote for Hillary, which gives her control of 64% of the electorate - Hillary lost the popular vote, but still won the nomination because the superdelegates lined up behind her.  That's a subversion of the democratic process, which said - by popular vote - that Bernie should be the nominee.


And yes, I technically am advocating for the idea that the superdelegates should defect to Bernie at the convention, in violation of the stand of the popular vote (as of current).  However, I am really only doing this for two reasons.

A: A lot of the polls out there - as much as they can be trusted - show that Trump is either within the margin of error of Hillary, or slowly starting to pull ahead.  Whereas Bernie is still beating Trump by double digits.  I am saying that if the Democratic Party wants to win, they need to switch candidates and start backing Bernie, because - while Beguile is correct and this election isn't like anything we've ever seen before - historically, Hillary has not proven she has real comeback power.  Once she starts losing, she keeps losing.

B: Because it is possible.  I want to state this, with all the clarity I can - if superdelegates did not exist, and Hillary won the nomination (which she wouldn't have yet, since if all the supers were just regular delegates, some of those would have gone to Bernie) via the popular vote, then I would have no ability to advocate for this strategy, because it would not be possible.

The problem with superdelegates is that it magnifies the role of party officials, and lets them wield influence disproportionate to their numbers.  The nominee should be the one who gets the most votes.  Not the one with the proven track record of standing with the party line.  Not the person who can fundraise the most money.  The one who is more popular.  If that's Hillary, when all is said and done, then it's Hillary.

Does that help to clear things up a bit?

You actually touched on something here that I think is worth mentioning. I'm not sure how the delegate math stacks up today; if Sanders wins every single primary today, will be have more pledged delegates than Hillary?

If he does, then what you said becomes null and void - he wins the popular vote, superdelegates will be acting against the people if they put Hillary over.

That, I can't say.  I pay attention to the math, but not that much attention.  I do know that California - which VOTES TODAY, so if you live in California and can go vote, GO VOTE - has over 500 delegates up for grabs, and that over 75% of those are non-superdelegates.  That does mean, if Bernie wins big there, he can close the regular delegate gap by quite a bit.  It would have to be a double-digit win for him, though.

But that's beside the point because realistically, it's not likely Sanders will secure more pledged delegates than Hillary by the time the polls close today. And that brings up another issue.

That's why the long-term strategy for the Sanders camp has been to attack the superdelegates, since they can - for good or ill - subvert the democratic process, and highlight that Bernie beats Trump hands-down.  If superdelegates did not exist, as I stated earlier, it wouldn't be a possible strategy and we would be almost surely seeing a Clinton v Trump race.

In short, superdelegates may exist to turn the tide in favor of the party favorite.

But this time?  They just might be the thing that manages a Democratic victory.  If the DNC is smart about it.

Hillary Clinton beat Bernie Sanders in the Democratic Primary, by popular votes cast. Democratic voters up and down the United States picked the foreign policy hawk with Wall Street ties over the social democratic dove.

What that implies, by any political yardstick, is that the Democratic Party is a right-wing party by default. And that's fine - a right-wing party should certainly have a right-wing candidate.

Hillary has never really been left-wing.  She's just been more to the left than her opponents historically, and uses the Democrat party lines because...well, frankly, if you're a woman and you state you're a Republican?  How well has that worked out in the past?  Hillary campaigned for Barry Goldwater in '64, she voted for Iraq & Afghanistan, she was in the White House (as First Lady, but a lot of information available suggests that she was involved in the process, too) when they deregulated the financial industry (which caused 2008) and...there's a long laundry list of things I could say, but the bottom line is that she's not really liberal, just more than.

The problem we have today is that the political establishment is drifting towards the right while the voters are moving to the left.  People are tired of spending money and human lives on interventionism in countries nobody cares about when there are real problems at home. 

Problems like working families now needing two incomes in order to be able to afford a middle-class lifestyle and to send their kids to college.

Problems like kids coming out of college with massive debt and not being able to find a job.  (I read in a recent article that 40% of people ages 18-34 still live with their parents.)

Problems like our failing schools, which is resulting in an ever-dumber populace.  (It's kind of hard to care what happens in a country if you don't even know where it is!)

Problems like the ever-rising costs of healthcare, which causes more personal bankruptcies now than every other type combined.

Problems why America feels less like America and more like a bunch of people who hate each other all occupying the same space.  (Thanksgiving is fine for one day of the year.  365?  Bit much.)

But it does mean that liberal Democrats need to make a move. America needs a left-wing and liberal third party to oppose the Democratic and Republican status quo. If Bernie's movement or revolution or whatever you want to call it is to mean anything at all, liberals need to leave the Democrats in droves following the Convention. Clearly, the Democratic Party has nothing to offer them.

I live in New England, which is historically a blue region of the country.  So I know a lot of registered Democrats (I don't identify as either, for reasons I can elaborate in a PM), and the more I've talked to them over the years, the more they're becoming dissatisfied with the policies of the party.  I have seen - in slow real-time - in action the phrase "I didn't leave the party, the party left me."  A lot of those disillusioned Democrats were really excited when Bernie announced his campaign, because Bernie was left-wing, he was new blood (idea-wise) in the party, and more importantly, they saw the youth movement growing behind him.

One of those Democrats - a really good friend, and my table GM - has stated for years he's hated how the Democrats have changed, and always identified more strongly with Jill Stein and the Green Party.  Problem is, third parties - like Stein's Greens, or Gary Johnson and the Libertarians - have almost no traction whatsoever in elections because of the two-party system that's come to dominate the American politiscape.

I've stated previously that the number one thing I want from this election - more than one specific candidate - is for the power of the political establishment, and the media, to be utterly destroyed beyond restoration.  That includes the existence of political parties.  When I read some article or someone worries to me that "Trump will destroy the Republican Party," my answer to that is "Good!  About damn time."  For all their squawking about 'what the Founding Fathers would have wanted,' the Republicans seem to ignore things like the fact that they detested political parties - James Madison even said that they were factions dangerous to the public interest.

If we're going to do this democracy thing, or this republic thing, then you can't just have a few really big parties.  Coalition government is the way to go.