Tag Archives: 2020 election

Don’t run, Joe; leave the 2020 race to the young’ns.

Readers of this blog know it already, but I’ll restate it: I am a big fan of former Vice President Joe Biden.

There. I’ve got that out of the way. Now I want to declare that I do not want the former VPOTUS to run for president in 2020. It’s not that he can’t do the job. It’s not that he is incapable.

It is that I want new blood, new ideas, new faces, new voices to be seen and heard.

This will sound as though I’m an ageist. Believe me, I know what ageism looks like. I believe I’ve been victimized by it in recent years, so I say this next piece with a good bit of caution.

Biden’s age is going to work against him. He will be 77 years of age in 2020. He would be the oldest man ever elected to the nation’s highest office were that to occur. That would mean he would be 81 in 2024. Would he seek a second term, which would put him into his mid-80s were he to win?

Or … would a President Biden declare himself to be a one-termer, thus making him a lame duck the moment he takes his hand off the Bible at his inauguration in January 2021?

Biden is ruminating yet again about whether to run for president.

His pondering is the subject of an article in Atlantic. Read it here.

My hope for the country is that Donald Trump is defeated in 2020. I didn’t want him elected in 2016 and was shocked along with most political observers when he squeaked out that Electoral College victory over Hillary Clinton.

He remains more unfit for the high office than any man who has ever held it. I want him gone. Defeated either in the GOP primary or in the general election.

Joe Biden isn’t the man to do it. I want him to remain active in the political discourse. He can lend plenty to the discussion of the issues of the day.

However, he needs to let the next generation of Democratic politicians have their time. Let them seek to take hold of the levers of power.

The former veep has had his day. It was a great run through 36 years as a U.S. senator and then as the second-in-command of the greatest nation on Earth.

Let it go, Mr. Vice President.

Why worry now about Trump’s business history?

Someone, somewhere — maybe a lot of folks out here in Trump Country, where I live — may be asking: Why are the media obsessing now about Donald Trump’s business practices when he was a much younger man, an up-and-comer in the real estate development industry?

I think I might have an answer. It’s because Donald Trump sold his presidential candidacy largely on the notion that he is a self-made man, that he had a “little bit of help” from his father, Fred Trump, as he sought to build a business empire.

The New York Times has put the lie to that boast. It has revealed in an exhaustive investigation that Trump received a lot of help from his father and that he well might have used fraudulent tax schemes to benefit his father’s business.

Donald Trump’s status as president of the United States of America makes this a legitimate issue of discussion, particularly as he prepares to campaign for re-election in 2020. The issue of his truthfulness in describing his pre-political business career must be brought up and it must be discussed thoroughly.

I doubt seriously that Trump himself will engage in that serious discussion. He’ll toss out insults at the media and his foes. He will energize his base of supporters. The president isn’t likely to provide forthright answers to direct questions about the Times’s story.

However, the president’s business history and the huge disparity between what a media outlet has uncovered and what he has said about that history demand a full and complete airing.

I hope the president would explain himself. My fear is that he won’t.

‘I am totally focused on the Senate’

I love listening to politicians who give these non-denial denials pertaining to their political future.

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat, offered up the latest example of such a pol’s attempt at rhetorical dodge ball.

Someone asked her if she is considering a run for the presidency in 2020. Her answer was classic: “I am running for the Senate and I am totally focused on being the kind of senator” her constituents expect her to be.

She even put some emphasis on the words “totally focused.” As if that makes it an even more declarative and believable statement.

Sorry, senator. Your so-called “denial” doesn’t work. Skeptics out here heard what you didn’t say, which is that you won’t run for president in 2020.

‘Don’t call me a celebrity?’ Sorry, bub … you are one!

Michael Avenatti cracks me up.

The lawyer who is pondering a run for the presidency in 2020 has scolded the media for calling him a “celebrity.” He bristled at the idea of the media labeling him something he most certainly has become.

Avenatti represents Stephanie Clifford, aka Stormy Daniels, the porn actor who alleges she and the future president of the United States, Donald Trump, had a fling in a hotel room years ago. The president paid her hush money to keep her quiet, but denies the tryst occurred … go figure.

Avenatti has stepped into the public spotlight by being everywhere, seemingly at once. That, by my definition, makes him a celebrity.

Oh, no, he answers. He is a lawyer with an 18-year career. He has represented “Davids against Goliaths.”

I guess this means that if decides to run for president, he’ll tell us he isn’t a politician.

He then will fit the definition of two terms he doesn’t like.

Too bad, counselor/celebrity and maybe — politician.

I mean, if the shoe fits …

Wanting a presidential candidate with policy chops

I just watched a snippet of Michael Avenatti delivering a sort of campaign stump speech to some listeners in Iowa.

The high-profile lawyer is considering a run for the presidency. His only claim to fame/notoriety to date has been that he represents Stormy Daniels, the porn star who says she and the future president, Donald Trump, had a fling in a hotel room back in 2006 — and that the president paid her $130,000 to keep quiet about it.

Avenatti is her mouthpiece. He also is a blowhard, a celebrity who’s trying to parlay his celebrity status into something that requires a lot more of those who seek high public office.

Does that remind you of anyone else? Of course it does!

I’m a bit old-fashioned. I want presidents to have some public service experience. I want them to demonstrate a commitment to the public. I want them to be well-versed, well-spoken and well-educated on policy and on the nuance of government. I do not want some showboat to prance onto the political stage and bellow, “Vote for me because I am not a politician!”

The 2020 election will feature, more than likely, a large field of Democratic candidates, the size of which of might rival the number of 2016 Republican candidates who sought to succeed Barack Obama as president.

Given the electoral success that Donald Trump experienced in 2016, I am pretty certain that the opening-day field of Democratic contenders will include its fair share of carnival barkers, goofballs and unqualified showboats.

That is how I consider Michael Avenatti, who well might be a great lawyer, but who is about as qualified to serve as president as the guy who’s in the office now. Which is to say he is patently unqualified.

My hope is that Democrats can produce a newcomer, someone who isn’t much of a presence at this moment on the political horizon.

That all said, I hope Avenatti sticks to lawyering and clears the field for candidates who actually know what they would do were they to get elected president.

President Biden? Not so fast

This just in: Early polls say former Vice President Joe Biden is the early favorite to win the Democratic Party presidential nomination in 2020.

Sigh. Oh, my. Please. No!

It’s not that I dislike Vice  President Biden. I happen to admire him. I have admired him for many years, dating back to when he served in the Senate. Even to when he was first elected to the Senate, only to suffer the loss of his wife and daughter in a tragic car crash before the start of his first term.

He thought about quitting before he took office. He stayed the course and served with honor.

Having sung his praises, I don’t think he’s the ticket for Democrats in 2020. I would much prefer someone no one knows about. I want a much younger individual to run for the presidency.

VP Biden is 76. He’d be 78 in 2020. He would be 82 at the end of his term in office. I have nothing against old people. After all, I’m one of ’em, too.

The Democratic Party needs a fresh outlook, a fresh voice, a fresh approach to governing.

However, if it turns out to be Joe Biden vs. Donald Trump in 2020, well … you know who gets my vote.

Spoiler art: It ain’t the incumbent.

Looking ahead — already! — to Trump departure

Forgive me for getting ahead of myself, but I cannot help but think about how Donald J. Trump is going to leave the world stage when his time comes.

My gut tells me it won’t be pretty, no matter the terms of the president’s departure.

He’ll either leave after one term in January 2021; or he could get a second term and he’ll leave in January 2025.

Or … he’ll leave before the end of either term. If you get my drift.

The custom is that presidents hand over the keys to the White House to their successor. They get on the helicopter and fly away toward retirement. They then serve their retirement years in relative quiet, pursuing this and/or that cause.

Do you really think Trump will go out with that usual customary class and grace? I don’t. I fear he’ll keep yapping well beyond his years in the White House.

And that’s if he is able to walk away on his own terms, either after one term or — God forbid! — two terms.

If he is forced out by issues that have preoccupied many of us for most of his term to date in office, well, we will need to settle in for an indeterminate siege from the 45th president of the United States.

I’ll need to put these thoughts aside for the time being and concern myself with the issues of the day.

They concern whether the president colluded with Russians who attacked our electoral system. Hey, they’re real. They aren’t a “hoax.”

What do you mean by ‘everybody,’ Mr. President?

Donald J. Trump sat down with Piers Morgan and made yet another astonishing exaggeration, which compels me to disabuse him of the idiocy he put out there.

Morgan asked the president if there is any doubt he will seek re-election in 2020. Trump said he’s all in for a re-election bid.

“Everybody wants me to run” for a second term, he said.

Huh? Wha … ? Eh? Everybody wants him to run?

Count me out, Mr. President. I am not a member of the Everybody Brigade he is citing.

Not only do I want him to walk away after his term, I want him booted out before the end of his term. Although I must concede that a President Mike Pence gives me pause as well, but for reasons that deal more with public policy than with general incompetence, ignorance, arrogance and rhetorical idiocy.

OK, I get that I’m likely nitpicking what Trump said about “everybody” wanting him to run again. However, if we’re being asked to take the president at his word, then I cannot remain silent when he blathers such absolute nonsense.

Trump vs. Warren gets going early!

Donald Trump must believe U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren is going to run for president in 2020, and … that she well might be the Democratic Party nominee for the office Trump currently occupies.

He went after Warren in typical Trumpian fashion Thursday at a rally in Great Falls, Mont., calling her by that derisive nickname he has hung on her, “Pocahontas,” owing to her claim of having Native-American heritage in her background.

Trump has been dismissing that for years. He gets lots of laughs from his political rally crowds.

But here’s my observation about the manner that Trump might campaign for re-election. He won’t take the high road. He won’t ride the moral altitude that his high office allows him.

Oh, no! He’s going to return to the insults and the innuendo that energized his base and helped him get elected in 2016. We’re witnessing it again as he rails and rants against potential rivals for his job.

His rally speech in Great Falls flew off the rails — quite naturally.

He said the following, according to The Hill:

“I’m going to get one of those little kits and in the middle of the debate, when she proclaims she’s of Indian heritage — because her mother said she has high cheekbones, that’s her only evidence,” Trump continued.

“We will take that little kit, we have to do it gently because we’re in the “Me Too” generation, we have to be very gentle,” Trump said mocking the movement that seeks to expose sexual misconduct in media, entertainment and politics.

“We will very gently take that kit and we will slowly toss it, hoping it doesn’t hit her and injure her arm, even though it only weighs probably 2 oz,” he said.

“And we will say, ‘I will give you a million dollars, paid for by Trump, to your favorite charity if you take the test and it shows you’re an Indian,” Trump said. “And we’ll see what she does. I have a feeling she will say no but we will hold it for the debates.”

Doesn’t that sound like a man immersed in the dignity of his high office? Of course not! Dignity and decorum are foreign to this guy.

Tax returns, Mr. President?

A Rhode Island state senator has pitched a fascinating idea that I hope becomes law. Indeed, her idea has already passed the state Senate. Where it goes next is anyone’s guess.

I fear that it won’t see the light of day.

Democrat Gayle Goldin authored a bill that would keep Donald J. Trump’s name off the 2020 ballot unless he releases his income tax returns, something he has so far refused to do.

Trump already has launched his re-election effort. He won’t win Rhode Island’s electoral votes in 2020, just as he didn’t win them in 2016. Sen. Goldin wants him to do something that every presidential candidate has done for the past 40 years, which is release his tax returns for public scrutiny.

Trump’s excuse for refusing to do so is as lame as it gets. He says the Internal Revenue Service is auditing his returns. The IRS says an audit doesn’t prevent someone from releasing their returns to the public, although it has not commented specifically on whether it is actually auditing Trump’s returns.

For that matter, the president hasn’t even produced any evidence that the IRS is in fact auditing his returns, which makes many of us question whether any such audit even has taken place.

Democrats control the Rhode Island Senate. Goldin’s bill passed 34-3. It now goes to the state House. I don’t yet have confidence that this gutsy measure will become law.

I hope it does. I also hope it catches on in all 50 states. I know. It’s not likely to happen. One can hope.