Monday, March 7, 2016

In case you missed the 2016 Democratic Party Debate in Flint, Michigan: the low down of the Seventh Debate?

Keywords or terms; Seventh democratic Party Debate; Flint, Michigan; Hillary Clinton; Bernie Sanders; Philadelphia; Cleveland; Kansas; Nebraska; Maine; Re-branding; Opponent's claim; Trade Policies; Loss of Jobs in Auto-Industry; Pivoting in campaign Messaging; H-brand; Jew; Donald Trump; Ted Cruz; Platitudes and Openness

The touchstone of Vermont Senator Bernie Sander’s 2016 presidential campaign – the alleviation of the spiraling down of middle-income lifestyle and holding accountable Wall-Street excesses and squanders behavior that led to the last melt down of America’s financial sector – got a bigger boost this past weekend. The primary threat to Hillary Clinton’s presidential ambition raked in delegates as he won primaries in the States of Kansas, Nebraska and Maine. That Bernie Sander’s campaign triumphed in these states despite Hillary Clinton’s delegates lead, as of now, Clinton has One thousand one hundred and twenty-nine (1,129) and Sanders, four hundred and ninety-eight (498), is cause for celebration for the Bernie Sanders’ brand. This is probably why some observers maintain that the unending ambition of Bernie Sanders for the White House oval office has just began; the ‘feel the Bern’ brand is not going away very soon, neither is the denunciation of corporate greed and income inequality, ever going to get a reprieve or rest. The supposedly 2016 champion of the Democratic middle-income earners is a proud Jew and promises to take the fight to the floor of the Democratic Party’s Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Convention, if need be.

Unfortunately, it appears most establishment Democrats and super delegates are already committed to Hillary Clinton’s campaign; and, many minority Democrats flocking to the ‘H’-brand, are making it rather difficult for Bernie Sanders to overcome the already huge gulf in delegates’ count and disparity. Further, the size and probable irreversibility of the gulf in the delegate’s disparity count, questions the possibility of Bernie Sanders being the Democratic Party nominee. As the contest move Westwards and probably to the Middle Belt states, Bernie Sanders may not be able to garner enough delegates to overcome the Hillary’s current edge or huge lead. Now, this does not preclude the possibility of overcoming part of the deficit with a palpable ratio, with surprise victories in Mountain states as West Virginia, Wisconsin, Montana and or Idaho for Bernie Sanders. As we speak, Bernie Sanders is acknowledged to have a robust grassroots fund raising effort and this is more like a life-saver for a long drawn out primary and caucuses' fights in the nomination exercise.

Understanding that Bernie Sanders’ campaign is not a push over is reminiscent of the rapid effort of Clinton’s campaign team, prior to the conclusion of Sunday’s (March 6, 2016) debate, to release emails and tweets regarding how outstanding their candidate is performing or has performed in the CNN moderated 2016-Democratic debate in Flint, Michigan. This is not wholly unexpected or surprising, as the recent Bernie’s victories in Kansas, Nebraska and Maine, and his verbalization that he is not going away, now resonates more than ever, with the Clinton’s team. Bernie Sanders has proven he is a formidable candidate or alternative to Hillary Clinton. He has won some rather unpredictable victories, even for the Clinton’s campaign strategists’ expectations. Whoever thought Bernie Sander’s campaign could outmatch Clinton in a State like Kansas? Moreover, it has been argued elsewhere that Bernie’s Socialist genre will turn many voters off in the Mid-western and Rust-belt states; however, that is not what has happened in this campaign cycle. Capitalizing and branding your campaign messaging in such a way as to plant doubts in the minds of potential voters regarding your opponent’s credibility, can do magic; and has been known to be the nuclear option that would torpedo, in situation where other things or messaging has failed in a presidential campaign. Re-branding opponents or telling the story of the opponents the way it really isn’t, is often an option. Maybe that is why Bernie Sanders may be contemplating re-branding as an alternative means of cutting into the former Secretary of State’s leads in the polls; and maybe, the same reason Hillary Clinton has been re-branding Bernie Sanders’ legislative voting records, as we saw in the last debate in Flint, Michigan.

Those campaign strategists and debate coaches, who coolly stress a lukewarm or no-so-much temperamental aggressiveness or approach in primary and caucuses debates, may have been taken aback by Bernie Sander’s somewhat prick response to Hillary Clinton in the middle of his sentences, with: “Excuse me, I am talking!” However, how else is Bernie going to overtake the overwhelming delegate deficiency, if he does not edify a message that I’m here to be reckoned with and don’t think you’ve got the nomination wrapped up, yet? You know like they say: “It’s not over until it is over!" Unfortunately, Bernie Sander’s claim that Hillary Clinton's free-trade voting or policies was the reason for loss of jobs in the auto industry, is unlikely to do his cause any good; as many facts' checkers insist that is a mischief on the part of Bernie and mostly a miss-characterization of Hillary’s support for those policies.

The remarkable give-and-take debate style on Sunday, showed how very civil both candidates have been to each other and probably, neutralizes claim of tawny and tangy hostilities between both campaign teams; however, the competition was still there, if not very obvious to the onlookers. Interestingly, for Democrats, the working class remains the real base to draw votes and supports; and, will remain so for a long time. The debating duo probably spoke to some concerns of this group, if not necessarily exhaustively. It therefore behooves any aspirant working to garner the support of this class of Democratic Party voters, if he or she is going to make an impact on a campaign contest, to emphasize and re-emphasize what he or she is going to do to make their life choices easier. Yes, the rich investor class in the Democratic Party will always be the source of huge campaigns contributions and donations; however, to win large support at the voting booth, an aspirant is better-off pivoting his campaign messaging to the working class, who make up the majority of likely voters in the Democratic Party. This is just the gospel truth for Democrats and for now, it appears Bernie Sanders has grasped the essence of this ploy and using it to the benefit of his campaign, which has led him to some unexpected or hardly fought victories in states and places hitherto considered the domain or friendly to Hillary Clinton and her campaign.

March 6th, 2016 Democratic party debate in Flint, Michigan, probably opened up some moments of tense demeanor between the Clinton and Sander’s campaigns; and those observers who have concluded that the cordial encounters in prior debates are essentially temporal and would gradually be eroding as Bernie Sanders eventually realize that deflecting criticism against Hillary Clinton from Republicans and naysayers to the H-brand, is probably not making his campaign competitive enough to overcome the lopsided delegates’ count in favor of Hillary Clinton. The progressive erosion of the cordiality with Hillary Clinton’s campaign probably began when the gloves came off at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee debate, the sixth Democratic Party debate, without much differences or recognition by likely voters. In light of the changes and gaps in delegate counts between both campaigns, supporters and voters must now expect the ramp up of comments like, “You’re not the president yet” and “Excuse me, I am talking”, coming out of the mouth of the competitive campaign of Bernie Sanders. What observers must and will probably never see, is the rowdiness and personal attacks that have characterized the Republican Party debates. The constant acrimonious and personal attacks from the Republican front runner against his closest rivals, have provided fodder for laughter from political observers and the public at large; however, they have also created implicit and explicit skepticism of the maturity of the Republican field for the 2016 White House oval office.

Nevertheless, the current 2016 campaign for the White House oval office, from both political parties’ competitors, continues to open up new frontier considerations for America: do we need more liberality, or should the take be for more conservatism? One, Democratic Party’s aspirants’ friendly debate rebuttals have relayed somewhat sublime, if not increasingly warmer perspectives of what issues are of estimable concerns of the rank and file of the party. Two, the somewhat volatile debate interactions among Republican aspirants, posit a more complex perspective of what the average republican really wants as the voters preferences are splintered among more than three aspirants. Sadly, too, it is more difficult to ascertain, if the position of the party’s front runner, including some of his evasive responses and sometimes offensive rhetoric are representative of the preferences of Republican party’s rank and file; or, are better ignored and relegated to secondary consideration or oblivion because of how marveling extremists they can easily be termed or probably anti-republican party establishment? Three, the average Republican voter may now be in a quagmire, asking himself or herself, if the choice between Donald Trump and Ted Cruz for the Republican flag bearer's status is not a toss-up, riskier for Republicans than the nation, or vice-versa? Fourth and finally, on the Democratic side, many voters have probably concluded that the choice between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, is less risky for the party, and by default, the nation?

Today, baring a negotiated conference in Cleveland, Ohio, Donald Trump or Ted Cruz, would likely be the Republican flag bearer; and on the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders would assume the status of the party’s flag bearer. The policy rhetoric and the unspoken policy stance of the top Republican aspirant, Donald Trump, would continue to be essentially indecipherable because they mostly border on nationalism; and or, a rather crude and demeaning way of categorizing or classifying members of the society that are not like Mr. Trump in color, most of whom find most of his comments offensive and campaign messaging hardly representative of their position on a number of public policies, especially on immigration and trade policies. Now, the question from this supposedly ‘Anti-Trump’ group maybe, are rank and file Republicans flocking to Donald Trump because they share his inhibitions or because the anti-establishment rhetoric from him, is just as important as unattended policies issues that may alleviate the challenges the everyday American faces in the course of surviving in an openly competitive marketplace? For Democrats, are the harbingers of Bernie Sander’s claim that income inequality and excesses of Corporate America are necessarily paramount or more important for policy implication than Hillary Clinton’s interpretation of voting against auto industry’s bailout by Bernie Sanders as synonymous with voting against America’s middle income group? These are tough questions and they are just as important considerations for anyone looking at the likelihood of Donald Trump or Ted Cruz ending up as the republican flag bearer and Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sander’s becoming the Democratic Party flag bearer.

The known positions of theses aspirants on many issues; and those positions that these aspirants have kept under wraps, are the risks involved in their choice as either party’s flag bearer and likely eventual President of the United States. In a world of platitudes and openness, where all the unknowns are knowable, the arguments maintained by opponents of either of these aspirants for party’s flag-bearer, would be focused on the exclusions out there that appear fuzzy, in making a perfect choice for the office of Commander-in-Chief. Coping with a host of campaign rhetoric, relevant or irrelevant, may actually be the risk involved in making the right choice of who to succeed the sitting President, President Barack Obama. Remaining uncommitted to any of these candidacies, maybe a strategic thinking that could easily be resolved in the voting booth in November. In the hindsight, part of the risks of choice, or inherent risks, would have been absolved by others, members of both parties who decide to vote for one of the aspirants over the other in the Republican Party or the Democratic Party Primaries and Caucuses; thus, making the eventual choice between the two best aspirants, easier. The potential of having the opportunity to make choices at the party level may seem rather important to some voters; however, to those who care much about candidate’s potential policies and voting records, it may actually be a life-savior to wait it out until the chaff is separated from the seed.
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