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Fri Jan 11, 2019, 11:32 AM

If you revisited the accusations made by the Obama and Clinton camps against each other in 2008

during the heat of the primaries, a simple truth is clear. At the highest levels especially, politics is very much hardball. That is the basic norm, though sometimes it goes even further over the top from there. And that should surprise no one. Ultimate success and ultimate power is involved. The presidency in particular is the pinnacle achievement of any political career, and it is also the pinnacle achievement for a political operative to win that prize for their candidate. It brings out every competitive instinct that exists, in the heat of that moment. Whenever possible the candidate is shielded, to an extent, from doing the dirtiest of work themselves, so as not to sully their personal image. Surrogates and "unnamed sources" wield the hatchets for them if possible. Vice Presidential candidates have frequently been chosen, for example, based on their ability to be the "attack dog" for their team.

As to power, everything is riding on the results of presidential elections. Anyone with any agenda has a big stake riding on who wins the presidency. Especially given our two party system, powerful interests often make multiple bets on potential winners, actual ideology often sinking to a lower level criteria for their support, behind viability. Having a claim on the attention of the eventual winner becomes a primary goal. Given how election campaigns are financed in America, especially ones of national consequence, the viability of a candidate often matters more than their platform.

Every day is a "money primary" for a candidate seeking to win a major party nomination in a contested primary field. Who wins that battle daily advances, who loses it sinks. This feeds into the need for a candidate to rather ruthlessly exploit any potential weakness they can find in an election adversary, including those in the same political party as their own. When a candidate has a perceived weakness, it is exploited by an adversary even if that adversary knows there's at most a whiff of smoke present, but no real fire. Almost every primary has a dark underbelly. Sometimes the contenders all float high above the muck, while anonymous sources (aligned with a political campaign) forward dirt and salacious rumors to political reporters about an opponent via envelopes with no return addresses.

Primaries are frequently ugly. We have to brace ourselves so as not to get caught in the undertow. The candidates all know how it works. They know how the game is played. it is played that way because it is not a game. The stakes are very real and they are very high. And the loser(s) usually are quick to pull in their horns once the contest is over. Again, the Obama vs Clinton contest in 2008 shows what is possible.

We are entering the 2020 primary season. I'm not backing anyone yet but I'm going to do my best not to burn any bridges with anyone here who end up backing a candidate other than the one I ultimately choose to support.

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Reply If you revisited the accusations made by the Obama and Clinton camps against each other in 2008 (Original post)
Tom Rinaldo Jan 11 OP
LongtimeAZDem Jan 11 #1
Heartstrings Jan 11 #2
Tom Rinaldo Jan 11 #3
LongtimeAZDem Jan 11 #4
Iggo Jan 11 #25
GWC58 Jan 11 #32
Iggo Jan 11 #36
Autumn Jan 11 #5
Tom Rinaldo Jan 11 #7
Autumn Jan 11 #9
Post removed Jan 11 #6
nycbos Jan 11 #8
Autumn Jan 11 #10
nycbos Jan 11 #11
Autumn Jan 11 #12
nycbos Jan 11 #13
Autumn Jan 11 #14
nycbos Jan 11 #16
Autumn Jan 11 #17
ehrnst Jan 11 #21
guillaumeb Jan 11 #30
George II Jan 11 #20
NurseJackie Jan 11 #22
Eliot Rosewater Jan 11 #26
Tom Rinaldo Jan 11 #34
CentralMass Jan 11 #15
Autumn Jan 11 #18
CentralMass Jan 11 #19
George II Jan 11 #27
NurseJackie Jan 11 #28
George II Jan 11 #24
NurseJackie Jan 11 #29
Cha Jan 11 #35
Iggo Jan 11 #23
guillaumeb Jan 11 #31
Crutchez_CuiBono Jan 11 #33

Response to Tom Rinaldo (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 11:37 AM

1. This is exactly why, when a winner is clear, the loser needs to publicly support the winner,

to overcome the rancor of the primary and bring their supporters enthusiastically onboard.

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Response to LongtimeAZDem (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 11:39 AM

2. Agree 100%......

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Response to LongtimeAZDem (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 11:41 AM

3. True, but thst doesn't relieve our own responsibility

Often hard core supporters of one candidate remain pitted against those of another (and sometimes against the winning candidate as well) regardless of the example set by the candidates themselves.

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Response to Tom Rinaldo (Reply #3)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 11:42 AM

4. Agreed +1 /nt

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Response to Tom Rinaldo (Reply #3)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 05:47 PM

25. I hate hardcore supporters of any candidate.

Every single one of them.

>>>>> Hate. <<<<<<

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Response to Iggo (Reply #25)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 06:01 PM

32. I will never forgive the

“Bernie or bust” ers. As far as 2008 after she was eliminated Hillary Clinton became a Team Obama player. Eight years later, at the 2016 Democratic National Convention when Obama and Hillary hugged you could see the affection they have for each other. That night gave me chills! 😃👍🏻

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Response to GWC58 (Reply #32)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 07:29 PM

36. All of them. BoBs, PUMAs.

All of them.

Every single fucking one.

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Response to Tom Rinaldo (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 11:43 AM

5. Primaries winnow out the chaff from the wheat and gives us the best Democrat.

No one is entitled to any seat in politics, they have to prove they are the best person for the job. Primaries give the candidate a chance to explain their issues and bring people to their vision of America. The best vision and the person who hits all or most the issues that are important with the voters wins. It looks like we will have a great field to pick from.

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Response to Autumn (Reply #5)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 11:51 AM

7. I too believe in primaries, for the same reasons

And I agree that it is looking like we will have an exceptional field of potential presidential candidates in 2020. But they remain a form of elections, and elections have their dark as well as light sides to them. It has become virtually impossible to win any reasonably competitive election without some forces on "your side" engaging in the darker electoral arts, at least to some extent. That's true whether we like it or not. We can't afford to be naive and allow that to sour us to whoever emerges victorious or, to only a slightly lesser extent, on whoever comes close but falls short. The loser in a close primary still won a lot of support. We all have a role to play in reuniting our party, individual registered voters being a big part of that, behind our eventual November candidates.

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Response to Tom Rinaldo (Reply #7)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 12:00 PM

9. I agree. Politics has been called a blood sport, and it really is. We may not like the winner

but we don't have to hate the winner and the people who supported the winner. Neither do we have to hate the candidates who loose the primary.

It is however natural to hate the Republican winner.

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Response to Tom Rinaldo (Original post)


Response to Post removed (Reply #6)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 11:54 AM

8. So women who work for a "progressive" can't be harassed?

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Response to nycbos (Reply #8)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 12:07 PM

10. No woman should be harassed. If a progressive candidate didn't harass a woman

why would any Democrat attempt to tie it to them? Should that candidate have to step down because of what someone else did? Do you think everyone knows everything that everyone they know or who works for them is doing?

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Response to Autumn (Reply #10)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 12:12 PM

11. They candidate himself shouldn't have to step down.

But if there are repeated incidents that aren't dealt with it says something about how the campaign is run. If Bernie was smart he would announce how things were handled was a mistake and what he is going to do to prevent them from happening again.

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Response to nycbos (Reply #11)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 12:25 PM

12. He's addressed it already. If what he said isn't good enough for people who

aren't satisfied with his apology that's not his fault. Nothing he could possibly do about it would be good enough for people who don't like him.




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Response to Autumn (Reply #12)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 12:35 PM

13. I'm glad he apologized, but the candidate is responsible for the culture of the campaign.

And often, there seems to be a lack of control from the top.

Members of his data team accessed Clinton's New Hampshire data. Later on members of Bernie campaign team pretended to be members of the Vegas Culinary Workers union after the union had endorsed Clinton.


If the culture is a brogressive again these problems will remain.


I went to UVM. The term "Bernie Bro" is very accurate. There is a reason why Vermont hockey games are more diverse then crowds at Sanders rallies.

However, if he and his campaign handles things differently in 2020 then I will admit I am wrong.

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Response to nycbos (Reply #13)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 12:47 PM

14. Harassment can happen in any campaign. As for the rest I'm not interested in rehashing 2016. nt

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Response to Autumn (Reply #14)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 02:09 PM

16. I prefer to think of it as reflecting.

Learning from our mistakes so we don't make them again.

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Response to nycbos (Reply #16)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 02:10 PM

17. Think of it what you will, I'm not interested in rehashing the 2016 primary.

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Response to Autumn (Reply #17)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 05:18 PM

21. So we ignore all that's come out in the past few days?

Including his statement the other day about not knowing anything about a federal discrimination complaints lodged against his campaign by two staffers against another staffer, and that his campaign paid 30k to settle it?



There was plenty of interest in talking about revelations from the 2008 primary. And at the time she wasn't considering a run.

Sanders is a potential candidate - by his own admission. Vetting is very relevant, and will be more thorough now than ever. No one is exempt.

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Response to Autumn (Reply #12)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 05:59 PM

30. Very well said. eom

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Response to Autumn (Reply #10)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 04:25 PM

20. Elizabeth Esty is no longer in the House because one of her staffers harassed a woman.

Is there a double standard? Female candidates are forced to resign, male get a pass?

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Response to George II (Reply #20)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 05:45 PM

22. Yes. Thank you! Absolutely correct.

Disgusting, isn't it?

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Response to NurseJackie (Reply #22)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 05:52 PM

26. very

If someone else ever did something then our guy can do it too, something like that

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Response to Eliot Rosewater (Reply #26)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 06:20 PM

34. The valid role of so called "whataboutism" is to expose hypocracy. It is often abused as well

Hypocrisy isn't solely a potential failing of a candidate. It can also be a failure on the part of someone who raises a stink about something candidate A does but defends or remains silent about candidate B's behavior under similar circumstances.

Sure "Whataboutism" is sometimes used to deflect attention away from an important discussion of someone's (say a politician) negative behavior onto a discussion of someone else's negative behavior instead. But it also can illuminate when a double standard is being applied by some, calling into question motives. "Whataboutism" was highly relevant and valid vis a vis what Al Franken went through, used to expose the hypocrisy of some who were selectively eager to lynch him.

Personally, I'm staying away from discussions about any of our candidates past or present on this particular thread (other than the framing reference to the 2008 primary, which was negative toward neither candidate.) My OP isn't partisan in that sense. People obviously can discuss anything they want.

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Response to nycbos (Reply #8)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 01:09 PM

15. There is a double standard here among the supporters of other candidates IMO.

Last edited Fri Jan 11, 2019, 02:03 PM - Edit history (1)

Hillary had her own campaign sexual harrasment issue in 2008 where she did not fire the top aid who had been accused of sexual harrassment. He went on to work for a group supporting uer in 2016 where he was fired after another sexual harrasment claim.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/26/us/politics/hillary-clinton-chose-to-shield-a-top-adviser-accused-of-harassment-in-2008.html

No one cared here when that surfaced.

Kamala Harris had a top aid while she was AG who was accused by his assistant of sexual harrasment back in 2016-2017. He became a senior adviser in her Sacramento Senate office. The case was settled by her succesor around the time she took office in the Senate. The accuser was awarded 400k by the state and the Senator, who claimed she was unaware of the charges, fired the man.

https://www.sfchronicle.com/politics/article/Kamala-Harris-aide-resigns-after-sex-harassment-13447386.php

How does a women that intelligent in that type of top level postion not know her top aid has been accused of sexual harrasment of his assistent ?

Would it be the right thing to do to have half a dozen different members post threads about it every day ?

Are the 3 cases that dissimilar ? Is it a matter of liking one candidate and not the other ?

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Response to CentralMass (Reply #15)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 02:13 PM

18. Only the harassment in Bernie's campaign is relevant.

He's not a Democrat you know.

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Response to Autumn (Reply #18)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 04:16 PM

19. +1

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Response to Autumn (Reply #18)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 05:53 PM

27. Since two other cases were brought up (why I don't know, except..........), those two were....

....each were one abuser and one victim, and they were both addressed as soon as they became known.

On the other hand there were many incidents, remember two dozen women signed that letter. And his campaign was characterized as "a pervasive culture of toxic masculinity".

It has nothing to do with the affiliation of any of the three, it has to do with the specifics of the three - the Clinton case and the Harris case are in no way similar to the Sanders cases (plural!).

I have no idea why the three are being compared, or even why the first two were even mentioned.

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Response to Autumn (Reply #18)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 05:55 PM

28. ...

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Response to CentralMass (Reply #15)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 05:46 PM

24. Clinton addressed the issue. She consulted the victim and offered a solution....

....that satisfied the victim. It wasn't kept quiet for two years. She didn't "shield" him. It was addressed to the satisfaction of the victim.

As for the Harris situation, she wasn't aware of the incident until around the date of that article to which you linked. Read the article.
The complaint wasn't even filed until after Harris left the DA position to be Senator.

Being a settlement between the state and the plaintiff, it had to be kept confidential and only those involved directly (i.e., the state and plaintiff) knew about it. Settlements like that have confidentiality clauses. Therefore Harris would NOT be aware of it.

Are you calling her a liar? You're really stretching to generate a similarity between the three which doesn't exist..

Also, the Clinton and Harris cases both were stand-alone cases, one abuser and one victim each. There weren't more than two-dozen individual cases, and the Clinton and Harris cases weren't characterized as a "pervasive culture of toxic masculinity" as has been done in the Sanders campaign.

It has nothing to do with liking one (or two) candidates and not the other. The first two are simply completely different from the third, and those two were addressed at the time.

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Response to George II (Reply #24)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 05:57 PM

29. This bears repeating. Loudly and in boldface!

Also, the Clinton and Harris cases both were stand-alone cases, one abuser and one victim each. There weren't more than two-dozen individual cases, and the Clinton and Harris cases weren't characterized as a "pervasive culture of toxic masculinity" as has been done in the Sanders campaign.
This bears repeating. Loudly and in boldface!

Thank you for setting that poster right and correcting the, uh, "disinformation".

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Response to CentralMass (Reply #15)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 07:09 PM

35. No, there's no "double standard".. but there is

a lot deflection and attempts at distraction from the reality of the staffers and women coming forward with their stories.

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Response to Tom Rinaldo (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 05:46 PM

23. I'm backing everyone!

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Response to Iggo (Reply #23)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 06:01 PM

31. Now THAT is a good answer.

I will back everyone and vote for the eventual candidate.

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Response to Tom Rinaldo (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 06:02 PM

33. Pretty thoughtful Tommy.

"I see you". Good advice and a nice essay. Well written. I couldn't help but think of that picture of Pres Obama and Pres H. Clinton having a laugh sitting together. Obamas head down so he doesn't choke on his drink, and she w a big grin on her face.
Have a good weekend. It's Friday.

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