John Kerry

14 Weeks Until First Vote In Iowa Caucuses

As the House of Representatives is working on its impeachment inquiry involving President Donald Trump, the political calendar is starting to close in on many Democratic Presidential contenders.

It is now only 14 weeks until the first Americans vote on 2020, with the Iowa Caucuses taking place on Monday, February 3.

Iowa is not truly decisive on who wins the nomination and the Presidency in either major political party, as the only times that Iowa was a sign of the future was when an incumbent President was not on the ballot, and even then, not very often.

Democratic Party

Walter Mondale in 1984

Al Gore in 2000

John Kerry in 2004

Barack Obama in 2008

Hillary Clinton in 2016

George McGovern in 1972, Jimmy Carter in 1976, Michael Dukakis in 1988, and Bill Clinton in 1992 failed to win Iowa.

Republican Party

Gerald Ford in 1976

Bob Dole in 1996

George W. Bush in 2000

Ronald Reagan in 1980, George H. W. Bush in 1988, John McCain in 2008, Mitt Romney in 2012, and Donald Trump in 2016 failed to win Iowa.

So only George W. Bush in 2000 and Barack Obama in 2008 won Iowa and went on to win the Presidency in the fall of those years.

So do not expect that who wins Iowa will automatically be the nominee for the Democrats in November 2020.

Since 1972, Iowa has been accurate on the Democratic nominee 43 percent of the time, and 50 percent accurate on the Republican nominee.

Iowa is not representative of the nation in its population mix, but it gives a leg up to a few of the candidates, while dashing the hopes of so many others.

Alternative Candidates Who Might Enter The Democratic Presidential Race

Hard to believe, but rumors are spreading that there could be alternative candidates who might enter the Democratic Presidential race.

These would include:

2016 Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton

Former First Lady Michelle Obama

Former 2004 Presidential nominee John Kerry

Former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg

Former Attorney General Eric Holder

Former Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick

Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown

Most of these ideas are totally preposterous.

It is time for Hillary Clinton to pass the torch finally, and make an unequivocal statement she will not run, as she would divide the party and the nation in such a way that would be totally destructive.

Michelle Obama is not going to run, too smart to consider it.

John Kerry is another too old nominee, who is from the distant past, 2004 as a Presidential candidate, and would be 77 when taking the oath, and the last thing we need is another old candidate.

The same goes for Michael Bloomberg, who would five months younger than Bernie Sanders and nine months older than Joe Biden, and would be one month short of 79 in January 2021, too old, and really too divisive with his record as NYC Mayor, and not loyal to the Democratic Party.

Eric Holder and Deval Patrick would only create more racial division, with Cory Booker and Kamala Harris and Julian Castro already in the race, and Holder highly controversial and being 70 the day after the inauguration, and Deval Patrick just another Massachusetts politician, but with no real constituency to run.

If any candidate deciding to run makes sense, it just might be Sherrod Brown, who considered running, and would be a strong competitor from Ohio, but if he is to run, time is of the essence. He would be 68 at the time of the inauguration, and might be a good Vice Presidential choice instead of for the Presidency.

But except for Brown, really, the next Democratic Presidential nominee needs to come from the present, rapidly dwindling list, and dreaming of alternatives needs to end!

Reality: Candidates Ahead In Public Opinion Polls In Third Year Of Presidential Term Never Are The Nominees For President

Public opinion polls have been notoriously inaccurate in the third year of a Presidential term in who would be the Presidential nominees of major parties the following year.

In 2003, Vermont Governor Howard Dean was the front runner for the Democratic Presidential nomination, but John Kerry ended up as the nominee in 2004.

In 2007, New York Senator Hillary Clinton was the front runner for the Democratic Presidential nomination, but Barack Obama ended up as the nominee in 2008.

In 2007, former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani was the front runner for the Republican Presidential nomination, but John McCain ended up as the nominee in 2008.

In 2011, Herman Cain was the front runner for the Republican Presidential nomination, but Mitt Romney ended up as the nominee in 2012.

In 2015, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush was the front runner for the Republican Presidential nomination, but Donald Trump ended up as the nominee in 2016.

Beyond these examples, in the third year of many Presidential terms, who could have known that the next President would be someone not seriously considered at that time to have a chance to be elected.

Witness John F. Kennedy in 1959; Richard Nixon in 1967; Jimmy Carter in 1975; Ronald Reagan in 1979; Bill Clinton in 1991; Barack Obama in 2007; and Donald Trump in 2015.

Also add the following: Abraham Lincoln in 1859; Woodrow Wilson in 1911; Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1931; and Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1951.

So, to assume that Joe Biden, currently ahead in all polls for the Democratic Presidential nomination in 2020, will be the nominee is quite a gamble, based upon history.

Losing Vice Presidential Candidates Who Should Have Been President: Henry Cabot Lodge Jr. (1960) And Edmund Muskie (1968)

A category of political leaders very easily forgotten are Vice Presidential candidates on a losing Presidential ticket.

Many of them are seen in history as disastrous for one reason or another, including William E. Miller, who ran with Barry Goldwater in 1964; Geraldine Ferraro, who was the running mate of Walter Mondale in 1984; John Edwards, who was John Kerry’s Vice Presidential nominee in 2004; and Sarah Palin, who was John McCain’s running mate in 2008.

On the other hand, we can find at least two Vice Presidential running mates who were true giant figures in American political history.

One was Richard Nixon’s Vice Presidential choice in 1960, former Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr of Massachusetts, who lost his seat to John F. Kennedy in 1952, but was United Nations Ambassador under President Dwight D. Eisenhower; and later Ambassador to South Vietnam under John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson; and also sought the Republican Presidential nomination in 1964. Lodge was a true star figure, the only one of the four candidates in 1960 not to become President, and there are scholars who think he might have been a better President, than Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon. He was certainly a solid figure in American foreign policy, and had 16 years service in the US Senate.

The other Vice Presidential running mate who was a star figure was Maine Senator Edmund Muskie, who was Hubert Humphrey’s choice in 1968. Muskie ran a dignified campaign that year, and later sought the Presidency in 1972, but derailed by the “Dirty Tricks” of the Richard Nixon reelection campaign, and lost the nomination to Senator George McGovern, seen as an easier candidate to defeat, which indeed he turned out to be. But Muskie served 21 years in the Senate, and then was Secretary of State under President Jimmy Carter in 1980.

Both men would have been exceptional choices for the Oval Office, but never had the opportunity, but their legacy needs to be honored and remembered.

Experience, Not Age, Should Rule In Government, After Donald Trump

As a result of the disaster that is Donald Trump, it is urgent that Americans elect the next President based on solid experience in government.

We do not need or want anyone who has spent his life in business alone.

We also should not elect anyone who has not had substantial experience in government, although one is not putting a specific number of years of experience as the requirement.

One thing is clear:  Age cannot be a factor, as is now being proved by the masterful leadership of future and past Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.  She has demonstrated that she is the right person for the times, but has also agreed that she will leave no later than four years, and give the younger generation an opportunity to gain experience in lower level leadership, so as to take over when she and the other veteran Democratic leaders, Steny Hoyer and James Clyburn, leave no later than 2022.

What is needed is proof of skill in government policy making, and if it is determined that Joe Biden, or Bernie Sanders, or Michael Bloomberg, or John Kerry, or even Jerry Brown is the “right” person, then we simply have to insure that his running mate for Vice President is someone, male or female, who is fully equipped to take over if anything happens to the President who might have reached his 80s in age.

It might also be wise for any of these soon to be octogenarians to make a pledge not to seek a second term, and by choosing a Vice Presidential nominee, be grooming such person for the succession if needed during the term, or for after that term, although, obviously, others could challenge the Vice President for election in the next term.

If, on the other hand, we move toward much younger leadership, let us be certain that such younger nominees have enough experience, vision, and goals to make such person an appropriate President of the United States.

44 Retired US Senators Speak Out On Constitutional Crisis, Including Principled Republicans

The Washington Post published two days ago an op-ed editorial by 44 retired US Senators, calling on the present members of the Senate to show guts and courage and speak up to defend democracy and the Constitution, from the threats presented by President Donald Trump.

Eleven of those 44 were Republicans, of all stripes and beliefs, including Ben Nighthorse Campbell of Colorado; William Cohen of Maine; Alfonse D’Amato of New York;  John Danforth of Missouri; David Durenberger of Minnesota; Chuck Hagel of Nebraska; Richard Lugar of Indiana; Larry Pressler of South Dakota; Alan Simpson of Wyoming; John Warner of Virginia; and Lowell Weicker of Connecticut.

The other 33 were Democrats, including such luminaries as Evan Bayh of Indiana; Bill Bradley of New Jersey; Tom Daschle of South Dakota; Chris Dodd of Connecticut; Russ Feingold of Wisconsin; Bob Graham of Florida; Tom Harkin of Iowa; Gary Hart of Colorado; Bob Kerrey of Nebraska; John Kerry of Massachusetts; Joe Lieberman of Connecticut; Barbara Mikulski of Maryland; Sam Nunn of Georgia; Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia; and Mark Udall of Colorado.

America needs Republicans in the Senate, now 53 of them, to stop defending Donald Trump, and start concerning themselves with the preservation of American democracy.  They need to speak up and challenge and confront Donald Trump and stop accepting his violations of the Constitution.

If they do not, they will  be relegated to the dustbin of history, and the Republican party of Lincoln, TR, Ike, Reagan, Ford, and H. W. Bush will die of lack of principle and commitment.

Rumors That Jerry Brown Will Announce For A Fourth Run At Being President, After 1976, 1980, 1992 Despite Being 82 In 2020

MSNBC will be having an hour presentation on Sunday evening about soon retiring Governor Jerry Brown of California, who has been on the political scene for a half century, and now at age 80 this past April, seems to be at the end of his public career.

Or is he?

Rumors are flying, and supposedly will be addressed on Sunday evening, that Brown is considering a fourth run at the White House, which he ran for in Democratic primaries against Jimmy Carter in 1976 and 1980, and against Bill Clinton in 1992.

Brown has had an amazing career as four time Governor of the Golden State from 1975-1983 and 2011-2019, along with being Oakland Mayor from 1999-2007 and California Attorney General from 2007-2011. Brown had the only defeat of his career when he tried for the US Senate in 1982, and if he had been elected, one can imagine he would still be in the Senate, running for his seventh term after what would have been 36 years in that upper chamber.

As Governor the past eight years, Brown has led the fight for the environment, for immigration, and against the Trump agenda during the past two years, and he seems unlikely to be quiet in the future, whether he runs for President in 2020 or not.

Brown has had his naysayers, but also his supporters over the years, and were he to announce for President for a fourth time, he would be the oldest of a number of potential candidates who would reach their 80s in the next Presidential term, including Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Michael Bloomberg, and John Kerry.

One thing seems clear, that at least two future octogenarians, Biden and Sanders, will definitely announce for President, with Bloomberg, Kerry, and Brown also potentially joining the fray.

Senator John McCain: Rest In Peace, You Did Your Country Well, And Will Be Well Remembered In The Annals Of American History!

One of the giant figures of the US Senate, a true “Lion of the Senate”, Arizona Senator John McCain, has left us as of last evening, and the nation is in deep mourning for his family, and for the loss to the nation by his passing.

Let me make it clear, that I did not vote for Senator McCain in 2008, but I have always had deep respect for him as a human being.

I did not always agree with his views on issues either, but I knew his viewpoints were sincere and based on his conservative values.

Ironically, McCain died on the same day that his good friend and also rival, Democratic Senator Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts, passed away nine years ago.

McCain worked well across the aisle, and was particularly close with Democratic Senators Joe Lieberman of Connecticut, Joe Biden of Delaware, John Kerry of Massachusetts, and Russ Feingold of Wisconsin, along with Ted Kennedy. McCain promoted campaign finance reform with Feingold, something we desperately need in 2018. And probably his closest friendship was with South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham.

He thought of creating a bipartisan Presidential ticket with Joe Lieberman, and who knows, if he had done so, would the Presidential Election of 2008 ended up differently?

He knew he had made many mistakes in his life, and did not deny that, but he was always a decent man, who while so many were attacking Sarah Palin in 2008 and ever since, he never said he had made a mistake in selecting her as his running mate, even though he certainly knew that was the case.

He fought bitterly with George W. Bush for the GOP nomination in 2000, and against Barack Obama for the Presidency in 2008, and often disagreed with both Presidents’ policies, but he asked both of them to give eulogies for him at his upcoming funeral.

At the same time, Donald Trump never showed any respect for McCain, and the suffering he went through as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam for five and a half years, and could not show any common decency toward McCain in his declining days. So rightfully, McCain ordered that Trump NOT attend his funeral, which was his right to assert that. For what Trump has done regarding McCain, as well as the innumerable sins Trump has visited toward everyone imaginable, the 45th President will pay the price in the after life, and his funeral one day will not have the deep mourning that we are witnessing for John McCain.

McCain will be best remembered for his defense of Barack Obama at that campaign rally in 2008, when that crazy woman was saying Obama was an Arab. This was a moment that stands out for the ages, when we need unity, and not racism and nativism.

Also, in his last appearance on the Senate floor, John McCain, who had voted against ObamaCare, saved ObamaCare from Donald Trump and the evil Republican leadership and membership, which wanted to destroy it in 2017, without any alternative for millions of Americans. That showed the true statesmanship of the Arizona Senator.

John McCain will go down in the annals of American history as one of the small number of US Senators who made a real difference in a positive way in the evolution of American history.

And unbelievably, his mother Roberta is still alive at past the half way point from 106 to 107 in age, making her one of a very small number of Americans still alive who were born in the year of the most dramatic election of the 20th century, 1912, when McCain’s favorite President, Theodore Roosevelt, ran as a “maverick” against President William Howard Taft. And McCain was proud to be called a “maverick”.

It seems likely that Cindy McCain, now a widow, will replace her husband by appointment for the next two years, and it is believed she is a moderate, and could have a dramatic effect on the Senate if she indeed moves toward shifting the momentum of the party in votes, whether the Republicans remain the majority, or end up in the minority in the next two years.

God bless John McCain, rest in peace, as you did your country well, and will be well remembered and honored in the annals of American history!

Is Our Future Leadership Our Past Contenders, And “Old” Leaders (Those Over 70 In 2020)?

At a time when many observers would say we need to look to a new generation of leadership for America. instead the potential for our past contenders or “old’ leaders to end up competing for the Presidency in 2020 is very clear.

On the Democratic side, we could have Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont (age 79 in 2020); former Vice President Joe Biden (78 in 2020); former 2016 Presidential nominee and First Lady and New York Senator Hillary Clinton (age 73 in 2020); and Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts (age 71 in 2020) all announcing for President.

Some rumors even put retiring California Governor Jerry Brown (82 in 2020); former 2004 Presidential nominee, former Massachusetts Senator, and former Secretary of State John Kerry (77 in 2020); and former 2000 Presidential nominee and former Vice President Al Gore (72 in 2020) also in the mix.

On the Republican side, we could have President Donald Trump (74 in 2020) and former 2012 Presidential nominee, Massachusetts Governor, and future likely Utah Senator Mitt Romney (73 in 2020), announcing for President.

The question that arises is whether the voting population would be turned off to “Baby Boomers” and some born even before 1946, with Sanders, Biden, Brown and Kerry born between 1938 and 1943, being the competitors who make it to the final stage of the election campaign.

It is certainly likely that at least some of this above list is in the mix, but the likelihood still is that a Senator or Governor of a younger generation will be, at least, the Democratic Presidential nominee in 2020, and a slight chance that such would be the case in the Republican Party.

Would Mitt Romney Work For Donald Trump As Secretary Of State?

The mere suggestion that Mitt Romney, the 2012 Republican Presidential nominee, who vehemently opposed Donald Trump throughout the 2016 campaign, will be visiting with Trump, and might agree to be his Secretary of State, is mind blowing.

Romney is the most credible nominee for any post yet to be rumored to be a possible cabinet member for Trump, but it is hard to imagine that Romney would actually be offered such a position, or would agree to such appointment.

The two men are temperamentally exact opposites, and Romney ran his campaign in 2012 warning us how dangerous Russia and its leader, Vladimir Putin, were, while Donald Trump has praised Putin, and suggested a bromance with the Russian leader.

How would Romney reconcile that difference, and how would Trump do the same?

Romney would add some badly needed stature to the Trump cabinet, but what would he get out of it, other than being mistreated by a boss who would be looking forward to firing him, or forcing him to resign over policy differences?

How would Romney overcome National Security Adviser nominee Michael Flynn’s close association and impact on President Trump?

And why would Romney want to give up his close family activities, and spend, if he survived in office, the next four years doing the toughest job in the world, in regards to stress and constant travel, such as a million miles in four years, as occurred with Hillary Clinton, and close to that mileage, if not more, for John Kerry?