02 March 2020

Klobuchar Out

Senator Amy Klobuchar has suspended her campaign in advance of Super Tuesday and endorsed Joe Biden. She had dim prospects for crossing the 15% threshold anywhere outside of her home state of Minnesota, and her departure allows the anybody but Sanders wing of the Democratic Party to rally around a single candidate, Joe Biden. 

Her departure from the race will also probably help Elizabeth Warren, the sole remaining viable female candidate in the race. Her decision comes close on the heels of the decisions of Tom Steyer and Pete Buttigieg to suspend their campaigns after the South Carolina primary results were announced. The decisions are being forced now because Super Tuesday voters will make an indelible mark on who goes to the national convention with how many delegates.

This leaves the following candidates still in the running (in order of candidacy strength to date):

1. Sanders
2. Biden
3. Warren
4. Bloomberg
5. Gabbard

As previously noted, Gabbard's candidacy is already dead in all but name, so there are really only four candidates running, and Bloomberg has not yet even appeared on the ballot. The fact that she is still in the race has become a bad joke.

These departures improve the possibility that Biden could capture a plurality or majority of delegates going into the national convention. Warren's only real shot at the nomination is as a compromise candidate between the Sanders and Biden camps in a brokered convention, but that possibility now looks much better as competitors have suspended their candidacies.

Bloomberg looks unlikely to secure enough support from the Democratic based to win the nomination despite immense campaign spending. He has a late start and he is too far to the right and too recently affiliated with the Republican party to be very attractive to Democratic voters and shares many, although not all, of the flaws that the Democratic party base sees in their opponent, President Trump. Bloomberg's candidacy was fueled by the belief that neither Biden nor Sanders could win the nomination or beat Trump. To the extent that Biden looks viable again, Bloomberg's support suffers.

Notably, all of the remaining viable candidates in both political parties are 70+ year old white people who represent the Northeastern United States, and three of the five were born in New York City. Two of the four viable Democratic candidates are Jewish (Gabbard is a Hindu, FWIW).

Below the fold are reprinted biographies from my prior post of the remaining candidates in both parties for President.

* Bernie Sanders is a Jewish white man born in 1941 in New York City to a middle class immigrant Jewish family, who is 78 years old, from Vermont, who has politically identified as a Democratic Socialist. He married a college sweetheart in 1964 but divorced two years later with no children. He had a son out of wedlock in 1969 with his girlfriend whom he never married. He married his current wife of 32 years in 1988 and has treated his three stepchildren (who were 13 to 17 years old in 1988) as his own children.

Mike Bloomberg is a Jewish white man born in 1942 in Boston to a middle class family, who is 78 years old. He now resides in New York City. He was married to his first wife, with whom he had two daughters, for eighteen years, and has had a "domestic partner" for nineteen years, since 2000. Prior to 2001, he was registered as a Democrat, but from 2001 to 2007 was ran as and served as the Republican mayor of New York City. Midway through his second term of mayor, he disaffiliated with the Republican party and became a political independent, which he remained for the rest of his term as mayor when he was defeated in his bid for a fourth term in 2013. He remained an independent for five more years before re-affiliating with the Democratic party two years ago in 2018. He is a self-made billionaire businessman.

Joe Biden is a Roman Catholic white man born in Pennsylvania in 1942, who is 77 years old from Delaware, whose defining issue in his early political career as a member of the Southern wing of the Democratic party was opposing busing to desegregate public schools. His father was a middle class, reasonably successful used car salesman in a large family. He married in law school, but his wife and one year old daughter died six years later just after he was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1972. He has been married for 42 years to his second wife whom he married in 1977 with whom he had four children.

Donald Trump is white man born in New York City in 1946, who is 73 years old and is also from New York City, who is nominally a Presbyterian with several Evangelical Christian religious advisors. He his currently a far right Republican but his political party affiliation has varied over time. Until 1987, he was a Democrat. For the next twelve years, from 1987-1999, he was a Republican, after which he spent two years identified with the Reform Party (1999-2001). He then identified as a Democrat for another eight years (2001-2009), then as a Republican for two years (2009-2011), then briefly as an independent, 2011-2012, and then as a Republican since 2012. His first political office was as President of the United States an office he won as the Republican nominee in the 2016 election. His father was a wealthy New York City based real estate investor known for his racism. Trump is reputed to be a billionaire, but this cannot be verified, he has made numerous misrepresentations regarding his wealth, and his wealth is largely inherited. He has many business interests he has not been a good steward of his inherited wealth reporting more tax losses than anyone else in the entire United States in many years. He is in his third marriage and has five children, with some children from each of his three marriages. His fifteen marriage to his first wife, Ivana (from 1977-1992) and his six year marriage to his second wife Marla (1993-1999) ended in divorces. He has been married for fourteen years to his current wife, Melania (from 2005). His first and third wives were Eastern European immigrants. He is also widely known to have had many affairs, including multiple affairs in his current marriage, and is reputed to have paid for abortions for some of his mistresses.

Elizabeth Warren is a white woman raised as a Methodist, with some minor Native American ancestry, who was born in 1949 in Oklahoma City, and is 70 years old, from Massachusetts, who represents that state as a U.S. Senator. She identified as a Republican as a young woman but converted to being a Democrat while she was a law school professor in the late 1980s and early 1990s based upon her research (ultimately at Harvard University after teaching in Texas, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania). She grew up in a large lower middle class family with her parents working in retail, food service, and building maintenance work. She had two children (one before law school and one shortly after) in her first ten year marriage, then divorced and remarried two years later in 1980 and has been married to her current husband for 39 years.

Tulsi Gabbard is a mixed race vegan Hindu woman of mixed race (Asian, Polynesian and white) born in 1981 in American Samoa, she is 38 years old and currently a member of Congress from Hawaii who lived there since she was 2 years old. She has served in the Army National Guard as a medic including combat service in the Iraq War, but has primarily been a politician for most of her adult life. She was married to her first husband from 2002 to 2006, after which they divorced, and to her current husband for four years since 2015. She does not have children. She has been a life long conservative Democrat since her late teens and since she was elected to the state legislature in 2002, who is notable for her anti-gay marriage efforts (which she has since apologized for and disavowed) and her lack of support for impeaching Donald Trump, which is particularly notable since unlike other Democratic members of the House of Representatives who broke ranks, she is from a safe Democratic district.

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