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Old 05-05-2016, 12:55 AM   #501
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I have been thinking that a lot of people are upset because they were looking forward to the 'contested convention" and the GOP ripping itself apart.
There was the "GOP ripping itself apart" factor, but to be honest as a political junkie I just enjoy really rare events occurring. It's unlikely to even get this close to a contested convention for a while, let alone one actually happen. I'm excited that Australia is almost certainly about to have a double dissolution election (where the entire Senate is up for re-election rather than just half) simply because there hasn't been one for three decades, not for any consideration of which parties it will benefit. I'd also look forward to the prospect of a contested Democratic convention, though if Bernie supporters think that's still half a chance they're kidding themselves.

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The GOP field was not that weak at all, Rubio, Christie, Jeb, Walker, Kasish, come on now, be honest. The problem was the people are done with established politicians, that's why 3 outsiders rose to the top, with Hillary clinging on. Strange times, Biden would not have done as well as people think.
Is it just that people are done with the "establishment"? I think the weakness was that those men were weak at persuading voters to support them. If you can't consistently get even 10%, you're weak.

Please clap.
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Old 05-05-2016, 01:03 AM   #502
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I appreciate you taking the time to weigh in from Oceania?? I think?

I could not carry on a decent conversation about your internal politics and I consider myself better informed than most Americans.
Trump won't get a lot of the young Sanders supporters. He will get many of the working class middle aged Americans that feel they have been sold out by the trade agreements that Bill and Hillary passed in the 90s. Sanders has hit a note on that, same note as Trump. Our elections turn on just a few states. What we call the rust belt, and coal country that typically goes Democratic, these people feel left behind by the Clintons and even Obama with his new trade deal. This is where Trump can flip a couple of states.
It's a function of two things - the global reach of American power makes its politics relevant to us, and the fact that when I first went online most communities in which I was interested were heavily populated by Americans. If there was a political discussion online it was about the US. So today a lot of my online friends are American and its politics fills my social media feeds. My knowledge of UK politics, for example, is much weaker despite Australia and New Zealand's strong historical ties to that country. Of course, I think that's in part because American politics really is more entertaining in its quirks, characters, and - to us - its extremism.

What I don't quite get, though, is how American politics today turns on only a few states, as you say. Look at election maps from the 1960s-80s. There are states voting Democrat that never would today, and states voting Republican that never would today. I realise that this was a big time of transition, especially in the Democrats losing the south, but now also appears to be a shift within parties, a change in what they represent or stand for, and nobody's expecting the Republicans to lose certain states in their modern heartland unless they nominated the ghost of Osama bin Laden.

Hell, they could probably nominate Putin and win more states than Mondale did.
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Old 05-05-2016, 01:04 AM   #503
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If Hillary was in a nest with 15 other hatchings she may have gotten pushed out by the big noisy cuckoo bird too,
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Old 05-05-2016, 01:21 AM   #504
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It's a function of two things - the global reach of American power makes its politics relevant to us, and the fact that when I first went online most communities in which I was interested were heavily populated by Americans. If there was a political discussion online it was about the US. So today a lot of my online friends are American and its politics fills my social media feeds. My knowledge of UK politics, for example, is much weaker despite Australia and New Zealand's strong historical ties to that country. Of course, I think that's in part because American politics really is more entertaining in its quirks, characters, and - to us - its extremism.

What I don't quite get, though, is how American politics today turns on only a few states, as you say. Look at election maps from the 1960s-80s. There are states voting Democrat that never would today, and states voting Republican that never would today. I realise that this was a big time of transition, especially in the Democrats losing the south, but now also appears to be a shift within parties, a change in what they represent or stand for, and nobody's expecting the Republicans to lose certain states in their modern heartland unless they nominated the ghost of Osama bin Laden.

Hell, they could probably nominate Putin and win more states than Mondale did.
I do appreciate that is does seem odd that perhaps 3 but no more that 7-8 of the 50 states are only in play. I have lived on California my whole life and being the biggest state, 13% of the population we only see the candidates when they want money, and that is quite often. Being that I live in Newport Beach where there is a lot of money they all come here.

Every now and then the country seems to be getting on well, then we can have a more lop-sided election, Reagan's second term, and Clinton's second term.

Good luck with your national elections, sounds really interesting. I am sure I will read about it in my Los Angeles Times daily newspaper. A few years back when they had more overseas correspondents the coverage was better.
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Old 05-05-2016, 08:38 AM   #505
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http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2...imes&smtyp=cur

So as national polling is utterly useless, even though some will inevitably pull out a national poll anyways. They mean jack shit.

Currently Clinton destroys Trump. If he improves his polling by 5%, he still loses. He would need to improve his polling in key battle ground states by 10% to pull off a victory.

Impossible? No, as the link states Reagan did just that. So if you think Trump is Reagan, you've got that to hang onto.

But the odds say that this will be a blow out.
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Old 05-05-2016, 08:54 AM   #506
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2016 US Presidential Election Thread - VIII

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I'd also look forward to the prospect of a contested Democratic convention, though if Bernie supporters think that's still half a chance they're kidding themselves.

There won't be a contested convention in any meaningful sense. A candidate will win on the first round of balloting - it's mathematically impossible for that not to be the case, given that there are only two candidates in the running.

In the real world, of course, the candidate who will win will be HRC. But even if we could not be so confident about that - hypothetically - the convention still wouldn't really be contested. The supers may vote as they please, but we'll have a good sense of how that will be heading into the convention. (Again, it will be for HRC. But, if there are mass defections to the Bernie side to the point of even supers from Clinton states #FeelingTheBern, it's unimaginable that that will be some sort of a convention surprise. We will know beforehand.)

So, there will be a first balloting, a candidate will win on that first balloting, and we will know exactly who that candidate is before the convention.

The only real question is this: how much does Bernie try to extract from HRC and the Democratic Party in exchange for a speech endorsing Clinton. Some of his supporters are fairly fanatical and making claims of #BernieOrBust at the moment. (Note that, had Bernie never run, they probably would have happily lined up behind HRC.) A speech where Bernie endorses HRC at the DNC would go a long way to prevent that, and HRC may give into some demands from Bernie to secure that. For instance, adopting his campaign reform platform might be reasonable. But if he makes demands like adding #BreakUpTheBanks to the Democratic Party platform in exchange for an endorsement speech, they may just tell him to eff off. Note, however, that all of this is really unrelated to how many delegates Bernie has.


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Old 05-05-2016, 09:08 AM   #507
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Is it just that people are done with the "establishment"? I think the weakness was that those men were weak at persuading voters to support them. If you can't consistently get even 10%, you're weak.



Please clap.

I don't think that's necessarily true. Failure to launch doesn't equate to weakness. It's hard to break the mold if you're not hot when the doors open. Rand Paul was actually a polled favorite a year prior to it beginning. Then Christie. Then Bush, for a rather long time. None of those guys faired well because once you've hit your peak, if you lose it, there's no gaining it back. Ask Ben Carson.

I think what actually happened is that, when the gates opened, there was no good candidate left. It was junior boys Cruz and Rubio, and most people didn't know much about how much Rubio actually sucked until they got to know him.
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Old 05-05-2016, 09:20 AM   #508
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I think we also need to look at the Republican base and its composition to understand how Trump happened. As well as Republican leadership since Reagan. Perhaps working class whites realize that the Chamber of Commerce crowd doesn't have their best interests at heart. Abortion is still legal, and church/charity isn't going to pay your chemo bills. Or get you meaningful work. Cultural resentments -- and, to be honest, some of the more eye rolling developments of the cultural left of late -- might condition some voters to never vote Democrat, but voting Trump is as close as you can get to voting against the Republican Party that has failed these "Regan democrats" since Reagan.
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Old 05-05-2016, 10:18 AM   #509
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The majority of Republicans who resent other cultures, in my experience, are people who spend very little time outside of their own world. Their communities are a vast majority white or highly segregated from generations of everyone staying with their own kind. Those who are poor are still poor because they feel abandoned by the political system (and those lucky ones who created a better life for themselves all legitimately worked very hard, and can't imagine that luck had anything to do with it). That there are still significant issues is a sign that something other, something they don't see in their everyday lives, is the cause. Sure, it's the politicians, but it's more than that. It's the things Trump is talking about. They don't encounter blacks or hispanics other than when someone is in the local news for committing a crime. They don't see Muslims except for when another terrorist attack is being reported on. Their experiences are so rare with these groups of people that their thoughts are painted almost solely by their limited exposure. And they've all got so much going on in their lives, very few of them have time to learn about how truly diverse all of these different cultures are across the world. They've got bills to pay and kids to raise.

That's why I find it hard to get angry with the typical right-winger. It's only the pundit class and those who actively sneer at legitimate discourse (like our online friend BobSaget77) who grind my gears.
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Old 05-05-2016, 10:51 AM   #510
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My thoughts on Bernie, and I'm assuming that he's in it for ideology and not ego, is that he's staying in to keep her from drifting too much back to the center. She knows that only the most self-hating Bernie supporters won't vote for her in November. They won't vote for Trump. She wants them, of course, but they aren't her primary concern.

What she needs is the middle and the Chamber of Commerce Republicans. She knows he can't win on a coalition of working class whites, racists, and conspiracy theorists. She is going to make herself presentable to the Mitt Romney wing of the party who are going to hold their nose and vote for her. People talk about how much she is "hated" by the right -- but the people who are invested in actually hating her are the Trump voters. Sure, she's not a natural politician and can be grating, but no one thinks she's stupid or crazy or irresponsible.

Sanders wants his platform to be heard, and to his credit, he's far surpassed any other leftist candidate I can remember. I think it's a bit selfish to make her spend money in California, and if his attacks become helpful to Trump and therefore counterproductive to his message I'll lose patience with him.

For now, I'm choosing to believe that this is how Bernie is reading the tea leaves. He's keeping his platform alive so it isn't forgotten in her pivot to the center to claim the middle and maybe even middle right.

I could be wrong.

I like your benefit of the doubt to Sanders. It's commendable. BUT
At this point it is feeling very much more like Ego to me, and not just trying to further his position in keeping Clinton to the left.

I think the best way to explain this is to put to rest the false narrative that has been sold by Bernie, and swallowed hook line and sinker by most of his supporters. That lie is that these two candidates are lightyears apart in their platforms. That Clinton is some Republican light that is just as bad as voting in Trump or some other GOPer.

The facts:

Citizens United - Both fervently want to overturn it.

Immigration Reform - Both want to get something concrete passed with a path to citizenship. Here i would say Clinton is even more focused on this.

Wall St. Reform - Both want stricter regulations. Again, Clinton has showed more in depth plans to regulate more deeply into all Wall St. institutions, where Sanders has mostly just repeated claims to break up the banks! Something that is already doable under Dodd Frank if banks don't meet the standards set.

Infrastucture - Both want large new investments into this

Renewables - Both have plans to greatly increase our position with renewables and to lessen our use of fossil fuels. Sanders is to the left on fracking, but this again brings up one of my main issues with him, is that he shouts to just so No to fracking, NO to drilling, No to coal, where Clinton is thinking about a realistic transition, when the reality is that currently renewables are only about 6% of our power source.

Guns - Clinton obviously a much more out front supporter of fighting the NRA and getting gun legislation passed. She's on his left here.

Minimum wage - Both want huge increases in minimum wage. Bernie wanting 15 Federally, and Clinton 12 federally, and 15 or more in high cost metro areas as they see fit. This again is where Clinton makes MUCH more sense to me. As the cost of living in Manhattan and Boston and LA are enormously higher than say, Elk River Minnesota. This is why a split plan, of 12 Fed, and 15 Metro is more logical and more doable.

Equal Pay, family leave - Both are strongly for this, and again would say Clinton is even more "out front" on these issues than Sanders.

Women's Choice - Both obviously for this, but again, Clinton has a more proactive strength on this issue.

College - Both want big changes here. For reasons i wont fully get into, i again think Clintons plan is better, for the simple fact that I think it could get passed. Free community college and debt free college is still a huge undertaking and would be a huge liberal win if it can be done.

Social Security - Both want to strengthen and extend. Sanders at this point has a more concrete plan he is touting, while Clinton has different ideas to reach the same goal, but she does need to get herself together on this point.
Either way, both better than GOP alternatives.

Healthcare - Obviously Bernie is to the left hear. But again, it comes down to the current reality. If ACA can really be improved and get to full coverage, it will be great for now. I think we all can agree, single payer will take much longer to get instituted, and will probably be a multi presidential effort over decades. Again, both are better than GOP.


I'm sure I'm missing a bunch, but these are the big ones. Of course, just the importance of the SCOTUS picks, should be enough to make everyone vote blue no matter what.

How anyone could look at these main issues and be a #bernieorbust person, just boggles my mind, and really shows me that they are being willfully ignorant.

Sadly, I think Bernie has bought into this whole false narrative, and standing in front of large rallies has given him the ego to keep banging at Clinton hard, instead of easing up on her personally and still just sticking with his issues as we get to June.

Hopefully, he will come around in the end. I hope so...
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Old 05-05-2016, 11:24 AM   #511
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I think we also need to look at the Republican base and its composition to understand how Trump happened. As well as Republican leadership since Reagan. Perhaps working class whites realize that the Chamber of Commerce crowd doesn't have their best interests at heart. Abortion is still legal, and church/charity isn't going to pay your chemo bills. Or get you meaningful work. Cultural resentments -- and, to be honest, some of the more eye rolling developments of the cultural left of late -- might condition some voters to never vote Democrat, but voting Trump is as close as you can get to voting against the Republican Party that has failed these "Regan democrats" since Reagan.
I have a bit of a hard time understanding the aspect of surprise that so many seem to have over the rise of Trump, if only because it seems like his ploy is to openly voice all of the things Republicans have been strongly insinuating for at least a decade. The racism and xenophobia, the casual misogyny, the economic protectionism, the selective ethics - these are all long-standing trends in the American right. If anything it seems logical that someone like Trump would emerge.
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Old 05-05-2016, 11:33 AM   #512
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The majority of Republicans who resent other cultures, in my experience, are people who spend very little time outside of their own world. Their communities are a vast majority white or highly segregated from generations of everyone staying with their own kind. Those who are poor are still poor because they feel abandoned by the political system (and those lucky ones who created a better life for themselves all legitimately worked very hard, and can't imagine that luck had anything to do with it). That there are still significant issues is a sign that something other, something they don't see in their everyday lives, is the cause. Sure, it's the politicians, but it's more than that. It's the things Trump is talking about. They don't encounter blacks or hispanics other than when someone is in the local news for committing a crime. They don't see Muslims except for when another terrorist attack is being reported on. Their experiences are so rare with these groups of people that their thoughts are painted almost solely by their limited exposure. And they've all got so much going on in their lives, very few of them have time to learn about how truly diverse all of these different cultures are across the world. They've got bills to pay and kids to raise.

That's why I find it hard to get angry with the typical right-winger. It's only the pundit class and those who actively sneer at legitimate discourse (like our online friend BobSaget77) who grind my gears.
Excellent post. This has been my experience with these people as well.
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Old 05-05-2016, 11:48 AM   #513
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I have a bit of a hard time understanding the aspect of surprise that so many seem to have over the rise of Trump, if only because it seems like his ploy is to openly voice all of the things Republicans have been strongly insinuating for at least a decade. The racism and xenophobia, the casual misogyny, the economic protectionism, the selective ethics - these are all long-standing trends in the American right. If anything it seems logical that someone like Trump would emerge.
I think for me the biggest surprise is that in the information age they can't see they are all being played. I could maybe see if this was some no name or not well known person rising among the ranks and saying all the right things, but that's not what's happening. This man's past political views are very well documented and he stood on the opposite side on most hot button issues. And even if you believe he made some genuine 180 on these issues, he's spelled it out right before your eyes that he's not genuine, that's he's not on your side. He flat out told you he wants universal healthcare before changing his mind a week later, he said he knows this person and literally 5 minutes later on another program said he didn't,

I mean he's right, he could shoot their grandma right before their eyes blame Obama and they'd still vote for him. It's the full on no holds barred embracing of ignorance right there in plain sight is what shocks me. They aren't even trying to hide it. We are taught to be weary of politicians, this group in particular doesn't want an "establishment" politician because they feel betrayed so they are instead fully supporting someone that has given them every reason to doubt he'll follow through on anything.

I guess that way they can say they were betrayed, but at least it wasn't by the "establishment"
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Old 05-05-2016, 12:36 PM   #514
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I'm sure I'm missing a bunch, but these are the big ones.
Foreign policy! The one you are missing is foreign policy. It's by far the worst part of Clinton and for all the rhetoric of people on the right, Clinton has actively participated in many of the horrific things you have heard about overseas. Her foreign policy frightens the shit out of me.

One of my biggest hang ups with Obama was his overuse of drones. Clinton's stance on Obama is that he was way too soft overseas.

I think Irvine has said before that when all is said and done, the two main things a president does is direct foreign policy and the military and choose Supreme Court justices. For me, Clinton is only 1-for-2 on those things.
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Old 05-05-2016, 12:45 PM   #515
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I have a bit of a hard time understanding the aspect of surprise that so many seem to have over the rise of Trump, if only because it seems like his ploy is to openly voice all of the things Republicans have been strongly insinuating for at least a decade. The racism and xenophobia, the casual misogyny, the economic protectionism, the selective ethics - these are all long-standing trends in the American right. If anything it seems logical that someone like Trump would emerge.
The pundit class and the "country club" Republicans don't want to admit that this is who they've thrown their lot in with all of this time. The pundits don't want to admit that by framing every issue as having two legitimate sides even when many of them don't, they've allowed these ideas to take root. The establishment GOP doesn't want to admit that all of the accusations of dog whistles and catering to bigotry was 100 percent accurate and that it was a crucial part of their ability to win elections. They've spent so much time and effort defending themselves against attacks that this is what the American right is, and they still refuse to believe that it could have been true all along.
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Old 05-05-2016, 12:55 PM   #516
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I think Irvine has said before that when all is said and done, the two main things a president does is direct foreign policy and the military and choose Supreme Court justices.

And give speeches about mass shootings.
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Old 05-05-2016, 12:57 PM   #517
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What's sad about Clinton's foreign policy, to touch on what PF was saying, is that it's not even an important item on people's list of criticisms about her. I mean, republicans criticize her for doing essentially their right stance but in the wrong way. Maybe that's because the media shoves ISIS down our throats as though they're bigger and scarier than they truly are. It really leaves an "I don't know what to do about them" mentality on the table. People sort of just either turn a blind eye, or if they're truly afraid, they support intervention.
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Old 05-05-2016, 01:00 PM   #518
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so, this is interesting, and runs counter to what we've been talking about. that people who support Sanders and Clinton are poorer than those who support Trump:

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It’s been extremely common for news accounts to portray Donald Trump’s candidacy as a “working-class” rebellion against Republican elites. There are elements of truth in this perspective: Republican voters, especially Trump supporters, are unhappy about the direction of the economy. Trump voters have lower incomes than supporters of John Kasich or Marco Rubio. And things have gone so badly for the Republican “establishment” that the party may be facing an existential crisis.

But the definition of “working class” and similar terms is fuzzy, and narratives like these risk obscuring an important and perhaps counterintuitive fact about Trump’s voters: As compared with most Americans, Trump’s voters are better off. The median household income of a Trump voter so far in the primaries is about $72,000, based on estimates derived from exit polls and Census Bureau data. That’s lower than the $91,000 median for Kasich voters. But it’s well above the national median household income of about $56,000. It’s also higher than the median income for Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders supporters, which is around $61,000 for both.

The Mythology Of Trump’s ‘Working Class’ Support | FiveThirtyEight
i have totally been swept up in this narrative about a shattered white working class in burnt out small town America. communities with no hope and beset by opiates, alcoholism, obesity, and suicide. a demographic where women have a lower life expectancy than they did 20 years ago. a group of people left behind by modernity and globalism who are turning to a demagogue to focus their fears.

but it appears as if those people aren't the Trump supporters. so maybe it's time we started calling Trump supporters by their true name: assholes.
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Old 05-05-2016, 01:03 PM   #519
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Can we meet somewhere in the middle on foreign policy?

Bernie strikes me as not wanting to be involved, and not having any sort of care in FP. Either out of ignorance, or just a lack of caring about it. I get he's very much against the trade agreements being pushed/proposed out there.

I'm fine with special forces and drones to keep ISIS in check. In regards to the middle east, we're damned if we do, damned if we don't. ISIS will still try to harm the west regardless of our involvement. They want world domination, not isolation.

I think the steps we have taken under Obama are fine. You cut off their $$$, you do your absolute best at intel for drone strikes, and you start hardening your stances, relationships with the Saudis.
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Old 05-05-2016, 01:07 PM   #520
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Foreign policy! The one you are missing is foreign policy. It's by far the worst part of Clinton and for all the rhetoric of people on the right, Clinton has actively participated in many of the horrific things you have heard about overseas. Her foreign policy frightens the shit out of me.

One of my biggest hang ups with Obama was his overuse of drones. Clinton's stance on Obama is that he was way too soft overseas.

I think Irvine has said before that when all is said and done, the two main things a president does is direct foreign policy and the military and choose Supreme Court justices. For me, Clinton is only 1-for-2 on those things.
I think anyone that has witnessed Obama's tenure would vehemently disagree with that last point of them only really being responsible for those two things. That large list, really the guts of what people will remember a president by. A lot of it, social issues, and economic successes.

That being said, this then brings us to probably my most hated Sanders deception. Foreign policy.
They pretty much have ONE vote that differentiates their background on foreign policy, and that was Iraq. And boy does he run with that one. Problem is, it's a bunch of crap.

Sanders voted twice in support of regime change in Iraq. Then, when it came to the vote that would give Bush the power to use military action, after inspections were done, blah, blah.. He voted NO.
I guess he thought maybe a strongly worded letter, or a gift basket from Harry and David might be the best method to get Saddam out of power.

Then he voted 5 times to fund the war he was so against! He didn't need to, the funding would have gone through without his vote.

Same in Libya. He voted to get Khaddafi out, but since it didn't work out as well as they hoped, now he's against it?

It must be nice to just lob criticism and blame, while he sits back safely in his little independent bubble of no consequence.

I will take Clinton, who has actually been in the trenches, and probably learned a whole hell of a lot along the way. If Bernie were SOS, He would have a spotty record as well. Its not an easy job, and Bernie's stance that he puts out there to supporters, is that he would just be hands off everything... Well his record says otherwise, AND if he did go to a hands off everything approach, that could be disastrous as well..
I think Obamas approach of keeping a toe in a lot of hotspots with limited forces has served us fairly well.
Just ignoring problems abroad, could in the end leave us in a bad position.
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