I was talking to a top strategist for one of the major presidential campaigns about Joe Biden’s surge out of the gate. His take: “We hear it everywhere we go, people are scared, and they want the sure thing to beat Trump.”
There is no “sure thing,” of course. 2016 taught us that. But there also isn’t a “better” Democrat to nominate. Fact is, the right-wing noise machine will run our nominee through the grinder, and they will all have “generic Democrat” numbers in the end. And as I’ve argued in the past, the idea that “white male” equals “more electable” is absurd—our party base isn’t white men; it’s women and men of color. When our candidates reflect that base, as in 2018, we win big. And, in fact, no white male running for president has ever hit 63 million votes. Ever. Yet the two candidates to exceed 65 million? A black man with the middle name “Hussein” and a woman who was supposedly unliked.
Our latest Civiqs/Daily Kos poll has good news for anyone overly worried about that stupid “electability” argument.
Donald Trump: 44
Joe Biden: 48
Donald Trump: 45
Elizabeth Warren: 48
In 2016, Trump got 46% of the vote. These numbers are completely in line with a president who hasn’t done anything to expand his base of support, but whose supporters have shown zero inclination to abandon him. After the votes are counted, there will be little difference in the Trump-Democrat spread. We are too polarized as a society. The biggest difference will come down to who can best motivate our base to turn out, so we can squeeze out the margins we need in places such as Milwaukee, Maricopa County, Atlanta, Philadelphia, and Detroit. So we can focus on who best inspires us, rather than worry about who is best able to, supposedly, win back the white rural voters we don’t need to win.