9 votes

This Week in Election Night, 2020 (Week 4)

week four is upon us because i have simply run out of space to put links in. i have a literal page of links that comprise today's post, and that suggests to me it's probably time to make another one of these. the [LONGFORM] tag continues (although this week there are no longform pieces) and once again, i will also be sorting by candidate--but also with a Fundraising header today since reporting deadlines came yesterday and there are a lot of pieces on that, and a Polling header since we have a few polls going now.

the usual note: common sense should be able to generally dictate what does and does not get posted in this thread. if it's big news or feels like big news, probably make it its own post instead of lobbing it in here. like the other weekly threads, this one is going to try to focus on things that are still discussion worthy, but wouldn't necessarily make good/unique/non-repetitive discussion starters as their own posts.

Week 1 threadWeek 2 threadWeek 3 thread


News

Fundraising

  • from FiveThirtyEight: What First-Quarter Fundraising Can Tell Us About 2020. probably the seminal piece of fundraising reporting from the slate since it's 538, this article is pretty straightforward. in general, this means basically nothing for the actual 2020 election--but it means a lot for the primary, since fundraising is a decent barometer for energy and likability and suggests a candidate will be able to hold their own. 538's metrics suggest that sanders, warren, and harris, and gillibrand are punching well for their weight class and the primary itself, while beto, buttigieg, booker, and others are punching well for their weight class, but not necessarily the primary.

  • from Vox: 7 winners from the first big presidential fundraising reports. Vox takes a slightly more subjective approach to their reporting than 538, but a similar story arises: they name their winners on actual fundraising as sanders, harris, warren, and buttigieg. interestingly, they also name biden a winner because nobody did truly "exceptional" in fundraising in their view which keeps his path slightly open; john delaney's consultants get an amusing mention for shaking him dry of money.

  • from NBC News: Six things we've learned from the 2020 candidates' fundraising reports. NBC News gives raw numbers on contributions, cash on hand, burn rate, so if you're curious about the numbers themselves, this is your source. as far as analysis, NBC crowns the two big winners as sanders and o'rourke on their fundraising totals, mostly on their average daily amount raised (sanders 445k over 41 days; o'rourke 520k over 18 days). they note that most of the senators in the race are doing respectably (although outside of kamala this is partly because of campaign transfers), and also think castro is the big loser with a paltry 1.1 million raised, less than some of the minor candidates like yang and marianne williamson.

Polling

A new national Emerson poll, including 20 Democratic candidates for President, found Senator Bernie Sanders ahead of the pack with 29%, followed by former Vice President Joe Biden at 24%. They were followed by Mayor Pete Buttigieg at 9%, former Rep. Beto O’Rourke and Senator Kamala Harris at 8%, and Senator Elizabeth Warren at 7%. Entrepreneur Andrew Yang and former HUD secretary Julian Castro were at 3%. The poll was conducted April 11-14 of Democratic Primary voters with a subset of n=356, +/- 5.2%.

Joe Biden on 31%, Bernie Sanders on 23%, Kamala Harris on 9%, Beto O'Rourke on 8%, Elizabeth Warren and Pete Buttigieg on 7%, Corey Booker on 4%. All others below 3%. n=5,000, +/- 1%.

Buttigieg ticks up again, and now has 7% of the Democratic primary vote share. This is the fourth straight week his vote share has increased. High income earners in particular are warming to Buttigieg: in the last six weeks, his vote share among Democratic primary voters earning more than $100k has risen from 1% to 11%. Bernie Sanders holds a strong lead with young voters: 41% of 18-29 year-old women and 39% of 18-29 year-old men support Sanders as their first choice. Andrew Yang lands in 5th place with 18-29 year-old men, with 5% of the vote.

If Biden doesn’t run, Sanders has the most to gain. A projection based on second choice vote shows that Sanders would pick up 12 points if Biden opts not to run, enough to give him a 23 point first place lead.

In a field of 24 announced and potential candidates, Biden holds the lead with 27% support among Democratic voters who are likely to attend the Iowa caucuses in February. He is followed by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders (16%), South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg (9%), Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren (7%), California Sen. Kamala Harris (7%), former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke (6%), Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar (4%), New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker (3%), and former cabinet secretary Julián Castro (2%). Former Maryland Rep. John Delaney, New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan, California Rep. Eric Swalwell, and entrepreneur Andrew Yang each receive 1% support from likely caucusgoers. The remaining 10 candidates earn less than 1% or were not chosen by any respondents in the poll.


Bernie Sanders

Cory Booker

  • from Reuters: Booker launches 'Justice' tour, aiming for surge in U.S. presidential bid. cory booker ostensibly kicked off his middling campaign a few days ago, starting on a two-week whistle stop tour that'll see him around the country like the other candidates. booker is in a weird position, polling wise. he's not quite a frontrunner, but he's also not irrelevant (and he's probably siphoning votes from kamala, to be honest). theoretically, he has a path to the presidency, but i'm not entirely sure that the way he's trying to position himself is going to be particularly helpful in that end.

  • from NBC News: Booker kicks off campaign in hometown of Newark, promises to stay above the fray. NBC News has a more policy-focused article on booker's campaign launch: "Democratic ideals of health care for all, LGBTQ rights, economic equality and a pathway to citizenship for immigrants" among other things. he's also trying to embrace civility politics, it would seem. how well that works for him remains to be seen, but i would bet on him staying about where he is for the time being.

  • from Buzzfeed News: Cory Booker’s Campaign Hasn’t Gotten The Candidate’s Memo On His Message Of Urgency. the booker campaign as a whole is also fighting a battle of contradictory messaging: booker is an energetic candidate--his campaign, however, is very much a slow and steady affair. the booker campaign in general seems to be admitting it won't be able to keep the pace of the frontrunners, and so instead of fighting a battle it knows it can't win, it'll instead sit back and try and gain institutional backing that will benefit booker's chances in the likely event that the primary doesn't end with a presumtive nominee. it's an interesting strategy (it probably will not work, though). there's also some additional policy in this article that NBC and Reuters don't touch on, if you're curious about that.

Pete Buttigieg

  • from The Guardian: Does everyone really love Mayor Pete? His home town has some answers. pete buttigieg's record and history as south bend, indiana's mayor is getting some traction in the media this week (as you'll see from some of the other articles in this section), and this is no exception. this article focuses mostly on the favorable reception south bender have toward both buttigieg and his candidacy, and the good things that his mayorship did for the city.

  • from NPR: Pete Buttigieg Helped Transform South Bend As Mayor, But Some Feel Left Out. contrast NPR, which has this article (similar to last week's Buzzfeed article) on the people who are less thrilled with buttigieg's tenure as mayor and his efforts to win the presidency, and the greater context they place buttigieg in.

  • from Slate: The Mayor Who Wants to Be President: Pete Buttigieg is a long shot. But so was Donald Trump.. this is the transcript of an interview that one of slate's podcasts did with pete buttigieg about a week ago, mostly focusing on his political history and policy issues but also on some of buttigieg's personal history like coming out. probably a good place to start if you're unclear on who he is or what he says he stands for.

  • from Reuters: Millennial 'Mayor Pete' Buttigieg makes case for U.S. presidency. this small article mostly focuses on buttigieg's formal launching of his campaign, which occurred a few days ago. we have a tildes thread on this, so i feel like there's not much to be said here that hasn't already been said there.

  • from Vox: Pete Buttigieg, Barack Obama, and the psychology of liberalism. this article basically puts into context one of the ways buttigieg seems to be trying to position himself and his campaign, and there's not a whole lot more to be said about it. this article is one of those ones that really only makes sense if you read it, and trying to explain it back to people just makes it a bit confusing all around, so if you're curious about this one, just read it.

Kamala Harris

  • from Reuters: Kamala Harris carves distinct early-state path in her 2020 White House bid. the kamala harris path to the white house probably does not involve many of the early states necessarily, but that has not stopped harris from stumping in places like iowa and south carolina extensively in the past few weeks. harris would probably be the frontrunner if she were to do very well in the early states; california will be favorable to her, you would think, and comes very early in the 2020 primary cycle (early march) this year relative to where it fell in 2016.

  • from CBS News: Kamala Harris releases 15 years of tax returns. harris is also the frontrunner in this weird litmus test democrats have going on. will anyone upstage her on this? probably not. is it important? probably not. but here you go, if you wanted to know what her tax returns are like.

Everybody else

  • from CNN: Seven takeaways from CNN's town halls with Andrew Yang and Marianne Williamson. andrew yang and marianne williamson both got town halls, and both of them are pretty interesting people when you actually press them on issues instead of having them shoot things into the wind without needing to really back them up. williamson is arguably the more interesting of the two, but really i think you'll find some of what CNN took away here from the both of them as pretty novel.

  • from FiveThirtyEight: Can Julian Castro Rally Latino Voters?. 538 poses this question--to which the answer seems to currently be no by most accounts. to be clear he's positioning himself pretty well with latino voters, but his problem isn't really latino voters so much as everybody else. he does quite badly with all non-latino demographics, to put it lightly, and him getting the latino vote only really matters if he can do well with other demographics on top of that. maybe he'll turn it around, but judging by his fundraising numbers, i think we might already be able to relegate him to the bin with yang and williamson and the other 'basically novelty' candidates

General Policy

  • from CBS News: Democratic presidential candidates stay vague on immigration. despite what you might think based on how much of an issue it's been, julian castro is literally the only democrat so far to have a particularly detailed immigration policy plan. most candidates thus far have been pretty quiet on the subject, although i'm sure you can at least guess how most of them would structure an immigration plan. we'll probably see some be rolled out later on in the primary cycle as the race actually gets going, but at least for now this is the one thing castro can pride himself on that other candidates cannot.

  • from NPR: Democratic Candidates Are Releasing Tax Returns, Answering Big Questions For Voters. tax returns are a litmus test this year, and you can expect to see more of them in the future since most of the major candidates have either released them already or will do so at some point in the future. pretty straightforward.


Opinion/Ideology-driven

  • from The Guardian: Elizabeth Warren is the intellectual powerhouse of the Democratic party. this op-ed mostly focuses on warren's extensive policy proposals and how, in moira donegan's view, this makes warren the aforementioned intellectual powerhouse of the democratic party. this is not wrong--warren is probably far and away the most policy-driven candidate so far in the campaign--but also it's not necessarily indicative of anything voters want. in the last election, hillary clinton had a pretty extensive set of policies, to which voters kindly responded by electing our non-clinton president. it does remain to be seen if they're more kind to warren, or if her ideas get picked up by other people in the race.

  • from The Guardian: Buttigieg is the Democrats' flavour of the month. Just don't ask what he stands for. nathan robinson hammers home one of the bigger criticisms of pete buttigieg in this op-ed, namely that nobody seems to know what he really stands for and he very much reeks of a "flavor of the month" democrat who is going to peter out at some point when the novelty wears off. robinson is actually pretty brutal to buttigieg here, to a point where i think i'm just going to quote him to give you an example of how not-sparing this op-ed is:

But politics shouldn’t be about people’s attributes, it should be about their values and actions. Buttigieg is a man with a lot of “gold stars” on his résumé, but why should anybody actually trust him to be on their side? (Amusingly enough, in his campaign book Shortest Way Home, Buttigieg describes an incident in which a voter asked him how he could prove that he wasn’t just another self-serving politician. Buttigieg couldn’t come up with an answer.) The available evidence of his character is thin. Has he spent a lifetime sticking up for working people? No, he worked at McKinsey before he entered politics. Has he taken courageous moral stands? No: while Gary, Indiana, declared itself a sanctuary city in response to Donald Trump’s immigration policies, Buttigieg’s city of South Bend did not.

yeah.

  • from The Guardian: How wide is Bernie Sanders' appeal? This cheering Fox News audience is a clue. bhaskar sunkara has another op-ed this week about the sanders fox news town hall, which he uses as proof that sanders has more widespread appeal than people give him credit for. considering that you're already seeing other candidates try and arrange similar plans, there's probably something to be said about whether or not that also applies to other candidates and the modern democratic message, too. (also, it does seem somewhat weird that candidates don't do this more often considering how much bipartisanship gets played up.)

  • and lastly, from NBC News: Fox News, Bernie Sanders and the value of discomfort. steve krakauer on the other hand argues a more pragmatic viewpoint: sanders going on fox news for the town hall was good for both himself but also for fox news because it pierced the filter bubbles that exist in modern politics, and allowed crosspollination of viewpoints that don't normally do so.


anyways, feel free to as always contribute other interesting articles you stumble across, or comment on some of the ones up there.

6 comments

  1. [5]
    alyaza
    Link
    meta: i'm really shooting to keep these relatively digestible while also telling you what's in them so you don't waste your time reading shit you don't care for, so i'm open to suggestions on how...

    meta: i'm really shooting to keep these relatively digestible while also telling you what's in them so you don't waste your time reading shit you don't care for, so i'm open to suggestions on how to navigate what could eventually become a length problem with these. in four weeks this has gone from about 1,000 words to nearly 3,000, and while that's probably because of the additional sections this week, that might be a problem since the news cycle probably won't be laying off any time soon. in the immediate term i might just make these slightly more frequent when necessary, but i'm open to other suggestions on trying to keep the length down while also telling y'all what's in these links so you don't waste your time on shit you don't care about.

    5 votes
    1. vord
      Link Parent
      Perhaps some sort of summary bot to assist with writing short blurbs? While your commentary on each link is delightful, if it's becoming too burdensome to give a personal touch on everything,...

      Perhaps some sort of summary bot to assist with writing short blurbs? While your commentary on each link is delightful, if it's becoming too burdensome to give a personal touch on everything, something like this might be useful?

      I've leveraged https://smmry.com/ before, to help cut the fat and get to the meat of articles.

      2 votes
    2. [2]
      Loire
      Link Parent
      I hate to say it but you could simply begin omitting the "never going to happen" candidates unless something truly valuable happens. Just because the Primary is crowded doesn't mean you have to...

      I hate to say it but you could simply begin omitting the "never going to happen" candidates unless something truly valuable happens. Just because the Primary is crowded doesn't mean you have to consider every candidate as newsworthy.

      Andrew Yang, Julian Castro, and Inslee have important things to say, but whether or not they should be in the summaries you write is questionable. They are not rocking any boats or making any moves at this point. Klobuchar, Gabbard, Swalwell, Hickenlooper etc are essentially meaningless right now. Marianne Williamson is an author and an activist with no political history or background. If/when Buttigieg, and O'Rourke fall off the wagon, that's less you have to report as well.

      You also probably don't need to report it everytime a candidate releases their tax returns. It's both a historical expectation (until the current President of course) and a modern expectation (thanks to our current President of course) that every candidate will release them. Should a candidate refuse to release them that will be news.

      Finally: don't worry about the length. Give me all the news. Let it wash over me. I don't mind walls of text in posts. Reddit has reprogrammed me to want bite sized snippets and to jump straight to the comments because of a trend towards smaller digestible posts. Fuck that. Retrain my brain and dump 5000 words on my door step. I want to read everything.

      1. alyaza
        Link Parent
        i mean these people barely get any articles to begin with (buttigieg alone this week has the same number of articles as all the minor candidates combined did last week) so cutting down on their...

        I hate to say it but you could simply begin omitting the "never going to happen" candidates unless something truly valuable happens. Just because the Primary is crowded doesn't mean you have to consider every candidate as newsworthy.

        Andrew Yang, Julian Castro, and Inslee have important things to say, but whether or not they should be in the summaries you write is questionable. They are not rocking any boats or making any moves at this point. Klobuchar, Gabbard, Swalwell, Hickenlooper etc are essentially meaningless right now. Marianne Williamson is an author and an activist with no political history or background. If/when Buttigieg, and O'Rourke fall off the wagon, that's less you have to report as well.

        i mean these people barely get any articles to begin with (buttigieg alone this week has the same number of articles as all the minor candidates combined did last week) so cutting down on their air time probably wouldn't do much to change the length significantly most of the time, but beyond that the issue with applying a standard like this is that literally everybody who polls worse than booker is basically irrelevant in the race--but their ideas and the discourse around them definitely are not. yang is why we talk about UBI, inslee is mostly why we talk about climate change, booker will probably make reparations a wedge issue, etc. so it's hard to really draw the line because on one hand, none of those people will probably win, but on the other hand what they talk about definitely might.

        You also probably don't need to report it everytime a candidate releases their tax returns. It's both a historical expectation (until the current President of course) and a modern expectation (thanks to our current President of course) that every candidate will release them. Should a candidate refuse to release them that will be news.

        with respect to this, i don't intend to do that. the only reason i bothered with harris is because her releasing tax returns happened to catch media attention and coincide with it being the big thing candidates are doing right now. i didn't even bother with sanders's tax returns even though he released them yesterday.

        1 vote
    3. just_a_salmon
      Link Parent
      There is an article summary bot on Reddit that seems to do a very good job. I don’t recall its username at the moment.

      There is an article summary bot on Reddit that seems to do a very good job. I don’t recall its username at the moment.

  2. [2]
    Comment deleted by author
    Link
    1. alyaza
      Link Parent
      that was why her policy focus hurt her in my view, actually. a lot of what she was stumping on was good policy, but she was never particularly forceful on why her policies were good for people or...

      I don't think a policy focus hurt Clinton. Her campaign officially had many policies spelt out, but I don't recall that coming out very strong in her personal messaging.

      that was why her policy focus hurt her in my view, actually. a lot of what she was stumping on was good policy, but she was never particularly forceful on why her policies were good for people or why someone should like her policies beyond them being detailed and not from donald trump. in the debates in particular i remember she'd often lead into them with some line like "...and if you go to my website" instead of just telling people up front what her policies were. trump in contrast had literally no detailed focus on policy in anything he did, but he was able to concisely bullshit to people why his policies would be good and how they would "help" their communities (even if they were never going to or were never going to be policies he'd pass), and that among many other things is what probably helped shift a few crucial demographics his way, even if clinton came off way better. on the campaign trail, some half-assed tagline like "MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!" slapped together with platitudes just tends to go a lot farther than "Go to my website and read all about how we're going to create clean jobs for Ohio." or whatever, unfortunately.

      1 vote