10 votes

Why America is Ignoring Kirsten Gillibrand

11 comments

  1. [11]
    MimicSquid Link
    Because there's already a handful of people in the race who have been well known for years, and so we're not as interested in acceptable, little known senators? If she had been knock your socks...

    Because there's already a handful of people in the race who have been well known for years, and so we're not as interested in acceptable, little known senators? If she had been knock your socks off amazing this might be a different story, but we already have other more interesting options.

    9 votes
    1. [9]
      BuckeyeSundae Link Parent
      I think one of the interesting angles this article leans into is the idea that Gillibrand is boring. She wasn't exactly "little known" compared to Booker or Harris at the start of the race, but...

      I think one of the interesting angles this article leans into is the idea that Gillibrand is boring. She wasn't exactly "little known" compared to Booker or Harris at the start of the race, but she doesn't drive news cycles lately like Harris does either. She doesn't say much in a way that offends people. She isn't out to throw liberal meat at the base (unlike what some people would say about her given her transition from her time in the House to her time as a Senator).

      This article making such a profound observation of Gillibrand's milquetoast qualities made me stop and think about what it is we're looking for in a presidential candidate. And I got to say, Politics as Entertainment is one of the reasons we find ourselves in the position that we're in.

      7 votes
      1. [3]
        MimicSquid Link Parent
        I can say definitively that I'm not entertained at all about politics. The whole deal infuses me with a terrible sense of dread and I try to not spend too much time thinking about it. That said,...

        I can say definitively that I'm not entertained at all about politics. The whole deal infuses me with a terrible sense of dread and I try to not spend too much time thinking about it. That said, the people who I support are not my choices because they are entertaining, but because they have established a clear vision with regards to how they would like America to function and have spoken consistently and publicly in similar ways for years. It's not entertainment, it's a clear and consistent message that has reached me over the years and describes a vision similar to the one I hold.

        7 votes
        1. Chopincakes Link Parent
          There was a well written piece in CurrentAffairs that was criticizing O'Rorke that said something extremely similar to your comment that had resonated with me so well, because I keep getting upset...

          There was a well written piece in CurrentAffairs that was criticizing O'Rorke that said something extremely similar to your comment that had resonated with me so well, because I keep getting upset bout the entire Spectacle of this election when it should be about policies:

          Some people may think that if you harshly criticize particular candidates, it’s because you’re “biased” toward your favorite candidate and want to “annihilate” or “destroy” their enemies. Hence the idea that it’s “BernieBros” doing the “attacks” on Beto. I think this misunderstands where a lot of us on the left are coming from. If I’m critical of Beto O’Rourke and supportive of Bernie Sanders, it all comes from my belief that I want a strong left candidate in 2020. I don’t support Bernie because he’s Bernie, and criticize Beto because he’s Beto, I support Bernie because I think he is willing to fight against corporate interests, and I’m skeptical of Beto because he isn’t.
          There is a common misunderstanding about Bernie Sanders supporters. People believe it’s a kind of “cult of personality”—the “BernieBros” are irrationally emotionally obsessed with Sanders and therefore unfairly dismiss equally good progressive candidates like Warren, Gillibrand, and O’Rourke without giving them a fair hearing. That’s not what’s going on, though. If Bernie announced tomorrow that he was a staunch capitalist who thought millennials just needed to work harder if they wanted to get out of debt, all of us who like him would drop him like the hottest of hot potatoes. I have no loyalty to him, except to the extent that he continues to champion the causes I believe in. If Elizabeth Warren stopped talking about how she was a “capitalist to her bones,” and showed some better political instincts, I can see myself strongly supporting her!

          9 votes
        2. BuckeyeSundae Link Parent
          Yeah I didn't mean to sound as though I think you're supporting candidates because they're more entertaining than others. But I definitely get the feeling from talking to other people that...

          Yeah I didn't mean to sound as though I think you're supporting candidates because they're more entertaining than others. But I definitely get the feeling from talking to other people that politics at the national level has turned a bit into a spectator sport. One of my friends gets all of her political news from Colbert. I used to get much of my news from the Daily Show. Formats that are more intended to entertain than inform (with the informing being incidental to the entertainment). That leads to my being susceptible to candidates who make great sound bites that resonate easily on twitter. Get in front of me a bunch and I'll know more about you. Simple shit that lies at the fundamental core of how candidates reach voters.

          So at one level, I think politics as entertainment has been a thing for a long while, but at another level among the general population it's feels like a fairly new thing that is tied to comedy, social media, and the pressures that come from 24 hour news cycles and consumer choice in news sourcing.

          2 votes
      2. xiv Link Parent
        I found the existence of the article interesting on its own. An illuminating way to think about candidates is to take them out of context and imagine them running alone, against Biden or even...

        I found the existence of the article interesting on its own. An illuminating way to think about candidates is to take them out of context and imagine them running alone, against Biden or even Trump. Gillibrand is a lot more palatable in that context, but I don't think she keys into click-heavy racial/policy-type statements like Harris and Sanders. I almost read it as what the corporate-left wishes we would focus on.

        4 votes
      3. [4]
        NaraVara Link Parent
        I don’t find her any more boring than Buttigieg or Biden. I think the real culprit is that her natural constituency, media connections, and fundraising resources have probably all shunned her...

        I don’t find her any more boring than Buttigieg or Biden. I think the real culprit is that her natural constituency, media connections, and fundraising resources have probably all shunned her because of how quickly she threw Al Franken under the bus.

        2 votes
        1. [3]
          patience_limited (edited ) Link Parent
          I don't think it's solely vengefulness burying her candidacy; there's been a sudden spate of mainstream coverage since the last week of June. It's a crowded field and the media is giving them rota...

          I don't think it's solely vengefulness burying her candidacy; there's been a sudden spate of mainstream coverage since the last week of June. It's a crowded field and the media is giving them rota attention to maintain the illusion of a fierce horserace.

          Kirsten Gillibrand's legislative record is competent, but safe and unimaginative, reflecting adherence to conventional wisdom and mainstream party talking points wherever possible. She's a bit ahead of the pack on womens' and family issues, but otherwise, not even as interesting or adventurous as an updated version of Hillary Clinton might be. Gillibrand's latter-day awakening to progressive economics feels somewhat opportunistic. I'm personally turned off by her churchiness; it feels performative.

          Gillibrand has a deep history of accepting campaign financing from some of the most odious white-shoe law firms and bankers in the country.

          A B+ performance, when we need someone competent, inspirational, and visionary.

          5 votes
          1. [2]
            NaraVara Link Parent
            I find most of the criticisms of Harris as well though. Gillibrand has been a fairly effective legislator, but one of the main reasons she didn’t come out the gate early is because of the reasons...

            I find most of the criticisms of Harris as well though. Gillibrand has been a fairly effective legislator, but one of the main reasons she didn’t come out the gate early is because of the reasons I noted. Once you’re behind it’s hard to pull ahead. You’ll notice she was floated as one of the most likely candidates back in 2016-2017.

            Gillibrand has a deep history of accepting campaign financing from some of the most odious white-shoe law firms and bankers in the country.

            This is going to be true of any Senator from New York. That’s part of her constituency. You either get their support or you don’t win your election.

            2 votes
            1. patience_limited Link Parent
              Bernie Sanders has the spotlight advantage that he's been throwing bombs for a long time, and Elizabeth Warren is a fountain of flashy policy ideas. Then there are the clickbait-y "intriguing...

              Bernie Sanders has the spotlight advantage that he's been throwing bombs for a long time, and Elizabeth Warren is a fountain of flashy policy ideas. Then there are the clickbait-y "intriguing outsider" stories... It's more reflective of a dysfunctional media ecosystem than a deliberate attempt to bury or disadvantage Kirsten Gillibrand.

              There aren't any perfect candidates, and I agree that Kamala Harris has some of the same issues, with the additional caveat that Harris hasn't held nationwide office as long.

              1 vote
    2. Hypersapien Link Parent
      This is why everyone is screaming for AOC to run in 2024

      This is why everyone is screaming for AOC to run in 2024