Newell: Sure seems like there's friction in the Democratic primary

Sanders picks up key endorsement just as Warren hits first major hurdle

Newell Normand
October 22, 2019 - 7:48 pm

New alliances are forming, new endorsements are coming out that very well may be influencing the Democratic primary campaign, and a new poll is out showing the mood of the Louisiana electorate ahead of the Gubernatorial runoff in November. Political Analyst Ron Faucheaux joined Newell Tuesday morning to shed some light on what it all means.

"You and I talked once in the aftermath of last week's Democratic debate," Newell began. "Since that time it's come out that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the Squad were going to endorse Bernie Sanders, or at least the Squad minus one.. Ayanna Presley declined to joined AOC, Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar in the endorsement. But in Iowa, it doesn't seem to be helping Bernie very much. Why is that?"

"It isn't helping, but it is keeping him in the race," Faucheaux replied. "There was a lot of concern on the part of Sanders' supporters and other Democrats that after his heart attack, Sanders would weaken as a candidate, or even get out of the race. I think what that endorsement shows is that not only did it not get him out of the race, but that he's picking up new support. The support that Sanders is picking up is not from the middle of the Democratic spectrum, it's from the far Left. For him to battle Elizabeth Warren, that's what he needs to get, so it does show that his campaign is alive. Most of the polls have been showing him slipping, although the most recent two national polls show that his percentages are about the same. He's running strong third after Biden and Warren. So he's still in, and he's complicating Warren's situation. If he wasn't in the race, it would give her an opportunity to move to the middle on some of these issues. But until that happens, there's a high risk for her to do that.

"Elizabeth Warren has put a number of policies out there, and just recently after the debate she comes out and says she's actually going to quantify the cost of Medicare For All - everyone has kind of already under the assumption that she had already done that, correct?" Newell asked. 

"I think so, and I think that has been hurting her. She has built an image of being honest, candid, consistent and very policy-oriented, putting out a slew of policy proposals that have been pretty dense and detailed. But the biggest issue for Democrats is health care, and that's an issue where she has been struggling because she just endorsed Sanders' proposal, and he says that would increase middle class taxes. She has not said that, she won't say that. They went at her pretty hard at the last debate on that and she handled it pretty well. So what we're seeing here is that she's trying to deal with something that she sees has become a weakness. And some of the estimates of the cost of Medicare For All have been over $30 trillion dollars over the next ten years... it's equivalent to about 70% of all Federal revenue, it would have to be piled on top of existing Federal revenue. As she attempts to quantify it, she's going to find that the budget swamp is not a good place to be as a candidate."

"Seems as though there's a lot of friction in the party right now - what's your reaction to Hillary Clinton claiming that Tulsi Gabbard is a Russian asset?"

"I get the impression that Clinton is sitting there in Chappaqua, seething about this whole election, she's still upset that Trump won, which is understandable because she thought she was going to win. But I think she sees all these candidates running and thinks they're inferior to her, and that she would be the better President, she would be the better candidate. She knows it would be difficult for her to get in the race at this point and get support. She would really love to do it, and I think that's what we see. The difference between her and Gabbard is that Gabbard might want to run as a third party or independent candidate, and that has set Clinton off and now she's going after Gabbard with sort of uncharacteristic venom. The whole incident, I dont think, has been particularly good for Hillary's public image."

"Not at all," Newell agreed. "And now it seems the Basket of Deplorables includes some Democrats as well!"

Listen to the full interview in the audio player below.


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