February 12, 2020
New Hampshire primary: So much schadenfreude, so little time
By Thomas Lifson
It's a glorious morning for Republicans. The implosion of the Democrats' party continues, and karma has come calling for two of its most obnoxious candidates, once touted for their purported ability to rid the country of the Orange Menace.
Let's start with turnout. While not as disastrous as Iowa, which got the New York Times worried, turnout in the New Hampshire primary failed to equal the level of 2008. Considering that hatred of the 45th president is supposed to be the animating factor uniting Democrats and driving turnout, and that there were more candidates this time than in 2008, the turnout is a worry for Dems. Worse, the Democrats are far more divided than they have been in 68 years.
All signs point to Sanders-supporters being unwilling to accept a loss of the party's nomination in Milwaukee in July. Because the party establishment is horrified at the prospect of being led by a socialist so in love with communism that he honeymooned in the USSR, and because of the role of superdelegates and the prospect of a brokered convention rising, the chances are excellent that the Bernsheviks will be embittered when the party shuns him, and will either stay home or vote third party — or for Trump — once Sanders is rejected.
Thanks to Adam Schiff and Jerry Nadler, support for Joe Biden, not long ago proclaimed the leader in the polls and just the man to take down President Trump, has collapsed, and he fled town before the voting was over, stranding his forlorn supporters with his sister at the election party. Biden has been exposed as a man of declining mental capabilities, with a nasty, thuggish, and creepy side. His political career is now over, and South Carolina will seal his fate.
Pete Buttigieg appears to have picked up a lot of support that is fleeing Joe Biden. That's good, because he is glib and artificial to an extent that will eventually annoy most voters. Reportedly, he focus-groups everything, including his hand gestures, and it shows. He will not wear well outside the academic/highly educated wing of the party. His record as mayor of South Bend, Indiana is not impressive, and aside from his elite education and brief career at McKinsey & Company, it's all he's got, aside from the notoriety of being the first openly gay major candidate for president.
Even better, the utter phoniness of Elizabeth Warren has penetrated the consciousness of the voting public. Her finish behind Amy Klobuchar in New Hampshire should be enough to kill her fundraising and thus her campaign. About half of the population of New Hampshire lies in the Boston television market, and she is therefore well known to the electorate. Familiarity has not bred affection or respect.
Amy Klobuchar is the big winner and, if the media unite behind her, may appear to be a comer. But she has no campaign organization in place beyond New Hampshire. Maybe her fundraising will enable her to hire some of the staffers cut free as other candidates collapse. But with higher visibility comes greater scrutiny, and her Minnesota Nice pose is not an act she is able to consistently pull off. Tales of former staffers, as well as the antagonism of the black community, may come to haunt her if she continues strong.
All in all, this is a very auspicious moment for the Trump re-election campaign.