Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

Reading Democratic Tea Leaves

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, August 8, 2019

The Democratic candidates’ field is as great for the upcoming 2020 General Election as the Republicans’ 2016 was – and, that may, or may not be a good sign.

The 2016 GOP clown car was populated by, among others, Donald Trump, Texas Senator Ted Cruz, Ohio Governor John Kasich, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, retired pediatric neurosurgeon Ben Carson, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, former Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, former Virginia Governor Jim Gilmore, former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee.

Aside from them, there were 10 others who withdrew before the primaries, so say it was a crowded field, was a gross understatement.

Now, it’s the Democrats’ turn.

The 20-candidate field has not yet been winnowed, per se – at least not by prospective primary voters.

Among them, is one of the last candidates to join that field was former Vice President Joe Biden, who had the advantage of name recognition among all voters, and potential voters.

Because of his name recognition advantage, Biden’s “popularity” within the massive field has led the next closest competitors – which are Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren – sometimes by double digits.

A notable game-changing exception was made following the first Democratic debate at The Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in Miami, Florida, with NBC Moderators Savannah Guthrie, Lester Holt, Chuck Todd, Rachel Maddow and José Diaz-Balart on Night 2 (June 27) when California Senator Kamala Harris took former Vice President Joe Biden to task for his opposition as then-Senator from Delaware to busing to remedy and resolve the problem of segregation in California pubic schools.

Up until that time, Harris was polling 7.0%, while Biden was at 32.0%. After that night, support for Harris doubled to 15.2%, while Biden experienced a corresponding 6-point drop to 26.0%.

Since that high, Harris has continued to fall, and as of August 7 was polling at 8.3%.

Up until then, Sanders, the next-closest competitor, had fluctuated from 16.5% to 24.0% (his highest), to 14.0% (his lowest), and as of August 7, was polling at 15.8%.

Biden’s polling has been as high as 41.4% since polling began on December 9, 2018, and has been as low as 26.0%.

However, while fluctuating, since inception, Biden’s polling has remained largely stagnated, and has gone from 29.0%, 26.0% (lowest), and as of August 7, was most recently at 31.0%.

In sharp contrast, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, who initiated polling at 6.0%, has seen a steady increase, close to tripling at 16.3%, and as of August 7, was at polling at 15.5%. Her lowest polling was 4.3%.

But South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg has performed even better, similarly increasing, and has fluctuated from 1.3% to 8.4%, and is most recently polling at 5.5% – a quadruple increase.

No other candidate can claim such accomplishment.

Since July 5, Senators Sanders and Warren have run practically neck-and-neck at 14.0% and 13.8%, respectively, and are now nearly tied at 15.8% and 15.5%, respectively.

All other candidates have experienced declines in polling, despite having made qualifications to participate in debates.

While prospective voters have not winnowed the field of candidates, the Democratic National Committee’s rules for participation in debates have.

According to rules established well in advance by the DNC, candidates must meet a polling -and- a fundraising requirement: 1.) Reaching at least 2% in four DNC-approved separate national or early state polls released from June 28-Aug. 28, in addition to 2.) Receiving donations from a minimum of 130,000 unique donors, including 400 unique donors in 20 different states.

The Third Democratic Debate is scheduled for:
September 12 & 13, 2019
ABC News Democratic Primary Debate
Aired On: ABC, Univision
Live Stream: ABC News Live
Location: Texas Southern University in Houston, Texas
Moderators: TBD
Candidates: TBD
Qualifications: A candidate will need to either have at least 2 percent support in three qualifying polls, AND provide evidence of at least 130,000 individual donations from a minimum of 400 different donors in at least 20 states.

By those rules, 9 candidates have met all the qualifications:

Photo of Joe Biden

Joe Biden
Former Vice President

Photo of Cory Booker

Cory Booker
Senator from New Jersey

Photo of Pete Buttigieg

Pete Buttigieg
Mayor of South Bend, Indiana

Photo of Kamala Harris

Kamala Harris
Senator from California

Photo of Amy Klobuchar

Amy Klobuchar
Senator from Minnesota

Photo of Beto O'Rourke

Beto O’Rourke
Former representative from Texas’ 16th District

Photo of Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders
Senator from Vermont

Photo of Elizabeth Warren

Elizabeth Warren
Senator from Massachusetts

Photo of Andrew Yang

Andrew Yang
Founder of Venture for America

One Response to “Reading Democratic Tea Leaves”

  1. […] a recent entry dated August 8, 2019, and entitled Reading Democratic Tea Leaves I noted one, or two very fine, somewhat minor points overlooked by most […]


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