Day 74: 8/2/19

As the week came to an end, on Friday: Joe Biden got upset Obama’s record was attacked, Kamala Harris didn’t actually hit her fundraising goal, and Julian Castro was so pleased that his fearmongering worked, he upped the ante with some red font.

Those who did email me emailed me a lot!

Michael Bennet, Joe Biden, Cory Booker, Jay Inslee, and Tim Ryan all tried to capitalize on the debates by sending 3 emails each (and Ryan extended his yoga contest “due to demand”). Julian Castro, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, and Tom Steyer all sent 2 emails each.

If I include the counts that aren’t negative toward either of these groups, it skews the scale too much.

The above chart is counting both donor and non-donor emails, so while there were 2 attacks on Democrats, only 1 candidate actually was on the attack.

Joe Biden was disappointed in how much Democrats attacked Obama.

I must tell you, I was a little surprised at how much my colleagues criticized President Obama’s policies at the debate.

I’m proud of having served with him; I’m proud of the job he did.

And I hope at the next debate we can talk about our answers to fix the things that Trump has broken, not how Barack Obama made all of these mistakes. He didn’t.

Joe Biden

I am disappointed in Biden for his disappointment.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Obama. I think he’s the best President in my lifetime (thus far), and definitely top ten or higher overall (though I don’t know enough about the other 40-some I haven’t lived with to concretely rank them). However, we cannot and must not forget that Obama wasn’t perfect. He was not some godly deity born into a human body to serve us as President for 8 years. He was a mortal man with all the strengths and flaws of a mortal, albeit incredible, man.

Every President who has served the country has been a mortal man. Every President is capable of mistakes and missteps and things that looked good at the time but ended up not being good. Everyone is capable of that.

Saying that criticizing a leader’s unpopular decisions is something to be disappointed in is VERY alarming.

After all, isn’t that one of Trump’s current scandals? He’s using racist language against four Congresswomen who loudly criticize and disagree with him? “If they don’t love America, they can just leave!”

Critiquing our leaders IS American.

Not blindly following them is American. Having doubts and worries and fears about your leaders is American. Calling out flaws and still admiring and respecting someone is American.

If a leader cannot withstand scrutiny, disagreement, dissent, and criticism, they aren’t a very strong leader. Again, this is how we feel about Trump. Obama doesn’t get to be held above scrutiny just because he was a good man who did the right thing a majority of the time.

As Democrats, we call people out if they screw up. We don’t let them off the hook for having a “mostly blameless” life, except for that one spot of treason or rape. We believe in accountability and that no one is above the law.

That includes President Obama.

Honestly, I think Obama would be one of the first to call himself out on unpopular decisions. If he made the wrong call, or if he made a call that seemed right at the time but really wasn’t, I have no doubt that Obama would go “That’s on me.” And that is the mark of a strong leader. Crying “How dare you attack this great man?” is an actual Republican talking point.

Biden, you are not Obama 2.0. You are Joe Biden. Let’s stop leaning on the past and instead stride forth into the future.

Because if you argue that things Obama did that could have been done better are without reproach, then you’re saying let’s not fix the mistakes of the past. And that right there is enough to lose my vote.

Debates has dropped, and a lot are just saying Thanks!

On a slightly different angle to the whole negativity thing, Kamala Harris managed to use her opponents’ successes as motivation for her team to do better without actually coming out negatively against them.

Bernie Sanders reported raising more than $2 million in the immediate aftermath of his debate performance this week.

Cory Booker wrote in an email that debate night was the best fundraising day for his team since he launched his campaign this year.

Meanwhile, one of our primary opponents is self-funding his campaign and spending more than $100,000 per day on targeted Facebook ads trying to buy this election with his own personal fortune.

Don’t get us wrong, our numbers ticked up too in the hours after Wednesday’s debate — but we still fell short of our July fundraising goal. That’s why we had to extend it.

Team Kamala

Notice how she did that? “This is what they did,” (and she didn’t give a name to her 1%er opponent, Tom Steyer, who is not in the same tier of candidate as Harris right now. She got a lot of flack for engaging with Tulsi Gabbard at the debate, someone who is supposedly “beneath her” in popular candidate rankings), “and this is where we are. We need to do better.”

At no point did Harris call out the other three as bad, just said that she wasn’t doing as good. I really appreciated this approach and attitude… even if I was tired of all the Harris fundraising emails.

The donate number is dropping.

Honestly, I’m surprised Kamala Harris fell short in her fundraising. I remember saying in this very blog that she was going to be sounding the alarms up until the very last day, and then she’d tell me how much she crushed her goals. She didn’t do that. I’m not sure if it is honest numbers or a fictitious scenario to bring in more donations.

Julian Castro is going the fearmongering route, after all. After his emails on Thursday about how NPR announced he might not make the next debate stage, he sent this email on Friday:

I am so sick of that “When…” list. He’s really fond of it.

That email implies that Castro is really struggling, right? After all, NPR has been JUST ANNOUNCING that Castro might not make it since July 30. Since before his debate.

But hey, at least he has effective ads!

(If an ad is actually effective, do you have to tell people it is?)

After I told you NPR warned this week’s debate might have been my last…

 Your support skyrocketed — I’m now just one poll away from officially qualifying for the next debates!

Julian Castro

It was this following email that really upset me. “After I scared you, you gave me money!” Now just one poll away? He’d been one poll away for over a week now!

Just as I’m disappointed in Biden, I’m also disappointed in Castro. I’m so tired of being scared. I want a leader who doesn’t see a value in scaring me, but instead sees a value in giving me hope.

If Castro becomes the Democratic nominee, I will absolutely vote for him.

I will not donate to him.

One candidate I will donate to is Jay Inslee. His emails have always been light (remember when he offered some of his paintings?), but recently, they’ve taken on a thoroughly amusing tilt. While he started Friday with a warning that he might not make it in the debate and needs my help (but WITHOUT the fear, Castro!), he then went on to send an email about what working for a campaign is like:

Have you ever wondered what working on a presidential campaign is really like?

Let me paint you a picture: [see below, can’t insert in a quote!]

Trump tweets. Candidate schedules. News of the day. Your eyes cross before it’s even 10‌:00 a‌m — but not Jay. He’s cool, calm, collected — and singularly focused on what matters.

Travis Mockler, Digital Director, Inslee for America
His digital director also asked me to send coffee.

Following up on that email, he sent one talking about how our planet is in trouble and we have a hero who can save us… not Captain Planet, but Jay Inslee!

I smiled. And again, as before, I felt good about Inslee. I’m still not sold on PRESIDENT for Inslee, but I want him at a cabinet-level position, minimum, in the next administration. And in light of my disappointment in other candidates, I put my money where my hope was and sent off a donation of $5 to Inslee on my personal email.

You may not be Captain Planet, Inslee, but you do have the heart ring.

(If you’re counting: I’ve donated more than $1 to Pete Buttigieg (who emailed today with debate highlights), Elizabeth Warren (who shocked me with 0 emails today after her flood of multi-email days), Cory Booker (who is flying high today on his debate successes), and now Jay Inslee (who can make me feel happy despite his proclamations of imminent catastrophe).)

We broke 3,000 emails!

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