A Mediocre Candidate Who Beats Trump Is Infinitely Better Than A Great Candidate Who Doesn’t

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

By David Grace (www.DavidGraceAuthor.com)

Americans Are Not The People The Progressives Think They Are

The United States is not the country the progressives would wish it were.

The citizens of the United States are not the people the progressives wish they were.

That misapprehension is the fatal flaw in the way many Democrats think about who should be their Presidential candidate for the 2020 election. They think that just nominating a person with the “right” ideas will automatically beat Mr. T.


The wrong candidate with the “right ideas” will lose to Mr. T.

And nominating someone with all the right ideas who loses is far, far worse than nominating someone with only some of the right ideas who wins.

White Racists

The progressives think that the overwhelming majority of Americans are decent, fair-minded, unbiased, somewhat intelligent people. In my view, that’s not true.

I define a “white racist” as someone who believes that, for genetic reasons, on average, black people are lazier, more violent, more prone to drug and alcohol abuse and dumber than the average white person. At best these racists have no respect for black people. At worst they dislike and fear them.

My guess is that between 25% and 35% of the white adults in the United States disrespect, dislike and/or fear black people. All these people are a lock to vote for Mr. T.

Evangelicals are estimated to represent 20% to 25% of the electorate. Almost all of them are going to vote for Mr. T. To some unknown degree they overlap the racist population, so the total Mr. T vote from both racists and evangelicals is unknown. My guess is that it’s about 35% to 40% and they will absolutely show up on election day to vote for Mr. T.

Can’t Trust A Woman

How many potential voters will refuse to vote for a woman as President? I’m guessing 5% to 15%, mostly high-school-educated over-40 males. Those people don’t all overlap with the racist voters and the evangelical voters.

Can’t Live With The First Lady Being A First Man

How many potential voters will not vote for a Presidential candidate who is gay man who is married to an another gay man? I’ve got to guess at least another 10% to 15%.

Do you disagree with that opinion?

OK, imagine you’re at a sporting event or in a church in Louisville, Houston, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Milwaukee or Miami. You set up a bunch of private voting booths and run a thousand random people through them to answer the sole question: “Are you willing to see a gay man at official events in foreign countries as the First Gentlemen spouse of the male President of the United States?”

How do you think that vote would break down? What percentage of those 1,000 people do you think would vote “Yes, I’m good with that.” 80%, 70%, 50%? Less?

Now hold the same kind of vote in towns with 100,000 people or less in states like Utah, South Carolina, Oklahoma, Montana, Indiana, etc.

There are millions of people who might vote for a moderate, straight, white, male Democratic candidate running against Mr. T but who will, at the very least, stay home if that Democratic candidate is a gay man.

A Swing Of 5% Will Decide The Election

The next presidential election is probably going to have a voter split of someplace between 55%–45% and 51%–49%. A shift of only 5% of the votes or less is going to decide who wins.

At least as important as how many people show up to cast their ballots for Mr. T’s opponent is how many people who might otherwise vote for the Democratic candidate so dislike that candidate that they decide to stay home and not vote at all.

You would need only a percent or two of the people who would otherwise vote for the Democrat to stay home to make Trump the winner, again.

If all the people who didn’t want Trump to become president in 2016 and who stayed home because they were mad at Hillary had actually gotten off their butts, held their collective noses, and voted for her anyway, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named would not be President today.

Boy, they showed her!

The Election Will Be Decided By Who Doesn’t Show Up To Vote

This is not a progressive country. The United States is a fundamentally right-of-center country. A large percentage of the electorate believes that, in general, black people are genetically inferior to white people and those racists are all going to show up on election day and vote for Mr. T.

All the people who want to eliminate a woman’s ability to have an abortion are going to show up and vote for Mr. T.

All the people who want everyone to be able to own an unregistered assault rifle are going to show up and vote for Mr. T.

A material percentage of the electorate will not vote for a Presidential candidate who is a woman or is gay.

Many people who would otherwise vote for the Democratic candidate and against Mr. T will not show up if the Democratic candidate is female, gay or a socialist.

And if they don’t show up to vote for the presidential candidate they also won’t be there to vote for any Democrats running for the House or the Senate.

Progressives Haven’t Done Their Homework

If you want to elect a progressive candidate as President you first have to do what the right wing has done — you first have to change the way the people feel about government.

The Republicans didn’t get up one morning, nominate a right-wing candidate, and expect him to get elected.

The GOP has spent fifty years, years, promoting their message:

  • The government is your enemy;
  • Making corporations and rich people richer is good for poor people;
  • Working people deserve to be poor;
  • Rich people deserve to be rich;
  • Corporations should be free to do anything they can get away with.

Thanks to Fox News, gerrymandering, and a concerted, take-no-prisoners strategy, the GOP has sold their brand to the middle class and the upper working class.

If the progressives want to take back the country they are going to have to spend years doing the same thing for their brand. Just saying, “We’re here and the other side is bad” will not work.

First the progressives will have to change how the working class and middle class view government, then they can nominate a progressive, not the other way around.

The Best Candidate Losing Is Worse Than The Just OK Candidate Winning

Just having Bernie stand up there and say, “The government will give everybody free this and free that. Vote for free stuff. Vote for me” isn’t going to cut it. It’s just going to put the MIC (Megalomaniac In Chief) back in the White House.

The left wing may feel excited and emotionally fulfilled to nominate a progressive or a socialist, a gay person, a black person or a female as the Democratic presidential candidate, but the goal is not to make them feel good.

The goal is to make sure that the MIC is out of the White House before he has the chance to appoint another Supreme Court justice, because if that happens everything non-right-wing people believe in is screwed for the next twenty or thirty years.

The progressives can get away with a female, white or black, as the Dem VP candidate, but not as the presidential candidate. Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren would work.

I’d love to have some more intelligent, charismatic, creative, non-socialist, straight, white male other than Joe Biden as the Dem nominee, but I don’t know who that might be.

But here’s the thing: Many, many, many white Americans are racists and they are going to vote against a black candidate; many will vote against a female candidate; very many will vote against a gay candidate. Very many will vote against a socialist candidate.

And many of those who don’t vote against those candidates won’t vote for them either.

They will just not vote at all.

The margin of winning or losing is going to be 5% or less. We cannot afford to leave the MIC in office for four more years. We need to keep the house out of GOP hands, and if anything is going to be done, we have to take the Senate away from the GOP.

In the last election the Bernie Sanders supporters who were pissed off at Hillary chose glorious defeat over ignominious victory and look where that got them — Neil Gorsuch and Brent Cavanaugh.

The country cannot survive another glorious defeat and it would be beyond stupid to try that strategy again.

To Win The Election It’s Going To Have To Be The Old White Guy

Progressives don’t run this country. They are nowhere near a majority. The big money is against them.

It’s not enough to believe that the conservatives are wrong. You actually have to win elections, and that’s not going to happen for the progressives in 2020 no matter how much they think they are right and everybody else is wrong.

It just isn’t.

Much as I don’t want to do it, I think we will probably have to give the ball to the tired old white guy or it’s going to be game-over for everybody but big corporations, rich people and semi-anarchists.

— David Grace (www.DavidGraceAuthor.com)

To see a searchable list of all David Grace’s columns in chronological order, CLICK HERE

To see a list of David Grace’s columns sorted by topic/subject matter, CLICK HERE.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
David Grace

David Grace


Graduate of Stanford University & U.C. Berkeley Law School. Author of 16 novels and over 400 Medium columns on Economics, Politics, Law, Humor & Satire.