Saturday, March 07, 2020

Electing A Woman

In a debate in January at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa,

Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren finally addressed some of the escalating conflict between the two when they tackled a question about sexism and the 2020 election.

Sanders emphasized that he had championed Warren for the presidency in the past and said it was “incomprehensible” that he would argue a woman couldn’t win. Warren, meanwhile, seized on this exchange to make her case about why women’s electability in 2020 shouldn’t be questioned — the subject at the heart of a supposed disagreement she had with Sanders.

The following weekend, body language expert Janine Driver told Joy Ann Reid

He looks away, he laughs. I think he may have been coached to laugh in this moment. A lot of politicians are coached to laugh in the difficult times so we focus on the laughter and it's supposed to send a message that this isn't serious. But it is serious.

If he said, which I believe that he did, he would have been better to just own it. You know, Barack Obama wrote a book years ago. He said what in the book? He tried cocaine and marijuana and he never touched the stuff again. We never talked about it when he was President after that. If Bernie just owned it, it would have just disappeared and we wouldn't be talking about it six days later.

He should have owned it because many, if not most, voters would have agreed with him. 
This isn't the only reason that Elizabeth Warren's campaign went up in flames.  Sadly, many people believed what the Vermont senator was accused of telling the Massachusetts senator was accurate- that a woman could not be elected President at this time. And by calling Sanders on his remark, Warren may have reinforced the notion that a woman was a risky choice- in an election cycle in which Democrats are focused (perhaps obsessed) with nominating a candidate they believe can beat the incumbent.

Ironies abound in this campaign season. In this case at least, Elizabeth Warren's boldness and candor may have helped sow the seeds of the destruction of her own campaign.

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