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Beto - win or lose tonight, has he changed the face of u.s. politics?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Wei, Nov 6, 2018.

  1. Wei

    Wei Active Member

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    Beto O'Rourke.jpg
    BETO O'ROURKE: Galvanizing young, female and minority voters to defeat Trump Republican Ted Cruz
    He's a political star in his own right - and campaigning to defeat (now) Trump loyalist and far right-winger Ted Cruz in Texas - a Ruby Red Republican state. And he's hoping to do it by upending the usual political textbook response: turn Right in a heavily Republican state to pick off a few conservative Republicans by minimizing difference. Beto O'Rourke has felt from the start that the usual strategy belongs in the garbage. Instead, he's campaigning on the moderate-progressive center-left, reaching out and galvanizing huge numbers of young, female and minority voters to come out en masse to try to defeat the Republicans - and he's turned down corporate funding, in favor of thousands of small contributions from the public.

    Over the final week, my bros and I have traveled across the US to volunteer in local campaigns, and we're with Beto's campaign here in Texas on his last day today. Tomorrow, we fly back to California. Just as Beto hoped, the lines of young & minority voters here have been enormous - despite the odds against a Democrat winning this state. The latest opinion polls are neck-and-neck: it just feels unreal! Win or lose, Beto's candidacy has changed Texas political campaigning forever. :)

    And win or lose, do you think Beto has also changed the face of US politics?
     
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  2. TexanStar

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    It's complicated. I'm still glued to the TV so I can't write much now (go Beto!), but there are ways in which Beto is creating change but also ways in which he's reflecting change.

    Anyways, I'll write more once this gets called in. Still too much of a nailbiter.
     
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  3. SonyToyo

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    Beto lost lol

    Called it
     
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  4. Tight_N_Juicy

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    Did he change US politics? No. Not by himself.

    I was rooting for him, hard... But I'm not surprised that he didn't win.

    It's disgusting that this guy who is so obviously disliked by so many people still managed to win. It's because of the overall corrupt system we have in this "free" country.
     
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  5. b.c.

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    Like I keep saying, it's because of WHO they dislike even MORE:

    The Dark State of Mind - Part II
     
  6. TexanStar

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    Bummer he didn't make it across the finish line, but still ran a really good race. For comparison, John Cornyn won his senate seat in the 2014 midterms 62 to 35. Cruz won his during the 2012 presidential 57 to 41. Cruz only beat Beto by 3 points (a win's a win, but that was very close, especially for this state).

    As far as what Beto changed, he's laid the groundwork for the Democratic support structure for future races in this state. Texas is one of the fastest growing states and has been for years and the cities are growing faster than the rural areas. When I talk about Beto being a reflection, it's of the fact that whether the GOP likes it or not, the state is slowly becoming more purple over time. Pete Sessions just lost the house seat he's held for the last 15 years (and lost it by 8 points).

    If I had to peg one impact of Beto on the national stage, it's that being authentic and earnest can carry you a lot further than watering down your views to appeal to the opposition. That doesn't mean everyone run as a progressive, it just means that people appreciate candidates who have the courage of their own convictions regardless of where they sit on the political spectrum.

    If he'd won senate I think he'd be positioned well for a presidential run in 2024. He still could, but it depends a lot what he gets up to over the next 4 years (and whether Trump wins or loses in 2020).
     
  7. phonehome

    phonehome Well-Liked Member

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    So did he run to keep his house seat ?
     
  8. Wei

    Wei Active Member

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    Thanks for your reply. Fell asleep, exhausted but so happy! After we finished campaigning for him yesterday, we felt so relieved that we, and all the local campaigners we worked with, had pulled out all the stops to maximize his vote. I don't think the fact that we didn't win is due to an "overall corrupt system": in truth, this was a "Ruby Red" Republican state, where right wing Republicans, including Ted Cruz, constantly win by landslides. I'm from California, where Dems win by similar margins.

    So we didn't think we would win - tbh, in a place like Texas, we didn't think a few weeks ago that any Democrat could even come close. Yet here we were, within a whisker of taking the state. So we're not at all disheartened that Beto/we narrowly lost - just amazed that he/we came so far! I'm going back to sleep soon - we're in a big tent for party volunteers, surrounded by a ton of guys our age - and my bros & bf are in the beds right around me. All of us are very tired, with sore feet - but very, very proud of Beto, of the Democratic "get out the vote" volunteers, of Texas voters and the wonderful, amazing people we met in several local campaigns across different states. What an experience.... :)
     
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  9. Wei

    Wei Active Member

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    Actually, that's usually the case. But this time, it wasn't just a vote against Sen. Ted Cruz - or even by proxy against Donald Trump. For many here, It was actually a positive vote for Beto. Because unlike most politicians, he doesn't endlessly sling mud at his opponents - he has an upbeat and optimistic message, a really good political program and a genuinely good character to match. It's as much about wanting him, and his policy program, than a vote against Cruz/Trump/Republicans....
     
  10. b.c.

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    All qualities that don't MATTER at all to the GOP and Trump's band of sycophants. In fact they ridicule such qualities. Congratulations to you and your candidate for running a campaign on dignity, poise and the REAL issues at hand.
     
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  11. Wei

    Wei Active Member

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    Oh yes - absolutely. And you really got to the crux of it in the part I just highlighted. Authenticity is key. Campaigning hard for Beto on our last day of crossing the US, that was one of the key reasons people gave us in voting for him. And as I mentioned in my reply to b.c. above, many voted for him and not just against Cruz/Trump/Republicans. Too often, Dems in Ruby Red states pretend that they're Republican in everything but name, and end up in crazily contorted positions, endorsing Trump or Trump nominees like Kavanaugh. Republicans in Deep Blue states do the same, pretending that they're virtually identical to Democrats, and that Nancy Pelosi is their personal pin-up.

    It's so much easier to lazily attract a handful of voters in landslide states to switch party, and end with a deeply compromised candidate who then goes on to lose, even if the incumbent's landslide is reduced a little in the process. Voters can spot the inauthentic a mile away, and they rightly punish them. That happened to a Democrat challenger last night in the House race for West Virginia, Richard Ojeda. He pledged loyalty to Trump on most issues and strongly praised his nomination of Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court - but was rightly swept away by voters who preferred the real thing in incumbent Carol Miller, who went whole hog in defense of Trump. Meanwhile, corporate supporters don't wanna support no-hopers, leading some candidates to then get into shady deals to raise the funds need to run.

    By contrast, Beto ran on his own program, didn't try over-compromising (or making much compromise at all) with Republican positions or even try courting Rep voters - and instead concentrated on large numbers who support the Dems but often don't turn out to vote. And to avoid accusations of selling out to corporate interests or making those shady finance deals, he didn't take money from either: instead, he took small donations from thousands of ordinary people. He actually raised over $37 million in that way - considerably more than Ted Cruz gained from all of his corporate money.

    So you're absolutely right to say, "people appreciate candidates who have the courage of their own convictions". Let's hope that for both sides, instead of being a rare and notable exception, this actually starts to become the norm....
     
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  12. Wei

    Wei Active Member

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    Thank you so much. He really did run on the real issue, and almost won. Just a month ago, ppl would laugh if you or I suggested he could have gotten anywhere close to Cruz. I would've been mighty skeptical at that time, too. Managed to meet and shake hands with him - he was in the middle of a live interview, but he didn't mind and nor did the TV crew - tbh, he's even more impressive "in the flesh" than on TV!

    Before Beto, for me the only really great politician I saw was when I was a small kid: we flew out to Chicago and went to Grant Park on Election Night in 2008 for President-Elect Obama's wonderful, mesmerizing speech. It made a lifelong impression on me. I loved his presidency, and still strongly support him. And before my time, Al Gore is someone I deeply admire, too. I'm relieved I was way too young to experience the shock of Bush 2 taking the Presidency, and Gore's graceful concession that I first watched many years later (2009).

    You're right: Beto's qualities don't matter to the GOP or Trump's numerous sycophants. But what we noticed in Texas was that while many Republican voters still support Cruz, many are not at all keen on Trump or his acolytes. In some ways that's hardly surprising, given the depth of hostility between Cruz and Trump in 2016. As a result, many Texas Republicans can't stand Trump - specially the way he trashed Cruz and Cruz's dad that year.

    But the issue for many Cruz supporters now is that the "new Cruz" is now very much pro-Trump - and many can't simply stomach it. Many Republicans we spoke to were genuinely seething about that, are more than happy to speak out - we were amazed at their openness toward us, as we're obviously Ddemocrat volunteers - and told us their former hero has "sold out" to Trump. They didn't vote Beto, and they were honest to tell us (very) bluntly they wouldn't be supporting him either - and quite a few gritted their teeth to vote Cruz to keep Beto out! But many simply can't support Cruz in his reincarnation as a Trump sycophant. Instead, they registered their own type of protest by refusing to turn up to vote at all.

    When we first turned up outside people's front doors to ask them if they'd consider voting Beto, it's like they discussed this with neighbors and friends beforehand, cos the reaction and wording of their response was much the same: Cruz has "betrayed our trust, so if we vote him at all", it would only be to keep out "your candidate", Beto, who they feel is "way too extreme/socialistic for Texas". And many warned that even if Cruz held on this time, he's very likely to lose next time - even if "extreme" Beto is our candidate - and they specially won't be casting their vote for Trump in the 2020 Presidentials, either.... :)
     
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  13. Wei

    Wei Active Member

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    Hey again, B.C. - sorry, I meant to use the plural: "he really did run on the real issues". One or two other errors in my response, for which I apologize, due to extreme tiredness. Kinda drifting into the world of sleep again now, so must have a little rest before we fly back home later today. Talk again to you & others in a few hrs' time. They're letting us all sleep in for a few hrs til very late morning (11:30am) before we must vacate the site and the big tent is taken down for the last time - fortunately very little traffic, so we can sleep.... Nighty night :sleeping:
     
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  14. TexanStar

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    No, that's why I said a 2024 presidential run depends a lot on what he does over the next 4 years.

    His house seat (TX-16) was won by Veronica Escobar last night (stays blue).
     
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  15. TexanStar

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    I'll note also that Beto flipped the last urban center in TX lastnight.

    Prior to this election, Fort Worth was voting reliably red in every election. Last night it did go blue for Beto (50% to 49%). So Beto won the eight largest cities in the state, but Cruz won largely on the strength of the rural vote.

    Texas Election Results 2018: Live Midterm Map by County & Analysis

    As Texas grows, and grows more urban, the statewide races are going to continue to grow more competitive like this: New Census Data Show Texas Cities Are Growing Faster Than All Other States

    Dems do need to work on Plano & Frisco especially though. They're often considered suburbs of Dallas, but both cities are growing large enough that they're transitioning into more of their own urban center (They'll have to start calling it Dallas-Fort Worth-Plano/Frisco). I just mention it because Beto did lose those two counties (Collin & Denton). I wasn't sure which way they were going to go (there's a ton of tech & health care jobs up there), but that's definitely an opportunity to do better.

    Ended up being a 2.6% difference. Close, but not close enough (but close! :)). Things are definitely changing.

     
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  16. 185248

    185248 Guest

    You mean the Osmond smile did not work? Dang blast it.[​IMG]
     
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  17. StormfrontFL

    StormfrontFL Loved Member

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    I join you in no longer believing humanity has a future.

    Ted Cruz, a "man" who kissed up to someone who called his father a murderer and his wife ugly, won reelection. Steve King, a known racist and anti-semite, won reelection. Duncan Hunter. Devin Nunes.

    Now we know. The Republican voters can no longer deny that they don't care about integrity, qualifications, or character.
     
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  18. TexanStar

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    Texas has been and still is a majority Republican state. I don't think there was ever a question that they would abandon Cruz (who represents lower taxes, school vouchers, gun rights, and immigration crackdown) to support a liberal.

    It was really about which candidate could energize enough voters to win. Cruz had the easier job here, and he managed to secure his re-election, but for Beto to come as close as he did reflects both changing voter demographics and the state and also a straight up kick-ass campaigning job.

    Basically, Beto ran the better campaign, but Cruz leveraged his advantage.
     
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  19. StormfrontFL

    StormfrontFL Loved Member

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    Cruz's victory will hopefully be a lesson to those on the left who refuse to vote for a candidate unless he or she is their choice. A lot of people who voted for Cruz did so "holding their nose" because they didn't like the man but couldn't let the other side win. Imagine what it might have been like in 2016 if those who voted for Stein or refused to vote because it wasn't Sanders did the same?
     
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  20. TexanStar

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    I don't think anyone "likes" Ted Cruz. As a person and human being he's really gross. But he's a reliable conservative vote in congress. Most Republican voters aren't going to throw away a vote just because the douche casting the vote is a douche.

    But look at it this way. Beto O'Rourke, in a midterm no less, secured more total votes for Senator than Hillary Clinton did for president in 2016 in the same state.

    Hillary Clinton 2016 vote total: 3,877,868
    Beto O'Rourke 2018 vote total: 4,015,082

    More democratic voters came out in a midterm than came out in the presidential election. That's phenomenal.

    Ted Cruz received less votes than Donald Trump (4,228,832 -vs- 4,685,047).

    Don't get me wrong, Ted still won, but this state is pushing its way purple and the failure of the Texas GOP to adopt a more moderate conservative platform increases the likelihood that there will be a transition of power in the future (it wasn't this election, but it inches closer to happening with the continued population explosion in Texas cities).

    Republicans are still winning, but any trend of their election performance shows them very obviously hemorraging independents in particular. Any presidential run where Texas votes Democrat is completely lost to the GOP. There's no math that will save them if/when that happens and growth rate is enough that it could happen as soon as 2024.
     
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