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OpEdNews Op Eds    H4'ed 11/28/19

A Long & Winding Road: The Rise of Mayor Pete

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Assume that we had the current maze of insurance companies and healthcare providers and added the public option. What would prevent the private for-profit insurance companies from jacking the rates on high-risk patients, pushing virtually all high-risk, high-cost patients to the public option? How would you prevent it? The insurance companies are motivated by profit and profit alone. They have a million ways to push you out of their fold if you don't contribute to their bottom line. If you are healthy now, just wait until you're not.

The public option would become a refuge for all high-risk, high-cost patients. The insurance companies would love it because it would boost their profits. In terms of healthcare policy, it would kill universal healthcare for years. The public option is just another way to kick the can down the road. It is not a solution.

Why won't Sanders or Warren make the case? No one knows. It seems they are counting on progressives to make it for them. Meantime, Buttigieg rises and he will continue to rise until someone on the top tier takes aim and knocks him down.

I like Mayor Pete. He's a very bright man, a Fulbright scholar with a promising future. He represents an oppressed community whose time has come. But he is not qualified to be president. He has not proven he can win a statewide election, no less the presidency.

Buttigieg is running on the weakness of Joe Biden. He is the younger alternative for the moderate wing of the party.

The other candidates have largely let him skate. Maybe they assume that his lack of support among minorities will take him down without their having to criticize him. Maybe the cost of attacking the first openly gay candidate for president is greater than the reward. Maybe.

There is a path for Buttigieg to win the nomination but it is a precarious one. As long as Biden is in the race, he has no chance below the Mason-Dixon line. That means he would have to sweep the rest of the nation. It is a daunting task. He would have to build momentum and ride it to the finish line.

Assuming he wins the nomination, the path to the White House would be even more difficult. Democrats are hoping to bring the Obama coalition with them. In 2020 that means winning not only North Carolina but bringing Georgia and Virginia into play. It means rallying minorities to vote in record numbers not only in the South but in the pivotal states of Arizona, Colorado and Nevada.

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Jack Random is the author of The Jazzman Chronicles and the founder of Crow Dog Press. His novels include Wasichu: The Killing Spirit, Number Nine: The Adventures of Jake Jones and Ruby Daulton, Ghost Dance Insurrection and A Patriot Dirge in (more...)

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