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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 3/10/20

Get out now, Bernie! It's Joe Biden's time to run for President

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Primaires de'mocrates : premier duel entre Joe Biden et Bernie Sanders Couronne' dans plusieurs tats la semaine dernire lors du .Super Tuesday., Joe Biden veut s'imposer de nouveau, mardi, sur son rival Bernie Sanders.
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I'm proud of my vote for Bernie Sanders in the 2016 Democratic primary. As an FDR Democrat, how could I have acted otherwise? Roosevelt gave us huge public works projects when we needed them -- but, like Sanders, he was far from a Stalin or Castro.

Contrary to hints from his enemies, Sanders is not keen on nationalizing private property just for the joy of it or killing off enemies in stadiums.

Read Sanders's recent speech at George Washington University and visit the issues section of his Web site if you want to know where he's coming from. Shame, shame, shame on Sanders's detractors for either laziness or sheer dishonesty. Yes, Sanders is angry. Why shouldn't he be, given the outrageous wealth and income gaps between the rich and the poor -- and the "socialism for the rich" compounding the outrages? Or the Democratic Party's less than stellar record on healthcare or the environment?

So why did I vote for Joe Biden in the 2020 primary, and why am I begging Sanders to leave the presidential race immediately?

Because Biden stands more of a chance of winning the general election against Donald Trump -- a traitor, crook, climate denier, life-jeopardizing incompetent, racist, self-proclaimed rapist, xenophobe, and at least an aspiring fascist dictator who, knowingly or not, might pave the way eventually for a full-strength Nazi. Despite Sanders's good intentions, he has not helped himself by calling himself a "Democratic Socialist," or gratuitously mentioning Fidel Castro's literacy programs. To deplore this butcher's authoritarianism isn't enough.

Ahead I'll lay out my serious caveats about the former vice president. But in the end, I must support Biden to the max in the general election. The Democrats must win this one. The White House's bungling of the coronavirus crisis is just the latest of the multifarious horrors from the Trump administration, a constant threat to life and a sustainable economy alike.

Even in the first term -- ideally his only one! -- Trump already is well on the way to meeting his malevolent goals. Read George Packer's Atlantic article headlined The President Is Winning His War on American Institutions. How Trump is destroying the civil service and bending the government his will. The Republican Party at the leadership level is now the Authoritarian Party -- eager to suppress votes and otherwise cheat to enable a totalitarian like Trump to stay in power. Dems can't afford to blow this one.

Caveats about Joe Biden

Before making the case for Joe Biden as a presidential candidate to counter The Existential Threat, let me get my caveats out of the way. He is far more labor-friendly than Trump but not quite the worker's friend he would have you believe. In the past, Biden went along with billionaire-optimized trade deals that failed to protect blue-collar Americans sufficiently, and he has talked all too often of cuts to Social Security.

Also, as shown by constant gaffes, even more than in his prime, Biden is not as sharp mentally as before. Trump isn't, either. But he could still put up quite a fight. In regard to Biden, you already know of other troubling matters such as his less than full devotion to the fight against climate change. Bernie Sanders surpasses Biden in all those ways.

Why I'm for Biden anyway

So why am I still for Biden? Well, just as I've said, he's more electable -- more likely to replace the traitor-fascist-crook as president. In this era of Russian trolls and bots and massive corporate donations, not to mention the Authoritarian Party's voter suppression, the Democrats will need all the votes they can get. The probability of Trump contesting a close election makes this even more urgent. Sanders may or may not be able to win, but even if the odds with Biden are just slightly better, I'll go for Joe. That's how high the stakes are.

As it happens, in the wake of the Super Tuesday results, Biden at this point appears to have a significantly greater chance against Trump than Sanders.

The youth vote on which Sanders was counting just did not turn out to the extent he was hoping. Rachel Maddow's MSNBC interview with him on March 4 further weakened his case. I was left wondering how Sanders could sufficiently increase participation from debt-ridden young people, minorities and other screwed-over Americans between now and November. At the national level, are they sufficiently wild about Sanders in the first place to actually get out and vote for him?

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David H. Rothman is a columnist for The Georgetown Dish (GeorgetownDish.com). He is author of The Solomon Scandals (Twilight Times Books), a 2009 novel featuring a real estate crook with a knack for buying up journalists and politicians. "My (more...)
 

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