Primarily Speaking

image of a cartoon version of me screaming inside a cartoon version of Edvard Munch's 'The Scream,' pictured in front of a patriotic stars-and-stripes graphic, to which I've added text reading: 'The Democratic Primary 2020: Let's do this thing.'

Welcome to another edition of Primarily Speaking, because presidential primaries now begin fully one million years before the election!

In case you missed it, Senator Elizabeth Warren was the first senator to enter into the official Senate record a call for Donald Trump's impeachment. This is brave for a whole lot of reasons, not least of which is that she had to know she'd get blowback for calling for the impeachment of her potential general election opponent, but did it anyway.

And, since it's a day ending in Y, Professor Policy has yet another plan for us: "My Comprehensive Plan to End the Opioid Crisis." This does not contain the problems that Senator Kirsten Gillibrand's terrible plan has. To the contrary, Warren's plan puts the responsibility for the opioid crisis squarely where it belongs — on exploitative wrecks like the Sacklers, not on chronic pain patients, addicts, or doctors.

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Senator Cory Booker is beautifully strident in his defense of abortion rights:

And so I believe very strongly in Roe v. Wade as the law of the land. I believe that we should actually codify it in law through the legislature so nobody, no matter who you appoint to the judiciary branch of government, can ever overturn it. [applause] And I fight to protect a woman's right to make her own medical decisions. I will fight to make sure that a woman's body is under the purview of that woman and not a bunch of politicians in Washington or in a state capitol.
OMG let us count the many things that Booker gets right here! 1. I have never heard a male presidential candidate argue to codify abortion rights into law and that is SO GREAT. 2. He refers to abortion as a medical decision. 3. He says he will fight for a woman's right to make her own medical decisions and doesn't couch it in some bullshit language about how abortion is a decision between a woman, her doctor, her family, her pastor, etc. He makes clear that he regards it as her decision. 4. He acknowledges that abortion restrictions undermine women's bodily autonomy. 5. He notes that many abortion restrictions happen on the state level.

FUCKING YES. This is a male politician, at long last, who I feel like I can trust actually understands the abortion fight.

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Senator Kamala Harris is blowing by all her opponents in fundraising in communities that are more than 50% nonwhite. This suggests that Harris will do well in the early southern primaries, and I am not mad about that.

[CN: Gun violence] Harris also asks one of the questions that any person with a functioning sense of decency is asking after yet another school shooting:

The other question, of course, is: How many more children have to die? Sob.

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Senator Bernie Sanders is super excited about Joe Biden having entered the race, because he prefers to be running in second place, from where he can launch all sorts of attacks on the frontrunner.
It's long been obvious to Sanders's political advisers and allies that he does best with voters when he has an obvious Establishment foil to both rile him up and sharpen his crusader-for-a-political-revolution pitch, in the form of a "we're under attack" message.

"He's a change candidate — his core message is he wants to take on the political Establishment and the economic Establishment. He wants to change the political and economic status quo," explained one senior Democrat close to him. "So any time he has an opportunity to critique either the political or economic status quo, it's like, 'There you go!' [because] the fuel driving his candidacy is voters who are unhappy with the status quo. So he's going to lean into any opportunity to pick that fight."

...In the pre-Biden stage of the race, Sanders's camp took advantage of squabbles with a trio of supposedly powerful antagonists to solidify support among his most loyal followers and try to grow their ranks, rallying them against the liberal Center for American Progress think tank, party donors organizing against him, and Fox News.

...Now, though, Sanders is no longer alone at the front of the field, supplanted by the former vice-president — the presumptive Establishment pick.
Sanders is absolutely toxic.

And the worst part of this is that there are legitimate "establishment" criticisms of Biden. But if Sanders makes them, a lot of people will tune out because they'll quite rightly note he used the same schtick (unfairly) against Hillary Clinton.

I am just endlessly exasperated with this guy. To put it politely.

* * *

Julián Castro just flat-out says that Donald Trump is probably hoping the Russians interfere again in 2020. YES, SAY THAT! "I bet he's hoping they're going to do it again in 2020. It's incumbent upon Congress to help ensure that we do everything that we can to get to the truth that the Mueller report tried to lay out and also hold this administration accountable to make sure that we do take steps to secure our 2020 election." Solid.

Governor Jay Inslee is pretty funny:

Celebrities are lining up to throw glitzy fundraisers for Mayor Pete Buttigieg, and it's absolutely ridiculous that they are going all-in on an untested, unvetted candidate with very little policy expertise and a case of Jesus Mouth that rivals Mike Pence's.

Here's a headline and a half: "Joe Biden Is Much Less Popular Among Democratic Women Who've Been Sexually Harassed." Huh!

John Hickenlooper is still definitely running for president.

Talk about these things! Or don't. Whatever makes you happy. Life is short.

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