Primarily Speaking

image of a cartoon version of me standing next to a Magic 8-Ball set to 'NO,' 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!

So, first we found out which candidates had qualified for the first debate, then we found out how those candidates broke down across two nights, and now we know which candidates will be in the coveted center-stage position at each debate: "On Night One, Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and former Rep. Beto O'Rourke of Texas will be in the middle, while Night Two will feature former Vice President Biden and Sanders, the Vermont senator, standing side-by-side at center stage."

As I noted in comments on Monday, I'm pretty cool with the distribution of the candidates, which was always going to feel a little fucked-up, lolsob, but I really like the sequence of the nights.

I'm glad the Biden/Bernie night is second, because I don't want Warren, Booker, and Castro (in particular) to have to field questions that start with, "Last night, Bernie said..."

They get the night where they won't be required to respond to whatever the others said. And their names are more likely to get a mention the subsequent evening, if they say something worth mentioning. GOOD.

* * *

Senator Cory Booker has written an op-ed for Essence to mark Juneteeth, sharing his thoughts on "how the spirit of the holiday should be celebrated and how he would fulfill the legacies of those who fought for emancipation." Writes Booker: "We should use today to honor our history, recommit to balancing the scales, and confront the bias that persists in the present. We celebrate and remember on this day, because of our ancestors, because of their strength, their indomitable grace, and their relentless hope. On this Juneteenth, we know we cannot pay them back for what they did for us, but we can, and we must pay it forward."

Senator Kamala Harris correctly connects Donald Trump's planned purge of undocumented immigrants with his white supremacy: "Let's call this what it is: an attempt to remake the demographics of our country by cracking down on immigrants. That this threat is coming from the President of the United States is deeply reprehensible and an affront to our values. We will fight this."

I believe I've mentioned once or twice or three dozen times that former HUD Secretary Julián Castro is very good at messaging, and here he is after being asked about Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez designating as "concentration camps" the facilities in which the Trump Regime is detaining migrants and refugees:
"Well look, I think the point she was trying to make is that this is serious, and this is the mistreatment of human beings," Mr. Castro, a former Obama administration official, said on CNN's New Day.

"Of course, I understand that there's a significance to that term, but I agree with the sentiment behind what she said, which is that we can't take this as normal — this is cruelty for these children," he said.

Mr. Castro said experts have said children will be affected for their entire lifetimes.

"And so we can't write it off, and I think we should focus on what she was trying to say, which is that we need to end this and end it now," he said.
He immediately and completely redirects away from the stupid debate about language that's being used to obfuscate the gravity of what's happening and refocuses on the point, which is the malice. He is so good at this.

Senator Bernie Sanders had a very strange response to Trump's disturbing rally last night:

I mean, of course Trump didn't mention any of those things. And Sanders insistence on pretending that this is a competition centered around policy only helps Trump, who has no policy, only malice. Sanders urgently needs to work on his messaging, not only as a presidential candidate but as a sitting senator, because this ain't it.

In other Sanders news, he says we should "definitely take a look at" busting up tech giants, which is something that Senator Elizabeth Warren suggested some time ago and on which Sanders should have a fully formed opinion by now.

Warren is emerging as a consensus candidate, according to Politico, and, I mean, sure, that's one way to put it — that she's not Bernie Sanders. But another, less misogynist way to put it is that she is emerging as an excellent candidate. A better candidate than other candidates, cough.

Here's a cool headline about Joe Biden, care of the New York Times: "Joe Biden, Recalling 'Civility' in Senate, Invokes Two Segregationist Senators." Yeah, I don't think I need to add any commentary to that, lol. Ol' Joe really knows how to speak for himself.

In other Biden news: "Former Vice President Joe Biden told affluent donors Tuesday that he wanted their support and — perhaps unlike some other Democratic presidential candidates — wouldn't be making them political targets because of their wealth. 'Remember, I got in trouble with some of the people on my team, on the Democratic side, because I said, you know, what I've found is rich people are just as patriotic as poor people. Not a joke. I mean, we may not want to demonize anybody who's made money,' Biden told about 100 well-dressed donors at the Carlyle Hotel on New York's Upper East Side, where the hors d'oeuvres included lobster, chicken satay, and crudites." Cool.

Governor Jay Inslee "has bolstered his presidential campaign with a series of new hires experienced in the politics of climate change, which has been the animating focus of Inslee's 2020 run." And they're not even all men! Imagine that!

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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