You would think that mayors would care about the citizens of their cities. All too often, that is not the case.
I recently heard an interview of a woman from Los Angeles. Her family has owned a business in downtown LA for over a century. Her business is in a neighborhood that is starting to resemble a third world nation with human waste on the sidewalks and streets. She has tried repeatedly to contact city hall without success.
Many mayors are willing to put their citizens at risk. They defy federal law to put convicted felons back on the streets.
These mayors are not only putting their jobs at risk. They are driving off people that pay taxes to support the cities. That creates a vicious cycle of higher and higher taxes causing more people to leave.
Nineteen serious candidates have filed for the Democratic presidential nomination. There are certainly more on the way, including Joe Biden. I will take a look at those most likely to be successful.
Biden and Bernie Sanders currently are in the lead. Much of that is based on name recognition but each brings a lot to the table. Biden has built a lot of contacts and good will from his many years in politics. Many are fighting for votes from the extreme left, leaving Biden with a large bloc of voters. Sanders has the organization he built in 2016.
The biggest challenge most face is standing out from the pack. Kamala Harris is black and female. Being from the most populous state won’t hurt. Pete Buttigieg has more going for him than just being gay. He is young, energetic and a dynamic speaker.
My surprise pick is Julian Castor. Only forty-five, he has served in the Obama cabinet and is Mayor of San Antonio. He has intimate knowledge of big city politics and a political family to back him up.
Elizabeth Warren and Beto O’Rourke have gained lots of attention. I don’t think she can get past her claims of Native American ancestry. He has had his day in the sun.
A lot can happen over the next year. Nobody would have considered Donald Trump to have a chance four years ago.
This may be news to some Democrats but the 2016 election is over. Donald Trump was the winner. Many couldn’t accept it. They tried recounts and convincing Republican electors to vote for Hillary Clinton. Of course, their ridiculous schemes didn’t work and Trump was inaugurated.
They turned their efforts toward impeachment and conviction. The Constitution uses the term “high crimes and misdemeanors” but doesn’t define it. To me, it is a serious criminal act. As a moderate, I don’t have a political axe to grind either way so I can be impartial.
For two years Democrats pinned their hopes on the Mueller investigation. They were dashed when the report said there was no collusion. A few diehards still insist there was collusion, citing the meeting Donald Trump junior attended. Just having a meeting is no proof. Using that logic means anyone a criminal talked to could be indicted. Now some are pinning their hopes on obstruction of justice. The investigation proceeded unmolested until its conclusion. Besides, how can there be obstruction if there was no crime?
Now there is a fishing expedition into his financial affairs. Some are making a big deal about getting his tax return. It wouldn’t reveal any detailed information about his business dealings. I once looked at the Clinton return. I could tell what they earned from speeches and book royalties but little else. They may find something in his business affairs, but right now there is no evidence of an impeachable offense.
I think some are caught up in what conservatives call Trump derangement syndrome. If they want, they can impeach him for jaywalking. It would take 67 votes in the Senate to remove him from office. That means 14 Republicans would need to agree.
As we all know, there is an election next year. Democrats could talk about all the great legislation the House passed or that they spent two years trying to dig up dirt on President Trump. It should be clear which strategy gets them the most votes.
I have done a few posts on President Trump and his obsession with immigration. It has been over a year since I wrote about the extremism we have seen on the left.
Some of it is just talk. Beto O’Rourke wants to tear down all the walls. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says all Hispanics should be let in because they are native peoples. It’s a free country and they are entitled to their opinion.
The actions of many cities and the state of California are far more dangerous. Whether or not police ask someone about their citizenship is within their discretion. The sanctuary movement won’t notify federal authorities if a convicted criminal is being released. How an elected official can care more about felons than the safety of their citizens is beyond my comprehension.
President Trump has talked about releasing illegal aliens into sanctuary cities. I don’t have a problem with that assuming that they get the support they need and are not just dumped on the streets. He once talked about them infesting America. Describing people with a term normally reserved for cockroaches and rats is a good indicator that he isn’t very concerned about their welfare.
We are in desperate need of immigration reform. As with so many other issues, both extremes make that impossible.
President Trump has backed off of closing the border, at least for now. During this episode he has displayed two characteristics which will hurt his popularity and his presidency if he doesn’t change his ways.
He is not a stupid man. Graduating from Wharton is clear proof of that. It appears that he doesn’t like to engage in deep thinking. He made the statement that closing the border wouldn’t hurt the economy much since we are running a trade deficit. He doesn’t seem to realize how interdependent are economies are. If he stops cars from coming in, car dealers will be out of business. Car parts move back and forth across the border. American assembly lines will shut down because they don’t have radiators or steering wheels coming from Mexico. He hasn’t made it clear if he wound want a total cessation of trade. That would mean the deaths of tens of thousands of Mexican citizens who are denied access to pharmaceuticals and other medical equipment and supplies.
If the borders are closed for a long time, our economy will go into a recession. Mexico’s will likely go into depression. That will lead a massive increase in illegal immigration. Since they can’t trust us, Mexico would look elsewhere. China would be the most likely candidate.
I’m no psychologist, but it seems that he is so confident of his gut instincts, that he not only doesn’t need advice, he also doesn’t need facts.
I also don’t understand his obsession with immigration, both legal and illegal. He just terminated a deal that would allow Cubans to play major league baseball here. Immigration is certainly an important issue. But so are the economy, health care and others. It seems like they are much less important to him than immigration. He had a compelling story to about the economy but focused almost totally on the wall during the midterms. That cost a number of Republican their seats.
I don’t expect this to change. He has been in office more than two years and he is still the same guy we saw in 2016.
Some of the Democratic candidates have their knives out and are ready to give Joe Biden a fatal blow, politically speaking. They are focusing on his behavior toward women. He has a warm, expressive manner that might be too much for some. We need to recognize that different cultures, families and people have widely different styles. I once met a woman from Argentina. This was a business setting. As we were saying goodbye, she turned her head clearly indicating that I was to kiss her on the cheek. The Me Too movement was about sexual harassment and sexual predators. If they focus on behavior like this, they have clearly lost their way.
Right now, Biden is leading in the polls. That is because he has name recognition. I think he stands little chance of winning the nomination. It has nothing to do with his social style, his age (he would be 78 at inauguration) or where he stands on the issues. I see the following problems:
1. He is prone to misstatements. As George H.W. Bush would say, that can lead people to misunderestimate him.
2. He has been in public life nearly fifty years. Anything that isn’t perfectly in line with 2019 sensibilities will be used against him.
3. He is a traditional Democrat. It would have been better for him if he had been a Socialist like Bernie Sanders.
4. He had strong appeal with blue collar voters. They are no longer welcome in the party.
I have no plans to run for office. If I change my mind, I hope there are no pictures of me kissing that Argentine lady.