Back in 1988, when the field of Democrat candidates for the presidential nomination consisted of Colorado Congresswoman Pat Schroeder, Michael Dukakis, Al Gore, Jesse Jackson, Dick Gephardt, Paul Simon, Gary Hart, and Bruce Babbitt, one commentator referred to them as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
Now, it’s the 2020 bunch. They’re blue. They’re of diminutive stature.
Philip Klein has a post over at the Washington Examiner that takes a look at Joe Biden’s behavior during the Clarence Thomas hearings in 1991. Biden was chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee overseeing the confirmation process of the nomination of Thomas to replace Thurgood Marshall on the Supreme Court. Klein’s uses Thomas’ 2007 autobiography, My Grandfather’s Son, as the basis of his post. From that point of view, Biden’s behavior might best be described as two-faced backstabbing.
Part of Biden’s quasi-defense of his groping has been that standards of behavior have evolved. What was acceptable during his early years is no longer permissible. In a half-hearted mea culpa, he says he should do better now.
The standard under which Thomas was challenged involved making remarks to Anita Hill that made her uncomfortable. There was no physical contact. Just words. Unproven words. He said/she said “evidence.” That seems to me to be a much stricter standard than the documented complaints against Biden which involve unwanted touching captured in images and video. IANAL, but isn’t that technically the crime of battery?
It may be that the real law Biden has violated is the Law of Karma, and he’s now experiencing his own high tech lynching (to borrow a phrase from Justice Thomas) at the hands of the feminists because he might get in the way of a women being nominated in 2020.
You reap what you sow, Joe.
UPDATE—My podcasting partner Stacy McCain has further thoughts on how Biden’s past is being used against him because he no longer serves The Narrative.
It’s interesting that many of the Democrat Party pr flacks with bylines have turned their attention to Joe Biden as he has begun to be considered as a candidate for the party’s 2020 presidential nomination. Things that unreported when he was Vice President are now coming to light.
For example, there’s a report at The Hill about Biden’s interference in an criminal investigation in Ukraine.
In his own words, with video cameras rolling, Biden described how he threatened Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in March 2016 that the Obama administration would pull $1 billion in U.S. loan guarantees, sending the former Soviet republic toward insolvency, if it didn’t immediately fire Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin.
The prosecutor was fired, and his successor terminated an investigation into the natural gas firm Burisma Holdings that employed Biden’s younger son, Hunter, as a board member.
As the now-completed Russia collusion investigation showed us, every American deserves the right to be presumed innocent until evidence is made public or a conviction is secured, especially when some matters of a case involve foreigners. The same presumption should be afforded to Joe Biden, Hunter Biden, … and Burisma in the Ukraine case.
Nonetheless, some hard questions should be answered by Biden as he prepares, potentially, to run for president in 2020: Was it appropriate for your son and his firm to cash in on Ukraine while you served as point man for Ukraine policy? What work was performed for the money Hunter Biden’s firm received? Did you know about the Burisma probe? And when it was publicly announced that your son worked for Burisma, should you have recused yourself from leveraging a U.S. policy to pressure the prosecutor who very publicly pursued Burisma?
Joe, they’re trying to tell you that you’re past your sell by date.
And even the New York Times has noticed. He’s too connected to the Democrats past failures and simply not credible with the party’s She Guevara Democratic Socialist wing.
Biden’s issues with gender, after all, go far beyond chronic handsiness. His waffling on reproductive choice troubles many feminists; as The Times reported last week, Biden’s “back-and-forth over abortion would become a hallmark of his political career.” He was the chairman of the hearings on Clarence Thomas’s Supreme Court nomination, where Anita Hill, who accused Thomas of sexual harassment, was demeaned and dismissed. Though Biden has expressed sorrow for how Hill was treated, he’s never directly apologized to her.
Beyond gender, on issue after issue, if Biden runs for president he will have to run away from his own record. He — and by extension, we — will have to relive the debate over the Iraq war, which he voted to authorize. He’ll have to explain his vote to repeal the Glass-Steagall Act, which, by lifting regulations on banking, helped create the conditions for the 2008 financial meltdown. (Biden has called that vote one of the biggest regrets of his career.) In 2016, Hillary Clinton was slammed for her previous support of the 1994 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, which contributed to mass incarceration. Biden helped write the law, which he called, in 2015, the “1994 Biden crime bill.”
As noted in the Babylon Bee, Republicans colluded with Reality to defeat the Green Nude Eel. The vote was 0-57. All of the Republicans voted against it, as did three Democrats and one Independent. All the other Democrats and the other Independent voted “present.” That included the bill’s sponsor and all its cosponsors. It included all the senators who had endorsed the Green Nude Eel in connection with their candidacies for the party’s 2020 presidential nomination.
These remarks by Senator Lee (R-UT) are a fair summary of the Republican objections to the bill.
The Second Law of Thermodynamics was available for comment and noted, “There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.”
James P. Pinkerton has a post over at The American Conservative about how the Democrats’ lack of imagination has forced them to recycle failed ideas from FDR’s administration. In addition to court packing, various Democrats are pushing a Green New Deal. Others are proposing a Universal Basic Income. And way too many Democrats seem to be behind higher taxes and so-called Modern Monetary Theory.
Yet Modern Monetary Theory might just as well be called Weimar Monetary Theory, as we recall, without affection, the German hyperinflation of 1921-23. Historians regard that monetary debacle, which wiped out Germany’s middle class, as one of that country’s stepping stones on the road to Nazism.
While many Progressives will refer to anyone opposing their proposals as a “nazi,” they seem to view being on a road to more state control as a feature not a bug. Stephen Green (he’s due a H/T for pointing me to the Pinkerton piece) has noted,
that the current push for ultra-high income taxes isn’t about collecting revenue, but about increasing control and creating new opportunities for graft.
Yep. American Progressivism has been about control from the late 19th century onward. Those early Progessives wanted to control the underclass and undesirables just as their great-great grandchildren want to control deplorables. Prohibition finally failed, but the mischief caused by the Harris Act (federal control of opium and coca) and its successors lives on. So does Planned Parenthood. So does …
As for graft, it’s not always about money. More often, it’s about power. Many supporters of the Progressive cause assume that they are members of the Party when, in fact, they are only useful proles, and many members of the Outer Party assume that they will be part of the Inner Party one day. Both groups will be shocked when their chocolate ration is raised from 30 grams to 20 grams along with the rest of us.
It’s not surprising that the Democrats are nostalgic about The New Deal. It changed the country’s relationship to the government in a way that cemented their dominance in Congress for a couple of generations. They now have their hands around the House of Representatives, and they’re looking to add the Senate in 2020.
The New Deal also locked in Progressive domination of the Supreme Court for many years. FDR’s threat of expanding the court by packing it with additional justice who would rule in his favor effectively slowed judicial opposition to The New Deal so that the appointments during the 20 years of the Roosevelt/Truman administration could remake the balance of the judiciary.
Politico has a post up about 2020 Democrat presidential candidates starting to talk about packing the Supreme Court. Pete Buttigieg (who?) and Beto O’Rourke have said that they might expand the court. Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren and Kirsten Gillibrand also have said they might favor such an expansion.
“We are on the verge of a crisis of confidence in the Supreme Court,” said Harris (D-Calif.). “We have to take this challenge head on, and everything is on the table to do that.”
Gillibrand said in an interview that she believes that Justice Neil Gorsuch essentially possesses an illegitimate seat after Garland was denied even a committee hearing. The New York Democrat added that the Senate should move swiftly to impose strict ethics rules on the Supreme Court.
“It’s not just about expansion, it’s about depoliticizing the Supreme Court,” said Warren (D-Mass.), who mentioned bringing appellate judges into Supreme Court cases as an option.
Again, we shouldn’t be surprised that the Left has lost confidence in a court that has become more originalist in its outlook and less supportive of a living constitution that morphs into whatever Progressive cause du jour demands, and we should expect some of them to try to sell the idea of court packing through expansion during the coming election cycle.