Take Your Polls and Shove Them…

As I write this, it is December 27, 2018. We are less than two months out of the most satisfying midterm election in a generation, and there are at least 13 months to go before the first caucus and almost 15 months before “Super Tuesday.”

No matter what, a Democrat has to win in 2020, no matter who runs on the Republican side. To date, the only people who have announced on the Democratic side are John Delaney, Richard Ojeda and Julian Castro. If you are asking, “Who?” Over the first two, you are not alone. Those two aren’t even mentioned in the myriad polls that so many professional lefties are shoving in our faces on a daily basis. Instead, we are promised that either Joe Biden or Bernie Sanders are “frontrunners,” as if there could be such a thing two years before the election.

Think back to any previous election — ANY previous election, and name the last time the non-incumbent leader in the polls two years before any presidential election ever won. Hell; even Saint Reagan wasn’t a shoo-in in 1980 and he almost wiped out Gerald Ford four years before that. At this point in the 2008 race, Obama was barely a blip on the Democratic radar. The vast majority of “experts” were advising him to wait because it was Hillary Clinton’s election to lose.

In other words, no one knows shit at this point, and there is no poll that can clear anything up. Hell; candidates who might run haven’t announced yet and half the people included in these polls may decide not to run. For the record, even Bernie Sanders hasn’t yet announced. No one knows what the field will look like and no one knows what their platform or messaging will look like. The Democratic Party won’t decide on a platform for more than 18 months and, with any luck, 50–60 million Democratic votes are still to be cast.

This is absolutely no time to perpetuate the “horserace” version of presidential politics. It is so destructive, especially this far out. Consider 2016; how many polls at the beginning had Trump getting 5–10% of the Republican vote early on? How many polls had Jeb Bush winning anything and making us dread the prospect of another Bush presidency? Remember that? It’s a memory we’re nearly fond of at this point.

Have we learned nothing? We buy into horserace politics at our peril, and we cannot afford any more peril. Another four years of Trump? No thank you. The loss of the Democratic majority in the House that we just won? Nope, we can’t afford that, either. Gravely damaging anyone who might merge from the Democratic nomination process makes all of that more possible.

I don’t care who the Democrat is, if you are attempting to damage them, especially because you think it’s in service of your favorite candidate, you are damaging the country. You have to learn this lesson before going forward. If you don’t learn it, we can look forward to more Republican domination and even more dismantling of what little progressive infrastructure we have left. If your favorite candidate is Bernie, that’s great, but if you feel it necessary to try to destroy any other Democratic candidate, you’re the opposite of a progressive because you are making it more possible for the regressive Republicans to win.

And in the meantime, take your polls and shove them up your ass. They are indicative of nothing, and we actual progressives have absolutely nothing to gain and everything to lose from the horserace style of electioneering.

Again, grow up.


Originally published at The Pragmatic Progressive.