Thursday, May 25, 2017

Losers in Brief: Losing Our Damn Minds

(part 13 of 12, bonus entry)

Since 1789, 117 men and 2 women have won at least one electoral vote. Of that group, 71 never became President or Vice President. Of them, 31 were a bunch of ambitious losers who tried for the most powerful office in the country and failed. The other 40, you’ll have to read to find out. These are their stories.

Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton (Former Secretary of State, Democrat-IL) Lost to Trump-2016

Clinton had been in the national public eye since her husband ran for president 24 years before. She spent eight years in the White House advising the president. She parlayed her visibility into a successful New York Senate run. After six years serving her state, championing Democratic causes and leading in the Senate after 9/11, the people of her state re-elected her, knowing she intended to run for president two years later. After losing the 2008 primary, she was appointed Secretary of State, where she earned international respect as our chief diplomat. To recap, that's 8 years in an elected office of the legislative branch and 12 years in appointed and unappointed positions in the executive branch. Combined with a JD from Yale, she is basically the walking embodiment of all three branches of the federal government.

So why’d she lose? People fucking HATE her. It's almost absurd, the level of hate, unless you happen to also hate her, in which case is seems perfectly rational. During the election, I tried to refer to her as an expert in foreign policy, and I was told her foreign policy experience doesn't count because Secretary of State isn't an elected office. WHAT!?!?!?!? Obama had Wall Street folks in his cabinet, but apparently getting paid to give speeches made her more corrupt than every other politician who are also getting paid to give speeches to Wall Street. Not to mention her opponent was literally a Wall Street guy, so why the fuck does it matter? It matters because people fucking HATE her.


The most qualified woman having to fight for a job with a rich, male buffoon is literally why feminism exists, yet people will tell you their vote against her wasn't about gender. And I believe them because it's not about feminism with Clinton, it's about pure, irrational HATE. Her victory seemed so certain, even prominent people on the left unleashed their hate, not ever thinking they could be hurting her chances to win. In fact, the certainty of her victory eventually morphed into yet another reason to hate her. They hated even hearing how great a candidate she was.

Everything I read about her or heard her say made me want her to be president more, but to [apparently a lot of] people, every word deepened their hate and mistrust of her. Carl Bernstein wrote she has a penchant for making bad decisions. She voted for the Iraq War. People in Benghazi died on her watch. She had that email server. People accuse her of always being "on the wrong side of history," as though that string of words is supposed to mean something. It was a frustrating campaign to sit through, but I don't have existential problems with it the way I do with Kerry or Romney. The problem was with her, not anything she did, per se. She's inspiring and brilliant and driven, but she's also awkward and stiff. It takes one of two things to get elected president: experience or charisma. Unfortunately in 2016, charisma mattered more.

(there are a lot of other theories out there, but since none of them are proven, I went with my take. If any of the following are proven to have an effect, I will update: voter suppression through voter ID laws, Russian involvement, the Comey letter, Bernie Sanders, the DNC)

MORE BIG LOSERS:

If this election wasn't crazy enough, 7 electors went rogue. It was the largest showing of Faithless Electors since Horace Greeley died in 1872. The few other times it happened, it was no more than one. This literally never happens. Fucking chaos.

Former Secretary of State Colin Powell (3 votes)- Three Washington electors cast their ballots for Powell, who people have been trying to get to run for president since he left the cabinet. Come to think of it, he'd have won this election in a walk.
Activist Faith Spotted Eagle (1 vote)- A fourth Washington elector cast a ballot for Spotted Eagle, after declaring the entire election a farce. An environmental activist himself and a longtime admirer of her work, he had recently met Spotted Eagle in person while protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline. She is the first Native American to receive an electoral vote.
Ohio Governor John Kasich (1 vote)- Kasich went the distance in a primary where he was always going to come in no higher than second. Everyone liked him, and he lacked some of the negatives pulling down all the other candidates, but he was just so damned bland. Reports indicate he was begged to join the party ticket as VP, and he outright refused. This Texas elector rewarded him for his convictions.
Former U.S. Representative Ron Paul (1 vote)- This Libertarian hero famously refused to endorse the winning candidates after losing in 2008 and 2012. It's only fitting a Texas elector refusing to acknowledge the state's winner would instead vote for Paul.
Senator Bernie Sanders (1 vote)- This lifelong champion of left-wing values threw his hat into the race and badly lost the primary. That wasn't the end of it for many of his supporters, who apparently inclucled an elector from Hawaii.

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