He went collected the signatures to get himself on the ballot as a Democrat and put himself on the ballot. He won the Democratic primary w/94%.
After winning the Democratic nomination, he chose not to accept it. This meant no Democrat would appear on the ballot (unless the State Party named a replacement). The State Democratic party said "no-way" because they obviously wanted Sanders to win.
So Bernie Sanders, who was the Democratic nominee, ultimately won in November on the ballot as an Independent.
It was a shrewd and necessary move on his part. The last thing any of us in Vermont needed was a token Dem. taking 5-6% of the vote away from Bernie Sanders if the race were to tighten. It wasn't worth the risk of bypassing the Democratic party primary.
Remember, our US Senator Bernie Sanders is an independent who was elected to the Senate with official Democratic Party support, and previously beat Democratic candidates when he was elected to the US House.
Remember also that for the first time in his career (Bernie Sanders first ran for the U.S. Senate in 1972 and 1974 as the Liberty Union nominee) Sanders petitioned to be on the Democratic party ballot in 2006. He had never run as a Democrat in his 30+ years of running in statewide and municipal elections.
The Democratic party rewarded him with the Democratic nomination and(in a four way Dem. primary race with three extremely "lesser" Dem. contenders) 94% of the Democratic primary vote.
Sanders then declined the Democratic nomination and ran as an independent and the State Democratic committee refused to put a replacement candidate on the ballot. After all, their nominee and the man they wanted was still in the race -- just with an "Independent" label instead of a Democratic one.
Anthony Pollina, however, so far seems unwilling to take that route. If he wants to be a Progressive party Governor, that party will certainly keep the slot open for him (they use a convention rather than participate in the statewide primary).
If Pollina is serious about getting the Democratic voters behind him, as was Sen Sanders, he needs to stop acting like he DESERVES their vote and start acting like he WANTS their vote. As it stands now, his presence as a third party candidate only discourages Democrats from running or, more critically from raising money and mounting more effective campaigns.
INSTANT RUNOFF VOTING: I agree that Vermont needs IRV. Any state that has a constitutional majority vote requirement, rather than a plurality winner, needs to have IRV.
Doug Racine would have been elected governor in 2002, without a doubt, had there been IRV. Instead a third party candidate siphoned enough votes to throw the election into the legislature where they elected Jim Douglas.
Brian Dubie - Vermont's right wing Lt. Gov sneaked in with only 41% in 2002. Lt. Gov Dubie would never have been elected in 2002 had there been IRV. 58% of the electorate voted against Dubie while liberal Democrat Peter Shumlin received 32% of the vote and the Progressive party nominee, Anthony Pollina, received almost 25% of the vote. All of Pollina's votes came from Shumlin and none of them were going to go to Dubie. Pollina could have won that race as a Democrat and Shumlin would have definitely won the race w/o Pollina in there as a third party progressive.
Also, in 2000, Howard Dean who had previously received large reelection majorities collected only 50.7% and came within a handful of votes from having the election thrown into the legislature. The reason Dean's vote was suppressed in 2000 was due to Anthony Pollina pulling away 9.6% of the progressive/left/liberal vote. Obviously, none of the 9.6% handicap Pollina gave to Dean would have gone to the GOP nominee Ruth Dwyer, a right-wing crank who received 38% of the vote riding a wave of anti-gay fervor right after Vermont adopted civil unions.
----BOTTOM LINE: If Pollina switches to running for Lt. Governor as Progressive or a Democrat or if he deigns decides to run in the Democratic primary for Governor, Douglas is beatable.
I think you hit on one of the important dynamics at play in this election. Lieberman's attractiveness to Republicans is overstated in the polls. The fact that Schlesinger is, at his core, a joke, makes it hard for Republicans to acknowledge that they will vote for him.
I am sticking with my late October prediction of a hard fought Lamont victory (in the 45% to 42% ballpark) with Schlesinger receiving approx. 13%.
Broder stopped reporting decades ago. He hacks up comments reflexively through his badly atrophied political vision and never lets the facts get in the way of a good story. His commentary about things he neither understands, nor has the interest or ability to report on, are valueless and reflect his own vapidness.
Like so many other "I'm already here, and have been for a long time, so I keep publishing" columnists, if the Post didn't have comics and a sports page to draw subscribers with its monopoly in the political media capital, no one would read him.
I will agree that we must always respect and defend anyone's absolute right to believe anything they want. Still, recognizing someone's right never equates to accepting a person's subjective religious belief over rational thought.
Any person can ascribe to a religous belief system that explains, TO THEM, where they came from either before they were born, for instance, or where they think they are going when they die. However, that does not change the fact that no one is born with the magic blood of God's or the Gods' special design.
A religous group may chose to believe their God(s) do or do not make them/birth them/evolve them etc. a particular way. A religous explanation of any of these things is, nonetheless, a religious belief not a rational understanding or rational explanation.
The point relative to polling is that mixing and matching objective rational data with subjective and arbitrary faith-based beliefs held by self selected religious subset, invites interpretive hurdles that make reading the numbers as subjective as my explanation of the meaning of Genesis.
I am not sure there is value in asking questions, relative to a group's "ethnic" composition, when the poll seeks information that mixes completely unrelated topics concerning:
(1) people's physical appearance (e.g. white or "African American," which is typically not a white. What about those of us who are black but not Americans or those of us who are Africans but not black?); and
(2) people's ideological disposition (e.g. Christian or Jewish). Unlike our skin color, (ignoring Michael Jackson) we can change an ideological disposition such as Christian, Libertarian, Republican, Jew, fascist, anarchist etc. from day to day as can/could our ancestors; and
(3) people's random mixing of ideology, genetic skin coloring or the geographic origins of one's ancestors. Alternatively, is the question seeking information about random mixes of variant combinations of more than one of these? Many people could hit "other" and it would include several of the identified choices.
Based on the varying threads of cultural/geographic/political data the poll seeks, here is a recommended reader poll:
Question 1: Do you currently hold a religious, spiritual or other non-rational belief system?
Question 2: What are the predominant geographic ethnic/political backgrounds of your ancestors (check all that apply)? Example: Asian Oriental, Central Asian, African, Old Europe, Post-Commie Europe, South American, North American, Belligerent Irish etc.
Questions 3: Are your parents: (a) black (b) white (c) both?
" . . . You could be agnostic but if your parents are Catholic then your ethnicity is Christian white. Bear with me as I work on this. . . "
I disagree that it can work that way, or at least that you can get anything meaningful due to the assumptions and cross-over of unrelated topics built into that question.
How many of us have parents who both belong to the same religion or to the same religion as other members of their family?
The critically fatal assumption is that a person can be born into a religious belief system as opposed to being born to parents who have chosen to assume the label of a random self-selecting religious club. Some people, as a matter of faith, chose to believe they were "born" into a religion. However, that is a religious conviction, not a rational belief; and it certainly is not a condition or label they can impose on others who do not share the same beliefs.
Even answering "Other" does not work in a poll that has so many contradictory or crossed assumptions built into answers and which that address issues other than ethnicity.
What type of "other" am I if my black agnostic father and my white Jewish mother adopted me? Does my "other" answer change if I told you they adopted me from a Chinese orphanage in a town in Shandong Province that has been completely overrun by unwanted children, most of whom were left behind by philandering Christian missionaries?
"Not everyone is a Democrat like you' is the refrain"
Fact is not everyone is a Republican either and boatloads of people are sick and tired of those kleptocratic GOP bastards.
Not only should we be taking this golden opportunity to promote and enhance the Democratic "brand" (as much as I hate that term), but we need to reinforce it as the alternative to the out-of-favor GOP brand now carrying all of its negative baggage.
Put the heavy burden onus on the GOP to explain why being a Republican candidate somehow makes them a better choice for voters. We then get a double benefit. Voters will have a negatively reinforced reason to identify with or gravitate toward a Democratically identified candidate since they will hear both (1) the Democratic message of change and (2) be driven away from the tarnished GOP brand by the revulsion of the very same GOP corruption and incompetence that is directly responsible for all the intractably serious problems causing the GOP's declining poll numbers.
People are telling Democrats that they are pissed at the GOP. Any Democrat not exploiting the GOP "brand" revolt does so at their own peril and to their own detriment.
'. . . In the grand scheme and when the history of this race is written, the story will be how well Ned Lamont did in neutralizing opposition from incumbent Senate Democrats in the primary, and how well he cultivated their willing support for him in the general election if it comes down to a Lamont-D vs. Lieberman-Ind. contest.
. . . There is nothing to gain for any of them to be seen meddling in the primary of another state as Sen. Boxer learned. And she was stumping for the incumbent! The truth of the matter is that a significant number of the Senate Democrats believe they have more riding on Ned Lamont than even we do since they are the ones being tripped up by Lieberman on a daily basis.
. . . As much as we rightfully complain about the decision by a Senator such as Barbara Boxer to actually hit the ground and campaign, Joe Lieberman is the one who feels (correctly) that the other Democrats in the Senate have left him out on a limb. Most of the Dem. caucus is pulling for Lamont to win the primary and some are even smart enough to realize that Lieberman's a bigger problem for them than Lamont's campaign could ever be -- even if he tried. A primary win on Aug. 8th will bring open arms on Aug. 9th by Ned Lamont's future colleagues.
Today, not only are many of the establishment Democrats in D.C. (not the DLC poseur lobbyists, but the ones who actually run for office and represent us) breathing a sigh of relief, many are downright gleeful that one of their biggest thorns and obstacles has been taken out by Ned Lamont. Lieberman makes the job twice as hard for members who hate being in the minority, and tossing Lieberman is a dream come true for most.
I argued this several times before, (see above link for example) but it needs to be reiterated. There are FAR MORE currently sitting Democratic Senators who are sick of getting stabbed in the back by their caucus' own Republican enabler, Joe Lieberman, than there are Democratic Senators who actually want Lieberman to win the primary.
We observe and rightfully chastise the few who support Lieberman, but recognize that it is a mixed bag of reasons why he is getting the paucity of support he's been able to muster (Boxer--personal friendship, Salazar--ideological affiliation, Biden--chickened out when he realized Lieberman was an anvil on his neck etc.).
The big story is the deafening silence coming from most of Lieberman's colleagues. Even Sen. Dodd has made only the requisite finger-lifting endorsement out of an awkward obligation that Dodd obviously resents having to Holy Joe. It is clear behind the scenes that Lieberman is not pushing Dodd to do too much for him. What does Lieberman know that Dodd is keeping mum about?
Understand that members of the U.S. Senate are loathe to, and almost never, campaign against members of the OPPOSITE PARTY, much less for a challenger to a member of their own party. The only exception to this tradition being the DSCC Chair or select party leaders will come to a challenger's state to endorse their party's nominee w/o attacking the sitting member of the opposite party. Recall the GOP establishment gunning for Tom Daschle and what a break w/tradition that was and what a big story it was in D.C. (To me the big story was the failure of the ineffective national democrats to mount a serious defense of Daschle, but that's another story).
For all the talk about Lieberman's support within the club, he's received very little help from his honorable colleagues and has, in fact, encountered many cold shoulders for each Boxer or Salazar he's been able to push onto the stage. He has avoided even asking some of his Democratic colleagues because he knows "they're busy that day."
In the grand scheme and when the history of this race is written, the story will be how well Ned Lamont did in neutralizing opposition from incumbent Senate Democrats in the primary, and how well he cultivated their willing support for him in the general election if it comes down to a Lamont-D vs. Lieberman-Ind. contest.
There is nothing to gain for any of them to be seen meddling in the primary of another state as Sen. Boxer learned. And she was stumping for the incumbent! The truth of the matter is that a significant number of the Senate Democrats believe they have more riding on Ned Lamont than even we do since they are the one's being tripped up by Lieberman on a daily basis.
As much as we rightfully complain about the decision by a Senator such as Barbara Boxer to actually hit the ground and campaign, Joe Lieberman is the one who feels (correctly) that the other Democrats in the Senate have left him out on a limb. Most of the Dem. caucus is pulling for Lamont to win the primary and some are even smart enough to realize that Lieberman's a bigger problem for them than Lamont's campaign could ever be -- even if he tried. A primary win on Aug. 8th will bring open arms on Aug. 9th by Ned Lamont's future colleagues.
Recall that at the time of his self-aggrandizing and sanctimonious attack of President Clinton from the floor of the U.S. Senate, President Clinton was in Ireland on a follow-up trip to the critical (and ongoing) role our commander-in-chief was played in bringing about the negotiated peaceful settlement of intractable sectarian conflict in Northern Ireland.
The timing of Lieberman's speech was a glaring example of Joe Lieberman's lack of judgment and character, so evident that day and it continuing to this day to this day, highlights how unqualified he is to serve in the U.S. Senate. Whipping himself into a career defining passionate lather over (someone else's) blowjob at the very moment President Clinton was playing such a crucial role in helping to build a better future in Ireland underscores Lieberman's core lack of decency when it comes to the very essence of public service.
The U.S. influence on the Irish Good Friday peace agreement was one of the greatest foreign policy achievements of any U.S. President, and an example of true U.S. courage and strength in foreign policy. For Lieberman, however, President Clinton's ongoing efforts to showcase and strengthen U.S. influence overseas, in bringing peace and stability to an intractably violent and long-simmering conflict, was turned into a selfish opportunity for Holy Joe to tarnish the role the U.S. and President Clinton, played in one of the proudest moments in modern Irish history.
Imagine if the President had, instead of Ireland, been meeting in the Middle East working on the peace process that Bush so cowardly abandoned when he came to office -- would Joe Lieberman have picked a time like that to sell out the President while on a critical foreign policy mission? Never mind, rhetorical question.