I watched about an hour -- it was interesting enough, but I found a lot of repetition from having watched the other previous debates, and saw enough, figuring anything else of note that came up would be covered on the post-debate analysis. But as time passed, by the next day, the more I thought about it, the angrier a particular section of what I saw made me. The clip in question got shown a lot, so it's likely many, if not most people have seen it now, as well. However I didn’t hear any commentary saying that the problem with it was the same as what I felt. Other here may not either. But for me, the issue has just grown. It was when Pete Buttigieg and Elizabeth -- and to a lesser degree, Bernie Sanders -- got snipping at each other over fund-raising in “wine caves.”
What bothered me at the time, and all the more as I kept thinking about and see the clip over and over, is that there are three goals to the 2020 election – 1) Beat Trump, 2) Beat Trump, and 3) Beat Trump. And some of these Democrats, mainly Warren and Sanders at that debate, are trying to be SO freaking pure that they’re complaining about where someone legally raised money.
To be clear, I'm a strong supporter of strict campaign finance laws. And I love being on the side of the Angels. And I think holding out with purity as the goal should be striven for.
This coming year, 2020 -- as long as it’s absolutely legal and without any fishy stretching of the limits, and as long as we have no evidence of a candidate being corrupted by it – with the three top goals "Beat Trump," then I think Democrats should try to raise as much money as they possibly can!!!!
If a candidate is against holding these small, elite events and doesn't want to hold them, fine, don’t hold them. But the three goals are all to Beat Trump, so don’t start ripping part the Democratic Party because of where someone else raised money. It was legal, we know of no corruption, and it was money, and it counts as money. We can all be pure in 2024. But I’m absolutely fine with setting a high standard in the Democratic Party for fundraising that is legal and decent and fair and above board. What I don’t need is climbing even higher on the mountain top for “pure” in 2020 against Trump. To paraphrase the old saying – that’s bringing lace gossamer doilies to a gun fight.
I understand that undue corporate influence in politics is something to work to avoid. And I understand that favoritism to those who can buy it is unfair. What what I also understand that the absence of these standards is not corruption. Acts of corruption are corruption. Legal, decent and fair are uncommon, good standards in politics And when the goal is to defeat someone using Russian assistance, and using voter suppression, and using improper gerrymandering, and using impeachable extortion against foreign governments, and throwing people off the voter rolls, and is taking children from their parents and putting those children in cages, and is aligning himself with foreign dictators and is siding with white supremacists and is running an administration which is the dictionary definition of fascism --
-- then as long as its legal and without corruption, I couldn't care less if someone holds a fundraiser in a wine cave. Or wherever they're doing their fundraising. It's legal. And without corruption.
If the question is "But how do we know it's not corrupt?", the answer is that asking a question is not proof of something's existence. If it was, if questioning something meant the answer was proven, then pretty much everything would be suspect. And we would live in Conspiracy Believer's Heaven. Actually, there's an even better answer: We know something is corrupt when there are indications and evidence of it. Holding a fundraiser in a wine cave is not a corrupt act -- it's done because, when you're raising money, there's a good chance that that's where you're going to find money.
I understand wanting the most noble candidates to be elected. And I don't mean that facetiously, but seriously. But being legal, decent and fair, but not "pure," is not being corrupt nor even underhanded or improper. It's being legal, decent and fair.
And the goal in 2020 is not to rip apart the Democratic Party for a lack of purity. The goal is three things -- 1) Beat Trump, 2) Beat Trump, and 3) Beat Trump.
For 2020 most especially, as long as it's legal, decent and fair, I couldn't care less less where a fundraiser is held. I care that every legal, decent and fair action -- every one -- helps to Beat Trump.