It’s Pragmatism, Stupid

By Amy Chozick and Patrick Healy (New York Times) — “This new line of attack was a risky attempt to puncture Mr. Sanders’s growing popularity before the next nominating contests in Nevada and South Carolina. Mrs. Clinton is wagering that voters will care that Mr. Sanders has not provided a political strategy or clear financing plan to enact Medicare for all and provide free public colleges, and that such details will matter more to voters than his inspiring political message.”

Webb Out

Jim Webb spoke today at the World Affairs Council of Dallas/Ft. Worth about the need for a vigorous foreign policy debate in the presidential campaign and his conclusion that he will not pursue an independent campaign. 

Webb: “I’ve worked with both parties, including as an official in the Reagan administration and as a Democrat in the Senate. Both parties, in my view, have moved away from the major concerns of the average American. We looked at the possibility of an independent candidacy. Theoretically it could be done, but it is enormously costly and time sensitive, and  I don’t see the fundraising trajectory where we could make a realistic run.”

In his speech Webb discussed the lack of serious foreign policy debate in the current presidential election cycle.

“We have not had a clear statement of national security policy since the end of the Cold War, “ he said. “And I see no one running for president today who has a firm understanding of the elements necessary to build a national strategy.”

Webb will meet tomorrow at 9:00 am with the Dallas Morning News Editorial Board.

And Now It’s National

Cathleen Decker (Los Angeles Times): “Tuesday marked the end of regional contests and the beginning of a national campaign, with all the financial and logistical demands that entails. … One Clinton campaign concern is that Sanders will benefit from the same primary dynamic that aided Barack Obama in 2008: a cascade of support that fell toward him as voters realized that he might actually win the nomination. The situations are different: Obama was a breakout African American candidate trying to appeal to black voters. … As a senator from Vermont, Sanders has not had to forge the relationships that would come in handy now with black and Latino voters. But as the New Hampshire contest wore on, he became more adept at expressing concern about issues important to those voters.”

  • On Feb. 20, Democrats in Nevada and Republicans in South Carolina will vote.
  • On Feb. 23, Nevada Republicans will make their picks
  • On Feb.27, Democrats will compete in South Carolina.
  • On March 1, the race widens to more than a dozen states, many in the South, that vote on March 1: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado caucuses, Georgia, Massachusetts, Minnesota caucuses, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, and Wyoming