Democrats are getting ready to engage in battle for the coveted 2020 nomination as well as a shot at the Holy Grail of retaking the White House yet they are still without a candidate that they can coalesce around.
It’s definitely not an exaggeration to say that the Dems were so invested in Hillary Clinton that when she went down, she took the entire party down with her and absent of leadership, they have devolved into squabbling factions that may be on the cusp out outright tribal warfare.
Enter Robert “Beto” O’Rourke, the young Texan who gave Republican Ted Cruz a scare in the midterms and who is adored by Hollywood and other establishment liberals who have gushed that he is “Kennedyesque” and many see the 46-year-old as the party’s savior.
The early marketing campaign wants Americans to know Beto is just a regular guy whether it be air-drumming to The Who’s “Baba O’Riley” or embarking on a road trip to meet folks in person or even live-streaming his dental appointments but he is already at a big disadvantage with a powerful faction of the base that detests white men and wears the bigotry on their sleeves as if it was a badge of honor.
With the party becoming more “diverse” it’s going to be a tough rock to roll for any white man to emerge from the grueling primaries to come and a CNN reporter just sent a warning shot across Team Beto’s bow by calling him out for “white privilege,” a disgusting racist term that has been widely promoted by the media.
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) 19 января 2019 г.
We’ve seen the field fill up already with women. And we’ve seen how they think they must run — as serious, surefooted, policy experts with big ideas. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard are in; and on the same day as O’Rourke’s emo-essay, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand announced that she feels “called at this moment to make a difference.”
One of the first questions she got was about her likability, because of course she did.
O’Rourke, 46, we are told, is “Obama, but white,” because of his fundraising prowess — he raised nearly $80 million in his loss to Sen. Ted Cruz. He skateboards! He listens! He connects on the internet!
And Jack Kerouac-style, he roams around, jobless (does he not need a job?) to find himself and figure out if he wants to lead the free world. This is a luxury no woman or even minority in politics could ever have.
But O’Rourke, tall, handsome, white and male, has this latitude, to be and do anything. His privilege even allows him to turn a loss to the most despised candidate of the cycle into a launching pad for a White House run.
Stacey Abrams, a Yale-trained lawyer, couldn’t do this.
O’Rourke is being criticized for his randomness. For his TMI’ing and for his “what do I want to do with my life” aimlessness.
But the fact that he knows he has the freedom to cast about as a campaign-in-waiting forms, shows how much of his political identity is predicated on being white and male.
Bitter? That’s just the way that the political left rolls these days.
The real problem with Beto is that he is more of a manufactured product than presidential; much like a smooth-talking young hustler named Barack Obama who became a brand thanks to clever marketing and the more he tries, the more inauthentic that he seems.
Alas, he is the wrong man at the wrong time with the wrong skin color for a party that has turned identity politics into a religion.