Your Guide To The 2020 Democratic Primary

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Memo to Everyone: RIDE, BUT DON’T DIE.

I’ve been thinking about this for a while now, but with Bernie Sanders officially entering the Democratic primary, it’s now officially time to remind all of y’all how to act as this extended Democratic primary plays out.

First, decide who you’re going to support. This may be tricky. There are a lot of candidates already, and there are more to come, and every single one of them is going to disappoint you in one or more ways. Some may have a bad record on gay rights. Some may have a history of excessive prosecution. Some may have baggage over their handling of claims of ancestry. Some may be playing the “moderate pragmatist” card. Some will be old white dudes.

The point is, look at their records, look at what they say they support, look at your own views, see how they align. When you find the one you like best, decide whether or not you want to give them money. Maybe repost their stuff on social media. And, if they’re still in the race when the primary gets to your state? Vote for them! They’re your favorite!

If your favorite drops out of the race, look at who’s left and find a new favorite. Continue this process until the convention, when there will be one person left. Which means that whoever that one person left is is NOW YOUR FAVORITE.

And that’s the important part. Whoever you like in the primary, you can ride for them, but you don’t get to die with them. You don’t get to believe in Internet conspiracy theories about how the winner screwed your favorite EVEN IF THEY TURN OUT TO BE TRUE. You don’t get to be bitter, or cranky. You don’t get to rail against the eventual winner online and convince your friends they’re no better than Trump, because they’ll be better than Trump.

Yes, that includes Joe Biden. Yes, that includes Michael Fucking Bloomberg. I like typing that even less than you like reading it, but I’m typing it because it’s true. And you know it’s true, because you’ve lived through two years of Donald Trump as president, and if you think “it hasn’t been that bad”, then you’re not marginalized enough or paying attention to the people who are.

Saying a corporate centrist Democrat wouldn’t be any better than what we have now just means your kid isn’t in a camp and your Muslim grandma can’t get a visa and your house isn’t going to be torn down to build a wall and you don’t have to change channels every time President Addlepate comes on the TV for fear that the sentence structure alone will make your fucking brain explode. You’re privileged. You’re not in Trump’s crosshairs. And when you say shit like this, it means you don’t care about the people who are.

Same for the “It has to get worse before it can get better” crowd. Because it never really gets THAT much worse for that crowd, does it? A bunch of OTHER people have to go bankrupt from cancer treatments so we finally realize we have to have single-payer. Nobody ever says “I may die from Republicans eliminating pre-existing condition coverage, but that’s OK, because my example will serve as the five hundred thousandth example of how our health care system is broken and will finally turn the tide!”

Do not, under any circumstances, BernieBro this shit. Or PUMA that shit, if you remember back to 2008.

And don’t fuck with “electability”. Trump’s not that difficult to beat. In every way except the way that counts, Trump lost the 2016 election. He’s in office now because Russian trolls flipped a couple of states. And they didn’t flip those states by talking about how great Trump was.

They flipped those states by encouraging and inflaming the sentiment that Hillary “stole” the nomination from Bernie (which she sorta kinda maybe did but primary politics is a clusterfuck) and that she was no better than Trump and that she was bad and horrible and maybe sickly. And we fell for it and now we have a sweat-suited schlub at an omelette bar in a golf course in a red baseball cap in charge of us all.

So shout all you want during the primary about who’s more corrupt, who’s more pure, or who’s more deserving. But one that nomination is locked in, you’re voting for them. And all your friends are. And you’re all going to spend the remaining months of 2020 encouraging each other to vote for (worst case scenario) Michael Motherfucking Bloomberg, and you’re going to force a smile and you’re going to fucking well act like you like it.

Of course, none of this applies to a Howard Schulz independent bid. Shit on him until he goes away. We created the expression “fuuuuuuck that guy” a long time ago just so we’d be ready when Howard Schulz decided to run for President.