The Corner

It’s Now the Republicans vs. the Socialists in 2016.

Did you feel that? Does anyone have whiplash? As noted in today’s Morning Jolt, the Democrats just took another sudden, dramatic shift to the left again…

It’s Now the Republicans vs. the Socialists in 2016.

The Thursday night debate conclusion: America now has an openly socialist party.

This morning, a new poll confirms it: Socialism remains less popular than capitalism in the United States: only 25% of adults have a favorable opinion of it, while 48% view capitalism positively. Among Democrats, however, the balance is flipped, with 49% favorable to socialism compared to 37% for capitalism. 

Which party is extreme again? Which party is out of touch with the rest of the country?

Oh, and notice that 11 percent of self-identified Republicans have a favorable view of socialism.

Jim Webb: Wait, I Spent a Good Chunk of My Life Fighting Socialists!

The other conclusion from last week’s debate was that Jim Webb didn’t belong in the Democratic Party of 2015. Apparently he agrees:

Jim Webb, the former senator from Virginia, may be through with the Democratic Party.

The presidential candidate, who complained of not getting enough time to talk at last week’s debate, is considering running as an independent, according to his campaign.

Mr. Webb will hold a 1 p.m. news conference on Tuesday at the National Press Club in Washington to “discuss his candidacy, the campaign and his views of the political parties in the current election cycle.”

To paraphrase another old-fashioned New Democrat, I feel his pain. Still, how can Webb seem so surprised by this turn of events? Is he just now recognizing that the Democratic Party is functionally pacifist and isolationist? Is he just now realizing that when he discussed the potential threats from China, Democratic audiences check their watch and tune out? Is he just noticing that Democrats will never get past racial grievances, never take much interest in rural America or poor whites, and that the party’s elites are intractably opposed to gun ownership? Did he somehow miss the rise of Elizabeth Warren, “you didn’t build that”, Thomas Piketty, and the torrent of economic envy flowing through the party?

Senator Webb, where have you been?

Would a Jim Webb independent bid hurt the GOP nominee? It’s not that hard to imagine that kind of scenario, although at this point, he’s currently a nonentity in the polls. Webb’s nascent campaign is so low-profile so far, it was easy to forget he’s running. Is he really going to put together the grassroots volunteer effort to get him on the ballot for enough states to get 270 electoral votes? Is he going to dedicate himself to fundraising to get ads on the air? Is he willing to do the frustrating work of being a presidential candidate, or is he mostly running to make a point? 

Webb raised in a quarter what Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders raised in a night: “He raised just $696,972 in the third fundraising quarter, beating only former Rhode Island Gov. and Sen. Lincoln Chafee (who raised $15,458). His campaign has $316,765 in the bank.”

Also remember Jim Webb has won exactly one political race in his life, his 2006 Senate campaign… which he won by four-tenths of one percent… in a Democratic landslide year… running against George Allen… after the infamous “macaca” controversy. In the Senate, he showed little interest in raising money for another bid and retired after one term

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