Much anticipated and much revealing, it was a fiery, gloves off contest, where everyone got to have a moment in the sun.
Barring a major embarrassment, however, we have seen enough to begin to firm up our opinions. The traded punches have begun to seem familiar.
Was there a surprise?
Yes, and it was Bloomberg.
The expectation, going in, was that he would be trounced, ripped apart, by the rest of the field. He was not. Instead, he took it on the chin and came right back. He was the newcomer with a chance to shoot right up to the top and he was given that importance. He wore it well.
He was steady throughout, acknowledging his mistakes but pressing on. He was unapologetic about his wealth. And he now is giving it away, he said. Mind you, he has a long record of philanthropic efforts so this is not something that started last month.
Is the man politically correct? No. Is the man charismatic? Not either. Is the man flawed? Yes. But can the man learn? Yes. Can he lead? Yes.
Bloomberg doesn’t make you move to the edge of your seat when he speaks, he doesn’t dance with flowery statements, but he clearly conveys a sense that he can steer a ship to safe harbor. ‘We need a manager in the White House,’ I recall him saying, and we don’t have one.
Sanders was reveling in his front runner status. It won’t last. And even if it does, it will be for naught. He cannot beat Trump.
Is Bloomberg buying the election? Of course not.
He’s not buying my vote, he is earning it.
But many will continue to accuse him of doing so.
A candidacy like Bloomberg’s is unprecedented.
Can we have enough sense to see it for what it is?
No one on that stage, other than him, has a chance to beat Trump. No one on that stage has a chance of persuading ambivalent Trump supporters, dissatisfied with the president’s performance, to come over to the democratic side. No one on that stage has the ability to outspend Trump.
That Bloomberg was once a republican becomes a plus. He has been on the other side.
That Bloomberg brings a combination of strong commitment to social causes along with excellence in business is a huge asset.
We can choose to ignore this and keep believing the rant that he’s buying the election, but we would be passing up on a unique opportunity.
There’s that old saying that nations deserve the leaders they get.
There’ much truth to it.
If the many mistakes leading up to Trump’s elections hadn’t been made, he would not have become president. So, yes, we deserve Trump. But can we learn from it?
In Bloomberg we have a candidate who, while not perfect, represents an opportunity for the nation to right its present course.
We can, however, in the face of the evidence, stop our ears, close our eyes, stomp our feet in desperation while believing Sanders when he says that billionaires should not exist, implying that, instead of making his money, Bloomberg should have been doing missionary work to save the poor in our land.
If we don’t wake up we’re going to miss this unique chance. Let us not do that.
One last thought. Amy Klobuchar performed very well. She has been consistent throughout and is good at defending herself with restraint and substance.
She would make a terrific vice presidential choice, and a good president soon.
So here’s my choice for the democratic ticket. Bloomberg – Klobuchar.
I may have a bumper sticker printed out.
One final thought. Dearest America, think, please, think.