Warren Will Endorse Biden. Obama, When Will You?

In the next day or two, Warren will make her announcement. The choice is clear. She’s a talented intellectual with a political future. There is no future in endorsing Sanders.

Warren miscalculated when she took a center left position that made her seem too close to Sanders, and she’s paid the price in the polls.

But she has a political future. I think she should campaign for Biden all the way through November and thus add weight to the Biden movement.

And she would make a fine secretary of state in a Biden administration.

With the show of strength in Super Tuesday, Biden’s campaign should steadily add to the lead in delegates and so go into Milwaukee with the sufficient number.

Which brings me to the matter of vice presidential choice.

It should be a woman.

As things stand now, Amy Klobuchar is in the lead among potential candidates.

Biden will be tempted to consider Harris for the position but I think it will be a mistake.

He already has the black vote. He doesn’t need to offer the position as a gift for their support.

What he needs to do, once he’s elected, is deliver on the promises he’s made.

And now to Obama’s endorsement.

I see the merits of his having abstained from endorsing Biden to let things play out.

But they have already played out. And it is clear that Biden’s solid performance on Super Tuesday will continue to be replicated in other states.

Endorsing Biden now may seem like the kiss of death to the Sanders’ campaign but the party needs to solidify behind Biden and the quicker it is done, the more productive the outcome.

Sanders’ supporters need to feel represented in Biden’s campaign.

And so should every American, including those who now support Donald Trump.

The message will need to be refined. The less strife leading up to the convention, the more time to clarify the positions and broaden the appeal.

Warren the Intemperate

She may well win the democratic party’s nomination but it is looking unlikely that she’ll beat Trump.

In the reaction to Trump’s excesses in office, Warren is waving too frantically the banner of government remedies. Gradualism, which allows for the American entrepreneurial spirit to blossom, is being pushed aside.

In the reaction to Trump’s excesses, the democratic party ends up playing Trump’s game. A game that seeks to antagonize and divide.

Trump knows that there is a constituency in the middle that is unlikely to buy into the Medicare for All plan.

He knows that there is a constituency in the middle that is not ready to say that college education should be free.

Trump knows that the same constituency will not tolerate high taxes on the rich.

And he seems confident in the belief that, though that constituency disapproves of his conduct in many ways, when pushed, they would rather go to the polls holding their noses and vote for him, than to risk the radical changes Warren is now offering.

Will the nation be better off if health care delivery is improved and made more inclusive?  Yes.

Will we be better off with greater access to college and quality schools? Yes.

Will we be better off with tax reform where the richest pay more than they do now? Absolutely.

But it needs to happen gradually.

Warren needs to have two main plans. One plan to get in, the other to gradually begin to make the changes. But she needs to get in first.

She needs to get in and by showing herself a capable president, then begin to persuade us that some of those fundamental changes must be made.

We need to see her being open to compromise, to dialogue. We need to see her open to accept that while the system needs a lot of fixing, there’s also a lot of good stuff that should not be trimmed. And it takes time, sweat and tears, to do all that maneuvering.

We need to see a politician do the politician’s work of horse trading. Simply because that’s the nature of the business. Lots and lots of horse trading. Until she proves herself capable of reaching for the best in all of us.

Telling us that she has a plan for everything smells too much of government overreach. If she stays on that track, she’ll be playing Trump’s game and will not get in.

Trump has no plan and he’s okay with that. Or, his only plan to get reelected is to defend the status quo, stirring up hatred against the incoming democratic socialists.  

Warren the politician needs to step up. Warren the professor and preacher needs to sit down.

It shouldn’t be hard.

Will Impeachment Eclipse the Drive to November 2020?

The impeachment inquiry is taking up a whole lot of time and energy, whereas the outcome is very uncertain.

Trump cannot keep from making mistake after mistake, but for democrats to use up so many resources, to the point of diminishing the drive to persuade enough voters to beat him at the ballot box, is a monumental mistake.

At present, the center stage is Trump’s and he loves it, and that is not lost on the electorate who is not inclined to read the fine print in the multitude of documents to be reviewed. Soon they will be bored with the proceedings.

‘It will turn out to be a positive for me,’ Trump said defiantly in response to the announcement of the inquiry. I suspect he will be right.

Subpoenas will be issued and the many actors will take their seat in front of the panel of interrogators, but the questions and answers will be difficult to follow. I assure you there will be much frustration as the respondents give vague answers like, ‘I don’t recall’ and ‘To the best of my recollection this is all I know…’ etc.

Let us not forget that in Trump’s universe, there are two kinds of lawyers and only two: those who take notes and those who don’t. He picks those who don’t. Enter Rudy Giuliani.

Will the distinguished former New York mayor have a clear memory of what happened in his many meetings in the Ukraine? Of course not. And the interrogators will be pulling out their hair. Will Ukraine be cooperative? It depends. Do they think Trump will win reelection? Judging by the enthusiasm of Mr Zelensky, their president, Trump is faring well in that land.

There is an abundance of facts to make the case that Trump should not be reelected. But the hard work needed to persuade people to vote for a democratic candidate remains to be done.

There is a thirst in the American electorate for a person to lead us whose task is simply that, to lead. Lead us to connect with each other, to decrease inequality and increase opportunity.

There is a great desire in the American electorate for someone without personal problems, someone who can focus on the task of leadership and is not hungry for personal attention.

But it will take time to clarify the winning message that will make voters eager to cast their ballot come November 2020. There are no short cuts to get there.

Trump can and should be beat at the ballot box.

Impeachment should not eclipse the light that can take us there.

Dear Elizabeth, (3), 2020 is the Year of the American Woman.

For a brief moment I had considered that Trump would make an effort to veer to the center by toning down his divisive rhetoric and appeal to voters outside his ‘base,’ since it alone is unlikely to win him the reelection. Now I think differently.

Trump does not seem able to help himself and will play the racist card as he sees fit. But it will only hasten his undoing.

During his two and a half years in office, he has already incited enough hatred for the country to take the measure of the man. Could voters be so gullible as to take the bait again? They just might.

So let us ask ourselves this question, between a man and a woman, who’s more likely to be duped by Trump?

I think a man.

During his tenure, Trump has been offensive to both men and women, but more so toward women. Thus, I believe women who voted for him in 2016 are unlikely to vote for him again.

With strong women candidates vying for the presidency – accomplished women without the political baggage that accompanied Hillary – women voters will have before them a range of choices they have never had before.  

2020 will then be the Year of the American Woman. And it could well become a campaign slogan of yours.

American women must be pursued vigorously, and reminded of how they can, through the power of the vote, have a say in altering the direction of our social and economic policies and thus the fate of the nation.

Either we continue on an isolationist path that seeks to divide and weaken the country, or we embrace a future where women will rise to positions of leadership in all walks of life.

A woman president will immediately, from day one, affect the composition of the cabinet. Immediately, from day one, a woman president will greatly influence the number of female appointees to hundreds of critical posts. And the nation will breathe easier, knowing that with a better male/female balance in the conduct of our affairs, both foreign and national, America stands a much better chance of steering an enlightened course, one that is in our best interest while at the same time remaining respectful of other countries’ concerns.

To remain a nation of the first order, actions like the current trade war are of no benefit. What will make a difference in the long run, will be to foster the creative potential of every American, man or woman, while keeping our minds and hearts open to the world.


Oscar Valdes   oscarvaldes.net

Author of Brother Donald: Letters, and Helsinki.

Dear Elizabeth (2)

I read your proposals on immigration. They are balanced and filled with a sense of compassion. Thank you. The idea of creating an office for New Americans is a fine example of a future oriented imagination that seeks to inspire. Let that be the hallmark of your campaign. Thank you again.

The task now is to sell the proposals. I mean sell them to those who do not yet grasp the value of immigrants. I mean sell the proposals to Trump’s supporters.

I do not think that Trump’s ‘base’ should be conceded. Far from it. It should be actively courted because they are Americans left behind. They are Americans who, having been ignored by previous administrations, both Democratic and Republican, fell prey to the manipulations of the current president who, based on his actions, i.e. tax cuts that benefit the wealthy, seeks not to empower them. That task of empowerment will fall to someone who, like you, has a strong record of working to uplift our citizenry.

The ‘base’ was once sadly referred to by Hillary Clinton as comprised of ‘deplorables,’ a mistake that contributed to her losing her bid to be president. I have no doubt that, had a writer of yours inserted that word in the text of a speech, you would have immediately deemed it inappropriate and not vocalized it.  

The advantage of courting Trump’s base is that, in doing so, you would be actively engaged in the quest of attempting to unite the nation. Trump has shown no inclination to do so. He could but he doesn’t seem to grasp the essence of the concept. Part of the reason is that he is not an integrated man. He is intelligent and competitive, hard driving too, but his efforts appear guided by the desire to boost an ego thirsty for attention.

You, on the other hand, convey a sense of being a mature and well grounded person, someone not bedeviled by Trump’s affliction. Because of it, you can aspire to unite the nation. Which means reaching out to Trump’s ‘base’.

I do not think that the ‘base’ really sees the building of a wall on our southern border as a real solution to their problems.

The ‘base’ needs to gradually be guided to understand that their real freedom lies not in barring immigrants (though setting immigration limits is essential) but that it will come from their personal development; their real freedom will come from their efforts to nurture their productive capacities so they can feel they’re on a path to integrating with the rest of the nation and the world at large. Previous administration, both Democratic and Republican failed to assist them. Your administration will not make that mistake. You will engage the ‘base” and challenge them to be their best, offering the necessary means for them to realize their potential.

Men and women who are actively attempting to exercise their potential are not likely to fall prey to the fallacy of racism or white supremacy.

Reaching out to Trump’s ‘base’ with the firm promise of generous assistance for their personal and economic development stands the chance to not only engage them, but to signal to the rest of the nation that you are in the office of president to be an agent of change for the nation as a whole, and that you carry in you the spirit and creativity of a statesman like Franklin D Roosevelt.

Maybe there is a place for an office for Americans left behind by Globalization (as a counterpart to the office for New Americans) and for it to be the fountain of the effort to bring them on board.

There is a dynamic view of human beings that should be at the bottom of your programs and creative solutions. We human beings are always in transition. We are always desirous of improving ourselves. Sometimes we give up but the longings are always there. All of us, without exception, are eager to be better than we have been and, at bottom, want others to recognize us.

Essential to who we are is the need to connect to our fellow human beings, no matter what their color or origin. Racist beliefs are held by those who have temporarily given up on that fundamental quest.

Essential to who we are is the yearning to be validated by our brothers and sisters for there is nothing more satisfying.

Elizabeth, life has assigned you a gigantic task. But in its infinite wisdom, life has also chosen someone who is tremendously capable. So fear not that you lack the imagination, the daring and the compassion for the job. It’s all in you.

I see it. Others do too.


Oscar Valdes


Author of Brother Donald:Letters.

Dear Elizabeth

The fight is heating up. As you go through it you will be tested again and again, and again and again you will overcome. It’s in you. And you will be the next president of our nation.

You are being entrusted not only with restoring sanity to our affairs foreign and national, but with the grander task, long overdue, of lifting American women to positions of leadership.

The nation will be richer, when we let women in as full partners, for she has been neglected and undervalued throughout the course of our history.

We have paid dearly for such sad neglect. Had there been the balance that women bring to policy making and executive decisions, there may not have been the debacle of Vietnam, the bloody mistake of Iraq. Had there been the balance that women bring to policy making and executive decisions, there may not have been the institutionalized racism that plagues us, or the economic inequality that haunts us.

We often hear the question, is America ready for a woman president? It has always been ready. What has blocked women’s ascent is masculine insecurity, the obsession that men have with domination, the obsession with control over others to be able to feel at peace with ourselves.

But the peace earned in such way is transitory. Personal peace that lasts comes from a sense that everyone has value, and from the knowledge that at any given time in a person’s development, each human being is endeavoring to express such value, thus the importance of education and of social supports, to facilitate such expression.


The field is crowded, but already we can see the differences. The lack of focus. The vain quest for attention.

Meanwhile, do stay centered. You have a clear advantage over everybody in the field. I see it. Others see it.

As to the debates with Mr Trump you will have nothing to fear. He does not have the depth that you do (he could reach for it but he chooses not to). He knows that, which is why he will do all he can to degrade the nature of an exchange with you for that is his only course. Let him do the jokes. Let him have the laughs. We have seen plenty of those under his tenure while the nation backslides.

What the county wants to see is the leader in you. But rest easy. In contrast to our president, you do not have to reach for it or invent it. You do not have to make it up. It is in you. It is you.

You do not have to have all the answers. Some of your approaches may not be accurate. But if you have the courage to listen to contrary views and weigh them, you will chart balanced courses of action. Your choices may have to change, for circumstances will shift, but if your rationale has been sound, the chances of success will be good.

Till next time.

Oscar valdes   oscarvaldes.net