bernie sanders elizabeth warren Pete Buttigieg politics

Pete Buttigieg Storms To Commanding Lead In Iowa With Remarkable 16-Point Surge

Buttigieg called the results "extremely encouraging".

Score one for the centrists.

“Mayor Pete” has taken a commanding lead among Iowa’s likely Democratic caucusgoers, surging an incredible 16 points since September.

25% now say Buttigieg is their first choice for president, the latest Des Moines Register/ CNN/ Mediacom Iowa Poll shows. Elizabeth Warren slipped to 16%, while Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders logged 15% each.

As documented in these pages extensively earlier this month, America is starting to give Mayor Pete a serious look.

A well-spoken veteran, Buttigieg appeals to those hoping to avoid a situation where the nation is forced to choose between a far-left candidate and four more years of tragicomedic fascism under an increasingly unhinged Donald Trump, who is almost sure to be impeached, but not convicted or removed from office.

Buttigieg called the Iowa poll results “extremely encouraging” during remarks to reporters in California on Saturday evening. “We have felt a lot of momentum on the ground”, he added.

Read more: America Is Getting Serious About Pete Buttigieg

“This is the first poll that shows Buttigieg as a stand-alone front-runner”, J. Ann Selzer, president of Selzer & Co., which conducted the poll remarked. “There have been four candidates that have sort of jostled around in a pack together, but he has a sizable lead over the nearest contender — 9 points. So this is a new status for him”.

It sure is, and it will come as a relief to those who have become increasingly concerned about the populist appeal of Elizabeth Warren who, in addition to having a 5,000+-word plan for every agenda item, has a Trump-like penchant for feeding off would-be critics. “There’s really not a damn thing you can do about Warren”, one prominent hedge fund manager and Democratic bundler told Politico earlier this month. “If you say anything about [her] you just make her stronger”.

And yet, somehow, Buttigieg’s centrist message is resonating in an environment where both parties have been pulled to the poles. He was fourth in the Register poll in September, but since then, he’s doubled his staff and opened nearly two-dozen offices.

Warren’s 16% showing in the November poll represents a 6 point drop from September, when she was the frontrunner.

On Friday, Barack Obama weighed in on the primary and on the state of the Democratic party more generally. Speaking to a relative handful of rich liberal donors in Washington, Obama warned Democrats about going “too far left”, and cautioned that Independents, moderate Republicans and even some Democratic voters aren’t on board with “certain left-leaning Twitter feeds” or “the activist wing of our party”.

“Even as we push the envelope and we are bold in our vision we also have to be rooted in reality”, he chided. “The average American doesn’t think we have to completely tear down the system and remake it”.

It was a rather obvious shot at Warren and Sanders, but it could just as easily be aimed at Ocasio-Cortez and other, younger icons of the progressive movement.

He didn’t endorse anyone on Friday other than Stacey Abrams, who interviewed him (and who isn’t running, much to the chagrin of her fans). “I love me some Stacey Abrams”, Obama said.

Anyway, Iowa voters “love them some Mayor Pete”, or at least for this month they do.

“More respondents — 30% now, compared with 20% in September — say they have a first choice and their minds are made up”, the Register notes, adding that there’s still “ample opportunity for more surges and slides in the two-and-a-half months before the caucuses: 62% say they have a first choice but could still be persuaded, 1% are unsure and 7% have not made a first choice”.


 

 

24 comments on “Pete Buttigieg Storms To Commanding Lead In Iowa With Remarkable 16-Point Surge

  1. Of all the bullshit in American politics, the Iowa caucuses is the most overlooked. Let the lords of the WaPo / NYTimes confer frontrunner status by focusing on a state that doesn’t come close to mirroring America as a whole and looks even less like the electorate of the Democratic Party. And then let’s do that through a caucus system in the brutal cold of winter that draws a tiny sliver of registered voters.

    When Mayor Pete starts making inroads in South Carolina, I’ll start believing he can win the nomination.

  2. I appreciate that Obama has been muted in his public remarks out of respect for his former office. That demonstration of class also serves to strengthen any remarks he does make. I believe he is spot in his comments.

    The stereotypical comments he made many years ago about (obtuse) bitter people clinging to guns and religion was traumatic to those who at that time expected their president to be nice, the bigger man. Many of those people bust their ass to earn a living and promote civility in their community. “Rooted in reality” is his understanding that most of the groups he cites in his current comments do not operate under a whole lot of theory, they are practical people that are not intellectually challenged.

    • the progressive agenda calls for: 1) universal schooling, 2) universal healthcare, 3) cleaning up the environment.

      super “radical” ideas? hardly. that’s all common sense, and embraced by almost every other advanced society on the planet. it’s patently ridiculous to suggest those are far-fetched ideas. completely. and. totally. ridiculous. Obama is wrong. “Yes we can” turned into “Well, actually it doesn’t look like we can, and even if we could, I got disinterested once I became president”.

      that’s the reality.

      • I prefer all three of those items on your list compared to the right wing’s unnecessary wars, and tax cuts. When I think of the type of people Obama was speaking of I think of people who probably prefer a balanced approach in their investments. They may be ready to re-balance their portfolio in a more progressive direction but they are a little risk averse.

        • yeah, i mean i get it, i really do. and i would have agreed with Obama five years ago. but at this point, i feel like the issue needs to be pressed, because America seems to be spiraling backwards in time — perhaps the best example of why this is good time to press for big change is that the budget deficit is already being ballooned, and for what? tax cuts for the rich and for corporations and ~2-2.5% annual GDP growth. whoopee. if we’re going to balloon the deficit anyway, better to do it in the service of trying to bring about big change.

          • Go big or go home; I get that too. Your right this country is going backwards, and i just want it to stop. Where you guys have a reason for a specific candidates I just want the one who can defeat Trump. I could be wrong but it may take a candidate that can strip more voters away away from the republican party’s invasive political machine.

            I agree with the deficit sentiment, I have expressed it firmly in person on occasions, and caught hell for doing so. : )

      • Jack Farris

        Riddle me this. What would Elizabeth Warrens non radical agenda to ban fracking do to the economy?

        As a bit of background that is
        3% of the economy
        7% of the world oil supply
        1 trillion in obliterated market cap.

        There is no need to be mendacious. These agendas are nutball squared and you certainly know it.

        • No, Jack, these agendas are not “nutball squared”. You must be new to Heisenberg Report. Again, the vast majority of the civilized world has adopted many of these agenda items. What’s “nutball” is the continual pursuit of things like supply-side economics, which has literally failed every, single time it’s been tried. And if you think fracking is the key to economic prosperity then I’m not sure we can chat, Jack, because that’s just silly.

          • H- You were very kind to Jack.

          • Jack Farris

            I noticed you breezed right past my point almost as if you didn’t read past the first 3 words. I assume you don’t dispute my stated facts? What would be the economic impact of the specific policy I referenced? Feel free to include multiplier effects after the 3% direct gdp hit as well as the effect on gas prices, immediate obliteration of 1 trillion dollars of wealth etc.

            You are really no different than Trump if you refuse to acknowledge the obvious. Maybe you think a depression in the name of gaiea is worth it. Fine just say so, but this is the equivelant of lying about your inauguration crowds when anyone with eyesight can see reality.

          • Apparently you do not understand the correlation between my “breezing right past” your points and you implying that a fracking ban would cause “a depression”. An economist you are clearly not. When you suggest a fracking ban would precipitate a depression (which is what you did here), you compel folks like myself to summarily dismiss you for reasons that should be obvious. If those reasons aren’t obvious to you, then you’ve accidentally answered your own question.

        • Jack farris

          I think I understood fully, It was more convenient to speak in platitudes and generalities than deal with the specifics of an actual policy that make your preferred candidate look reckless and crazy. Maybe you could explain how all of this wouldn’t suck 4-6% out of the economy? I’m not an economist, but then again neither are you if you genuinely believe it wouldn’t. 3% is a fact. What is our current rate of growth and what happens when you subtract 3% from that? What is the impact of the downstream effects?

          I provided an argument and data. You provided dismissive platitudes, most likely because you have no factual rebuttal.

          I’ll add this is not some kind of defense of trump. It’s recognizing crazy and reckless when it stares you in the face.

          • Jack, banning fracking would not reduce economic growth by 3 percentage points. Again, that is silly. In fact, it’s beyond silly. It’s insane. The US economy grew 2.8% on a Q4-to-Q4 basis in 2018. The reason I can’t answer you is because if you’re saying what it sounds like you’re saying, then you are so out of touch with reality that there’s no point in responding to you. It sounds to me like you’re suggesting that more than 100% of US economic growth is attributable to fracking. It’s not. In no universe is that true, Jack. At this point I recognize that you are not a regular on Heisenberg Report and therefore have no idea who it is you’re arguing with here, so I’m going to just let this slide instead of embarrassing you in public, especially considering you have provided what may be your first and last name. I would politely encourage you to drop this, because if you don’t, here’s what’s going to come next: I’m going to e-mail some folks on wall street and have them ask their colleagues to provide me with estimates of what the actual economic impact of a fracking ban would be in basis points on quarterly and annual GDP growth and I’m going to post those estimates right here as a reply to you. Jack, save yourself from that fate: those estimates will not be what you think they are. You are not assessing this situation correctly. I don’t doubt that you got that 3% number from somewhere, but what you are doing (i.e., using 3% and subtracting it from the current annualized pace of growth which, as of the advance read for the third quarter, was 2.1%) to get a negative number is not how this works. Please, for the love of God, try to come to terms with that.

          • Jack Farris

            Please do ask your wallstreet experts. I’m on pins and needles waiting foe an explanation of why this is no big deal. Fracking is currently 3% of our economy. Eliminate 3% of economic activity and the natural conclusion is the short term impact on gdp is greater than 3% due to multiplier effects. It isn’t about how much fracking is contributing to growth. It’s about how much economic activity you are eliminating instantaneously by federal decree.

            Again

            Fracking accounts for 7% of the world oil supply. What does that do to oil prices?

            What are the multiplier effects when 3% of our economic output is immediately eliminated?

            What is the economic effect when you blow away a trillion dollars in market cap?

            What are the knock off effects for the investment environment when you can wave your pen and eliminate entire industries?

            I mean come on we can debate about the numbers and the multiplier effect but this is directly removing 3% of our economic output in one fell swoop. Framing this as just reasonable policies that every other country follows is nonsense on stilts.

            Maybe you could just do a post explaining why vaporizing 3% of our economy really won’t be a big deal. That one is popcorn worthy. Looking forward to it.

          • ok, i’ll grab some estimates. now i’m actually curious. lol

          • Jack farris

            As am I. For what it’s worth I do appreciate your blog and you have introduced me to other writers I was not familiar with so don’t take this as general hostility. I think you are blinded by partisanship in this particular case. Back of the envelope math says the loss of production alone is about 800 billion dollars in year one at $50/barrel.

          • Oh, trust me — i didn’t take it as general hostility. your comments don’t even come close to “hostile” compared to some of the e-mail i get. i’ll post some stuff from the banks here once i get some replies

          • Jack Farris

            Btw my last number was off. It’s probably more like 150 billion in direct oil fracking revenue and whatever ng provides which is roughly 70% of our ng production. I knew the number seemed too high for just oil.

          • Jack Farris

            You ever hear anything?

  3. vicissitude

    Re: “The average American doesn’t think we have to completely tear down the system and remake it”

    Is Obama expressing the Democrat strategy? Is it possible that Warren and people like Ocasio-Cortez are distractions for the far Right, i.e., decoys which help place Buttigieg in a more neutral position where he might succeed? The Art of Deflection? If anything, the Democrats lack leadership and that’s their major weakness, while on the other hand, trump is the core focus for the GOP, with fox news feeding the base. The fragmented Dems need a way forward. I agree with comment above about Iowa being fairly unimportant.

  4. Surprise! Obama presents the same type of argument that got us into this mess. The powers that be in the Democratic Party astonishingly haven’t yet internalized much from the 2016 election, even though we appear just a step or two away from authoritarianism. If voters were content with what is “normal” and “centrist”, Trump would never have become President; he wouldn’t have won the nomination or the presidency. The people who are endlessly concerned with ceding the self-defined so-called “center”, are the same people who have surrendered the “frame” without a fight. To date, none of them have much of a clue how to wrest the camera or narrative away from Trump. The problem is, Trump at least sells a positive vision, however fraudulent and abhorrent it is in reality. The appearance (or actuality) of standing for something is a very different thing than the appearance of standing for more or less nothing, or taking primarily a negative position, a la their latest flavor of the month, Pete Buttigieg.

  5. Good point Trump does go out and say invest in me/continue to invest in me; and here’s why… As distasteful as Buttigieg may be he is selling a concept of “the day after Trump” in the context of doing what is right for the country. Those are good selling points in these times.

  6. Wow, Obama just earned himself an Ok Boomer. It’s crazy to think how quickly he has become old and out of touch. He’s pretty young to be so old. I take Obama’s comments to be a reflexion of never having to had courted a Millennial base, which is and will be the dominant voting block for the next 20 years. Obama spent his entire career courting a Boomer base and while it had its relevance and merits at the time, times have changed.

    Oh, also, the Millennial vote is not likely represented in the current polling models correctly. We are in the middle of a massive shift in power between generations. Add that to the technological shift in dominant communications platforms, and the polling models will lack accuracy for a while.

    That all said, I really like Mayor Pete. He has a lot of strong points, but I don’t think he is the best candidate. His popularity in Iowa is pretty much to be expected based on cultural, ethnic and geographic proximity. Warren was rising in Iowa until the establishment (read billionaires) started to fear her and started funding massive attack campaigns that work for a populous that is less educated (36th state in bachelors and 42nd in advanced degree attainment).

    Pete wins Iowa, it’s his wheel house.
    Warren wins NH, it’s her wheel house.
    Biden wins Nevada, it’s his wheel house.
    Sanders wins South Carolina, it’s his wheel house.

    If any candidates take 2 of those 4, they will be the front runner and the one who misses their wheel house is done. If 1 candidate takes 3 of those states, they probably take the nomination.

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