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#1 User is offline   MTP Reggie 

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Posted 12 July 2019 - 07:42 AM

I Come to Bury Biden, Not to Praise Him
Ocasio-Cortez emerges as a one-woman Committee to Re-Elect the President.
By Peggy Noonan
July 11, 2019 6:44 pm ET

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Three small points we labor mightily to connect:

Joe Biden has me thinking about . . . Julius Caesar. The political class of Rome wanted Caesar gone and successfully dispatched him with 23 wounds. But the conspirators themselves came to unhappy ends—Caesar's base hated them and chased them out of town! Nobody loves an assassin. The only political survivors were Caesar's designated heir and the leaders who didn't join the conspiracy.

That is the predicament of the 23 contenders for the Democratic presidential nomination who are not named Joe Biden. They want the front-runner gone. But they don't really want to be the one who does him in. Pete Buttigieg doesn't want you saying he has a lean and hungry look! Amy Klobuchar doesn't want it said she really is mean. The safe course for them is to let someone else do it, then mourn, with poignant words, the end of an epic 20th-century career.

Kamala Harris got a boost from wielding her switchblade in the debates, but that's a moment, not a sustainable primary lifestyle, and it left a mark, not a fatal wound.

So how are they thinking? If in time they feel they have to, they'll do what Caesar's foes did and all join together and take a stab. But again, that didn't work out well. So for now they'll make small feints on Mr. Biden's statements and record, have their people be as poisonous as possible off the record, and wait for him to stab himself to death. Which in his previous presidential primary races he's tended to do.

What they're banking on is self-sabotage and deteriorating cognitive abilities, as Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez sweetly suggested in an interview with the New Yorker's David Remnick: "I think there are some folks that are of a certain age where you can kind of question their capacity."

Donald Trump, she said, is an example. And Joe Biden? "I think . . . his performance on the stage kind of raised some questions with respect to that. But I don't want to say, just because someone is 79, they can't or shouldn't run for president."

"Just because he's 79." Well done, missy.

And so to Speaker Nancy Pelosi's public fight with Ms. Ocasio-Cortez and the three other members of "The Squad"—Reps. Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib and Ayanna Pressley. I gather many on the left are lauding their cool defiance, but to me they look surprised, flummoxed and resentful.

Shortly after being elected, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez seemed to think she had Mrs. Pelosi under control—she's the future, after all, and Nancy's the past and surely knows it. She curled her hand around the speaker's arm in the famous Rolling Stone cover, as you might with a grandma to whom you enjoy showing particular warmth and who happens to have a big estate and no designated heir. Someone has to inherit it!

What do I suspect The Squad may know now that they didn't know then? That grandma has been observing them and sees what others see. She doesn't mind that they're hot, aggressive and ideological, but they don't confine their fire to outside the tent. They attack moderates as sellouts, racists, child abusers.

And no one who disagrees with them ever operates in good faith. There is a disrespect there. They're tough, they're bringing it, not winging it; but they're so immersed in ideology that they never give a thought to mercy. With Ms. Omar and Ms. Ocasio-Cortez especially, it's all identity politics and the accusing finger—you're criticizing me because you're greedy, misogynist, classist. And they always claim victimhood—they receive death threats and are called bigoted things, people are mean to them.

People are mean to everybody.


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