What’s this? “Tactical voting” worked?


Democratic (neoliberal) Party

Joe Biden

Fig. 1. Joe Biden and Pope Francis, unknown photographer, April 29, 2016, via Wikimedia Commons, public domain.

I have seen a few suggestions that the fireworks may come tomorrow, as Congress returns to session, and Democratic politicians, who were away from Washington, D.C., last week, return and talk to each other in person. What we’ll find out is not so much whether or not Democrats actually want to win—I’ve long since concluded they desperately don’t—but whether they want to remain in the game.

Eugene Daniels, Rachael Bade, and Ryan Lizza, “Team Biden tries to quell Dem panic,” Politico, June 30, 2024, https://www.politico.com/newsletters/playbook/2024/06/30/team-biden-tries-to-quell-dem-panic-00165945

Tyler Pager, “Biden aides plotted debate strategy for months. Then it all collapsed,” Washington Post, June 30, 2024, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2024/06/30/how-biden-debate-prep-led-to-damaging-event/

Maeve Reston, “Black men helped power Biden’s 2020 Georgia win. Some are wavering,” Washington Post, June 30, 2024, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2024/06/30/black-voters-georgia-election-biden-trump/

Alex Thompson, “Top aides shielded Biden from staff, but couldn’t hide the debate,” Axios, June 30, 2024, https://www.axios.com/2024/06/30/top-aides-shielded-biden-white-house-debate

John Heilemann, “Bidenworld’s Darkest Hour,” Puck, July 1, 2024, https://puck.news/should-biden-stay-or-should-he-go/

Matthew Choi, “Democratic Congressman Lloyd Doggett calls on Biden to withdraw from presidential race,” Texas Tribune, July 2, 2024, https://www.texastribune.org/2024/07/02/lloyd-doggett-joe-biden-withdraw-election/

Liz Goodwin et al., “Manchin threatened to break with Biden before senior Democrats intervened,” Washington Post, July 2, 2024, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2024/07/02/joe-manchin-biden-debate-democrats-drop-out/

Peter Hamby, “Biden Plunges in Swing States in Leaked Post-Debate Poll,” Puck, July 2, 2024, https://puck.news/biden-plunges-in-swing-states-in-leaked-post-debate-poll/

Jared Mitovich, “Democrats begin attacking Biden’s performance and campaign,” Politico, July 2, 2024, https://www.politico.com/news/2024/07/02/democrats-biden-debate-fallout-00166208

Eli Stokols et al., “‘We’ve all enabled the situation’: Dems turn on Biden’s inner sanctum post debate,” Politico, July 2, 2024, https://www.politico.com/news/2024/07/02/biden-campaign-debate-inner-circle-00166160

Prem Thakker, “Every Democrat Other Than Joe Biden Is Unburdened by What Has Been,” Intercept, July 2, 2024, https://theintercept.com/2024/07/02/biden-polls-democrats-alternative-candidates/

M. J. Lee, “Biden has privately acknowledged next stretch of days are critical for whether he can save his reelection bid,” Cable News Network, July 3, 2024, https://www.cnn.com/2024/07/03/politics/joe-biden-2024-campaign-troubles

Ally Mutnick et al., “‘Everybody’s in panic mode’ as House Democrats scramble after debate,” Politico, July 3, 2024, https://www.politico.com/news/2024/07/03/house-democrats-biden-debate-00166533

Michael Scherer, Tyler Pager, and Matt Viser, “Biden faces growing political crisis over response to debate performance,” Washington Post, July 3, 2024, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2024/07/03/biden-crisis-debate-democrats/

Stephen Collinson and Shelby Rose to Meanwhile in America list, “The dark cloud hanging over Biden’s Independence Day Party,” Cable News Network, July 4, 2024, https://edition.cnn.com/newsletters/meanwhile-in-america

Yasmeen Abutaleb et al., “Biden’s aging is seen as accelerating, lapses described as more common,” Washington Post, July 5, 2024, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2024/07/05/biden-aging-recent-months/

Leigh Ann Caldwell and Liz Goodwin, “Sen. Mark Warner works to gather Senate Democrats to ask Biden to exit race,” Washington Post, July 5, 2024, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2024/07/05/mark-warner-joe-biden-exit-race-democratic-senators/

Rebecca Falconer, “Biden says he’s ‘not going anywhere’ as calls for him to step aside grow,” Axios, July 5, 2024, https://www.axios.com/2024/07/05/biden-democratic-donors-finance-disney-heiress

David A. Graham, “What is the Biden campaign’s theory of victory now?” Atlantic, July 5, 2024, https://apple.news/AyCMikft8TDuFf_elUgfQSA

Eric Levitz, “In an ABC interview, Biden charts a course for Dems’ worst-case scenario,” Vox, July 5, 2024, https://www.vox.com/politics/359160/biden-abc-news-interview-drop-out

David Smith, “Biden says only ‘the Lord almighty’ could make him drop out in pivotal TV interview,” Guardian, July 5, 2024, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/article/2024/jul/05/biden-george-stephanopoulos-debate-interview

David Axelrod, “Biden’s defiant delusion,” Cable News Network, July 6, 2024, https://www.cnn.com/2024/07/06/opinions/biden-failed-to-quell-panic-abc-interview-axelrod/index.html

Lauren Koenig, Samantha Waldenberg, and Betsy Klein, “Radio host who interviewed Biden says aides provided questions in advance,” Cable News Network, July 6, 2024, https://www.cnn.com/2024/07/06/politics/biden-radio-interview-questions/index.html

Michael Scherer, Tyler Pager, and Josh Dawsey, “Biden thought he had it under control. Then it got worse,” Washington Post, July 6, 2024, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2024/07/06/biden-debate-white-house-campaign/

Matt Viser and Shane Harris, “As Biden digs in, another elected Democrat calls on him to exit race,” Washington Post, July 6, 2024, https://www.washingtonpost.com/elections/2024/07/06/biden-democrats-presidential-campaign/

Yasmeen Abutaleb, Tyler Pager, and Aaron Schaffer, “Debate brings scrutiny of whether aides shielded signs of Biden’s aging,” Washington Post, July 7, 2024, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2024/07/07/white-house-aides-biden-age/

Gillian McGoldrick, “Andrea Lawful-Sanders leaves WURD after White House provides questions for Joe Biden interview,” Philadelphia Inquirer, July 7, 2024, https://www.inquirer.com/politics/joe-biden-andrea-lawful-sanders-wurd-interview-20240707.html

Ashley Parker and Meryl Kornfield, “Watching Biden, many see the heartbreaking indignities of aging,” Washington Post, July 7, 2024, https://www.washingtonpost.com/elections/2024/07/07/biden-aging-debate-performance/

Kavita Patel, “I’m a doctor. Biden’s debate performance led me to a very different takeaway,” MSNBC, July 7, 2024, https://www.msnbc.com/opinion/msnbc-opinion/biden-debate-nominee-ageism-aging-rcna160319


Fig. 2. Photograph by Joachim F. Thurn, August 1991, Bundesarchiv, B 145 Bild-F089030-0003, via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0 DE.

Emmanuel Macron had warned of a “civil war” in France if either the far right or the far left won power.[1] But the “center” didn’t win either as “tactical voting” actually worked.[2] I don’t think I’ve seen that before.

Angelique Chrisafis, “Surprise win for leftwing alliance predicted in French election exit poll,” Guardian, July 7, 2024, https://www.theguardian.com/world/article/2024/jul/07/exit-poll-shows-surprise-win-for-left-wing-alliance-in-french-election

  1. [1]Angelique Chrisafis, “Far-right National Rally in reach of being dominant French party after election first round,” Guardian, July 1, 2024, https://www.theguardian.com/world/article/2024/jun/30/far-right-national-rally-in-reach-of-being-dominant-french-party-after-election-first-round
  2. [2]Angelique Chrisafis, “Surprise win for leftwing alliance predicted in French election exit poll,” Guardian, July 7, 2024, https://www.theguardian.com/world/article/2024/jul/07/exit-poll-shows-surprise-win-for-left-wing-alliance-in-french-election

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