Monday, May 03, 2021

Were We Awake During The Campaign

There are many erroneous (and contradictory if you remember yesterday) ways that American politics is covered, and one is that it is often asserted that to win elections, Democrats have to "campaign from the center," and that then, because they are Democrats, they will govern more from The Left. 

But this isn't what actually happens and during campaigns "everyone" acknowledges it. It's more the opposite! Certainly in 2008 and 2016, savvy pundits would assert, where people could hear them, that Obama and Clinton were very likely to break their promises to "The Left" and not do those things that they were campaigning on. And this was after the primary was over.

They're just lying, they would say! As if this was a good thing! Vote for the liar!

At "best" you can see this as an attempt to send different messages to different audiences. Have the campaign lie to some voters, and have savvy pundits reassure the people who matter that they are full of shit. (I'm not saying this is what was happening, I just think pundits like to pretend candidates are secretly catering to them).

Then when the new president tries to do anything at all lefty, even the stuff they explicitly campaigned on, it gets reported as some sort of sneaky betrayal of Real Americans who thought they were voting for The Moderate.

But the campaign wasn't all that long ago! I assume reporters wrote about it! Biden was marked as the "moderate" but that isn't how he ultimately ran the presidential campaign, aside from stylistically. The policies he ran on were pretty lefty. Maybe it was "savvy" to think he was full of shit, but that doesn't mean he didn't do it.

In the polls taken in the months leading up to the 2020 election, his ideological score averaged a 69. Americans see Biden as the same ideologically now as they did in the lead up to the election.

Biden is best described as somewhat liberal in Americans' eyes.

That's about voter perception, not necessarily reality, but the reality is that Biden is going to more break promises he made "to the left" than he's going to implement communism, as generally happens. Not that he campaigned as Mitt Romney but is governing instead as Bernie, which is entirely made up.