Sunday, June 19, 2016

The Political Negative Zone

By Jeff Simpson

In the Marvel Comic's world, the Negative Zone is a place where all matter is negatively charged, compared to positively charged here on earth.  This area of sub space was discovered by Reed Richards of the Fantastic Four.

Little did we know that it is not just a fictional place, used to expand the Marvel Universe, but also describes the upcoming Presidential election we are heading for.

The 2016 election, which culminates in November, is shaping up to be one of the worst in our history.

The two presumptive nominees , Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, are heading into an election year  where they could hardly be more unliked.

But both candidates face striking divisions inside their parties and both are widely disliked by independents.
About two-thirds of Wisconsin independents (68%) say they’re uncomfortable with Clinton as president. About three-fourths (74%) say they’re uncomfortable with Trump as president.
That helps explain why 25% of independents in the survey answered “neither” and 10% said “don’t know” when asked which of the two candidates they planned to vote for in November. Those two groups combined (35%) are large/r than the number of independents who picked Clinton (33%) or Trump (32%).    
The numbers are even worse in WI for both candidates.

He is viewed unfavorably by 71% of women, 73% of college grads, 65% of suburban voters and 66% of moderates in the poll of 800 registered voters, taken last Thursday through Sunday.
Seven in 10 voters overall say they are uncomfortable with him as president.
It is hard to imagine a nominee with these kinds of numbers being remotely competitive, but the new poll isn’t that much kinder to Clinton, who is viewed unfavorably by 66% of men, 65% of independents and 62% of rural voters.
Her public standing is not as negative as Trump’s, but it has been stuck in negative territory all year, with no positive movement. The share of Wisconsin voters who view her unfavorably was 55% in January, 55% in February, 59% in March and 58% in the new poll.
Clinton gets higher ratings than Trump for being able to handle a crisis, for caring about people and for her qualifications to be president.
But she gets slightly lower ratings for trustworthiness: 32% of voters called Trump honest, while 28% called Clinton honest.
How can the most powerful position in the free world come down to a contest between two people who no one likes?   Is our political system that broken?   They have both been fighting for their own party's nomination, in fairly safe and semi-positive campaigns.

Soon the two candidates will start focusing on each other, in what could be the biggest slime/smear fest we have ever seen( and that would be saying something), which will successfully drive all of these negative numbers up.  

I believe we will soon have groups of people coming up with creative ways to spend Election Day which does NOT include people voting.   This lack of enthusiasm on both sides, spells trouble for the down ticket races.

In WI  where this is the best chance the Deemocratic Party has to turn their fortunes around from the Mike Tate bleak years(Presidential election years typically favor Democratic candidates and turn out),  the WISDEMS have decided that they must support Ms. Clinton no matter the cost.

Her opponent, Bernie Sanders, won easily the WI primary and still holds huge nationwide poll advantages over Ms. Clinton and the Donald.
Clinton lost Wisconsin by double digits to Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders in the April primary, and Sanders continues to enjoy far better ratings here. His positive rating with registered voters is 16 points higher than Clinton’s.            
 The enthusiasm factor of bringing independents to vote on your ticket would in a normal election year be one that a party in the minority would seem to embrace.   In the negative zone election though, the Democratic Party seems content to go down with the ship and instead of at least embracing the fact that there is a large swath of voters in Wisconsin who feel politically homeless and un represented, the WISDEMS have felt the best way to reach them is to mock them and dismiss their feelings and opinions.

Even the Chair of the Wisconsin Democratic Party promised her (poorly named) super delegate vote for the winner of the WI primary to represent the Democrats of Wisconsin's choice.   Then after Senator Sanders won, Martha Laning quickly reversed her position and now has pledged her vote to the candidate with record negatives who was roundly rejected by WIsconsin voters.  

Even if the Democratic Party wants to cling to the Titanic that is Hillary Clinton, Ms. Laning keeping her vow to vote for who the people of WI overwhelmingly prefer, it would not affect the outcome but would show that she listens to the people she needs out knocking doors, sending money and registering voters in November.

Unfortunately listening to the people of WI is not on her list of priorities.  I am not sure how many times we have to let the same party insiders and highly paid consultants lead us to election losses in WI but it appears to be limitless.

I guess it's back to boots on the ground, working to get local progressives elected, and passing referendums to keep the doors open in our schools and communities.  

At least the fine folks of inside the political parties, consultants and lobbyists that are setting our losing agenda now, will be able to vacation together on the beach in January and discuss what went wrong over Pina Coladas.

Let's hope that for those of us stuck here, feeling the devastating effects of their incompetence, that our local communities will have enough money to clear the roads of snow and ice so we can make it to our two part time jobs safely!    


  1. At least you mentioned Bernie once, otherwise your piece places you in the same camp as the MSM: 'Bernie'? What is 'Bernie' we see no 'Bernie,' we hear no 'Bernie.

  2. John Nichols foretold this in "Dollarocracy", where big money perverts the system so badly that disliked candidates and negative ads are all that are left

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  4. The media has had decades of demeaning the Clintons, no surprise here.

  5. Im not at all surprised at Laning. It was pretty clear that her calls to Progressivism were a convenient campaign meme. With no real political experience she was promoted to do what she is told. That is what corporate hive workers do and they are very good at it.
    As for Clinton, I suggest listening to Thomas Frank on youtube or picking up his book, Listen Liberal! It seems that memories are short.

  6. More like the Twilight Zone. If Trump gets elected, we find out that what his agenda, "to serve man," really is.

  7. IMO the reason "no one" likes either candidate is that "no one" has a say. It has all been decided in the 2016 version of the cigar smoke filled room with only the big wig insiders having any say that counts. The rest of us are just window dressing. You know for show.

  8. There is a choice for the rest of us who detest the two major party candidates. I plan on voting for Jill Stein and for the down ticket Democrats, unless they are vociferous supporters of the female version of Cheney.

  9. There is a choice for the rest of us who detest the two major party candidates. I plan on voting for Jill Stein and for the down ticket Democrats, unless they are vociferous supporters of the female version of Cheney.