I wish with my limited skills at poker, I could enter the world championship of poker and win its millions in prize money because I could alter the rules when I held what normally would be a losing hand but now I can make it a winning hand!
Ah, to live in fantasy-land. Or the netherworld of “reality” TV.
Back to politics – how is any of what I said about poker different from the political process? There are rules. Some are arcane. Some are ridiculous. But they are there for a reason – now that could be a diabolical reason but the rules were established through a process. A process led by people from the local to the national level who chose to spend some of their time involved with a political party. There aren’t one or two people pulling the strings, as some candidates would have you believe. This is a process built up over decades by hundreds of people in all 50 states. Each state sets its own rules. Should someone be able to ride in and say those rules are unfair and I want them changed now because I can’t win with these rules?
And, it’s true on both sides. Donald Trump, who is barely a Republican and has only been involved the last few years as he planned his run for president (and yes he did plan it, it didn’t come to him one day in a vision) – wins and he’s happy with the rules. Loses and the system is stacked against him. These rules have been in place long before a candidacy was a glimmer in his eye.
Bernie Sanders is not a Democrat. He is an Independent. Yes, he caucuses with the Democrats, but he hasn’t been a worker in the party and has not lived by the party ideology, except on the leftist edge of it. Honestly, I didn’t know you could be an Independent and run for a party’s nomination. Can a Republican seek the Democratic nomination and vice versa? I know they’d have no chance but I assume it’s within the rules to do that? Seems silly, no? All these Bernie voters who aren’t true Democrats and they want to determine the party’s nominee?
Trump could just as easily have run as a Democrat but I think he sized up the two parties and figured he had a better chance to dominate the coverage on the GOP side. Would he dominate if his immediate opponent was Hillary? He is the diabolical one.
I’m a Republican. I started out as a Democrat many years ago because I did not like the mayor of my home town. Since whoever won the Democratic nomination in those days won the election because Democrats outnumbered Republicans by far, I chose to register as a Democrat to vote against him twice – once in the primary and again in the general. I then turned independent because I became a journalist and believe that is the appropriate choice for a journalist to be objective.
I didn’t register as a Republican until about two years into my service in Ronald Reagan’s administration, figuring I did support him and it wasn’t fair that I wasn’t registered in the party.
I'm very happy that so many people, young and old, have gotten involved in this election and I hope their interest continues, no matter how the election comes out.
But you can’t just walk into a game and not know the rules, arcane as they may be. Tell the truth, I don’t even agree with independents being able to register, in some states, on the day of the primary to potentially alter the choice of years-long party members. Why? Parties are not the government, there to ensure justice for all. They have a point of view and if you don’t like their point of view you should join and do something about it.