22 Democratic debate qualifiers and 20 spots. So who gets the little table?
After saturating Twitter something fierce in a quest for $1 donations over the weekend, Democratic presidential candidate Kirsten Gillibrand has finally secured herself a spot on the Democratic Party's debate stage in June, bringing up the rear.
According to the Daily Caller:
New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand has qualified for the Democratic presidential debates that will take place later in June, her campaign announced Monday.
Gillibrand officially surpassed 65,000 donors over the weekend, meeting the criteria to earn a spot in the debates in Miami, Florida.
One problem: There are only 20 spots on the debate stage. Gillibrand's stagger over the finish line makes 22 among the qualifiers. And maybe the last two Democratic hopefuls can pull a one-off and secure themselves spots, too, making the total 24, which leaves Democratic Party boss Tom Perez's effort to cull the herd two weeks ago useless.
Twenty-two qualifiers, 20 podiums? Someone's gonna have to go to the little table. Or more likely, someone's gonna get the boot but is going to yell about it from the sidelines and try to insert himself into it anyway. At a minimum, whoever it is who gets told "no" is going to get a whale-load of press with carping and whining about not securing a spot despite making the 1% or 2% polling threshold and securing the 65,000 $1 donors he's been told to do.
Lucky Perez for now, getting to sort this contest of who qualifies out, all because he never anticipated they'd all come through, given the low standards he set. As I noted earlier, he was in tough spot based on the shabby way the Democratic Party treated Bernie Sanders in 2016, rigging the nomination process away from him even as he showed more support among Democrats, stiffing the man in favor of their own favorite, Hillary Clinton. That did wonders for Democrat turnout for the woman who refused to visit Wisconsin, but water under the bridge — they're now all out to be the big shot who can knock out Trump.
Perez was tasked with the job of getting tough on his fractious clown car of Democratic candidates and paring the mess down, and guess what: he didn't. Here is what the Associated Press reported less than two weeks ago:
The parameters, announced Wednesday, are likely to help cull a crop of 24 candidates and, in the process, intensify scrutiny on Democratic Chairman Tom Perez and his pledge to give all candidates a chance to be heard .
The DNC's outline for its September debate — the third of at least a dozen promised matchups during the 2020 nominating fight — decrees that candidates can participate only by reaching 2% in four approved polls released between June 28 and Aug. 28 while also collecting contributions from a minimum of 130,000 unique donors before Aug. 28. That donor list must include a minimum of 400 individuals in at least 20 states. The qualifications would remain the same for an October debate, though the party hasn't set the deadline for measuring fundraising and polling.
Apparently, he cut the standards to let Gillibrand in or something like it and now he's got nearly the whole clown car back. Seems the qualifiers for the debate spot were a tad low.
What's worse, 20 debate slots isn't going to be much better than 24 debate slots, even if he cuts it to ten per segment, as some reports say. Ten is still too many, particularly with so many candidates polling in the 1% range for good reason. Viewers will have to listen to an ocean of bloviation from no-hopers in order to hear the Bernie quote they want or something. Each candidate will end up with only about two or three minutes' speaking time.
Does he set up a little table? Does he just muscle them out, as comes natural to him, and then tell the last two losers "too bad"? Does he explain to them that this sort of thing happens in the Miss Universe Pageant all the time as the 20 first-rounders get called to become the 12 semi-finalists before going into to the five finalists? It's never a good thing when a party chair shows himself unable to tell the bloated egos and bloviators in his own party "no."
For Republicans watching, this is going to be fun. Sen. Gillibrand would be a good candidate for the little table. Who else will join her so she doesn't have to sit there all by herself? Perhaps bets will be taken.
As Stephen Green observes on Instapundit: THE DRUNKBLOGGING IS GOING TO BE EPIC.