Wednesday night’s the night! The first round of the Democratic debates is upon us. Get your popcorn ready! And perhaps your fast-forward finger as well.
Because in actuality, Thursday night’s the night. On Wednesday, it’s Sen. Elizabeth Warren and the nine dwarfs. We’ll see the other heavy hitters on Thursday.
I first suspected something was amiss when I received two emails from people who had scheduled debate watch parties, switching the night from the 26th to the 27th. Why? Because in its wisdom, the Democratic National Committee drew the names by lottery, instead of dividing them based on polling. Bad move!
As a result, the current front-runners, except Warren, will debate on the 27th, including former Vice President Joe Biden, Sens. Bernie Sanders and Kamala Harris, and Mayor Pete Buttigieg.
Meanwhile, Warren will face such lightweight, vanity candidates as former Rep. John Delaney and, yes, our own beloved Mayor Bill de Blasio.
Still, Democrats are running a number of appealing candidates. President Donald Trump’s approval ratings are stuck in the low 40s, and it looks very promising for whoever emerges as the Democratic nominee.
But Democrats have a nasty habit of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. Please, not this time. Trump has wondered after his two-term limit as president expires, if “people would demand that I stay longer?” and sent a creepy tweet Saturday suggesting he remain president “4EVA.”
With such a large field and expecting only about 10 minutes of airtime each, the candidates will likely concentrate on three things: Don’t say anything stupid. Don’t make any weird faces. And prepare a viral zinger.
Despite what some may believe, Biden doesn’t have the nomination in the bag. In the early days of the 2016 Republican race, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker was the front-runner in some polls, and in 2007, the name Barack Obama still drew a blank with many. Someone very well might emerge in these debates, and the race will really begin.
That is, unless at age 73, now that he’s made America great again, Trump reconsiders running, leaves office in January 2021, hangs out at Mar-a-Lago and enjoys the rest of his life in peace.
I think he deserves that. Don’t you?
Follow playwright Mike Vogel at @mikewrite7.