Crazy Aunt Tulsi Gabbard Running Around Screaming 'RIGGED' Again
Tulsi Gabbard is sad and mad because her presidential campaign is a joke no one finds funny. She's yet to reach the comedic heights of Marianne Williamson, and God knows she's tried. The congresswoman from Hawaii, a state that deserves better, is polling at roughly half a percentage point. She didn't qualify for the September Democratic primary debate but a rounding error earned her an invitation to the October 15 showdown. (Yes, we just looked it up; there is one.) Now she's not so sure she even wants to attend their crummy debate. She knows no one likes her. Maybe she'll just stay home.
I'm so tired of the "corporate media" epithet. It's simplistic and reductive. There's crap produced "authentically" in someone's basement, and there's decent work published by organizations with shareholders. The Democratic National Committee has bent over backwards to accommodate the exploding clown car of candidates, but Gabbard believes there's some conspiracy between the DNC and "corporate media" to "rig" the primary. Lady, you sound like a goddamn child or, worse, Donald Trump when you claim elections are "rigged" without any fact-based evidence.
Apparently, Gabbard tried on her Alex Jones Halloween costume early this year. She argues that the "DNC and corporate media are trying to hijack the entire election process." Wow, if true, but it's not so we'll stick with "WTF?"
GABBARD: There are so many of you who I've met in Iowa and New Hampshire who have expressed to me how frustrated you are that the DNC and corporate media are essentially trying to usurp your role as voters in choosing who our Democratic nominee will be.
"Usurp" means to take something "illegally or by force." The "DNC and corporate media" aren't attempting to literally vote in the Iowa caucus and New Hampshire primary.
GABBARD: The 2016 Democratic Primary election was rigged by the DNC and their partners in the corporate media against Bernie Sanders.
I guess "rig" is the other word of the day on "Mr. Robinson's Neighborhood": It means to "manipulate or control usually by deceptive or dishonest means." If you want to argue that the DNC or the media were biased against Bernie Sanders, that's fine. We can have that debate. But shadowy puppet masters didn't control how people actually voted in the primary. If they had that kind of power, why did they stop after the primary? You don't want to ease up on the "rigging" when your opponent is Donald Trump.
Gabbard even has a little survey about the seething corruption within her own (more or less) political party. The first question is structured in the classic "when did you stop beating your spouse?" format.
GABBARD: They are attempting to replace the roles of voters in the early states, using polling and other arbitrary methods which are not transparent or democratic, and holding so-called debates which are not debates at all but rather commercialized reality television meant to entertain, not inform or enlighten.
Gabbard was present for most of those "commercialized reality TV" debates, so how entertaining could they have been? This isn't HGTV when they cut to commercial before the remodel reveal. These debates would play out about the same if aired on PBS. Polling isn't "rigged." The preferences of registered voters determine the results, and the methodology for most polls are in fact transparent. Everything Gabbard just said was bullshit.
NBC News reported that Russian influence operations "celebrated" when Gabbard launched her campaign. Last month, she claimed Russia's continued online support for her was because they think she'll save us all from nuclear war. That's either incredibly naive, willfully dishonest, or all of the above.
Gabbard is now fundraising off her proposed debate boycott. She was never going to win the primary. It can only benefit Donald Trump and the GOP if she runs around claiming that the eventual nominee was fraudulently selected. And mindlessly attacking the entire US electoral process benefits Putin most of all.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He's on the board of the Portland Playhouse theater and writes for the immersive theater Cafe Nordo in Seattle.