Success for Democrats Requires a free-for-all Primary

By Sheryl Deveraux, US Daily Review Contributor

It’s all over the news that longtime environmentalist—turned former presidential candidate, Ralph Nader, is attempting to circulate some winds of change  that President Obama was not expecting.  Nader, who was inspired by a comment during an interview with Senator Bernie Sanders who said, “I think it would be a good idea if President Obama faced some primary opposition,” is taking on the task of fielding opposition to the President.

Nader has obviously put some thought into this strategy.  He told the Daily Caller that to make any significant impact in the Democratic Primary, “You have to have several people of different distinguished backgrounds — different distinguished backgrounds — run as a slate in various primaries so [the press] can’t ignore someone who has a military-foreign policy background, environmental background, poverty-labor background. See what I mean?”

Nader understands.  Obama is going to lose.  He has not only successfully alienated Republicans of all persuasions—conservative, or otherwise—he has alienated independents and a growing number of his own party members. The only way for the Democrats to win is to survey the field and bring in other candidates who will take the primary against Obama with the hope of leveling the playing field in the general election.  If the Democrats want to win at all, they must create a viable solution to the catastrophe that has become Obama’s signature legacy. Saying everything Obama touches turns to lead (rather than gold) is painfully obvious.

This will  mean that Democrats must come up with an alternative candidate that is seen as an alchemist or janitor who can turn Mr. Obama’s messes into gold. The Republicans have a field of candidates—though some are more experienced with clean-up crews than others,–that can carry such a persona. The reality is that some of his messes will take many Presidential terms and Congressional turnovers to scour clean.  The easiest cleanup will be revoking Obama’s unconstitutionally written Executive Orders. However, finding any Democratic candidate willing to do that will be an extraordinary accomplishment. And I doubt that is what Nader has in mind.

If Nader is successful in amassing the artillery of Democratic challengers to the President needed to pull off such a strategy, it may create the largest split in Democratic alliances in many decades. The rising dissidence among Democrats will manifest itself in a bloody primary with confused voters searching for a legitimate option that can, not only clean up after Obama. Regardless of the outcome, the general election will be just as bloody.

Nader’s strategy, if actually executed, would mean the Democratic party would be making a courageous swing away from their routine of vetting one—maybe two—strong candidates for the Primary in order to maintain a tight, cohesive union of party voters toward a free-for-all akin to Republican primaries.

Nader understands that the risks outweigh the alternative: Four more years of far worse dissidence created by Obama, resulting in a Democratic voter population joining hands with other voters, will be disastrous for liberals. The risk is that Democrats will work with others who see President Obama as wholly deficient in all of the aforementioned backgrounds Nader seeks in a Democratic candidate—or any other party’s candidate, for that matter. Then, someone far worse (in Nader’s view) will end up winning.


Sheryl Devereaux is a prolific writer and researcher, speaker, and radio commentator on the Constitution and public policy. You can listen to her show, Foundation of a Nation on or find her on Twitter, @sheryldevereaux.

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.

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