Progressive Feud 2020: A tale of two campaigns… or wait, is it three?

Let’s talk about the current Progressive Feud that has developed since yesterday between Elizabeth Warren and an imaginary Bernie Sanders.

First off, I need to say, and I think we all should be doing this, I do not speak for any POTUS Campaign, Bernie Sanders, or any other surrogate.

Since a lot of new folks will be reading this, if I am anything, I have been the strategist of the movement making myself freely available to any candidate or organizer who cannot afford one since 2016. This had led me to be involved with a number of successful actions and I’m proud of the work I’ve done with all of you.

Now that that’s out of the way, what has been going on for the last 48 hours can only be described as a complete shit show.

Here are some of the facts.

At some point on the 11th of January, someone on Bernie’s Slack, who had joined months earlier and only ever made a single comment, dropped a fake Call Script in the chat. This was almost immediately identified as not official campaign material and was taken down by a mod.

Politico then somehow magically picked it up, and in their article claim that they had to retype the document to protect the person’s identity. Wierd but this will make sense later.

Here is a copy of the document in question.

Here is Politico’s first article, dated 1/11 @ 10:31 PM.

At this point, it is already not true. This is being manufactured just a few days before a debate which makes it all but impossible to have a proper rebuttal.

KEEP IN MIND, more than a few people have shared with me that this writer was extremely problematic with fabricating stories in 2016… so we should probably dig there too.

Moving on…

Then it was brought to Warren at a Media Q&A early in the day yesterday and without hesitation, Warren said she was disappointed that “Bernie was sending people out to attack her” and created the first big quote that we all saw.

This article came out at approximately 2 pm on the 12th.

Within 5 hours, Warren had put out a fundraising email making claims about the document which is super strange to read, to say the least.

You can read it here.

Since then we have seen various talking heads on Twitter try desperately to twist the document into something more nefarious than it is, usually using the tactic “if you could only see it” instead of actually posting the original because tbh, it’s not really that bad. It just reads like inner-campaign Counter-Intel which is a necessary part of campaign strategy but the version in question is in direct conflict with every official document the campaign has put out and there have been a lot of them.

This reminds me of a tactic used against me last year when instead of simply looking at my FB to see that my claims were supported, my accusers assumed no one would look and everyone would trust them. This is the same thing, it is effective on one level and has an obvious weakness on another.

As of this morning, there is a new article from CNN, keep in mind every article up to this point has been breaking from only Politico, with a breaking story with wild claims that Bernie “told Warren that a Woman couldn’t win.” They have very carefully try to pin this as a quote from Warren but it isn’t, it is from unconfirmed and unnamed sources.

Warren then later gave this quote “Among the topics that came up was what would happen if Democrats nominated a female candidate. I thought a woman could win; he disagreed,” — I’m thinking the nothing-Burger that was the fake call script imploded more quickly than I had originally realized and the claim against Bernie is to cover it up with something new and continue the push in fundraising.

Shaun King has been responding on Twitter to this allegation.

Bernie’s response at the time was swift, having already said this claim is ridiculous and said directly that they are “lying” about him.

So, right now it would be very easy to say this was all a set up by Warren. But I don’t think it’s that obvious…

Let’s go through what this has accomplished.

1) Warren’s campaign, though polling well, was in a fundraising slump which meant there was no way she could compete in Super Tuesday and eventually win, this means her supporters would be up for grabs.

— This has given her a path to create fundraising push from and driven her supporters away from Bernie.

2) Progressives, and we can argue what makes a progressive all day, are fighting with each other. This inevitably benefits the Corporations and one candidate…

— That candidate is Mayor Pete.

While we argue over whether Warren and her supporters are progressive enough, we forget that there are literal Corporate candidates in the race that are much further from Warren than Warren is from Bernie.

That being said, Warren’s campaign is desperate and it is not offensive to say so. They made a big deal about the slump in fundraising in the 4th quarter of 2019. So, when an opportunity like this presents itself, of course, they take it. But that 5-hour turn around from finding out to fundraising would be too slow for a planned set up from her team.

Now we know with absolute certainty that the document did not come from the Bernie camp and there is no way that Politico could have picked it up this quickly unless the writer was literally sitting in the Slack, which is a possibility. But the speed at which it was deleted combined with the quantity of content that is added hourly there is almost no way that anyone with a legitimate writing job would have time to troll a single Slack constantly waiting for that one misstep.

That is a huge commitment of time with no assurance of payout. What is much more likely is the whole thing is a set up between a separate POTUS campaign and Politico which now CNN is piling on to.

My Gut instinct initially was the Warren campaign was behind it because of how her section was written with an optional piece as if to minimize her presence. But then I saw the pattern of how she was sucked into it, the fundraising is gross but she’s desperate so it’s not totally unreasonable objectively and it does not mean she coordinated. Also if her people had prepared the document in a nefarious way then they would have added language that was more nefarious in their description of her in order to maximize damage. Instead, the document was written right in that sweet spot of believable but still too far for Bernie’s message.

Then the Twitter trolls started with their pushback with the idea that Bernie is toxic to Warren supporters and this seems reminiscent of Brock’s Troll Armies we had seen in 2016 and in this election cycle. They were using the worst part of the document as a quote to imply that this was the least of it and further implied greater toxicity allowing the reader’s imagination to do the work.

What is happening is something that I talk about regularly, they are using fake accounts to manipulate Warren lurkers (not a derogatory term, just means people who don’t comment) on twitter and Facebook away from moving to Sanders when the Warren campaign eventually fails due to slow fundraising.

In 2016, the only way for Berners to distinguish themselves from fake accounts was by putting their behavior on a bar above that which is normally socially acceptable. Being better than the perception of ourselves was the only way to beat the trolls… Going toe to toe would never work because they are already dishonest, they will stay in control as long as you play their game.

So, Warren’s campaign was failing but now it has a new life… her supporters, many of which had Bernie as their #2, are being fed hostility to drive them away and stop Bernie’s surge. We are right at the point in the meme “where they fight you.” We are really going to miss the part when they just ignored us.

And all right before the next debate where a proper rebuttal is critical but almost impossible, especially if you are trying to unwind all this crazy.

Which, by the way, we should not try to do… and this is why…

Only one candidate stands to gain from Progressive infighting because polling shows that if Warren and Bernie’s supporters combine in Iowa then we have a simple majority right there alone. If Yang and Tulsi get on board then we crush every state through Super Tuesday.

This is the reality of our 2020 race.

The only candidate who can benefit from this is Pete Buttigieg.

We are all being manipulated by the media for Pete’s benefit… We’ve been manipulated like this in the past and is far from the first time, I’ve said many times that “our rage is predictable.” Sure Warren is running with it to save her Campaign but Pete’s people are the ones at the start of this.

Also, all the really really toxic Hillary delegates who would make maneuvers like this all went for Pete.

But it goes a bit beyond just the circumstantial.

The account that posted the fake script? Well, they had to sign in with an email, that was tracked to a Twitter account…

And that account is all in for Pete and that is probably why Politico wanted to “protect” their identity.

I can’t release any data or names and frankly, I don’t have it so don’t ask. I am simply a humble (some times less than others) strategist who has brought you some of our greatest wins and electing Bernie as POTUS would be the GOAT.

So, here is what we do… we have to turn and quickly.

STOP FIGHTING WITH WARREN’S SUPPORTERS AND APOLOGIZE THAT THEY ARE BEING MANIPULATED BY PETE AND THE MEDIA. HER FUNDRAISING WILL SLUMP AND HER CAMPAIGN WILL WIND DOWN AROUND NH.

DO NOT PUSH BACK BUT INSTEAD, WELCOME HER SUPPORTERS ON SOCIAL MEDIA TO THE MOVEMENT WITH LOVE AND COMPASSION BECAUSE WARREN’S CAMPAIGN WILL IMPLODE EVEN QUICKER WHEN SHE REALIZES SHE WAS MANIPULATED. WHEN THEIR PLAN FOR THE DEBATE FALLS THROUGH THEN HER SUPPORTERS ARE GOING TO NEED A HOME.

The revolution is for everyone, even the ones you don’t like.

I have said a few times that the movements’ greatest challenge will be its own vanity and everyone looked at me like I was crazy…

But this is the moment where you put your hubris down and lead with inclusiveness and compassion by being the example that Bernie wants us to be.

If we are successful for a few months and once Bernie is POTUS then maybe some of you won’t need to fake it anymore and it will just be that way… but for now…

Put the pitchforks and torches down and start giving out hugs…. to progressives.

On that note, to hell with this corporate trash.

Pete represents an egg of a monster who we have already vanquished, we cannot let that egg grow into a new monster. In just 48 hours we have seen the unmitigated havoc they can create in the name of their own power.

Not just to Progressives but our Party.

So, we need to be nice to the folks who we need to join the movement in order to create a majority and we do that by drawing a clear line in the party with Biden and Pete on one side and Bernie and everyone else on the other.

The vast majority of Biden’s and Pete’s supporters are mostly VBNMW anyway, not to diminish their voters but it’s just true.

From that point, there is no argument that Bernie has the strongest campaign and is the best candidate for our party…

But only if we can make that majority, this is our version of parliamentarian politics. If we make the Majority, then we are the ruling body and we WILL ONLY ACCOMPLISH that by growing, not shrinking.

So, let’s grow individually and grow the movement with US.

I hope you will join me because none of us can do it alone.

You can follow Don on Twitter for more updates @TheWordOfDon.

This story originated as FB post and can be read here https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=148972986539542&id=100042805253838

Progressive Strategist, Filmmaker, & Grassroot Organizer. Awesome is an attitude. Lover of food, comics, and, and, and ... suspense.