An article from the Los Angeles Times – “Biden’s lead? Why Democrats worry they could blow it” – reveals a host of high-level Democratic campaign operatives and pro-Joe Biden-activists fretting over the 2020 election in fear of a victory for President Trump.
The nearly 1.400-word article provides insight into the panic currently experienced by the Biden camp with quotes from pro-Biden activists, fundraisers, and advisors.
Paul Begala, a Democratic fundraiser and “longtime advisor to Bill and Hillary Clinton” insisted “everybody is anxious”:
“Everybody is anxious,” said Paul Begala, a longtime advisor to Bill and Hillary Clinton and a founder of the Democratic fundraising behemoth Priorities USA. “It is not just post-traumatic stress disorder. We have permanent traumatic stress disorder. We will never get over what happened in 2016.”
Chuck Rocha, founder of a pro-Biden voter turnout group, revealed that “Florida keeps [him] up at night”:
“Florida keeps me up at night,” said Chuck Rocha, founder of Nuestro PAC, a pro-Biden group focused on turning out Latino voters. Nevada has him unnerved too, he said.
“The COVID disaster has hit workers face-on, but the argument that it will motivate Latinos to vote because Donald Trump did not take it seriously makes me hella nervous,” Rocha said. “They’ve got kids going to school in the living room, they are worried about keeping the lights on, while I am trying to talk to them about filling out an absentee ballot.”
And Senior Clinton advisor Karen Finney noted “everything worries me:
“When I think back to 2016, all the things we learned about after the fact are keeping me up at night now,” said Karen Finney, who was a senior Clinton advisor then. “What are the things we don’t know about and can’t see happening under the radar?”
Finney is also fixated on Democrats’ need to listen to local operatives. Perhaps the Clinton campaign’s biggest mistake in the last cycle was ignoring activists on the ground who warned that it was wrong to be complacent about Michigan and Wisconsin, both longtime Democratic strongholds.
“The campaign manager made the decision that [computer] modeling was telling him something different than the buzz on the ground,” she said. “We ended up taking Black voters for granted.” Clinton lost both states.
Even as the Biden campaign and allied groups are hyper-focused on mobilizing swing state Black voters, recent polling data from UCLA hasn’t calmed their nerves.
It showed Trump making slight inroads with Black voters younger than 45, with 21% signaling support for the president, double his share in 2016.
“At this point, everything worries me,” Finney said.