“Mayor Pete” for President?

Why not?

To say there’s a crowded Democratic presidential field is putting it mildly. There’s are least fifteen announced Democratic presidential candidates – and that’s a number that doesn’t include former Vice President Joe Biden, who’s rumored to be considering a run in 2020.

In such a crowded field, it would be easy to have a hard time figuring out which is the best candidate to support, and while I’m not saying South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg better or worse than any of the other announced or possible Democratic presidential candidates, I certainly think he’s worth a long look.

In a Democratic primary still haunted by the ghosts of 2016, Buttigieg stands out in part because he can’t be slotted into the familiar narratives. His unique profile is unlike any other presidential candidate, ever: He’s a married gay man, a devout Episcopalian, a Harvard graduate, a McKinsey alumnus, a Rhodes Scholar, a skilled pianist, and a Navy veteran who took a six-month leave of absence as mayor to serve in Afghanistan. He’s also hard to pin down politically. He wants to abolish the Electoral College and is even open to the idea of packing the Supreme Court. He’s a supporter of Medicare for All, though not for abolishing private insurance. An advocate of “democratic capitalism” and thoroughly earnest, he sometimes seems like a mix between Elizabeth Warren and former Newark Mayor Cory Booker. Except he’s not; he’s sui generis.

Pete Buttigieg may be a longshot given his relative lack of name recognition in comparison to candidates like Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Sen. Kamala Harris, Sen. Cory Booker, and former Rep. (and current flavor of the month) Beto O’Rourke but I don’t think Buttigieg should be disregarded. The most recent Emerson University poll in Iowa has Buttigieg in third place among Democratic presidential candidates/possible candidates, ahead of Elizabeth Warren, Beto O’Rourke, and Kamala Harris.

If you’d like to learn more about Mayor Pete Buttigieg you can check him out at his website.

Bernie Sanders’ Our Revolution: The Bolsheviks vs. the Mensheviks?

I haven’t seen the official coverage for Senator Bernie Sanders’ new group, Our Revolution. It was supposed to launch today. But from this article in Politico from yesterday it looks like internally there is a struggle over control and direction:

The revolution is already tearing itself apart.

Less than a week before its official launch on Wednesday, Bernie Sanders’ new political group is working its way through an internal war that led to the departure of digital director Kenneth Pennington and at least four others from a team of 15, and the return of presidential campaign manager Jeff Weaver as the group’s new president.

Weaver shrugged off the suggestion that the group was already falling victim to a caricature of liberal infighting.

“This is an organization that’s a couple of weeks old, and every new organization has to find its footing,” he said.

There isn’t an aide closer to Bernie and Jane Sanders than Weaver. But he became a lightning rod for the criticism of the younger generation who felt that he was curt, dismissive, and overmatched. So when Jane Sanders asked Weaver, who was already involved as a legal adviser to Our Revolution, to take on a greater role early last week — before the ABC News story — Pennington and others immediately protested. They issued what amounted to an ultimatum: him or them.

“A majority of the staff quit as a result of Jeff joining,” said one person familiar with the situation, who added that they had joined with a promise from Bernie and Jane Sanders, and executive director Shannon Jackson, that Weaver wouldn’t be running it and had asked for this promise specifically.

They claim as well that there was a specific argument about fundraising strategy.

Weaver said he had a vision that included more traditional — not just grassroots — fundraising, the person familiar with the situation said.

Our Revolution is aiming to have a long term impact on races all the way down to the most local. They say they’re hoping to start this year, getting the voters activated by Sanders involved in Senate, House and other campaigns.

But Sanders himself has yet to campaign for any candidates whatsoever aside from one rally for Eric Kingson — a New York House hopeful who subsequently lost his primary to the Democratic party’s favored contender.

Sanders’ attempts to get his work for other candidates off the ground has already been sputtering. Around the time he campaigned for Kingson, for example, Zephyr Teachout specifically asked him not to come and campaign for her until he ironed out his eventual endorsement of Hillary Clinton.

Although I agreed with much of Senator Sanders agenda, I never thought he was a good manager and feared that his race was another example of a cult of personality. Particularly when reading the comments and ideas put forward by his most ardent followers. It looks like some of my concerns are coming to fruition. But I wish him well in his endeavor…but it seems like a disorganized mess at the moment:

Weaver said he is optimistic.

“Millions of people voted for Bernie Sanders, hundreds of thousands volunteered, millions donated,” he said. “People are very excited about continuing the work that was done on the campaign and making sure we bring Bernie’s progressive vision to reality.”

VIDEO: Superdelegate David Bowen explains his support for Bernie Sanders

Watch as Democratic State Rep. David Bowen explains why he’s chosen to give his superdelegate vote to Sen. Bernie Sanders for the Democratic presidential nomination.

I appreciate David Bowen’s stated intention to support the will of the Democratic voters of the state of Wisconsin, who gave Sen. Sanders a convincing win here in Wisconsin’s Democratic presidential primary, and I just wish DPW Chair Martha Laning, who ran on a ticket with Bowen, would have followed his lead instead of flip-flopping on who she’d give her superdelegate vote to.

Watch: Bernie Sanders’ speech after Iowa caucus results

On Monday Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton gave what at least one report has categorized as a speech that was given with little advance notice due to a Clinton campaign “meltdown” over the Democratic Iowa caucus results.

Shortly after Clinton’s speech, her lone rival Bernie Sanders took to the stage to give his speech, and I think it’s a speech worth sharing with those of you who may not have seen it in its entirety.

Watch for yourselves.

While many have dismissed Bernie Sanders as unelectable, it’s worth noting that many of those same claims were made against Barack Obama in 2007 & 2008 (albeit for different reasons), and it’s clear now those claims were unfounded. Sure, there are certainly obstacles Bernie Sanders would face in a general election, but Hillary Clinton isn’t exactly free from her own baggage.

Ultimately, I look at the electability argument being made by many supporters of Hillary Clinton and I can’t help but think their argument is based more on a desire to preserve the status quo in the Democratic Party than it is on true concerns about the real electability of Bernie Sanders. The fact is, Sanders scares the hell out of many establishment Democrats who’ve become comfortable with our political system as it exists now.