“When your enemy is destroying himself, never interfere.”*
I’m certain that King Donald never read Napolean but Richard Nixon certainly did and Trump is doing a pretty good imitation.
Nixon’s racist divide-and-conquer southern strategy, upon which he hung the euphemism “law and order,” broke the Democratic base electing an re-electing him.
Trump has long been doing the same thing and some unwitting liberals are helping him.
In 1972, President Nixon identified Sen. Edmund Muskie, D-Maine, as his most dangerous re-election adversary. He dispatched his dirty tricks squad, which included convicted felon and Trump buddy Roger Stone. They did a helluva job. Nixon identified Sen. George McGovern, D-South Dakota, as his weakest rival. His bad guys did a great job of helping McGovern.
Nevada Senator Harry Reid, D-Searchlight, did the same thing in 2010. His strongest GOP opponent would have been telegenic blonde ex-TV anchor Sen. Sue Lowden, R-Gomorrah South. She never made it out of the primary and Reid smoked madcap Assemblymember Sharron Angle, R-Reno, in November.
Trump has done a good job scuttling former USVP Joseph Biden. No matter the facts, Biden has been bruised by the purported Ukrainian juice peddling by his kid. Down one.
SECOND DOWN. Sen. Bernie Sanders has replaced Biden as the Democratic frontrunner and Trump has pulled out all the stops to beat him. There are even nameless PAC (political action committee) spots on the air trashing Bernie as unelectable.
THIRD DOWN. If Bernie crashes, the next in line will be ex-South Bend Indiana Mayor Peter Buttigieg. With all due respect to the young man’s liberal positions, he’s the opponent Trump wants.
FOURTH DOWN. No Democrat can win unless African-Americans come out to vote 9 to 1 for the Democrat. Mayor Pete is openly homosexual, a fact which alienates a major chunk of fundamentalist black and brown people. Add to that unholy alliance a portion of union members who might find it easier to vote for Trump against a gay guy. Four in 10 union members are registered Republicans anyway.
GAME OVER. My former union, Culinary Local 226, Nevada’s largest, has officially endorsed no one in this week’s Democratic caucus. However, the LV-based local did advise its 60,000 members not to vote for any candidate supporting Medicare for All, as it would negatively impact their union health plan. Local 226’s plan is the envy of the nation. They have their own health care center and pharmacy, as should we all. The only better one is the province of congresscritters.
Sanders and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., advocate Medicare for All. (Don’t worry about a government takeover of health care. That ship sailed in 2011 when government became responsible for over half of US health care costs.)
Las Vegas hotels are already allowing caucus sites in their properties as they did when Sen. Reid pushed them to do so in 2016 when he influenced 226 to support Mrs. Clinton. (Barbwire Feb. 12, 2020) Otherwise, Sen. Sanders had her beaten and could very well have been turbocharged to win the presidential nomination and defeated Trump.
The union has a legit gripe about how Obamacare damaged their health plans. It never got fixed after the GOP took over congress.
I published the following on Dec. 27, 2015: “Campaigning in northwestern Nevada, Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, I-Vermont, spoke to a standingroom-only crowd at the Northern Nevada Labor Temple in Sparks.
“NevadaLabor.com Editor Andrew Barbano asked Sen. Sanders if he would support a fix to Obamacare which has put union health plans in jeopardy and is forcing union workers to pay a tax for which they receive nothing.
“‘Absolutely,’ Sanders replied.” Bernie is not the union’s enemy. A loss here hurts his momentum when the magic word “unstoppable” is already bouncing around the national media.
Las Vegas will probably splinter. Which means that Washoe County, the swing county in the swing state, will probably determine the caucus winner as the Donkeyites fight among themselves.
Bernie is also being called a folk hero and a cult hero in national media, the only D who can go against the cultist president.
This union rift is fixable or Trump, like Nixon, wins because his enemies have destroyed themselves.
LYON’S SHARE. Lyon County Democratic Chair Judy Zabolocky needs volunteers to work this Saturday’s caucus in Fernley. Call her at (847) 736-4947 or email
Be well. Raise hell. Esté bien. Haga infierno.
* An oft-quoted variation of advice from Napolean Bonaparte
Andrew Barbano is a 51-year Nevadan, executive producer of Nevada’s annual March 31 César Chávez Day celebration, editor of NevadaLabor.com and SenJoeNeal. org/ He is a withdrawn-in-goodstanding member of Culinary Local 226 and serves as first vice-president of the Reno-Sparks NAACP. As always, his comments are strictly his own. E-mail barbano@ frontpage.reno.nv.us. Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Tribune since 1988.