Democratic Nominees After The First Debate

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More time needs to pass to be more certain, but I’ll venture the following estimates based on my own impression, social media fervor, and limited polling.

Candidates with improved position:

Elizabeth Warren
Cory Booker
Amy Klobuchar
Kamala Harris
Julian Castro
Bill de Blasio
Tim Ryan
Tulsi Gabbard
Jay Inslee

Candidates with little change:

Bernie Sanders
Pete Buttiigieg
Eric Swalwell
Michael Bennet
John Hickenlooper
John Delaney
Kirsten Gillibrand
Andrew Yang

Candidates with reduced position:

Marianne Williamson
Beto O’Roruke
Joe Biden

Integrating how well the candidates are known and liked and how this first debate affected them, I’d provisionally say that this is likely a race between Biden, Sanders, Warren, Harris and Buttigieg, with Castro, Booker, O’Rourke, and Klobuchar in the wings, everyone else unlikely to get a lot of fundraising support between now and the next debate.

Some polling is summarized here.


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19 thoughts on “Democratic Nominees After The First Debate

  1. Wow – one poll shows Kamala jumping 10 points and Biden dropping 10 points. Kamala is now in 2nd place, still behind Biden by 5 points. I still like Kamala – she is much better from an identity politics point of view than Biden. She is young, black and a women, while Biden is old, white and a man. I say Kamala gets the nomination.

    1. Tyler, you also need to remember that rickA’s favored politicians are the racists currently in power. He loves himself people who abuse others, have a history of sexual assault, and don’t worry about putting non-whites in concentration camps. He also dislikes himself strong women, especially those who are intelligent and not white.

      That’s the story behind his comment.

    1. I don’t disagree with what RickA said in his comment, and mine was to emphasize what he left out and I deemed important. I am not unfamiliar with his point of view, having read a number of his comments on various matters.

      That name error is easy to make (Tyler, Trevor for ex.) and I took no umbrage.

    1. dean:

      Did you read this yourself?

      This sentence was particularly interesting to me “We also see that 91 percent of first retweeters of IRA tweets were non-IRA bots, which suggests that propaganda spread into networks of real U.S. citizens.”

      This suggests to me that 9% of the first retweeters were in fact IRA bots. I also wonder how many of the total retweets were IRA bots. I didn’t see this number anywhere in the article.

      Since they were using retweets per tweet, getting rid of IRA bot retweets seems pretty important to me.

      What are your thoughts on this issue?

  2. RickA, I think you have it backwards. The higher the bot percentage, the stronger their result. They are trying to say IRA got Trump elected, and if every time their bots gets active, it produces a poll jump that is some evidence. Instead, we have a result that a week before Trump does better in polls, there were more retweets by regular users of IRA pro-Trump tweets. They were simply flowing with the tide.
    They also couldn’t find a relationship between volume of tweets and Trump’s poll performance, presumably the result they really wanted.
    Bottom line they spent $150,000 in an election where billions were spent, and this was a marketing campaign to get readers to their site, where they sold ads for $50 each. It’s why they were also targeting Bernie supporters. They wanted volume of readers.

    1. No mikeN, you don’t seem to have understood the article at all. If it were simply “flowing with the tide” then the correlation would have been symmetric — retweets would have increased after a jump in the polls. That didn’t occur.

      “They also couldn’t find a relationship between volume of tweets and Trump’s poll performance, presumably the result they really wanted.”

      No: notice, from the summary:

      Here we have tested prediction, not causality.

      The intent wasn’t to search for causality — this was an observational study, and while there are times that causality can be investigated in this type of study (there was just an article about one method in “The Journal of Infectious Diseases” in July of 2019), this was not one of those times. So causality isn’t “presumably what they wanted” because that was never a possibility for them.

      “this was a marketing campaign to get readers to their site, where they sold ads for $50 each. ”

      That’s just a bunch of bullshit. We know from Mueller, this work, and other work, that the intention was to attempt influence in the election. Saying otherwise is pure dishonesty.

    2. Dean, Mueller said in his press conference that the IRA details in the report were just allegations, after they were taken to court for prejudicing the case. The court noted that the indictment makes no link between the Russian government and IRA as stated in the report as ‘established’.
      Judge discusses whether to start criminal contempt proceedings against the government in IRA case:
      https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/6185644/Sealed-Order.pdf
      No retweet increase after a polling bounce doesn’t rule out flowing with the tide. You are assuming polling jump should cause an increase of general retweets.

      At least you acknowledge that the paper doesn’t show the IRA caused Trump’s election win.

  3. ricka: didn’t respond sooner because I had one of those wonderful medical exams men of a certain age get, and then had a house full of company.

    – the adjustment to retweets wasn’t for any nefarious reason, it was to smooth out the numbers over the time period in question. The thought here is whether the IRA’s act of introducing false information into something as unstable as a political campaign can amplify that instability, with a goal of moving something (ultimately, voter support we presume) in one direction.

    – “I also wonder how many of the total retweets were IRA bots.” That really doesn’t matter. My (completely uninformed) guess is that it’s a low percentage, for this reason: the IRA’s goal was to pump misinformation into the system and monitor what was picked up and what wasn’t picked up, and use that along with other observations to generate new stuff. They may have dedicated some machine time to retweeting messages that were hot, but in a sense that would have been wasted effort: those messages were already being retweeted by people here. They’d have no good reason to retweet messages that hadn’t caught on.

    Remember, their goal was to influence the American voting public, so having “that propaganda spread into networks of real U.S. citizens.” was a kind of success.

    1. I am not an expert in twitter, since I avoid it altogether. However, we know some of the first retweeters were bots. But what if the second retweet was an IRA bot also. Or the third, or the 10,000 retweet.

      If retweets is a metric of popularity, I could see the IRA having bots specifically for retweeting their IRA tweets from their fake accounts, just to move them up in popularity.

      I wanted to know out of the total number of retweets of a particular tweet put out by the IRA – how many of those retweets were done by other IRA bots, versus by real people. I think that would be interesting.

      I just thought of that while I was reading and really have no idea whether the retweeting of a fake tweet makes the person more likely to change their vote from a non-Trump vote to a Trump vote or not (or affect anybody reading the retweet). Personally I suspect it makes very very little difference.

      I read all kinds of tweets about Hillary and it didn’t make me vote for her. I read all kinds of tweets about Trump and it didn’t make me vote for him. I ended up voting for Gary Johnson – not because of tweets, but because I couldn’t stand either of the major candidates.

      I would be surprised if an IRA tweet or retweet changed a single vote. I would like to see anybody come forward and say – yes my vote changed because of fake tweets or fake posts (or even real tweets or real posts). I don’t think it works that way. Even the billions spent on real advertising doesn’t actually change votes (in my opinion). A giant waste of money. People are much more media savvy than advertisers give them credit for (in my opinion). They can spot a pander or emotional manipulation a mile away and just mentally discard it (I think).

      But still – why wouldn’t the IRA bots retweet there own stuff and what percentage of the total retweets were done by bots, versus real people spreading the fake stuff? Inquiring minds want to know.

  4. News: There was a glimpse of sanity today.

    On Tuesday afternoon, the bipartisan leadership of the Senate Intelligence Committee issued some important findings, concluding that the U.S. intelligence community was correct in its assessment: Russia attacked the U.S. elections in 2016 and did so in the hopes of putting Donald Trump in the White House.

    As noted, only the intentionally dishonest continue to claim that the Russian stuff was not an attack.

    But there were still some Republican a-holes around.

    t was right around this time that seven Republican members of Congress – six senators and one House member – were in Moscow. Making matters much worse, however, is what the GOP lawmakers had to say while they were there. The Washington Post reported:
    Republican members of Congress sounded a newly conciliatory tone in meetings with Russian lawmakers and officials here on Tuesday in a rare visit to Moscow and a preview of the looming summit between President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

    Sen. Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.) told Russia’s foreign minister that while Russia and the United States were competitors, “we don’t necessarily need to be adversaries.” … “I’m not here today to accuse Russia of this or that or so forth,” Shelby told Duma speaker Vyacheslav Volodin.

    As long as there are flat-out dishonest people in the public who’ll do anything to misrepresent the russian attack in social media, there will be trump-butt lickers feeding them ammunition.

  5. I would be surprised if an IRA tweet or retweet changed a single vote.

    I wouldn’t be, but there is no way to tell from the current study (nor, I am sure, from data like that used here).

    I think that would be interesting.

    To you, maybe. For this study and others — not really, and not needed.

    I just thought of that while I was reading and really have no idea whether the retweeting of a fake tweet makes the person more likely to change their vote from a non-Trump vote to a Trump vote or not (or affect anybody reading the retweet). Personally I suspect it makes very very little difference.

    I’m sure you do think that way. Remember statistics never says anything about individuals, only mass behavior, and this study (as noted several times) was not capable of showing cause/effect. The discussion of movement of polls after mass tweets and retweets does strongly indicate the messages indicated poll responses, and we have no idea what influence the people who expressed support for trump had on others.

    I read all kinds of tweets about Hillary and it didn’t make me vote for her. I read all kinds of tweets about Trump and it didn’t make me vote for him. I ended up voting for Gary Johnson – not because of tweets, but because I couldn’t stand either of the major candidates.

    Again, we can’t infer individual behavior, only mass behavior.

  6. One more thing:

    “As alleged by the grand jury in an indictment, Russian intelligence officers who were part of the Russian military launched a concerted attack on our political system,” Mueller said. They allegedly used “sophisticated cyber technique to hack into computers and networks used by the Clinton campaign,” stole private information and then released it. These releases, Mueller said, “were designed and timed to interfere with our election and to damage a presidential candidate.” These include the hacks of the DNC and John Podesta’s email accounts.

    Mueller also briefly mentioned the indictment of “a private Russian entity engaged in a social media operation where Russian citizens posed as Americans in order to interfere in the election.” This is the Internet Research Agency case.

    Not at all what folks like mikeN want to say.

    1. Mueller prosecutor Jonathan Kravis in a hearing May 28,”The report doesn’t say that. The report does not say that the Russian government participated in the activity that was charged in US v IRA…” “the report itself does not state anywhere that the Russian government was behind the Internet Research Agency activity.”

    2. Mike, after your continued defense of the Nazi who drove his car into a crowd trying to murder people I should be surprised at this shit, but k am. I don’t understand how anyone can continue to sleep the “it wasn’t an attack” crap.

      From an article about Pompeo’s grilling of CIA folks.

      “Just after Pompeo took over as CIA director in 2017, he conducted a personal review of the CIA’s findings, grilling analysts on their conclusions in a challenging and at times combative interview, these people said. He ultimately found no evidence of any wrongdoing, or that the analysts had been under political pressure to produce their findings.

      ‘This wasn’t just a briefing’, said one person familiar with the episode. “This was a challenging back and forth, in which Pompeo asked the officers tough questions about their work and how they determined Putin’s specific objectives.” Pompeo also asked about CIA’s work with the FBI on the Russia probe in 2016. Two U.S. officials further confirmed to POLITICO that the interview occurred and was robust.

      Additionally, a congressional official said Pompeo and his deputies never gave any indication to lawmakers, even behind closed doors, that the CIA had acted improperly or drawn incorrect conclusions about Putin’s desire to help Trump get elected. Special counsel Robert Mueller and the Republican-led Senate Intelligence Committee also separately reaffirmed the intelligence community’s assessment of Moscow’s motivations in 2016.”

      I’m sure you’ll keep repeating the falsehood that it wasn’t an attack. People who read the reports and understand them won’t believe you. Nobody should.

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