Even most Democrats don’t love ‘Medicare for All’ and other commentary

Reality check: Even Dems Aren’t Hot on Medicare for All
A recent Marist College poll shows that Sen. Bernie Sanders’ “Medicare for All” plan isn’t “the most popular idea in the field” even among Democrats, reports FiveThirtyEight’s Nate Silver. Rather, a “Medicare for all that want it” — or “what’s sometimes called a public option,” as Joe Biden is proposing — is their first choice. And while “there’s more to winning elections than just picking whatever policies happen to poll best,” Biden’s more popular approach could “be a winning issue” that lets him “reinforce some of his core strengths.” That leaves Sens. Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren, who have co-sponsored Bernie’s bill, “stuck in the middle.” With support for Sanders’ plan dropping, don’t be surprised “if one or both of them issued their own health-care plan within the next few months.”

Foreign desk: AMLO’s Sick Sympathy for El Chapo
León Krauze at Slate is dismayed that Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador showed compassion for Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzmán, “a man who is arguably the most infamous criminal in Mexican history,” after he was sentenced to life in prison last week. Testimony in the three-month trial exposed Guzmán as a “ruthless gangster who built a sophisticated criminal network through an army of drug traffickers, enforcers and killers for hire.” Novelist Don Winslow, Krauze notes, argues that the Mexican president’s “tiptoeing around Guzmán’s atrocities” goes hand in hand with the country’s “massive corruption.” But Mexico itself bears some responsibility for the horrors, insists Krauze. The country that bred the “monster” will “have to reckon with his legacy for years to come.”

Foreign desk: BoJo’s Brexit Hard Line Just Might Work
Some view new UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s vow to quit the European Union by Oct. 31, “no ifs or buts,” as irresponsible, notes Bloomberg’s Mohamed A. El-Erian. Yet his approach “may offer both the EU and the U.K. a way out of an impasse that is harming both sides.” Fact is, the current “slow Brexit” came with “notable and mounting costs” for Britain and Europe. It “fed divisive” political forces and imposed “considerable uncertainty” on companies, “paralyzing investment.” But Johnson has “put down a clear come-what-may marker.” If he can also “convey a sense of parliamentary unity,” El-Erian argues, he may be able to “force the EU into a compromise.

Campus beat: Oberlin Resists Paying Price for Smears
Oberlin College is refusing to “take responsibility” for its administrators’ role in “defaming and retaliating against” Gibson’s Bakery, after they backed students smearing the cake shop as racist, Greg Piper grumbles at the College Fix. While the school is appealing the $31.5 million judgment against it, Judge John Miraldi has ordered it to post a $36 million bond to cover the award plus interest — because Oberlin pointed to its falling enrollment to argue that it couldn’t pay the “sizable” sum. Gibson’s had feared the college might pay other debts ahead of the appeal, “thereby leaving less available to pay the judgment.” As Cornell Law School Professor William Jacobson puts it, the judge agreed “there is at least some meaningful risk that the Gibsons will not be able to collect without security.”

Culture watch: Who Says Decency Is Gone in America?
At USA Today, Glenn Harlan Reynolds tells of finding himself at the scene of a horrible head-on traffic collision. Yet “the most striking thing wasn’t the accident” but “how well everyone responded.” People from all walks of life “kept drifting up to help,” bringing “first-aid kits, bottled water, blankets, or whatever they had that looked helpful. When something needed to be done, people just pitched in.” No one complained or honked their horns. Such a reaction, he contends, “happens everywhere” throughout the country. So much for claims that “decency is gone in America.” Fact is, “once outside the media/political bubble, most people seem to be awfully decent” — especially “when the going gets tough.”

Compiled by Ashley Allen & Adam Brodsky

This article was originally posted here