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HORIST: Too soon to bet on Beto

HORIST: Too soon to bet on Beto

There is no doubt that that glamour candidate of the Democrat 2020 presidential field is former Texas Congressman – and losing Senate candidate – Beto O’Rourke.  He has charisma – a quality that makes his personal appearances more exciting to audiences.  It has nothing to do with issues, but just the way he looks, he talks.

There are scores of Democrat congressmen who are more experienced, more knowledgeable, more capable, but they lack charisma.  Without it, Beto would be nothing more than an obscure former congressman.  When Speaker Nancy Pelosi was asked about Beto’s legislative accomplishments, she clutched.  She said he was a member of a couple of House committees.  Her fumbled answer addressed “being” not “doing.”  In fact, she pretty much covered his legislative accomplishments.

One cannot deny that he made a respectable showing in his race against incumbent Senator Ted Cruz.  And he did raise a lot of money for that campaign.  That money, however, was more in response to charisma – driven by a fawning national news media – than credibility or even his prospects for winning the race.  For sure, there was excitement throughout the Democrat ranks based on an irrational belief that he might actually win.  When the last ballots were counted, Beto lost by more than 200,000 votes – not exactly a cliffhanger.

Beto’s charisma is not original.  It is borrowed.  Virtually every admiring report compares him to the Kennedys.  It is not an unreasonable comparison.  He has the Kennedy look – more like Bobby than Jack.  He also has the Kennedy ability to speak in the loftiest language without getting into too many details.  That is not a talent to be demeaned.  It moves people.

Some compare him to President Obama – a handsome and articulate Democrat who succeed to the Oval Office with a rather thin resume, blank record of accomplishment and what they call a compelling personal narrative.  There may be a bit of “if him why not me” in Beto’s precocious ambition.

So far, Beto is style without substance.  He is a two-dimensional political figure.

His challenge is to add substance.  He needs positions on issues.  He needs a Beto agenda for America.  He has time to do that, but it will not be easy.  First of all, there are many challengers in the race – and they have pretty much sucked up all the issues and positions.  If he goes hard left, he bumps into Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, Peter Buttigieg and others.  If he tacks to the center, he will find the space filled by Amy Klobuchar and Joe Biden – who can only be considered centrists in the contemporary left-wing Democratic Party.

The only open space in the Democrat ranks is on the right – and that is tantamount to primary election suicide.  Beto does not have enough charisma or money to overcome the wrath of the radical left.  In fact, a couple of his positions – guns for one – is already raising eyebrows among the Party’s fringe.

Beto has made a few brash promises.  He will not waste money on polling.  Internal polling is essential to campaign strategy.  He says he will not go negative.  He represents a positive message.  Unfortunately for Beto, a large chunk of the Democrat base does not want to play nice-nice.  They do not want to reach across the aisle.  They want confrontation.  The loyal opposition is not to be part of a collegial process, but to be annihilated.   None of that “killing with kindness.”

Beto is – for the moment – the brightest star in the Democrat firmament – a supernova, as one admirer put it.  Beto should not take too much comfort in that analogy since a supernova is a bright star that is about to implode.

So, there ‘tis.

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry Horist Larry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.


  1. Navy PO2

    Beto is a schmuck with ear laps!

  2. Marvin

    The DNC is the leading party of ugly-faced bad actor’s, with no perceptible intellect, or integrity present, whatsoever! They have no conscience, no shame, no idea’s, no truth, no ethics or morals, whatsoever! Just an abomination committee of liars, murderer’s, thieve’s, wicked sins, and evildoer’s period! There it really is, and written correctly too as well! You cutesy-ass word-smith! Grow a pair and say it all, and factually! Now they are after the most sacred of all of our rights by constitutional and state law, which is the right of only US citizens to vote by secret ballot! You have totally understated HB-1, then would have me believe that I shouldn’t worry?! That it’s only for show and won’t become law(s)?! It will if the people don’t impeach the “USHOR” majority-(ick), leadership, as well as the renegade senate “(GOP RINO’s)”! The same also especially goes for a plethora of states! Especially mine of California! If your gonna tell it right, then don’t be half-assed you snapper-head?.

  3. sylvia

    his guy is like a.o.c an air head with no brains to be found