Fine, I'll bend. You guys have to promise to stop the daily emails asking about Beto's race, though.
First off, I like Beto a lot. I think he's a great guy. He's always been ears first and mouth second when I've approached him on an issue. He doesn't mind hearing from those on the other side of an issue. He's engaging. He's personable. He's in his district a ton. You easily get the feeling he cares about your issue - or at a minimum wants to hear you out.
Unfortunately I don't see eye to eye with him on a few issues. Whether I vote for him or not, really doesn't matter and you shouldn't care. You're here for the analysis and dumb jokes, not to be told how to vote.
I've read everything from Politico to the anonymous commenters on Reddit about Beto. The biggest thing you should take away from all of that is the fact that Beto turned himself into David and Cruz into Goliath. This is not an easy task. Qualifying to be the underdog sounds pretty easy, but in this day and age it is not. You have to be pretty inspiring to become a media darling thus earning the David treatment. Being from El Paso you should be proud that Beto was able to earn that on his hard work and good looks. (Although, it burns when I see and hear people mistakenly say he's "from San Antonio or Brownsville, somewhere over there near the border.")
By far the biggest mistake Beto has made was taking a policy stance. The Politico piece on Beto pointed this out and many internet armchair quarterbacks did as well. Beto didn't need to be anti-gun or pro-choice. He didn't have to have a single policy position at all. All he had to be was - not Ted Cruz.
By stating positions on issues like gun control, abortion and immigration he risks pushing away moderates who are leaning toward "anybody but Cruz" thinking even a Texas Democrat would be pretty moderate. These positions give them an out - a way to stay home and not vote for Beto. There are plenty of middle of the road Texans out there who want to either keep their guns, aren't big on open borders or think Israel is okay. You don't have to disagree with everything Beto thinks to withhold your vote - you just need one little reason.
Beto was fine just being Beto - he never needed to be Beto with a policy platform. He especially didn't need a policy platform given he won't have any control over any of it if elected. The platform is controlled by Chuck Schumer and it is in reaction to whatever the president is doing on any given day. Any promise Beto can make on legal weed, for example, is hollow and empty because he doesn't control the party platform. No need to make promises you can't keep - especially if they push away possible moderate votes.
Also pointed out in the Politico piece is just how white and affluent Beto's supporters (and campaign folks) are. I look at my friends in Austin who love Beto and I see white rich people who are apologists for their own success/inheritance. As one web commenter from a Houston rally put it "I felt like I was at a large yoga gathering for rich women in their 30s." Beto's latte loving white women don't make the traditional pillar of the Democratic party feel all that welcome. Latinos, blacks and those living at or below the poverty level who see the Democratic party as a lifeline for a better living are hard pressed to get excited about guy who seems to be only attracting the Lululemon set.
And don't get me started on the people caravanning around with Beto all over Texas... white white white white white white. Beto needs 400,000 new votes to show up to the polls and he needs every single one of those to vote for him. The only way to get that is to more than double Latino turnout. I see the people on Facebook helping him out. They are nice people. People I know. But they are exactly the kind of people that turn off Latino voters.
And let's just take cruise through the Latino voter strategy... There obviously wasn't one. Beto lost way too many counties to a woman who ran a Facebook campaign and had a Latino last name in the primary. How's he going to fare against a guy named Cruz in the general? Straight ticket voting is a must for him, but if they don't - he could go backwards in those counties.
Beto visited every county in Texas at least once. What he should have done was take up residence in the valley and never leave. He's got all the other Democrats in the state voting for him. That's an easy lift. Turning out the Latino vote is the only way to win. Just look at the polls that have the race close - they assume Latino turnout DOUBLES! The problem is that Latino turnout won't double on its own. You gotta be down there for months working the Patron system.
And that brings me to the miracle of polling. Beto should be very appreciative of these polls that are oversampling Latino and Democratic turnout. They make the race look so close. So close that he can fundraise like crazy on the message "We're within striking distance! Your $20 could put us over the finish line!" People believe it. People want in on the ground floor of the David vs. Goliath matchup. Every internet site that collects comments on these polls have people linking to ways to donate. It has been an amazing phenomenon to see Beto raise this much money.
However... those polls are way off. I mean, laughably off. Neither Beto's internal polls nor Cruz's internal polls show the race near that close. Remember, simple math shows a huge party affiliation advantage for Cruz. If every person having voted Republican before this election showed up to vote and every Democrat did the same - Republicans would still win handily. People who make a lot of money to tell insiders who is going to win and who is going to lose in these races all point to the math - Beto can't win without Cruz pulling some kind of Roy Moore move... which is very unlikely given we know all about Ted Cruz given the constant media scrutiny over that last six years.
Let me reiterate - Beto has done a good job leveraging shaky polling into campaign dollars and a huge boon to his national name recognition. If anything, Beto has proven to be the kind of star the Democrats need. Which, I think, maybe... could be... the intention all along.
I've gone long here and didn't want to do this in the first place... so I'll quit while I'm behind.