The mayor of Austin, TX, Steve Adler, gave a great speech on Sunday, which focused on the question, "Wouldn't it be great if we had a president who was smart?"
April 15, 2019

Two things about this speech: First, it's at the Pete Buttigieg campaign for president launch. I'm not endorsing Pete, and a reminder that it's the official policy of Crooks and Liars to stay neutral during the primary season and support the Democratic nominee for president, period.

Second, this speech introducing Pete, is a barnburner, and also a funny attack on Donald Trump, worth the listen, and applicable to many Democratic candidates for president (all of whom wish their introducer's speeches were this good). Good on ya, Steve Adler, mayor of Austin, Texas:

Let me ask you this question: Wouldn't it be great if we had a president who was really smart? I mean really really really smart. Somebody who spoke multiple languages, including having a beautiful command of English.

Wouldn't it be great, if we had a president who understood that freedom is sacred? And sometimes "freedom to," like freedom to be who you are, and to love who you want, is as important as freedom from someone you fear. Who helps us understand and grow from what we fear, instead of weaponizing fear for political gain.

Wouldn't it be great if we had a president who was genuinely humble? Who knows good policy cannot be uncoupled from facts and science. Who stands for democracy and knows that our country's march toward progress happens when we increase our access to the ballot, and that wealth inequality threatens that very democracy.

Wouldn't it be great if we had a president who listens? And actually answers questions. And in his answers teaches us something about nuance. Someone we would want our children to emulate. Someone who rallies our better souls.

Wouldn't it be great if we had a president who was a generation that will actually live with the consequences of the decisions that we make today?

Wouldn't it be great if we had a president who was really smart? Did I already say that? And we know it not because he says he's smart, but because we hear what he says and we see how he acts.

Wouldn't it be great if we had a president who fought and stood for our security? As a lieutenant in intelligence in Afghanistan. Someone who understood that security meant more things, like economic security, and climate security, and cybersecurity.

Wouldn't it be great if we had a president who was a new kind of messenger? Who speaks to our ideals and values as Americans? Someone not limited by litmus tests, and someone it is impossible to slot on a spectrum.

Wouldn't it be great if we had a president who holds his faith in his heart? Knows the importance it plays in his life, but does not use it, as a cynical tool, to achieve power.

And wouldn't it be great, if we had a president, who was thoughtful, rational, intelligent, deliberate, who simply told us the truth?

Wouldn't it be great if we had a president like Pete?

Side note, it's not great news for Texans Julián Castro and Beto O'Rourke that the Mayor of Austin TX flew to South Bend, Indiana to introduce and endorse Pete Buttigieg. That's raising eyebrows among the political cognoscenti. My suspicion is that Mayor Pete built relationships at those National Council of Mayors Meetings. Also in the opening lineup for the rally were Toledo Mayor Nan Whaley (not endorsing fellow Ohioan Tim Ryan) and West Sacramento Mayor Christopher Cabaldon (less of a problem for Kamala Harris but still).

Below, Left to Right: Ohio mayor, Texas mayor, California mayor. Somebody can read a dang electoral map.

Also, Steve Adler is a "comedy gold" mayor.

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