Being politically agnostic I found it odd that I took a sideways reluctant interest in Vivek Ramaswamy and found it even more odd when I developed a short fascination with his Twitter announcement that he was suddenly suspending his campaign for the 2024 Presidential Election. Not only did he tweet this within minutes of the Iowa caucus results, he pinned it to the top of his Twitter page. There was no hesitancy and it seemed as if it was planned in advance. He could have at least given New Hampshire a shot before making it seem bluntly obvious that this was his plan all along, should the Iowa results turn out the way they did. But something tells me that if Iowa had gone against their traditional pattern and voted for him and his results were anything higher than the outcome we were told, he still would have suspended his campaign. I’ll explain why I believe this later on in this piece.
Ramaswamy seemed to spring up out of nowhere and cracked like a lightning bolt across social media, capturing the attention of voters of all stripes. They found themselves rivoted by his heroic outlook and passionate dedication to lasso the American dream and bring it back into the hands of those who’d felt the sting of waning opportunity for far too long. But, just as soon as he’d appeared, he vanished.
Perhaps it was because social media was doing what it does: digging through the proverbial wayback machine and unearthing Ramaswamy’s past. A tweet from Dr. David Martin, a former frequent guest on CNBC, seemed to spark this criticism of Ramaswamy which led to hesitancy of his agenda, which then snowballed into downright vitriol against the company he founded, Roivant Sciences. Within hours of his announcement to suspend his campaign, more information was coming out about his interest in funding multiple levels of bio-tech and medical interventions. For instance, an Alzheimer’s drug which failed drug trials four times before he bought it for pennies. He rebranded it and took the company public in an IPO. Apparently he and his family dumped $2 billion of stock before it failed again. Here he is in 2015 on CNBC talking up this latest innovation.
Without a shred of irony, Forbes boasted how Ramaswamy, a Millenial, made his fortune entirely from investing in bio-tech, which at present has become the topic of heated debate. The American public, at large, feel that anyone who makes the kind of money Ramswamy made on interventionist and experimental therapies, isn’t something to respect or revere but rather something to criticize and hold under deep scrutiny and balance against ethics. After all, it is once again capitalism run amok, but this time through experimental health protocols and scientific and technological interventions, on the backs of an unaware, overworked American population.
Also, as Ramaswamy peppered our feeds with his convincing convictions, he was starting to sound like that other, memorable well-spoken candidate of 2008. In fact, some users even attempted to trend “Barackivek Obamaswamy” and hastily created an AI image of the two candidates combined when, just like Ramaswamy’s appearance then disappearance across our political peripheral, it too vanished into thin air.
Here is where I believe he was always going to suspend his campaign: he never addressed or even responded to the public criticism of Roivant Solutions investments in bio-tech because he didn’t have to.
Just one day before his announcement that he was suspending his campaign Donald Trump shouted into the ether from his Truth Social account that a vote for Vivek is a WASTED VOTE. I guess Ramaswamy got the message because just 24 hours later he suspended his campaign, threw his weight behind Trump and in classic Trump style, they’re suddenly buddies again. This is the fastest breakup/makeup in the history of political rivalries we’ve ever seen.
Speaking of something we’ve never seen, we’ve never ever EVER seen a dark horse come up out of nowhere, have we? No way. Not in this country. Especially not in 2008. The problem with the dark horse theory which seemed to electrify (if not manipulate) the consciousness of American voters to pivot toward Ramaswamy, is it was meant to make you believe we were looking at a possible repeat of say, James K. Polk , a relatively unknown Tennessee politician who won the Democratic Party’s 1844 presidential nomination over a host of better-known candidates.
But if you blink you might miss this little headline thrown out by MSNBC the day of the Iowa caucus which tells you the mindset of the majority of Iowa caucusgoers:
“Two-thirds of Iowa GOP caucusgoers falsely say Biden is not the legitimate 2020 Presidential winner.” In fact, this headline echoes a headline from The Hill just two weeks prior that offers an even more telling if not troubling crisis: one-third of US adults echo that same sentiment that two-thirds of the Iowa caucusgoers believe. I need to emphasize it’s what adults in the US and the Iowa caucusgoers believe, not that their belief is false nor is it true. That’s not the point. The point is they believe.
They believe Joe Biden is not a legitimate president which leads to all sorts of implications about where our electoral and even judicial system is at this point. It seems like it’s a hydra of chaos, a real mess.
So it should come as no surprise to anyone that for the first time in the history of the Iowa caucus a candidate won in a landslide victory. The Iowa caucusgoers’ belief that something wronged could possibly be made right outweighed their emotional connection to the powerful vision that Ramaswamy curated in their minds.
In truth, despite his captured passionate and articulate rhetoric that trended on social media and his commanding presence in front of the camera, I’m not sure Ramaswamy actually believed the American public were ready to accept a non-Christian leader and allow a practicing Hindu into the White House. Personally I think the American public would have been just fine with it. We’re not as phobic as the media would have you believe.
But it really comes down to an art that Trump has defined quite beautifully, if not with brutal efficiency, in his personal and professional life and now in his political life:
“You’re either with me or against me. And I’d rather have you with me.”
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