Democratic Debate

Beto’s Gun Ban


CNN09152019

Here’s your cartoon for CNN’s weekly newsletter, Provoke/Persuade. Please sign up to get these in your inbox every Sunday for the rest of your life.

I admit it. The comments on my social media are mostly an echo chamber so I knew this one wouldn’t get that many shares. It’s gotten plenty of comments though.

A lot of people who do agree with Beto O’Rourke about going after assault rifles also believe he handed the GOP and Donald Trump a gift. But, there are also liberals who not only don’t have a problem with Beto saying this, but want it screamed from the rooftops. I think we can respectfully disagree. I mean, it’s not like we’re discussing Bernie.

One of my readers made a comment under this cartoon on my Facebook post. I liked it so much, I’m stealing it. Talking about how Republicans are more motivated to vote than Democrats, my friend Lex said, “90-year-old right-wing grannies will crawl to the polls. 110-year-old right-wing mummies will crawl out of their graves.”

I didn’t have to draw that many roughs for CNN this week. It was kinda like last week. Usually, we’re doing the ideas on Thursday but this week, we waited until Friday because of the debate. I was feeling some stress but this idea was approved by noon.

I felt I was only sending duds to my editors…and I was. So, I took a step back, which is hard to do when you’re feeling stressed to deliver and there’s a deadline. I took a shower and while there was soap in my hair and eyes, this hit me. You might, but I don’t normally think about Beto O’Rourke or guns when I’m wet and naked (Republicans think about guns and AOC).

I sketched out a rough while wearing a towel (the same thing happened with a song idea years ago, and I wrote the tune while wearing a towel). Within a couple minutes of receiving it, my editor approved it. He was probably fully clothed.

Support the cartoonist.

As I noted in a previous cartoon, these are perilous times for political cartoonists. But you can help me continue to create cartoons, blogs, and videos by making a contribution. All support, large and small, is greatly appreciated. You can also support me by purchasing a signed print (8 1/2×11) for $40, or a signed poster (18×24) for $100 by clicking the PayPal button (just include a note if you’re purchasing a print). If you want to support but don’t want to use PayPal, you can send a contribution through the mail (address is on the contact page. Again, include a note for a print).I don’t plan on going anywhere and your support will help guarantee that. Whether you support, can’t. or just choose not to, please know that I am truly thankful that you visit my site and read my work.

You can purchase a signed print of this cartoon.

Watch me draw.

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Dems Dumb Debate


CNN08042019

Here’s your weekly cartoon for CNN’s weekly newsletter, Provoke/Persuade. Please sign up to get these in your inbox every Sunday for the rest of your life.

This isn’t a complaint because it happens occasionally in this business: My editor and I spent a few hours deciding which cartoon to use and what was the best angle of the subject. He wanted me to do something on the debate and I suggested we focus on the candidates’ focus on Obama and their criticism of him as a means to attack Joe Biden. He agreed. I put a lot of work in the cartoon. He put a lot of work into the newsletter. And then, nobody cared about this subject by the time Sunday arrived.

And that’s not a complaint because there was a much bigger and more important story on Sunday. I’m not upset that this cartoon was basically dead and got no interest online. No. My complaint is that with the other story, we have to have the same conversation again and then again that goes nowhere.

I have a year and four months to hit the presidential election which many will say is too much time. I think I’m going to have the rest of my life to talk about white supremacy, white nationalism, racism, and gun violence. That’s too much time too.

Support the cartoonist

As I noted in a previous cartoon, these are perilous times for political cartoonists. But you can help me continue to create cartoons, blogs, and videos by making a contribution. All support, large and small, is greatly appreciated. You can also support me by purchasing a signed print (8 1/2×11) for $40, or a signed poster (18×24) for $100 by clicking the PayPal button (just include a note if you’re purchasing a print). If you want to support but don’t want to use PayPal, you can send a contribution through the mail (address is on the contact page. Again, include a note for a print).I don’t plan on going anywhere and your support will help guarantee that. Whether you support, can’t. or just choose not to, please know that I am truly thankful that you visit my site and read my work.

You can purchase a signed print of this cartoon.

Watch me draw.

Punchy Joe


CNN07282019

Here’s your weekly cartoon for CNN’s weekly newsletter, Provoke/Persuade. Please sign up to get these in your inbox every Sunday for the rest of your life.

There will be two Democratic debates this week on CNN, one on Tuesday and Wednesday nights. They’re being staged in Detroit. Michigan is a state Trump surprisingly won in 2016 with a huge assist from Russia. It’ll be a major battleground in 2020.

What analysists are focusing on before the debates are that on night one, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders will be on the same stage. On night two, Biden’s podium will be between Cory Booker and Kamala Harris, the two candidates he’s been feuding with.

The expectation is that Warren and Sanders, the two most liberal and socialist candidates, will have to go after each other at some point. I don’t expect that yet. It’s too early. What we can expect on night one is a moderate Democrat going after both of them. We may see the socialists team up.

Biden has promised not to be as polite as he was during the first debate where Harris took him down for his stance in the 70s on mandatory busing. He’s also been at it with Booker who has demanded Biden apologize for boasting about his working relationship with segregationists in the past. Biden wasn’t ready in the last debate. Will he be ready now?

Biden is the favorite candidate at this point and leading in the polls. Even a Fox News poll has him beating Trump. But what happens when he’s on a debate stage with Trump? Personally, I’d rather see Kamala Harris, a former prosecutor, prosecute Donald Trump to his face.

Other things to look for is that Andrew Yang has been going at it with Michael Bennett. Does anyone care?

We can look at Tom Steyer. Oh, wait. He won’t be at the debate and is one more candidate we don’t need.

Will Pete Buttigieg build, fall, or continue to tread water? Will Julian Castro build on his great performance from the first debate? Will Beto finally fold and drop out?

That’s the thing to look for after the debates. After the last one, Eric Swalwell did us all a favor, and himself, and dropped out. He’s doing a great job in Congress and that’s where he should stay. But right now, there are too many candidates. I’d like to see ten of them drop out. C’mon, guys and girls. Go home.

Previously, I didn’t have a favorite. I was going back and forth between the candidates and there are several I still like. But, now I do have a favorite and its been that way for the past few weeks. My pick is Kamala Harris. I like her. She’s a fighter and Donald Trump is afraid of her. I love the job she’s performed in grilling Trump nominees from her position in the Senate. I’m not saying she’s going to win, but that she’s who I want to win. At least for now. I have the right to change my pick. But right now, Kamala is the only one I can feel any excitement for.  I think with the right campaign, she can beat Trump.

Support the cartoonist

As I noted in a previous cartoon, these are perilous times for political cartoonists. But you can help me continue to create cartoons, blogs, and videos by making a contribution. All support, large and small, is greatly appreciated. You can also support me by purchasing a signed print (8 1/2×11) for $40, or a signed poster (18×24) for $100 by clicking the PayPal button (just include a note if you’re purchasing a print). If you want to support but don’t want to use PayPal, you can send a contribution through the mail (address is on the contact page. Again, include a note for a print).I don’t plan on going anywhere and your support will help guarantee that. Whether you support, can’t. or just choose not to, please know that I am truly thankful that you visit my site and read my work.

You can purchase a signed print of this cartoon.

Watch me draw.

Roughing It, Volume 4


Hey, kids. It’s time to check out some cartoon ideas that didn’t make the cut. Each of these is from the batch submitted to CNN last week.

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We were set on the Democratic debates being our subject. This was a fun week as the newsletter was published on Friday instead of the usual Sunday. This made the deadline flexible and had me drawing in real time during the debate with Rich, my editor, sending me notes during. The rough above was sent Thursday morning before the second debate.

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I almost finished this one for my syndication. Maybe I shouldn’t be posting it here as I can always use it for a future debate. Maybe I’ll still do that if it’s not stolen by another cartoonist. I do like drawing Trump with Trump Bear.

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This was also drawn before the second debate. That’s kinda how it turned out too. Despite the accuracy, I still didn’t like it that much.

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I drew this one before the second debate. This one has two problems. The first is, it wasn’t a townhall-style debate. The second one is, this would have ignored the narrative that came out of both debates. But, it’s another one that I can probably use in the future, again, if it’s not stolen.

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This was drawn right after Kamala Harris took down Biden. My editor, who was watching it live like I was, wrote about the takedown and my reply included this cartoon, which was not very good.

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Rich kinda liked this one but another editor thought it was too grim. I think that’s the word they used. That didn’t automatically kill it, but we kept searching. I wasn’t in love with it.

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This is the idea we went with. They liked it but wanted to see more and wasn’t yet sure if this was the direction to go in. Rich said it may be the one to use. I drew a couple more but I kept going back fighting for this one. I knew it was the one.

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The idea here is, Harris just took out Biden and now was aiming for Trump. I didn’t love it and continued to push for the first bus idea.

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Honestly, I thought if I threw in some Klansmen, it’d make the other idea look better by comparison. Yikes! We can’t publish a cartoon with Klansmen, let’s go with that other idea. I don’t know if it worked that way because they finally chose my favorite after I pushed for it a couple more times. They ever agreed with me or got tired of hearing it.

In the future, every rough in the batch will have Klansmen except for the one I really want. Do you think they’ll catch on?

The cartoon, in its finished form, was a big hit on social media, at least on my accounts. I was a very happy boy. What made it really work out was that the Harris campaign released a childhood photo of her just as I was about to start drawing. I actually Googled for her childhood photo, seconds after the campaign had released it. It was kismet.

CNN06292019

Be Complicit

What kind of person would want to be part of something that disparages, slanders, and disrespects Dear Leader and his sycophantic followers? Hopefully, you. 
Making a contribution supports my work and keeps the cartoons, columns, and videos coming. My income is from newspapers that subscribe to my work and small contributors. George Soros hasn’t sent me a million dollar check in weeks. Making a contribution of any amount, or buying a print for $40.00, makes you part of this specific resistance, and a member of Team Claytoonz (we’re still working on the name). You are complicit, an accomplice, and in cahoots (and whatever gangster terms we can think of) with this political satire pointing out that the stupid emperor has no clothes. Contributions can be made through PayPal, checks, and wads of cash exchanged in back alleys.
Whether you can help support, can’t, or just choose not to, please continue to enjoy and keep reading my work. Thank you!!! 

You can purchase a signed print of this cartoon.

Watch Me Draw.

Kamala Scorches Biden


CNN06292019

Here’s your weekly cartoon for CNN’s weekly newsletter, Provoke/Persuade. Please sign up to get these in your inbox every Sunday for the rest of your life.

During night two of the Democratic debates, I was going back and forth with my editor at CNN with ideas and suggestions. Just as Kamala Harris took down Joe Biden, I started sketching an idea on the exchange. Within a minute, I got an email from my editor saying we should do something on it.

I didn’t send as many roughs as last week, twenty-five, but I did send eight. Even after I had sent this idea, my editor wanted to see more but said this is probably the way to go. I sent a few more but kept returning back to this one, twisting his arm. Finally, he relented. He either realized it was the best or I was too annoying. Either way, I’m happy with the choice.

We published the newsletter early this week and started planning right after I finished last week’s cartoon. I sent a couple ideas after Wednesday night’s debate, but we really picked up steam Thursday night. It was kinda like being back in a newsroom. I was pretty hyped up. All I needed was election night pizza.

I may do another cartoon on this topic since my clients will probably want one, and I’ll write my take on the debates with that one. This cartoon is for CNN’s exclusive use.

Here’s the rough.

CNNrough176

Be Complicit

What kind of person would want to be part of something that disparages, slanders, and disrespects Dear Leader and his sycophantic followers? Hopefully, you. 
Making a contribution supports my work and keeps the cartoons, columns, and videos coming. My income is from newspapers that subscribe to my work and small contributors. George Soros hasn’t sent me a million dollar check in weeks. Making a contribution of any amount, or buying a print for $40.00, makes you part of this specific resistance, and a member of Team Claytoonz (we’re still working on the name). You are complicit, an accomplice, and in cahoots (and whatever gangster terms we can think of) with this political satire pointing out that the stupid emperor has no clothes. Contributions can be made through PayPal, checks, and wads of cash exchanged in back alleys.
Whether you can help support, can’t, or just choose not to, please continue to enjoy and keep reading my work. Thank you!!! 

You can purchase a signed print of this cartoon.

Watch Me Draw.

Democrats Debate


cjones10152015

I’m not a team player. I’m not a Democrat. Their greatest virtue is that they’re obstacles preventing Republicans from taking this country backwards.

I had several angles I could have gone with for my cartoon on the Democratic Debate. I could have gone with Sanders slapping down talking about Hillary Clinton’s email. Or I could have gone with Sanders providing his definition of a Democratic Socialist, which was very interesting. But I think the biggest take away from the debate was the stark contrast between it and the four Republican debates held so far.

The two debates for the low-polling Republicans were often referred as the “kids’ table.” Compared to the Democrats, all four GOP debates were the kid’s table.

The Democrats talked about issues. Actual issues. They talked about the threat of Climate Change, guns, foreign policy, race relations, domestic financial policy, and the business of running government. The GOP held four events focused on racism, homophobia, Islamophobia, hatred, xenophobia, denials of science and personal insults. I was watching Fox News afterward to get their take and they were bored. Sean Hannity referred to it as a snoozefest.

While I didn’t agree with John McCain or Mitt Romney on most issues, I couldn’t deny there were serious candidates. They were qualified for the presidency and were presidential with their campaigns (despite Sarah Palin being a part of one of them).

Sometimes, I wonder if the Republicans aren’t serious yet and right now they just want to be entertained. Their top three candidates are not serious nor are they presidential. Their top guy, Trump, is a reality show maven. He’s not a great businessman. He’s a great marketer. There’s a difference. Their number two guy, Ben Carson, doesn’t understand history, science or even how the debt ceiling works. Their third candidate, Fiorina, biggest qualification is that she’s a failed CEO. Anyone who believes any of these three candidates is presidential doesn’t have the mental capabilities to understand the Democratic Debate.

Republicans like to point out they have a deep bench. It’s an argument of quantity over quality. It’s a deep bench of lower tier candidates. If they had a genuinely formidable candidate they too, like the Democratic Party, would only have four or five candidates.

Here’s a contrast for you between the parties: While the Democrats were talking policy and real issues, GOP candidate Mike Huckabee sent out a racist tweet about Asians eating dogs. That really sums up the differences between the parties.

Other take aways from the debate: Bernie Sanders won. He didn’t introduce himself as much as he introduced what he stands for. That was a success. His only weakness came for his support of the NRA. His defense is that he’s from a rural state. He’s not running for the presidency of a rural state.

Sanders winning the debate will actually help Hillary win the nomination. She’s still in the lead and probably too far ahead for Sanders to catch. Hillary was confidant and didn’t hurt herself. She may have even helped herself. Most voters don’t think Clinton is trustworthy. That’s not gonna be important. Her husband, Bill Clinton, was nicknamed “Slick Willy.” Nobody ever had the delusion Richard Nixon was an honest person. Nixon and Bill Clinton both won the presidency twice despite those red flags.

Martin O’Malley helped himself, but not enough. He might score a cabinet position.

Jim Webb was out of place. The candidates were asked which special interest hated them the most. Hillary said Republicans. Sanders said Wall Street. Jim Webb said the guy who lobbed a grenade at him during his tour of duty in the Vietnam War. Webb is the only veteran running for president and his service is commendable. But when given the opportunity to name a special interest you fought again, you should probably be able to name one.

If it’s possible for Lincoln Chafee to bury himself deeper, that’s exactly what he did. When asked about voting for Glass-Steagall, he didn’t defend it. He didn’t say he was wrong. His excuse was he was new to the Senate and his father had just died. Admitting you’re wrong, that you made a mistake and you learned from it is a lot better than saying you were confused or you didn’t know what you doing.

The final takeaway is talk of Joe Biden entering the race. They can stop talking about it now. I’m making a not-so-bold prediction and that is Biden is not going to enter the race. I’m glad he’s not. He would make the race much more dramatic and interesting but I’d hate to see him tarnish his legacy. I believe his time has passed and it’s time for him to ride off into the sunset and enjoy being an elder statesman.

Did you like this cartoon? Want to help a cartoonist make a living? Look to the right of this page and make a donation through Paypal. The starving cartoonist appreciates it.