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Interesting thread, with a lot of interesting points of view. The only thing that I'll add is a bit of historical perspective.
The ONLY modern presidential candidate to succeed a two-term president from his own party is George H. W. Bush.
Fact is, the whole "third term" thing is exceedingly rare in modern times (post-FDR / Truman).
There were a lot of mistakes in the 2016 Democratic campaign, as there are a lot of mistakes in every campaign, but perhaps the biggest strike against Democrats last year is that they were swimming against the tide of history.
Obamacare rate increases in late October 2016 didn't help much, either.
My take, for whatever it's worth. That may not be much, but it's still my take. :)