• Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Subscribe
  • RSS

Bernie Sanders Crushes Hillary Clinton In New Hampshire, But Clinton Still Favored

Bernie Sanders Speaking

As expected, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders easily defeated Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire last night, but the win still seems like something that will merely delay Clinton ultimately winning the Democratic nomination rather than denying it to her for the second time in eight years:

Sen. Bernie Sanders scored a decisive victory in Tuesday’s New Hampshire presidential primary, embarrassing Hillary Clinton in a state she won eight years ago and upending the Democratic nominating contest.

Sanders’s victory, which Clinton conceded when polls closed at 8 p.m., confirmed the strength of his iconoclastic appeal and the power of an insurgent message that cast Clinton as a creature of the old guard. The outcome provides a fresh burst of momentum for Sanders, a senator from Vermont, in a race that will soon broaden to more challenging terrain and that is widely expected to grow more combative as Clinton tries to regain her footing. The former secretary of state, who was declared the winner of the Iowa caucuses last week by the narrowest of margins, now finds herself struggling to right her ­once-formidable campaign against a self-described democratic socialist whom she has accused of selling pipe dreams.

“People have every right to be angry, but they’re hungry. They’re hungry for solutions,” Clinton said in a brief concession speech shortly after she called Sanders to congratulate him. “What are we going to do? That is the fight we’re taking” to the rest of the country.

Sanders’s lengthy victory speech focused on his core issues of Wall Street greed and income inequality, but also ranged to national security, immigration, Social Security and more. He told cheering supporters that the same improbable arc that brought him to victory here can happen across the country.

“What began last week in Iowa, what voters confirmed here tonight, is nothing short of the beginning of a political revolution,” Sanders said. “We will all come together to say loudly and clearly that the government of our great nation belongs to all of us, not just a few wealthy campaign contributors.”

Shortly before midnight, with roughly three-quarters of precincts tallied, Sanders had a huge, double-digit lead. Four hours earlier, a Clinton campaign memo was released as the polls closed stating that the loss was “long anticipated.”

“Attention will inevitably focus on the next two of the ‘early four’ states: Nevada and South Carolina,” Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook wrote. “We’ve built first-rate organizations in each state and we feel very good about our prospects for success” there and in states that vote in March, the memo stated.

Sanders planned to challenge those assumptions immediately. He was scheduled to leave New Hampshire late Tuesday and head to New York for a day-long victory lap. Following a breakfast with civil rights leader and television host Al Sharpton, Sanders is scheduled to appear on “The View” and “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert,” among other media appearances.

The meeting with Sharpton is part of an effort to widen Sanders’s support among African American voters, who will figure prominently in several upcoming primaries in Southern states — and who have favored Clinton by broad margins in polls.

Clinton is racing to shore up that advantage by turning next to states with large minority populations. She has scheduled campaign stops in South Carolina and Nevada in the next week, with an emphasis on criminal justice and gun control, issues on which she has attempted to get out ahead of Sanders or to his political left. Her campaign also announced new support from African American mothers who have lost children to gun violence and said some of the women would campaign for Clinton in South Carolina.

The fundraising race will also intensify — and already had, shortly after the race was called Tuesday.

Even before Sanders took the stage Tuesday night to acknowledge his victory, his campaign sent out a text message to supporters saying: “With your help, we were just declared the winner in New Hampshire! Reply GIVE to contribute $10 from your phone bill and keep up the momentum.”

(…)

Clinton’s campaign had been lowering expectations for New Hampshire, based largely on what Clinton called a “neighborly” impulse, although Sanders’s appeal here cannot be chalked up to that alone. Clinton trailed by an average of 15 points in major polls going into the nation’s first primary vote, and she ran an underdog campaign here in the closing weeks. Her campaign had watched as a 30-point lead here dwindled and then evaporated late last year.

Sanders’s appeal Tuesday was greatest among younger voters, according to exit polls reported by CNN and other networks. He also benefited from New Hampshire’s open primaries, which allow independents to vote in either the Democratic or Republican contests, winning roughly 7 in 10 not registered as Democrats.

Sanders also won decisively among male voters and more than held his own among female voters against Clinton, who would be the first woman to serve as president, a fact several of her high-profile boosters made a central part of their appeal in recent days.

As I noted yesterday, Sanders had held a steady lead in the Granite State since roughly mid-August when the seeming grassroots appeal of his campaign combined with the issues that have been hanging over Clinton’s campaign since the spring to boost the Vermont Senator beyond levels that even he probably thought he could achieve. While Clinton did catch up to some extent when her campaign seemingly turned itself around in October and November of last year, Sanders soon resumed its momentum in December and, especially, after the first of the year when he began to lead in every Granite State poll released and eventually took a double digit lead that seemed, and ultimately was, insurmountable. With the results last week in Iowa ending with Clinton and Sanders in what effectively amounts to a tie, there was seemingly no chance that Clinton would catch up to her unlikely challenger, and indeed to some extent one got the impression watching Bill and Hillary Clinton campaign in the week before the primary that they knew that Sanders would ultimately win the race. By the time voters were heading to the polls yesterday, there were reports that Clinton was considering shuffling her campaign staff in an effort to respond to outside criticism of how the campaign was being run and the fact that what once seemed inevitable had now become something Clinton would have to fight for just as she did in 2008.

With the loss in New Hampshire now official, the talk among Team Clinton has moved on to turning the campaign around in the coming weeks, and looking ahead to the stack of primaries in March to put the Sanders challenge behind them:

MANCHESTER, N.H. – Both Hillary and Bill Clinton knew she would lose here — but not by this much.

Now, after a drubbing so serious as to call into question every aspect of her campaign from her data operation to her message, the wounded front-runner and her allies are actively preparing to retool their campaign, according to Clinton allies.

Staffing and strategy will be reassessed. The message, which so spectacularly failed in New Hampshire, where she was trailing by 21 points when she appeared before her supporters to concede to Bernie Sanders, is also going to be reworked – with race at the center of it.

Clinton is set to campaign with the mothers of Trayvon Martin and Eric Garner, unarmed African-Americans who died in incidents involving law enforcement officers and a neighborhood watch representative, respectively. And the campaign, sources said, is expected to push a new focus on systematic racism, criminal justice reform, voting rights and gun violence that will mitigate concerns about her lack of an inspirational message.

“The gun message went silent in New Hampshire,” remarked one ally close to the campaign. “Guns will come back in a strong way.” She is expected to highlight the problem of gun violence as the leading cause of death among African-American men as she campaigns in South Carolina on Friday.

In her concession speech, which she gave about 30 minutes after the polls closed with Chelsea and Bill Clinton standing behind her, Clinton began to preview that new message — framing her remarks around a call for human rights and an end to discrimination.

“Where people are held back by injustice anywhere in America, that demands action,” she said. “We also have to break through the barriers of bigotry.” She added that “immigrant families shouldn’t have to lie awake at night listening for a knock at the door.”

Twice, she referenced her visit to Flint, Michigan, this week, a largely African-American city in crisis because of lead-contaminated water that has affected at least 8,000 children under the age of 6. “It isn’t right that the kids I met in Flint on Sunday night were poisoned because their governor wanted to save money,” she told the New Hampshire crowd.

The race issue was also front and center in the memo released by campaign manager Robby Mook before the polls closed, just minutes before the race was called for Sanders.

“It will be very difficult, if not impossible, for a Democrat to win the nomination without strong levels of support among African American and Hispanic voters,” Mook said in the three-page memo. “And a Democrat who is unable to inspire strong levels of support in minority communities will have no credible path to winning the presidency in the general election.”

On paper, Mook’s observations are entirely correct, and they point toward a campaign that, while longer than Clinton and her advisers may have hoped, is still ultimately headed toward Clinton ultimately winning the nomination. One of the primary reasons for this, of course, is the fact that Clinton has an overwhelming advantage among some of the most important parts of the Democratic Party’s coalition, African-Americans and Latino voters. Both of these voting blocs will play an important role in the final two contests of February in Nevada and South Carolina, as well across the vast swath of southern states that will hold primaries on March 1st and later in early March. Sanders, on the other hand, has been unable to expand his appeal in either among either of those groups and has relied largely upon his support among educated, middle class, and younger voters to propel him in Iowa and New Hampshire.

The future Democratic primary calendar, though, looks far different than those two states, though, and the problems that presents for Sanders are readily apparent. Clinton holds double digit leads in the polling in both South Carolina and Nevada, although it’s worth noting that it has been about two weeks now since there was any polling in either state so we don’t know whether the events in Iowa and New Hampshire has had any impact on the race there or not. For the moment at least, though, it seems as though Clinton has the opportunity to push back against Sanders’ strong performance in the early part of February with an equally strong performance in the final two primaries of the month. If she manages to do that, then it will likely alleviate much of the talk of her campaign being under siege from an insurgent Sanders campaign. Beyond February, Clinton seems well suited to do well in the massive SEC primary that will take place in many southern states in March 1st, in no small part due to the fact that victory in those states will also depend strongly on  good performance among minority voters. Sanders, on the other hand, will have to deal with the prospect of campaigning vigorously in more than one state at a time, something he hasn’t needed to do to until now, and it’s not at all clear that his campaign has the infrastructure needed to effectively run that kind of campaign notwithstanding the fact that it has been able to effectively match Clinton’s campaign when it comes to fundraising.

Or, as Harry Enten puts it, from here on out it gets harder for Bernie Sanders:

Sanders has yet to demonstrate strength in a state whose electorate isn’t more than 90 percent white. Nevada and South Carolina, the next contests, don’t look anything like Iowa or New Hampshire. Only 65 percent of voters were white in the 2008 Democratic caucus in Nevada, and only 43 percent were in South Carolina.

Polling has indicated that Sanders trails among nonwhite voters by nearly40 percentage points nationally. Although no reliable recent polling is available in Nevada, Clinton leads by 30 percentage points in both of ourSouth Carolina forecasts. In the latest Marist College poll, she’s buoyed by a 74 percent to 17 percent lead among black voters. Sanders must cut into that margin if he wants to have any chance in South Carolina or anywhere in the South.

You could already see how Sanders might have problems in Nevada and South Carolina even as he was crushing Clinton in New Hampshire. Despite winning the state by more than 20 percentage points, the best Sanders could manage among registered Democrats was a tie. His large margin came from registered independents who voted in the Democratic primary. You must be a registered Democrat to vote in the Nevada caucuses, though you can register as one the day of the election. In 2008, 81 percent of Nevada caucus-goers self-identified as Democrats. Just 58 percent of New Hampshire voters on Tuesday thought of themselves as Democrats.

Most worrisome for Sanders is his 25-percentage-point loss among New Hampshire Democrats who want to continue President Obama’s policies. Obama’s current job approval rating among blacks nationally is about 90 percent. Sanders will have big problems in South Carolina if he doesn’t do better among voters who like Obama.

 

Finally, the manner in which Democrats allocate delegates, along with the role played by the so-called “Superdelegates,” would seem to ultimately work to Clinton’s advantage. Notwithstanding his big win last night, for example, Sanders only leads Clinton by two delegates at this early stage of the race, for example, and as we go forward Clinton will likely stack up big wins in the larger states that will put more delegates in her column than in Sanders. Finally, for many voters in New Hampshire and Iowa it seems clear that supporting the Sanders campaign has been more about sending a message than backing a candidate likely to be a strong Democratic nominee for President. With Iowa and New Hampshire behind us, it’s likely that future voters will be more serious about who they’re supporting. It may take more time than anticipated, but absent something entirely unforeseen, Clinton is still far better positioned to be the Democratic nominee and as more Democrats realize this reality one suspects the Sanders momentum will fizzle out. If by some chance it doesn’t, though, then Clinton could find herself in a state-by-state fight for delegates to the bitter end. The difference is that Bernie Sanders is no Barack Obama and, this time, Clinton seems far better situated to pull off a win than she was eight years ago.

Related Posts:

About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. John Peabody says:

    But…but…Doug….there are so many blogs to fill, so many segments to run….so many inches of column to print (okay, that may be stretching a point). The pundits can’t have a simple race, can they? No, everything is always “It remains to be seen….” (read about it tomorrow!).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  2. Castanea says:

    Clinton started her campaign saying she was going to overturn Citizens United but basically any left-wing move of hers will be derided as opportunistic by a part of the RON PAUL Bernie Sanders crowd.

    She should have burned more bridges to the Wall Street island behind her on day one, with financial regulations and strict checks against risk exposure and derivative bubbles. An end to the War on Drugs and mass incarceration, a framework for undoing the extremely partisan legacy of the Kennedy court, an end to the usury practices of colleges, body cams for all police officers (with serious repercussions for an increase in malfunctions and lost footage), more maternity leave and cheaper daycare, deep condemnation of congress for not establishing the VAWA and a campaign for heavily reduced teen pregnancies.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  3. JKB says:

    The real threat Bernie’s success is creating is that it creates a conflict at the convention when the Democrats move to replace Hillary. Just trying to sub in Biden/Warren may cause Bernie supporters to revolt.

    “The worst thing that can happen to a socialist is to have his country ruled by socialists who are not his friends.”
    –Ludwig von Mises

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 20

  4. Todd says:

    I’m not making any predictions, but I did do a search last night for all the posts on this site from the summer and fall about the Sanders-Clinton race. This message has been consistent. Every time Sanders has looked better than expected (in polls or voting), it’s been “this is good for him now, but it won’t last … ”

    It will be very interesting to add this one to the look back, once some new polls start coming in over the next week and half, and especially if Sanders again does “better than expected” in actual voting in NV and SC.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  5. MBunge says:

    The issue is less that Hillary might eventually win. The question Democrats should start asking themselves is which is more likely…getting minority voters to warm up to Bernie or getting the youth and white working class voters to warm up to Hillary?

    Mike

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  6. Modulo Myself says:

    Well, the Clinton machine is data-driven and they really seem to know what they’re doing and what’s going on in the heads of voters, so I’m sure there are no future surprises awaiting in this utterly predictable campaign.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  7. An Interested Party says:

    The real threat Bernie’s success is creating is that it creates a conflict at the convention when the Democrats move to replace Hillary.

    And why would they replace her? Oh, you must suffer under the delusion that she will be incarcerated and/or otherwise legally unable to accept the nomination…keep hoping, baby, keep hoping…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 3

  8. Tillman says:

    @Castanea:

    Clinton started her campaign saying she was going to overturn Citizens United but basically any left-wing move of hers will be derided as opportunistic by a part of the RON PAUL Bernie Sanders crowd.

    Given the amount of supporters I’ve seen moaning about Clinton having to veer left in the primary, causing weakness in the general, this wound would be self-inflicted.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  9. Hal_10000 says:

    Is this going to be like the Trump thing where we’re going to get post after post about why Sanders can’t possibly win only to see him win anyway?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  10. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @MBunge:

    The unspoken corollary there is: which demographic is more likely to turn up on election day, African Americans or the youth?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  11. Neil Hudelson says:

    @Todd:

    My quibble with that analysis, in this instance, is that Bernie has been expected to win New Hampshire for a very, very long time. IIRC, there were conversations on just that subject when he entered the race. Iowa was surprising, but that doesn’t make a trend.

    Now, if he comes within a point or two of winning South Carolina or Nevada–let alone win–then I will be open to considering he has a real shot at winning. But right now, Iowa appears to be an exception. Hillary still holds a double digit national lead, and I see no reason to think that the demographics of southern states will help Bernie.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1

  12. James Pearce says:

    Worth remembering, the last 3 presidents -Obama, Bush, Clinton- all lost the NH primary before they were ultimately elected. It will probably be true of whoever wins this November.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

  13. J-Dub says:

    If Sanders starts hammering Clinton on her unwillingness to release the transcripts of her paid speeches to Goldman Sachs, etc., then I think he can create an opening for himself.

    What is she telling Goldman Sachs in private speeches that she can’t admit to? Maybe nothing, but right now she seems to be hiding something, which goes straight to people’s mistrust of her.

    He’s already gotten traction against her for her paid speeches, now he has the chance to go for the throat. Let’s see if he does it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  14. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Todd:

    We have had two contests thus far – both in exceedingly fertile ground for Sanders, overwhelmingly white Iowa and New Hampshire. Statistically speaking, Sanders should have been expected to post blowouts or near blowouts in both elections, but he lost Iowa (essentially a tie) and he gave up 40% of the vote in New Hampshire to Clinton.

    So, he was expected to win New Hampshire, and did, and was expected to win Iowa, but lost, both with numbers that do not portend happy things for his campaign down the road.

    Steven said it best – when your hope of victory depends on three concurrent and unprecedented shifts in voter demographics all happening at the same time, it’s time to start thinking about what else you’re going to do after the election.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 6

  15. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @J-Dub:

    The problem there is that the issue mostly (IMO) resonates with the already convinced. It’s of little benefit in the bigger picture if it just makes Sanders supporters dislike her more.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3

  16. DK says:

    @J-Dub: Bernie will not do so. He has been quiet on the subject since last week after CNN reported Bernie has been glad-handling executives from Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Chase and Citi at DSCC retreats in Miami and Martha’s Vibeyard, raising money for his Senate campaign along with the rest of “the establishment.” I suspect any call on his part for transcripts would be answered by calls for those transcripts. It is the stuff of fever dreams amongst his white liberal die-hards and the media, but not the kind of thing to move the needle with black and Latino voters in NV and New Hamoshire. Which is where his focus likely is, and where it should be.

    All these speeches are likely pablum anyway, so it would probably end up being an anti-climactic long form birth certificate wash that ends up making the conspiracy theorists look silly. One of Hillary’s Goldman Sachs speedes is already on YouTube and it is utterly harmless. She pontificates on the need for female entrepreneurship. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 5

  17. JKB says:

    @HarvardLaw92: but he lost Iowa (essentially a tie)

    He lost? by Hillary beating the odds and still she only “won” by pure dumb luck, i.e., a coin toss. Well, 6 coin tosses to be precise. And the Iowa Dems, whose head has a Hillary license plate, won’t release the raw numbers. Interesting.

    Now, we hear that while Bernie won NH, he lost. Seems the super-delegates are hard over for Hillary so she’s ahead in the count.

    Now, one has to wonder, with all the youthful passion for Bernie, how the kiddies are going to react to the realities of party politics? Disillusioned supporters, who feel their candidate lost by hook and crook, poor voters make. And the Trumpinator is already blurring the lines between his idea for healthcare and Bernie’s.

    The citizen must not be so narrowly circumscribed in his activities that, if he thinks differently from those in power, his only choice is either to perish or to destroy the machinery of state.

    Mises, Ludwig von (2010-12-10). Liberalism (p. 59). Ludwig von Mises Institute. Kindle Edition.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 8

  18. MBunge says:

    @HarvardLaw92: The unspoken corollary there is: which demographic is more likely to turn up on election day, African Americans or the youth?

    It’s fair to point out that Sanders has limited appeal to minority voters. As a socialist from Vermont, those aren’t groups he’s had to worry about. But Barack Obama, an extremely charismatic incumbent President running against a fairly mediocre opponent who made several critical mistakes during the campaign won the black vote 93-6 and the Latino vote 71-27 and still won in 2012 with just 51%, hardly a landslide.

    And beyond the Presidency, if Democrats want to win back and maintain majorities in the House and Senate they’ve got to stop getting killed with white voters. It’s kind of discomforting to put it so starkly but there it is.

    Mike

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  19. MBunge says:

    @HarvardLaw92: We have had two contests thus far – both in exceedingly fertile ground for Sanders, overwhelmingly white Iowa and New Hampshire. Statistically speaking, Sanders should have been expected to post blowouts or near blowouts in both elections, but he lost Iowa (essentially a tie) and he gave up 40% of the vote in New Hampshire to Clinton.

    This reads like Laurence O’Donnell going on about how Trump having “only” 33 to 35% in the polls proves that 60%+ of Republicans won’t vote for him, as if none of the people supporting other candidates would ever support Trump no matter what.

    Going 0-1-1 against a septuagenarian socialist who isn’t even technically a Democrat is not exactly good news for Hillary, no matter how hard you try and spin it.

    Mike

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  20. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @JKB:

    He lost? by Hillary beating the odds and still she only “won” by pure dumb luck, i.e., a coin toss. Well, 6 coin tosses to be precise.

    Will there ever be a time in our future where you won’t be regurgitating things from the Babbleverse as fact?

    Coin Tosses Did Not Win Iowa for Clinton

    Now, we hear that while Bernie won NH, he lost.

    Giving up 40% of the vote in your 2nd best electorate isn’t exactly what I would call promising.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 4

  21. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @MBunge:

    You’re missing the point. Iowa and New Hampshire, speaking frankly, are likely to be the best performances that Sanders will post in this election cycle other than Vermont – which nobody cares about to begin with 1) since it gets lumped in with the rest of Super Tuesday and 2) It only has 16 delegates to award. After those three, the racial demographics of the later contests make it clear than Sanders must perform worse in them than he did in Iowa and New Hampshire. In other words, Sanders performance will get worse going forward, not better. That is a recipe for going back to the Senate.

    Short version: what are likely to be his best showings resulted in a stalemate from a delegate standpoint (not counting the 371 committed superdelegates, of which Clinton holds 96%).

    At the end of the day, delegates are the only thing that matter, and he just doesn’t have the juice to pick up enough of them before she gets to 2,832.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 4

  22. bookdragon says:

    @J-Dub: He won’t. (1) because he is a team player and won’t weaken a likely Dem nominee, and (2) because he has his own record and he has been a good friend to the Military-Industrial Complex. I do not object to that in the least since it serves his constituents and aligns with my own priorities, but some of his young idealistic followers might take it as dent in his halo.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  23. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @MBunge:

    running against a fairly mediocre opponent who made several critical mistakes during the campaign won the black vote 93-6 and the Latino vote 71-27 and still won in 2012 with just 51%, hardly a landslide.

    Popular voters do not elect the president. Obama garnered 51.1% of the popular vote, but 61.7% of the electoral vote. I agree that we have problems in Congress, but there are few solutions which will salve the anger of a crowd displaced by post-industrialism who want something irrational. It can’t be 1955 again. The short version of that is that we’re likely to be at a Congressional disadvantage until the baby boomer generation who have convinced themselves that it can be dies off in appreciable numbers. Not the nicest thing to have to say, but IMO accurate nonetheless.

    We may retake the Senate, although I have my doubts. We have no hope of retaking the House before 2020.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3

  24. gVOR08 says:

    @MBunge:

    if Democrats want to win back and maintain majorities in the House and Senate they’ve got to stop getting killed with white voters.

    And to be entirely blunt, it’s the identification of Democrats with minorities that hurts them with blue collar white voters. And I don’t know how to escape that. When Dems do something like Obamcare that helps lower income whites as much as lower income blacks and Hispanics, it’s still seen as a give away to THEM. And raising taxes on the wealthy is seen by lower income whites as raising taxes on US.

    The angry Trump voters are really angry at the GOP establishment. They should be supporting Bernie. But I don’t see how to make that happen.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  25. David M says:

    There are several reasons why the Democrats probably won’t retake the House before 2020, including the racially discriminatory voter ID the GOP likes so much.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/02/04/new-evidence-that-voter-id-laws-skew-democracy-in-favor-of-white-republicans/

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  26. al-Ameda says:

    Absent Hillary getting indicted, or some other implosion, it’s going to come down to whether or not Democrats want to win in November.

    A Sanders nomination is a big problem – are there enough voters out there who want Bernie’s self-described democratic socialism? I have yet to be convinced of that. A Cruz-Sanders race would be wild, completely unpredictable. Sanders-Trump? The socialist against the reality-show capitalist? I think the bankruptcy expert wins easily.

    Hillary, for all her Clintonian Baggage is a centrist Democrat, and she can win.

    Again, I care about the next 2 nominations to the Supreme Court AND I do not want Republicans to control the entire federal government. ‘eff ideology and purity, I’m voting for the Democrat who has the best chance to win in November.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 4

  27. Scott says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    Popular voters do not elect the president. Obama garnered 51.1% of the popular vote, but 61.7% of the electoral vote.

    Apparently, it is just the opposite in the NH primary. Sanders got 60.2% of the vote and 13 of the 28 delegates (46.4%). How this is justified I haven’t a clue.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  28. Modulo Myself says:

    The confidence Clinton’s supporters have about the future is somewhat questionable. Given that no one here is being paid to spin results on television, I’m guessing that this is a form of confidence boosting, where Sanders was always slated to win NH in a rout.

    Look back at the NH polls-Clinton +4 on 12/2, Sanders +2 on 1/6. And then he wins by 20. There’s no certainty there; it was no more a lock for him than minority votes are for Clinton.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  29. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @al-Ameda:

    4 seats are likely to be in play, possibly 5, over the next 8 years.

    Scalia is 80, overweight and a 2 pack a day smoker. Kennedy is 80, Ginsburg is 82 and Breyer is 77. They’ll all be within striking range of 90 by the end of the next two presidential terms.

    I say possibly 5 because Thomas is also overweight, 67 and suffers from a variety of health problems. He’s less likely to go (IMO he either dies in office or they’d have to drag him out of the building in order to get him to leave), but anything is possible. This election will set the tenor of the court for a generation. Every other issue, IMO, runs a distant second to this one.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 3

  30. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Modulo Myself:

    To be fair, those polls typically reached registered Democrats for the most part. A quirk in NH’s election laws allows unaffiliated voters to be queen for a day in order to participate in a primary. Among registered NH Dems, Clinton won. Unaffiliated voters made up the bulk of Sander’s victory in NH.

    The bulk of the delegate rich states have closed or semi-open contests, so we have a situation where he’s at a massive disadvantage in minority demographics and many of his supporters won’t be able to vote for him unless they register as Democrats.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3

  31. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Scott:

    NH awards 32 total delegates, of which 24 are pledged based on the primary results. The other 8 are unpledged and have no connection to the primary results. At present, Sanders has 13 pledged, Clinton has 9 pledged and 2 are yet to be awarded.

    The remaining 8 are typically state party officials who essentially always initially pledge their support to the overall winner of their state in the 1st round at the convention (assuming Sanders hasn’t already conceded by that point), and then subsequently get behind whichever candidate they want. In the past, this has pretty much always been the national frontrunner.

    The short version is that there are still two pledged delegates up in the air in NH, but Sanders 13 is 59% of the total 22 that have been awarded.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 3

  32. al-Ameda says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    4 seats are likely to be in play, possibly 5, over the next 8 years.
    Scalia is 80, overweight and a 2 pack a day smoker. Kennedy is 80, Ginsburg is 82 and Breyer is 77. They’ll all be within striking range of 90 by the end of the next two presidential terms.

    Right you are, in the next 8 years we could see 4 openings.
    I tend to understate, however I think it’s very likely 2 seats may come open in the 2017-2020 period.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  33. James Joyner says:

    @Todd: I personally like Bernie Sanders a lot and would likely vote for him over Ted Cruz; I’d certainly vote for him over Donald Trump. I would be more amenable to Cruz, especially, if the alternative were Hillary Clinton. But I just don’t see an avowed socialist who eschews the party’s label winning the Democratic nomination against a competent, qualified, Democratic machine candidate. She would have won in 2008 were it not for Barack Obama’s enormous talents–and that one was a nail biter.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  34. gVOR08 says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    Among registered NH Dems, Clinton won. Unaffiliated voters made up the bulk of Sander’s victory in NH.

    And yet I’ve seen reports Dem turnout was substantially down. I’m…puzzled.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  35. gVOR08 says:

    @James Joyner: Cruz scares the living spit out of me. But otherwise I largely agree with you. Thank you for the comment that Hillary would have won in ’08 except for Obama’s “enormous talent”. A partial answer to Cruz and Rubio’s, ‘Well Obama was only a one term Senator.” And seems to have learned a lot from the experience.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  36. bookdragon says:

    @James Joyner: Mr. Joyner, could you please explain that? I can see someone like you choosing Kasich over HRC (my parents live in Ohio, so I know too much to vote for him, but he is the most decent and sane of GOP candidates). But Cruz?? The man makes Nixon and McCarthy look like admirable human beings.

    He’s a theocratic nut whose version of Christianity is so warped that if Jesus hadn’t risen from the grave, he’d be spinning in it.

    And even if you somehow don’t mind that, this is a guy with so little clue about international affairs or the military that he talks about ‘targeted’ carpet bombing and making sand glow by nuking the whole Middle East. Worse, his one security adviser is an art major whose only real credential is having edited Rumsfield’s bio. I have too many cousins in the Marines to want that man anywhere the presidency.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  37. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Scott:

    I could have been a tad more clear in my previous post, sorry.

    NH has 24 pledged delegates and 8 unpledged, or super, delegates.

    The cruel irony of this situation is that 6 of NH’s 8 unpledged superdelegates are already committed to Clinton.

    So, from a NH delegate standpoint, Sanders currently has 13, while Clinton, who lost the primary, currently has 15.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  38. gVOR08 says:

    @bookdragon: I’m also an OH resident. You may have seen my occasional comments that Kasich is Scott Walker without the stupid.

    if Jesus hadn’t risen from the grave, he’d be spinning in it.

    Mind if I steal that?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  39. Scott F. says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    The super delegates are Clinton’s firewall and she is well ahead of Sanders on that count. As happened with Obama vs. Clinton in 2008, the super delegates have been known to shift their allegiances, but Clinton has a massive advantage as of now.

    Senator Sanders, however, has already done the Democratic party a critical service. He has picked on on the national populist mood with a clarity that Clinton has been missing, but if her concession speech last night is any indication, she is starting to clue into things. It was a lot of “Bernie and I agree about x, y and z. And I have the ability to do something about it.”

    From her political history, Clinton is not a great vessel for this popular fervor, but I think a message around “I see that the system is rigged and I’m best equipped to fight that fight” has a chance to sell. A Sister Souljah moment aimed at Goldman Sachs would hurt either.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  40. Todd says:

    @James Joyner: @HarvardLaw92: @Neil Hudelson:

    As I said above, I’m not making any predictions. Just pointing out that much like with Donald Trump, at every stage of this campaign so far, Bernie Sanders has continued to be dismissed as “not a serious candidate”, and at pretty much every stage his campaign has exceeded expectations … and that very much includes last night’s win in NH. Even as recently as a couple of days ago very few mainstream journalists, and even commentators here on this site (go look at the early comments on the prediction post from yesterday) actually believed that Bernie Sanders was going to win by 20+ percentage points. And before perhaps a month or two ago, many weren’t predicting that he had much chance of actually winning at all, even after he took the lead in most polling.

    I will be very interested to see what happens in NV, then SC. Again, without calling this a prediction, I will say that I won’t be shocked at all if as soon as the next couple of days, as those States start to be polled, we don’t see a dramatically tighter race.

    If I’m wrong, so be it. I’m planning to volunteer for some local, State and House campaigns here in Arizona no matter what. If Sanders is the Democratic nominee, I will enthusiastically support him as well. If Clinton is the nominee, I will begin mentally preparing myself for President Trump. I honestly don’t think she will be President … and I would prefer she get that bad news in the primaries rather than the general election.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  41. bookdragon says:

    @gVOR08: Be my guest. :)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  42. C. Clavin says:

    Delegates to date:
    Clinton 344
    Sanders 44
    S. Carolina Polling:
    Clinton 62%
    Sanders 32.5%

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  43. Todd says:

    @James Joyner:

    But I just don’t see an avowed socialist who eschews the party’s label winning the Democratic nomination against a competent, qualified, Democratic machine candidate.

    One last thought. I agree with Clinton being qualified, and certainly the Democratic machine candidate. I do question assigning the label “competent”, especially in the context of her as candidate, and how her campaigns (both current and in 2008) have been run. And even beyond that, her general political judgement. Both the private email server and the Wall Street speeches are political problems of her own making … especially the speeches … she didn’t need the money, and it should have be easily foreseen that they would create at least an “optics” issue.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  44. Modulo Myself says:

    @Scott F.:

    Put simply: Sanders winning the votes but Clinton winning delegates and the nomination would be suicide for the Democratic party in the general election. She has to win the votes regardless of the rules. Otherwise she’s doomed.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  45. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Scott F.:

    Last night’s speech was the opening act of “Hey, Sanders people, now that Bernie is out of the race, you can still feel comfortable voting for me in November. We’re all one big happy bunch of Bradys”.

    In terms of rhetoric, sure, he’s moved her needle a bit. In terms of actual policy proposals once elected? I doubt he’ll have any impact at all. Here in the real world, she’ll be saddled with a Republican controlled Congress and the need to accomplish the doable. Bernie’s proposals are admirable, but they’re also largely unachievable pie in the sky fantasies.

    Politics is the art of the possible.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  46. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Todd:

    I’ll put it this way – in a fair, “everybody who wants to participate can do so regardless of party affiliation and the primary election results directly determine the nominee” sort of contest, Sanders might have a decent shot at getting close to being nominated. An outside chance at actually being nominated.

    The problem is that the Dem nomination process is none of the above. The structure of the delegate pool and the rules for how delegates are awarded make it next to impossible for Sanders to be nominated. Offhand, and bear in mind that my probability matrix is rough here, I give him a 7% chance of being nominated. The degree to which Clinton entered this race with one foot already over the finish line is something that a lot of people don’t want to either acknowledge or accept.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  47. Modulo Myself says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    They’re just rules. The fact that Hillary Clinton had the race in hand before it began is not to her credit politically, and does not sell. I’m quite sure that the Sanders campaign will be thrilled to be the popular vote candidate rather than the orchestrated rules candidate. They have the upper hand in this scenario, and they will use it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  48. gVOR08 says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    …a lot of people don’t want to either acknowledge or accept.

    Many of those people are being paid to generate column inches or digital equivalents.

    I find it hard to believe Bernie doesn’t know this. Which is evidence he’s in it to push an agenda and push Hillary and the party left, not in serious expectation of winning.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  49. Todd says:

    @HarvardLaw92: That’s fine. If the cake is already baked for Hillary Clinton’s nomination, no matter what, then I stand by my “get ready for President Trump” prediction. Especially if, as @Modulo Myself: points out above, Sanders continues to win votes, but in the end still loses the nomination primarily due to the super delegates who are loyal to Clinton. In that scenario, Democrats (up and down the ballot, not only in the Presidential race) are toast. You can’t give that kind of a big middle finger to the millions of enthusiastic Sanders voters, then act shocked when they don’t respond well to the “but don’t forget about the SCOTUS appointments” plea.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  50. Modulo Myself says:

    @Todd:

    Not only Sanders supporters. Honestly, I don’t think it will happen but if it comes down to a point where Clinton’s legal television is out offering lectures about how the primaries were basically all a farce that’s the end of the party for some time at the national level. It would be a joke.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  51. Todd says:

    One last thing, and I’ve said this a couple of times before. My own views on most of the issues actually more closely align with Clinton than Sanders. I don’t even really consider myself a liberal or progressive. I am however someone who does not want to see a Republican back in the White House. And towards that end, I consider Senator Sanders to be a significantly better candidate than Secretary Clinton. Nominating her is the much bigger risk.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  52. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Todd:

    I honestly see no scenario where Sanders wins the popular vote in this election cycle. Iowa and NH, for reasons already exhaustively discussed, are outliers with respect to the larger Dem primary electorate.

    I also think that Trump, assuming he actually gets the nomination, will go down in flames in the electoral college. There aren’t enough states where he could potentially flip the slate to overcome the Dem’s built-in electoral vote advantage.

    In a one-man one vote popular vote decides everything scenario? I’d be worried – but we don’t have that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3

  53. Scott F. says:

    @Modulo Myself:

    Oh, I agree Clinton has to win without the super delegates. My understanding is that since super delegates were brought into play in the 80’s, they’ve never tipped the balance against the candidate preferred by popular vote. I don’t expect anything different this time. The super delegates will mostly go with the leader in the national vote. Still, that favors Clinton as well, as she’s better positioned than Sanders in the big states.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  54. Todd says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    I honestly see no scenario where Sanders wins the popular vote in this election cycle. Iowa and NH, for reasons already exhaustively discussed, are outliers with respect to the larger Dem primary electorate.

    We’ll see. If subsequent contests really do turn out strongly in Clinton’s favor, then I will accept the wisdom of the punditry. However, if as has happened pretty much since shortly after Sanders entered the race in the summer, he continues to exceed expectations, I look forward to reading how those contests too are spun as not really significant.

    Time will tell. Until then, arguing over the as yet to be determined results of future events is kind of silly. :-)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  55. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Scott F.:

    Obama actually lost the popular vote in 2008. The wave of superdelegate endorsements on June 3rd put him over the top and initiated Clinton’s concession.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  56. charon says:

    @James Joyner:

    She would have won in 2008 were it not for Barack Obama’s enormous talents–

    Also, the little matter of the Democratic Party’s big swinging d!kks (so to speak) very publicly backing Obama early on – Tom Daschle, Nancy Pelosi. Also Ted Kennedy hosting big public events supporting Obama.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  57. Scott F. says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    In terms of actual policy proposals once elected? I doubt he’ll have any impact at all.

    In terms of actual policy proposals once elected, Sander will be saddled with the same Republican controlled Congress that will stymie a Clinton agenda.

    I am first and foremost a pragmatist. That’s why I proudly voted for Obama twice and why I look on him much more favorably at the end of his two terms than a lot of the left. I think Clinton will be best suited to navigate the political realities that will exist in the coming few years.

    But, I also say it would be foolish to not pay attention to the current zeitgeist in the country. I believe that Trump and Sanders are both resonating as they are because there is a significant cultural shift taking shape. People have had it with being ripped off, and they know that this dynamic will continue if they settle for the status quo. This movement hasn’t yet coalesced – too many of Trump’s supporters have bought into the idea that it’s the immigrants who are ripping them off, but Trump is bashing the Republican donor class as well, so there’s hope for them yet. I’m convinced the populist movement will only grow.

    The political parties are either going to crash into that wave or figure out how to ride it. The party that figures it out first wins. Not this year, but sooner than you’d think. I believe Clinton is politically savvy enough to get a jump on things with special credit due to Sanders.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  58. MBunge says:

    @HarvardLaw92: there are few solutions which will salve the anger of a crowd displaced by post-industrialism who want something irrational.

    They only want something irrational now because our political elites have spent the last 20+ years either ignoring them or doing their damn best to agitate and polarize them.

    Mike

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  59. DK says:

    @HarvardLaw92: This. This phony hang-wringing over super delegates ominous warnings that Hillary must have the popular vote mandate to be legitimate is exactly the kind of lame, sexist double standard that reveals the misogyny of the anti-Hillary crowd. I don’t recall this hang-wringing in 2008 when Hillary won the popular vote — the famous 18 million cracks in the glass ceiling — and super delegates, terrified of upsetting black voters, selected Obama anyway.

    Hillary knew the rules in 2008. Bernie knew the rules for 2016. Stop trying to move the goalposts for women, Berniebros.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  60. Kari Q says:

    @Modulo Myself:

    I’m way late in my response, I know, but I don’t know what polls you’re looking at. Here is the list of polls of New Hampshire going back to January (you can load more if you want) and the majority of them show Sanders up by double digits. His finish was maybe a bit stronger than expected, but not much.

    It’s been a while since we’ve had any good polling out of South Carolina, and Nevada is notoriously difficult to poll, but I’d be surprised if he does well in either of those states. If he comes any where close to her in one or both, he’s got a shot at the nomination. If he wins one while keeping the other close, I think he’ll be the nominee regardless of Clinton’s super delegates.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  61. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @Todd: There’s a saying in the business that I used to work in: “if you wish in one hand and s[p]it in the other, you shouldn’t be surprised about which hand fills up first.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  62. Todd says:

    @Just ‘nutha ig’rant cracker: I’m not wishing for anything. I’m actually fairly cynical about the whole process. One of the reasons that I’ve been a registered Independent for years is that I see out two major parties as almost two opposites sides of a coin.

    One party has horrible ideas about governing, but is pretty good at political messaging. I mean seriously, how else do you explain the number of people who will probably never earn more than 40K in any year of their life, but are none-the-less, very concerned about the “death (aka inheritance) tax”?

    On the flip side we’ve got a party that is arguably better when it comes to governing, but pretty horrible (in a general overall sense) when it comes to politics. The disastrous mid-term elections these past two cycles were not because *some* Democrats chose not to show up to vote, it’s because the candidates running (especially the southern former Senators) chose not to provide a compelling reason for them to show up.

    I’m not a policy guy when it comes to how I vote … mainly because I understand the system, so know how little ANY President will actually be able to get done, besides on the margins.

    But, because of things like the Supreme Court nominations, I want to see the Democrats win. Bernie Sanders is one of the few Democrats who is actually good when it comes to the marketing and messaging aspects of running a campaign. Whether you agree with him or not, most people (including the candidate himself) could easily explain in one or two short sentences what he stands for, and why he thinks he should be President. Ironically even the most popular pejorative description of his ideas “he’s just promising to give people free stuff” might be appealing to almost as many people as it turns off.

    With Hillary Clinton, it’s not so easy. “I’m qualified, competent, would do a good job … and oh yea, the other guy would be really ‘scary’ if elected”, is not a terribly effective campaign message. Add to that the combination of naked identity politics (sorry, but the Clinton name and her actions/judgements are why some are not terribly enthusiastic about her candidacy, not her sex), along with propensity to blame every mistake she’s made on “political enemies out to get her” make for a candidate whose primary appeal to voters in a general election would seem to be “well at least she’s not as bad as ______”

    That’s a very risky proposition to run on.

    In some ways Hillary Clinton reminds me of Al Gore … and in much the same way that many blamed Nader voters for the 2000 loss rather than Gore’s inept campaign; if Clinton gets the nomination but then loses in the fall, I all but guarantee that many Democrats will blame the “Berniebots” rather than the uninspiring and flawed candidate that they insisted on nominating.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  63. Todd says:

    @DK:

    I don’t recall this hang-wringing in 2008 when Hillary won the popular vote

    Clinton only “won” the popular vote in 2008 if you include Michigan; a State where most of the other major candidates (including Obama) took their name off the ballot after the State was sanctioned by the DNC for holding their primary too early.

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2008/president/democratic_vote_count.html

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  64. Tyrell says:

    Sanders was shown meeting with Reverend Al
    This is a lapse in judgment, some sort of desperate move to pick up some black votes. He does not have to bow before Sharpton’s throne.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 5

  65. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Todd:

    True, but the flipside of that equation is that Obama picked up a significant chunk of the Michigan delegates which were eventually awarded despite not having been on the ballot. I think we can all agree that 2008 ws a mess that is unlikely to be repeated.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  66. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Tyrell:

    It was 1) utterly transparent and 2) far too little, far too late.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  67. Todd says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    It was 1) utterly transparent and 2) far too little, far too late.

    Are you implying that Clinton’s apparent lead with minority voters has to do with any sort of substantive differences between the candidates … as opposed to primarily name recognition?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  68. Modulo Myself says:

    @Kari Q:

    I was looking at the Real Clear Politics website. I have no idea why there’s a different average on either. If you look back at the various polls you see Sanders surging at sometime in mid/early Dec. Before that, there was a poll in November giving Clinton a +21. And after that Clinton manages to lead in one poll in January. It was probably over by then, but certainly not with the actual end margin.

    I wouldn’t be surprised about Nevada or any other state. The more people see of Sanders, the more they like him. The opposite holds with Hillary Clinton.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  69. charon says:

    @Todd:

    Are you implying that Clinton’s apparent lead with minority voters has to do with any sort of substantive differences between the candidates … as opposed to primarily name recognition?

    Someone black could explain it to you:

    CharlesBlowNYT

    Piece is titled: Stop Bernie-Splaining to Black Voters

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  70. charon says:
  71. charon says:

    I Hope this excerpt is not too long for fair use:

    iousness is informed by a bitter history, a mountain of disappointment and an ocean of tears.

    There is a passage by James Baldwin in his essay “Journey to Atlanta” that I believe explains some of the apprehension about Sanders’s grand plans in a way that I could never equal, and although it is long, I’m going to quote it here in full.

    Of all Americans, Negroes distrust politicians most, or, more accurately, they have been best trained to expect nothing from them; more than other Americans, they are always aware of the enormous gap between election promises and their daily lives. It is true that the promises excite them, but this is not because they are taken as proof of good intentions. They are the proof of something more concrete than intentions: that the Negro situation is not static, that changes have occurred, and are occurring and will occur — this, in spite of the daily, dead-end monotony. It is this daily, dead-end monotony, though, as well as the wise desire not to be betrayed by too much hoping, which causes them to look on politicians with such an extraordinarily disenchanted eye.

    This fatalistic indifference is something that drives the optimistic American liberal quite mad; he is prone, in his more exasperated moments, to refer to Negroes as political children, an appellation not entirely just. Negro liberals, being consulted, assure us that this is something that will disappear with “education,” a vast, all-purpose term, conjuring up visions of sunlit housing projects, stacks of copybooks and a race of well-soaped, dark-skinned people who never slur their R’s. Actually, this is not so much political irresponsibility as the product of experience, experience which no amount of education can quite efface.

    Baldwin continues:

    “Our people” have functioned in this country for nearly a century as political weapons, the trump card up the enemies’ sleeve; anything promised Negroes at election time is also a threat leveled at the opposition; in the struggle for mastery the Negro is the pawn.

    Even black folks who don’t explicitly articulate this intuitively understand it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  72. Modulo Myself says:

    @charon:

    It’s wrong to believe that Clinton’s African-American support is unearned. Who really thinks this? Bernie Sanders? As far as I can tell: no. It’s more like randoms on the internet.

    Blow is deploying heavy artillery against these random elements in order to frame Sanders as being insensitive for going after the votes of African-American voters. He’s doing this because he sees the weaknesses in Clinton’s support. He’s not an idiot. Everybody does–welfare reform and crime in the 90s have not aged well, and the Clintons were hardly exemplars of anything equality-wise when they ran against Obama in 2008.

    And personally I don’t see the Baldwin of Another Country and the takedown of Uncle Tom’s Cabin being amused at being used so clumsily by Times columnist in a vague defense of Hillary Clinton.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  73. Todd says:

    @charon: Ok, wait …

    So if I’m understanding this correctly, the rationale for Clinton’s assumption that she has the minority vote all but “locked up” is that black people will be more open to her message that Bernie Sanders’ goals can’t be accomplished right away, so better to elect someone “realistic”????

    Yea, good luck with that.

    Even if I wasn’t a Bernie Sanders supporter, I’d tend to find arguments like this one by Matthew Yglesias more persuasive: http://www.vox.com/2016/2/11/10961910/bernie-sanders-minority-vote

    Clinton’s lead among minorities probably has much more to do with the fact that until recently many might not have known much, if anything, about Bernie Sanders. Once they do learn about him, there’s nothing there that would be terribly objectionable, and plenty for any Democratic voter (regardless of race) to potentially like.

    Again, I’m not a fortune teller, so I could certainly be wrong. But if I had to bet my own money right now, I’d say there’s a very good chance that polls will tighten in the next couple of weeks before they vote in SC. Clinton will probably still win, but more likely an “eke out” victory similar to Iowa than anything akin to Sanders’ blowout win in NH.

    You all can keep telling me all the reasons you’re sure that’s not going to happen. But in reality, the only way this “debate” will end is in a couple of weeks when we see the actual results.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  74. Todd says:

    I have a question for Clinton supporters …

    Do you actually personally object to any of Sanders policy proposals on an ideological basis? Or is your opposition mainly fear that those ideas may be “too extreme” for other voters?

    Just curious.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  75. charon says:

    Maybe some people just have greater reasons to prioritize electablity:

    http://pmcarpenter.blogs.com/p_m_carpenters_commentary/2016/02/is-bernie-worth-the-risk.html

    ” … I and others have put this question directly to Bernie’s supporters. And these are the answer we get:

    * Hillary’s supporters are defenders of status quo
    * Hillary’s supporters are defenders of Wall Street
    * Hillary is secretive
    * Hillary voted for the Iraq war
    * Hillary is a neoliberal
    * Hillary is supported by The Democratic Establishment
    * The Democratic Establishment is evil
    * Hillary is a lousy politician
    * Voting for Hillary because she’s a woman is no reason to vote for woman Hillary
    * Hillary and Bill are scheming triangulators
    * Bernie hates the status quo, Wall Street, neoliberalism and triangulation
    * Bernie is a visionary
    * Bernie wants to do nice things
    * Bernie wants to “shake things up”
    * Bernie has no super PAC
    * It’s time for a “political revolution”

    Which is to say, Bernie’s supporters have no answer, or at least they offer no answer. They offer an abundance of Hillary’s wickedness and Bernie’s virtues, but they never answer the bloody question: Is Sen. Sanders worth the risk of losing the White House — a White House in which the Democratic president would, at any rate, accomplish virtually nothing except act as a placeholder until the next decade?
    – See more at: http://pmcarpenter.blogs.com/p_m_carpenters_commentary/2016/02/is-bernie-worth-the-risk.html#sthash.2eseG1i1.dpuf

    … “

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  76. Todd says:

    @charon:

    There’s a faulty assumption in that question … that Hillary Clinton is more “electable” than Bernie Sanders.

    There’s more potential evidence that the exact opposite is true.

    Bernie Sanders has a concise, easy to understand, positive message. Sure he will be attacked by the big money Conservative groups in a general election campaign. But in formulating a response, he has the advantage of understanding that his policy proposals are actually quite popular with most of the American public … not just Democrats.

    The lament about “oh no the Republicans will say mean things” then formulating a campaign around not angering them too much, is exactly how Democrats have managed to lose so badly at pretty much every level but the Presidency over the past 7 years. Hillary Clinton is likely to run a very similar style campaign to all of those overly cautious former Senators … you know the ones who didn’t even want the President to campaign for them. They had an across the board 100% record … of losing.

    That sort of campaign would be the much greater risk in such an important election.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  77. Mikey says:

    @Todd:

    There’s a faulty assumption in that question … that Hillary Clinton is more “electable” than Bernie Sanders.

    Google “Obama electability” and you get plenty of hits with the same kind of blather from 2008 about how he was less “electable” than Hillary Clinton.

    How’d that turn out, again?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  78. charon says:

    @Todd:

    I can not speak for “Clinton supporters,” only myself.

    I do not exactly object to Bernie’s proposals, it is more that I find them pointless as they are too far out to even influence Congress let alone pass into enacted legislation. So, more irrelevant and silly than otherwise objectionable.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  79. Todd says:

    @charon: But Bernie Sanders isn’t saying that he is going to personally implement these policies on day one, just by getting into the White House. The whole rationale behind his “revolution” message is that unless people get much more involved, and work at all levels to elect leaders who care more about average citizens than their campaign donors, it won’t really matter who’s in the White House. Also, based on his record in the House and Senate, Sanders does not appear to be a Republican style purist who stomps his feet and screams “my way or the highway”. He fights for his ideals, but then at times goes along with the best deal that can be had … ironically a few of those type of votes are where Clinton supporters try to attack him (laughably) from the left.

    Look, I’ve been a strong supporter of President Obama for his entire Presidency, and I’m very much a person who values compromise in deal making. But I do think that in quite a few instances, the “opening bid” in negotiating with Republicans was much too “reasonable”. When Democrats start out proposing a relatively moderate solution to a problem, while Republicans scream for an extreme right agenda, is it any wonder that most compromises end somewhere right of center?

    I can’t speak for Sanders’s campaign, but from watching/listening so far, I get the strong impression that from day one, the message would be “this is what we want to do, now elect a congress that will make it possible”. Sure this may take several election cycles, quite possibly longer than Sanders term(s) in office. But if we simply accept the status quo, of Conservatives being overly represented in both Houses of Congress, the change that’s needed to make this a better country for most citizens will just be pushed even further down the road.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  80. An Interested Party says:

    …he has the advantage of understanding that his policy proposals are actually quite popular with most of the American public … not just Democrats.

    If that is really the case, why doesn’t most of the American public elect people who have policy proposals like his?

    When Democrats start out proposing a relatively moderate solution to a problem, while Republicans scream for an extreme right agenda, is it any wonder that most compromises end somewhere right of center?

    That theory flies in the face of how the PPACA came about, where there were plenty of Democrats who were against even the public option, much less a single-payer system…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

  81. Todd says:

    @An Interested Party:

    That theory flies in the face of how the PPACA came about, where there were plenty of Democrats who were against even the public option, much less a single-payer system…

    The PPACA was/is a horrible shit sandwich of a compromise. And oh coincidentally (or not), most of those “plenty of Democrats” who were against even the public option, are the very Democrats who are no longer in elected office anymore. The very Democrats who choose to attempt to appease their “moderate” Republican (as if many of those even exist anymore) constituents, while ignoring liberals as “too extreme”. Then when they get voted out anyway, turn around and blame all the liberals for not showing up to support them.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  82. Todd says:

    Many Democratic “strategists” are stuck in the past, where elections were theoretically about capturing the “swing” voters. Those days are long gone. The American people have, for the most part, mostly chosen sides. Today’s elections are won or lost by exciting and turning out the base.

    I say this as a mostly non-ideological, middle of the road kind of guy. Trying to tailor campaign messaging to appeal to people like me, at the expense of the “true believers” is a losing strategy in 2016.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  83. David M says:

    @Todd:

    I think that Sanders is setting things up for a disaster with his discussion about “Medicare for All”, because it won’t even end up with anything even approaching Obamacare. You were disappointed with how little could be accomplished with massive but brief Democratic majorities? Just wait for what Sanders can talk the GOP into passing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  84. Kari Q says:

    @Todd:

    Are you implying that Clinton’s apparent lead with minority voters has to do with any sort of substantive differences between the candidates … as opposed to primarily name recognition?

    Hillary has worked hard for the support of the black community. She’s met with them listened to their concerns, answered their questions, and generally made it clear that she values their support.

    Sanders has not engaged them much at all. He finally recognized this after the Black Live Matter protest, but he hadn’t done much to reach out to them before them. It’s not so much that they dislike Sanders, I don’t think they do, but they don’t know that he really cares about or engages the issues that matter to them.

    I would also say that if any group of people is likely to feel that incremental change is more likely than radical change, it would be a community with a long history of fighting oppression. They, more than anyone, knows things won’t change overnight.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  85. Kari Q says:

    @Modulo Myself:

    Far enough, but do keep in mind that polling for primaries is pretty volatile, especially before January, and and voters don’t pay attention till about a month before they actually vote. The fact that Sanders was leading the polling for a month before the election says that when the voters started thinking about who to support, they decided for Sanders.

    The difference in the polling is that Pollster reports all published polls, Real Clear Politics does not. I believe they only report media polls. There’s arguments to be made either way, but I tend to feel that more polls is better. In either case, even at RCP, polls from November showed Sanders doing well, except that one poll from Gravis. Other polls at the same time were showing either a close race or Sanders a lead outside the margin of error. Given that, I wouldn’t make too much of that one poll. It’s clearly an outlier.

    It will be interesting to see if we get fresh polls in South Carolina that tell us if something has changed dramatically.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  86. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Todd:

    No, I’m explicitly saying that Clinton has been working for years to gain their support, and her efforts in this cycle in particular started early and have been quite extensive.

    Bernie, in comparison, has essentially ignored them beyond token efforts. Him sitting down with Sharpton now has the unmistakable stink of “SC has a lot of those black folks. We probably need to get Bernie a photo op sitting down with one of them.”

    It’s transparently self-serving, and blatantly patronizing to boot. These people aren’t stupid, nor are you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  87. An Interested Party says:

    The PPACA was/is a horrible shit sandwich of a compromise. And oh coincidentally (or not), most of those “plenty of Democrats” who were against even the public option, are the very Democrats who are no longer in elected office anymore.

    I don’t disagree about PPACA but what better bill could have gotten through Congress? If all of those Democrats had voted for a single-payer plan would they still be in Congress? And, once again, if Sander’s policy proposals (many of which I agree with) are allegedly so popular with most of the American public, why aren’t more people who agree with those policy proposals actually winning elections…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  88. Todd says:

    @An Interested Party:

    If all of those Democrats had voted for a single-payer plan would they still be in Congress?

    That’s my point. The Democrats who were more responsible for making the healthcare law worse than it had to be ALL lost the next time they were up for reelection anyway.

    … if Sander’s policy proposals (many of which I agree with) are allegedly so popular with most of the American public, why aren’t more people who agree with those policy proposals actually winning elections…

    This very conversation makes it obvious. Too many Democrats are far too timid when it comes to advocating for what they really believe. Look, Republicans (especially of the strongly Conservative variety) are classic bullies. But most Democrats are correspondingly classic bully victims … cowed into moderating their message for fear of “angering the beast”.

    It’s a losing strategy.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  89. Todd says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    It’s transparently self-serving, and blatantly patronizing to boot.

    My Republican friends do this a lot … attempt to project their favored leader’s/candidate’s worst qualities on their opponents. :-)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  90. An Interested Party says:

    It’s a losing strategy.

    Hmm…speaking of losing, I’m thinking of Dukakis, Mondale, and McGovern…Sanders could easily join that list…I’m still trying to find this progressive groundswell you seem to think is in this country…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  91. Todd says:

    @An Interested Party: It’s not necessarily a “progressive” groundswell. But the message that Wall Street is, and has been engaged in mass fraud, and that our current corrupt campaign finance system enables that fraud, is a message that resonates with Americans across the ideological spectrum.

    When many Trump supporters say that Bernie Sanders would be their second choice, it’s not because they think Sanders agrees with Trump on things like immigration or ISIS … it’s about the destruction of the American Dream that has taken place over the past 3 to 4 decades … and it’s not just the Republican’s fault. Clinton style Democrats (and the policies they’ve either championed or gone along with) played a large part in the growth of economic inequality in America.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  92. Mikey says:

    What amazes me about this whole campaign is we’ve got a candidate (Sanders) who’d basically be a bog-standard middle-of-the-road social democrat just about anywhere else in the world, but in America he’s seen as hanging out on the far left, barely a hair’s breadth from Chairman Mao.

    I don’t think that’s a good thing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  93. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Todd:

    Not seeing where you get that from. Clinton has been engaged with African Americans on a very deep level for a LONG time. They’re not stupid people, by and large, and they adore her – for a reason.

    Sanders hasn’t done much of anything in the way of outreach to or engagement with the African American electorate beyond a few token gestures.His campaign has basically acted as though they don’t exist – until the SC primary comes along and his campaign evidently realized it has an AA problem.

    Let’s be honest – Sharpton is a self-promoting pimp whose primary concern is keeping Al Sharpton in the news. He’ll meet with ANYbody. It’s telling that, of all the African American leaders Sanders could have tried to engage with, even at this late date, evidently the only one willing to meet with him was Sharpton.

    It’s nice that Bernie evidently woke up and realized that he needed to try to make nice with the African American community, but it’s still as transparent as window glass.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

  94. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Todd:

    it’s about the destruction of the American Dream that has taken place over the past 3 to 4 decades

    The “American Dream” is a flawed set of expectations based on a period of aberrant post-war prosperity in the US. We were essentially the only industrial economy left standing after WW2, and we could sell everything we could produce (and did).

    The problem with that is that the rest of the world was always going to rebuild its industrial plants,and rebuild them along modern standards (in comparison to many of ours which dated back to the 1890s – 1920s). When they did so, the illusion that was the “American Dream” began to fade away.

    The primary problem here is that Americans, for reasons passing understanding, think that post-industrialism shouldn’t be happening to them, or more amusing, can be reversed. What’s happened in America was utterly predictable. People just don’t want to accept it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  95. jukeboxgrad says:

    Todd:

    When many Trump supporters say that Bernie Sanders would be their second choice

    Exactly. We see this:

    “Bernie is my No. 1 choice, and Trump is No. 2. They’re not that different.”

    And this:

    “I’m a Trump guy, but I do like Bernie … There are a lot of parallels between these two guys. There’s a populist appeal that comes with both of them.”

    And here’s something that’s mostly being ignored, and shouldn’t be:

    On Thursday, the Drudge Report conducted its first presidential preference poll of the 2016 campaign. … With more than 1,000,000 votes cast, Donald Trump took the top spot with 36 percent of the vote. He was followed by Socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)16% in second, with 30 percent. … While there isn’t any scientific value in the poll, with respect to predicting voting outcomes, the size of the voting sample and Drudge’s position at the center of political news makes the results interesting, nonetheless.

    Drudge is a major right-wing voice. His audience is massive and hardcore. They are not college liberals. 340,000 votes for Bernie in a Drudge poll is a major signal, and this signal is mostly being ignored.

    The tea party base is not really against socialism. They’re just against the government helping people they don’t like. They’re fine with socialism when it means the government helping people like them (‘get your government hands off my medicare’). They can see that Sanders believes in this.

    Sanders is in a strong position to pull voters away from Trump. As you have pointed out, Bernie, not Hillary, is the more electable one in the current environment.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  96. Todd says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    Not seeing where you get that from.

    Oh come on. Everytime she name drops President Obama, as if they have always been best buddies who agree on everything, it’s utterly transparent that it’s aimed squarely at South Carolina voters. I’m not saying it’s wrong or bad, she is a politician. I just find it rich that a Clinton supporter would attempt to accuse her opponent of being overly “transparently self-serving, and blatantly patronizing”. Black pot, meet kettle. 😉

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  97. Todd says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    Let’s be honest – Sharpton is a self-promoting pimp whose primary concern is keeping Al Sharpton in the news.

    Sharpton is also having essentially the same meeting with Secretary Clinton next week.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  98. jukeboxgrad says:

    An Interested Party:

    I’m still trying to find this progressive groundswell you seem to think is in this country

    There’s plenty of evidence that voters who don’t label themselves “progressive” nevertheless support progressive policies. For example, a majority believes that government should “redistribute wealth by heavy taxes on the rich.”

    why aren’t more people who agree with those policy proposals actually winning elections

    Because our system is driven by corporate money, which has in mind a different set of policy proposals.

    Campaign finance is the core issue. There are precisely two candidates who are refusing the support of big donors. This matters to voters, so these are the two candidates who are doing surprisingly well.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  99. Todd says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    The “American Dream” is a flawed set of expectations based on a period of aberrant post-war prosperity in the US. We were essentially the only industrial economy left standing after WW2, and we could sell everything we could produce (and did).

    That makes sense.

    Ok then, how about at least the “European dream”. We are still unquestionably the wealthiest country in the world. So why is it considered “radical” to ask how things like universal healthcare, family leave, and going to college without incurring mounds of debt are “too expensive” here in America, but are things that citizens in virtually every other industrialized country in the world are able to have?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  100. Pch101 says:

    @Todd:

    So why is it considered “radical” to ask how things like universal healthcare, family leave, and going to college without incurring mounds of debt are “too expensive” here in America, but are things that citizens in virtually every other industrialized country in the world are able to have?

    The US is more conservative in those respects than are western and northern Europe. Sorry, but that’s just how it is.

    Some of the reasons:

    -In Germany, the idea of the welfare state came from the monarchist right (Bismarck). Accordingly, welfare doesn’t fall on the left-right axis as it does in the US.

    -The Dutch experience with social programs comes in part from the country’s need to entrust the government with fundamental issues of existence, such as keeping the country above water (literally). In the US, the average American’s experience with government involves the DMV and the IRS, which aren’t exactly leaders in the field of public relations.

    -The Brits started demanding a welfare state due to the disparaties of the class system and the feeling that the common people had earned it due to their sacrifices during the wars. Whereas the British working class does not trust and is skeptical of the wealthy, Americans aspire to be wealthy.

    The US isn’t going to be Europe, and political innovations to need to be presented in that context. For example, we should have gone for a more aggressive cradle-to-death healthcare plan that covered everyone when the Dems still had 60 votes in the Senate and a House majority, but such a plan should have been marketed differently, i.e. as a way to make sure that you can see any doctor who you want (kill the networks) and as a tool for avoiding outrageous deductibles (which are not unknown even for employer-based insurance plans.) It should have been promoted by big business and the tech industry rock stars as a way of reducing their costs and spurring entrepreneurship while increasing consumer choice, not as a way to help the poor people who many Americans despise (since “poor” in the US is a code word for “minority.”)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  101. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Todd:

    Understood, but she’s had multiple meetings with him, Roland Martin, April Ryan, et al stretching back over many months, if not years. You can’t just expect to slide in with one AA leader at the last possible second and not be accused of being less than sincere.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2