Wednesday, June 8, 2016

The Fall of Sanders

So, here's what I'm thinking.

They should give Bernie Sanders a prime time speaking slot at the Democrat National Convention. Pride of place and everything.

And then, 30 seconds into his speech, they should let some Black Lives Matters protesters on the stage and say, 'If you can get him to stand down, you can have his time slot.'


B. Prokop said...

I think that Sanders losing in California by double digits actually makes it easier for him to drop out at this point. He now has no case to make to any hypothetical superdelegates open to switching allegiance. (I say "hypothetical" because there was never any evidence that such delegates even existed in the first place.)

We will learn by week's end whether his whole campaign was ever serious, or just a huge ego trip. Part of being a leader is not only knowing when to concede, but also knowing how to do so in a manner that preserves one's principles.

I'm not sure that Sanders has that in him.

Well, in any case, this summer will give us a campaign season that I for one never expected. A year ago I would have been willing to bet Yankee dollars that we'd be seeing a race between either Clinton or Bidon and Rand Paul. Boy was I ever wrong!

In the short term, the most fascinating political question for me is will the pollsters start including Gary Johnson in their polls? And if they do, will his support rise to the level that gets him on the debate stage?

The second most interesting question is, where will the die hard Sanders supporters go? Will they acquiesce to Clinton's victory, or switch to Trump, or go third party (either Libertarian or Green), or just stay home? Lots of choices there.

Crude said...

Drop out? Why would he?

He's the socialist anti-capitalist, anti-Wall-Street crusader, and Hillary's as bought and paid for as they come. March off to the convention, I say. Demand change after his unfair treatment. Maybe run third party, even.

Or, I suppose, Democrats could just acquiesce to becoming the big-business war party. But at least they'll have abortion and gay marriage!

Anonymous said...

Crude, I gotta hand it to you. You're right. This election IS hilarious!

Honestly, after Trump's press conference where he ripped into the press like an angry wolverine, he'd have to eat a baby for me not to support him. And even then I'd waffle a bit.

That was one of the greatest political moments I've ever seen. Truly magnificent.

B. Prokop said...

I think we have two separate, and only partially related, questions here.

The first deals with Sanders himself. A lot depends on what is really important to him. Is it the "cause", or is it Sanders? As a senator, he was always speaking out (and voting) on behalf of issues I believe he was genuinely sincere about. This helps explain his backing of gun rights, a cause not normally associated with left wingers. He got some attention, of course - and was always welcome on MSNBC. But he was, all in all, a small fish in a little pond.

But as a presidential candidate, he has been the recipient of the fawning adoration of vast crowds and extensive media coverage - a new experience for this senator from a really small, sleepy, rural state. (I've spent a lot of time in Vermont - excitement is not its middle name.) It's not hard to see how this could be habit forming. Sanders must know, even if only subconsciously, that the day he concedes, all this is over. So the question becomes, is he willing to give such attention up?

The second question deals with his supporters. Are they in it for "him" or for the issues? If the former (and Sanders' celebrity idol status suggests this is the case), then many will either sit November out or vote for Trump - not out of conviction, but for sheer spite. If the latter (a minority of them, in my belief), then they'll either hold their nose and vote Clinton, or look around for a third party.

In any case, we'll almost surely know which was the tree will fall by week's end. I strongly suspect events will start to move at lightning speed from here on out, all the way to November. I don't see the traditional summer lull happening this year.

Lucretius said...

I can't wait to see him endorse Mrs. Clinton, the most bought Wall Street Candidate of them all *giggle*

Christi pax,


Crude said...


Pretty much. His candidacy is everything I've wanted for a while.


You seem to not be giving Sanders enough credit, which is odd! What makes you think the point of his candidacy is securing victory for the Democrats? Last I recall, he was an independent from Vermont. Maybe what he's after is bigger than him and bigger than the party.

Apparently his loss over the past couple days isn't enough to stop him. March on, I say. Dare I say it - if one is truly opposed to war, opposed to Wall Street, and more, well. One can't support Hillary.

Unless all that matters is abortion and such.

B. Prokop said...

"Unless all that matters is abortion and such."

I doubt that most Democrats give those issues as much time and attention as Republicans do. I will say that I have spoken to two or three Clinton supporters for whom same sex "marriage" is near the top of their agenda (which is weird, since they seem to have already won on that one), but I have yet to meet either a Clinton or a Sanders supporter who assigns any real priority to abortion. The fire is all on the other side, and I think a bit of projection is going on here. ("If we're so engaged with this issue, our opponents must be equally passionate.")

As for "Wall Street" I must make a confession here. I've listened to Sanders talk about this, but for the life of me I can't figure out what he would actually do about it, were to to somehow become president.

Crude said...

I doubt that most Democrats give those issues as much time and attention as Republicans do. I


B. Prokop said...

Why the laughter? I'm just stating a fact.

Unless you yourself bring the subject up, most partisan Democrats never talk about it (or seemingly even think about it). Have you had a different experience?

Crude said...

Why the laughter? I'm just stating a fact.

Unless you yourself bring the subject up, most partisan Democrats never talk about it (or seemingly even think about it).




B. Prokop said...

Whatever. I'm just telling you what I've experienced for myself. Republicans get all worked up over it; Democrats hardly ever raise the subject (but will respond once it's been raised). Anecdotal evidence to be sure, but there it is. At least as valid as your HAHAHA's.

Crude said...

Pfftaha. Haha.. Ha.

Okay, no, no. I'm good, I'm good. Whew, sorry about that.

Anyway, to respond, I--

Democrats hardly ever raise the subject


Anonymous said...

B. Prokop,

I'm gonna have to side with Crude here. I DON'T talk about abortion in public, or very rarely, in controlled circumstances. Why? Because if I bring it up, I'll be attacked.

Meanwhile almost literally every female I know not related to me, and some who ARE related to me, has gone public supporting abortion explicitly and bashing some politician or another for making a vaguely pro-life comment.

I find the idea that you don't think democrats talk about this stuff to be absurd to, like Crude, the point of parody.

B. Prokop said...

I guess we move in different circles. I quite literally can't think of a single incident ever when one of my Democratic friends brought the subject up - not once. Whereas I can't count the times my Republican friends introduced the topic into a conversation. Maybe geography's a factor? Perhaps the different "sides" behave differently in different states? Or perhaps it's an urban/suburban/rural divide?

As I said, anecdotal evidence. Take it for what it's worth. A data point, nothing more.

And I apologize for sidelining the conversation. It was much more interesting when we were discussing what Sanders might do next.

The Deuce said...

Oh hey look. Here's Hillary not focusing on abortion again!

The Deuce said...

Ooh, and again:

and again:

(I swear she never does this!)

and again:

(I swear I don't know what came over her!)

and again:

B. Prokop said...


I'm not talking about politicians, but people I know personally. Huge difference. Quoting Clinton is irrelevant. I don't know her - have never spoken to her (though we did make eye contact once in 1994, passing each other in a Pentagon hallway).