Sunday, March 27, 2016

Sanders still lagging, dragging behind

Yes, it’s true. The presidential aspirations of Bernie Sanders had a good day Saturday – he managed to win caucuses or primaries in three states, picking up 55 more delegates to the Democratic National Convention.

SANDERS: Enough time for a victory?
By comparison, Hillary Clinton’s campaign only gained 20 more delegates. And when combined with the week before when Bernie picked up wins in Idaho and Utah, it gives him a streak.

MOMENTUM, IS THE word he’ll want to screech and scream to the world. He has it, she doesn’t. He is destined for the presidency, he’ll want us to think. I'm sure his response to the Progressive Turnout Project's Internet survey of whether he should withdraw from the race is to complain there's no "Hell, No!!!" option to pick from.

Yet the problem for Sanders, the senator from Vermont, is that his momentum may have come a tad too late.

It could wind up like the 2008 election cycle when Barack Obama’s presidential aspirations built up an early lead that Hillary was never able to fully close the gap on.

Only this time, the Democratic Party establishment has given Hillary the early lead, and Bernie is the guy who is merely dragging out the process without a real chance to win.

THE PROBLEM FOR Sanders is that all 50 states are not created equal. Some states matter more than others. And rightfully so, because they’re the ones that have significant numbers of people living within their boundaries.

Yes, it’s true that Bernie gained 55 more delegates on Saturday. Then again, when Illinois had its primary a couple of weeks ago, Hillary won 73 delegates in the Land of Lincoln alone.

Heck, even the other day when Bernie won in Utah and Idaho and gained 43 more delegates, Hillary won in Arizona and took 44 delegates for her own campaign.

Yes, I’m reducing all of this to cold, hard numbers. Because that ultimately is what the nominating conventions are all about – particularly when the campaign is down to two candidates (Martin O’Malley’s bid pops up on a few ballots, but he’s gaining nothing).

AS OF NOW, Hillary has 1,712 delegates committed to supporting her, short of the 2,383 needed at the nominating convention to be held in Philadelphia. While Bernie has only 1,004. He has to start running up overwhelming win streaks, including in places that have significant numbers of delegates to offer.

Or else he’s going to lose.

As for those young kids who think it’d be “cool” to have a Democratic Socialist as the party nominee instead of some old party hack like Hillary (a ridiculous image, to be sure, but the one many of them have of her), perhaps a math lesson is the best way to explain how their enthusiasm is not catching on with the rest of the country.

It’s all about the numbers. It’s why the Republican Party establishment that despises the very existence of Donald Trump on their ballot (but they love it when he gives money to their political candidates) is focusing its own attention on keeping Trump’s delegate count below the minimum required.

THEN THEY CAN engage in some hard-core politicking to pick a different presidential nominee.

As for whether it is fair that larger, urban states will wind up dominating the Democratic nominating process, I’d argue what else is new. The Dems are the urban-influenced political party of this nation.

Sanders’ ultimate problem is that many of the states where he is prevailing now are ones not only with few delegates but also ones where the Democratic Party organization is weak and not likely to back him come November.

Those same states likely will wind up in the Republican column come the general election. That is, unless they rebel against the idea of a “President Donald Trump” and wind up making their mark on the ballot next to the name of Hillary!


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