Clinton’s figured out how to ensure her victory: Threaten Sanders that if he doesn’t endorse her, pronto, she’ll begin campaigning as a triangulator.
The risk is that [Sanders] will lose his moment because some Clinton partisans already see a more centrist campaign as the best way to win over millions of middle-of-the-road voters who find Trump abhorrent. Sanders has to decide if accelerating his plans to endorse Clinton is now the best way to maximize progressive influence.
— Sanders is making his long goodbye count, E.J. Dionne, Washington Post, today
So there it is. The moment that Sanders endorses Clinton, Clinton will conclude that a more centrist campaign is the best way to win over millions of middle-of-the-road voters who find Trump abhorrent. Because there are just so very many middle-of-the-road voters who find Trump abhorrent but find the idea of a Medicare-for-all-type healthcare system, a $15/hr. minimum wage, tuition-free public colleges and universities, and compelled reduction in the size and consequent economic and political power of a few mega-banks even more abhorrent.
Throw in sizable tax increases on the wealthy, and the abhorrence of this platform as compared with a Trump presidency shoots off the charts. At least if you’re a Clinton partisan—Bill Daley, for example, who’s a Democrat only by convenience—and your Wall Street career depended initially upon your family contacts and later upon your Clinton ones. Or you’ve made your Wall Street fortune the new-fashioned way: private equity.
The very definition of middle-of-the-road, in other words. Just not the definition of middle-class. Or working-class. Unless your work is parlaying your money into ever greater political power in order to ensure a continued inflow of huge amounts of money.
In any event we have it now from the horse’s mouth—someone in Clinton’s inner circle. The risk is that Sanders will lose his moment because some Clinton partisans already see a more centrist campaign as the best way to win over middle-of-the-road voters with millions of dollars who find Trump abhorrent.
Too late, Bernie. You missed your moment. You can now withhold not only your endorsement but also your mailing list of three million donors, none of them middle-of-the-road ones.
And some of those three million donors and the many millions more who voted for you, being deemed not as important as the middle-of-the-road voters who hate the idea of a Medicare-for-all-type healthcare system, a $15/hr. minimum wage, tuition-free public colleges and universities, and compelled reduction in the size and consequent economic and political power of a few mega-banks, even more than they hate Trump, may find themselves hating Clinton even more than they hate Trump. And every bit as much as those millions of middle-of-the-road voters hate a progressive policy platform. Which is even more than they hate Trump.
What prompted this threat, presumably, was Sanders’ response in an interview with Jake Tapper on Tuesday, when asked what he thought it would take for Clinton to win over his supporters. “We are trying to say to Secretary Clinton and the Clinton campaign, ‘Make it clear which side you are on,’” he said. The punditry is up in arms about that.
I myself thought it was a bit harsh, when I read about it on Tuesday. But Sanders’ instincts were right, apparently.
If the risk to Sanders is that he will lose his moment because some Clinton partisans already see a more centrist campaign as the best way to win over millions of middle-of-the-road voters who find Trump abhorrent, then his moment wasn’t worth much. The Clinton partisans who claim to see a more centrist campaign as the best way to win over millions of middle-of-the-road voters actually likely just see a victorious Clinton, given who her opponent is, and want to make sure a new Clinton administration is a triangulating one, just like the original.
But if they really believe that a more centrist campaign is the best way to win this election, it’s that their tunnel vision is misleading them about who millions of middle-of-the-road voters actually are. The millions who don’t work in the financial services industry, aren’t major Clinton donors, and aren’t professional centrists.
Well, this does solve the mystery of the Clinton campaign’s odd choice of ad themes, anyway. But this candidate should wonder no further why so very many people don’t like her and so many don’t trust her. That this didn’t occur to her before she allowed her campaign to use a progressive columnist to put out that particular threat is just par for this candidate’s and this campaign team’s course.
Announcing to Sanders’s supporters that she’ll go Triangulation if he asks her again to make it clear which side she’s on rather than just endorsing her has served, it appears, to make it clear which side she’s on.
Just as I was beginning to feel okay with this candidate, she pulled the rug out from under me and, probably, from a slew of others who will hear about that threat.
Of course, she needn’t worry, given all those millions of centrist voters who hate the thought of Medicare-for-all, tuition-free public colleges and universities, reducing the size and influence of the mega-banks, and the like, even more than they hate Donald Trump.
So it will all work out well for her campaign in the end.
Just to be clear: I know better than to not vote or to vote for the professional grifter. I’ll vote for her. And I expect to see this reward: a very progressive Dem-controlled Congress that will put progressive legislation on Clinton’s desk for her to sign.
This was, in my view, always going to happen. This is what Hillary Clinton is. If there is a Republican house or senate or both next year, she will jump on the conservative policy bandwagon quite happily to show how much she can accomplish. If there is a solid level of Democratic control, she might drift a bit more progressive, but it’s just as likely that she will try to identify right leaning Democrats and build a coalition with moderate Republicans to push through her policies to show how she can “change the tone in Washington through bipartisanship.”
This might strike you as news, but the Dem voter in AZ is not the same as the Dem voter in NY. And that is certainly more true when you drill down to the House race level. Some candidates will not adopt all of Sanders’ thoughts. Some certainly will. I would think the primary results clearly show that.
Sanders’ time and efforts right now should be totally engaged in raising money for, and campaigning for, candidates who agree with all of his policies. He has done it for a couple of people, but not anywhere near the degree he needs to if he wants his policies to become a driving force in the Dem party.
His actions since the last primary have been baffling to me. The potential problems at the Convention his behavior is bringing into play scare me to death. And even if those confrontations do not occur, the idea that Sanders is now risking a chance for a prime time speech at the convention is mind boggling.
It is getting to the point where I am starting to think this revolution is more about Sanders than his policies.
The Dem voter in Ohio, in Michigan, in Pennsylvania is the Dem voter whom Clinton should be most concerned with. Since they are more likely than the Dem voter in Arizona to determine the outcome of the election. Much more likely, I would think.
There are no “moderate Republicans”. Obama searched for some for the last 7 years(the last time there were some “Moderate Republicans”, and since the only “bipartisanship” there has been has been forced on both sides only because inaction would be worse.
“Dem” voter in red state……… don’t mind their gardener is illegal and happy to keep it that way.
This PUMA sees Hilary as Dick Nixon and any bone she throws is her secret Vietnam exit…..
AZ is in play. And the Dem voters in those swing states you mentioned are not all the same.
Last time I checked, Clinton hammered Sanders in PA and Ohio. But that is besides the point.
The point is that Sanders is now showing(as he has in the past) that he has the Political IQ of a wildebeest. He showed it with the second most stupid political decision in my lifetime in 2006 when he won the Dem nomination for Senator in Vermont.(McCain naming Palin tops my list.
He would then have had a speech at the 2008 convention. And might even had had the keynote in 2012. Pushing his policies for years, instead of one year.
But no, he wanted his independence, for reasons I cannot understand and which, imo, is the main reason he is not the Dem nominee in 2016.
But maybe I am wrong. It’s not like there is any history of a previously unknown Senator at the national level rising to national prominence by virtue of a DNC convention speech and defeating a huge favorite in the primary, right?
Oh, wait. He has been in the White House for the last 8 years……
As has been apparent for some time, the best hope for progressives is concentrating on Congress and state and local politics. Their desired policies were never going to be imposed from the top down. Obama’s terms have amply demonstrated the point.
With respect to Bernie and the presidential race and upcoming convention, at some point he really does have to concede that she won.
Dan here..deleted 3 comments per request
Yeah Beverly, I know you and many others do not like centrist Hillary and believe that in their hearts a majority of thinking people will support more leftist ideas, but the facts are that Hillary got a lot more votes than Sanders and is the presumptive Democratic nominee, she is not going to change her spots regardless of what Sanders may want, while I agree that it would be nice if she threw some red meat to the party’s left, that left is either decimated–labor– or does not bother to vote. That is why Sanders had very little clout to begin with and why he has even less today. And EMichael is absolutely right. If Sanders had spent the last 10 years in the Democratic party and helping to elect Democrats downticket, including in state government, he could well be the presumptive nominee and would certainly have a much stronger voice in the Democratic party.
If people are stupid enough not to vote for the better candidate just because he was not part of the party long enough, they deserve what ever they get. Their mistakes are on their heads, and are no reason for me to vote for a warmonger.
The choice is between the so called war monger and a total charlatan. The suggestion that the two are on some equal plane is absurd at the very least. In fact the only candidates that Trump has any affinity with are his former competitors in the Republican primaries. So there is a real reason to vote Democrat for President, even if you have to hold your nose to do so. And the term war monger in this day and age is thrown around a bit too lightly. Clinton may be too far to the right of the center regarding economics and the government’s role in enforcing better business practices, but she is pretty much an average Democrat in a nation too inclined to the search for empire.
Snowden for president.
Clinton News Network, PK, DeLong etc…… hawking all the time.
Sanders’ ‘support’ was limited in closed primary states.
Sanders draws independents and PUMAs.
See if Clinton pulls in independents, Dem PUMAs and GOP PUMA? Seen by Nate Silver!
Snowden got no one killed (in the unclas world) just like Hillary.
Snowden will soon be in prison in Russia, after criticizing recent legislation. He was a fun political toy when he was criticizing the US, but he’ll quickly lose his perceived value if he keeps saying bad things about Russia.
Hillary is sharp as a tack. Bernie, not so much. He allowed his window of opportunity to close. He best bet now is to simply concede, endorse and campaign his butt off for defeating Trump.
I am surprised he has yet to figure out how to land the plane. It ain’t rocket science. He lost. Game over.
The Democratic Party made this type of mistake once before in 2010 and did not learn a thing apparently. I will vote for Hillary but if she moves further to the right turnout may be a real issue. It does not matter how many centrists she gets she will not be able to compensate for the massive Democratic no show. A no show that may effect the Democratic Party for numerous years to come.
Raymond 2010/2014 we were tired of red dog dems!
2012 Romney was even more despised than McCain’s insanity.
Clinton has the red dog stain.
I’d vote Joe Liebermann before Clinton……….
There’s a difference between moderating your language and sounding less confrontational and trading away your positions. She has plenty of progressive positions that have strong majority support. They can be formulated in language that reaches a broad spectrum, including both progressives and centrists.
A higher minimum wage, for example, has broad public support, and a $12 national minimum would be a not-insignificant 70% increase. It would force the $15 standard in most cities. Both progressives and centrists should be able to support that enthusiastically. A public option will have majority public support, too, as a way to improve ACA — as it did to the tune of 80% when explained correctly in 2010; there’s no reason why that cannot be described in language that appeals to both progressives and centrists can support.
The success of working people depends on businesses having success. That’s the fatal flaw in Sanders re-living the enthusiasms of the 1960s and appealing to raw anti-corporatism. The broad message should be that it’s a two-way street: the success of business is also dependent on working people having success. Clinton has been expressing that progressive side of the coin quite well without alienating the middle, it seems to me. It would be malpractice to turn away the middle deliberately.
But Urban! The Contradictions won’t Heighten Themselves! Which is why we NEED Vanguard Revolutionaries. (Who often have pretty comfortable living situations while they wait for The Revolution).
“If people are stupid enough not to vote for the better candidate just because he was not part of the party long enough, they deserve what ever they get.”
I am constantly amazed how adults refuse to understand how the Constitution, while not mentioning political parties demands political parties. In presidential elections; passing legislation and nominating SC justices(that is the Big 3 by the way), it is clear that only a strong alliance can control our government. And common sense clearly indicates that two such alliances will emerge.
It is not just because Sanders wasn’t a Dem long enough, it is because he wasn’t known long enough on the national level. The simple fact that he ran for the Dem nomination is clear proof of his political stupidity the last decade or two.
Finally, like the Nader voters in 2000, these people cannot figure out(or refuse to admit it), that is it not what “they deserve”, it is what “we deserve”.