Saturday, June 04, 2016

WHAT IF HILLARY CLINTON DOESN'T NEED SANDERS DIEHARDS?

When Donald Trump effectively clinched the Republican presidential nomination and head-to-head Trump-Clinton polls tightened, it was huge news. But what if that was a blip? What if the race really isn't close?

If we're to belive a poll released yesterday -- and yes, it's just one poll -- the tightening might well have been temporary:
Democratic presidential contender Hillary Clinton has opened up a double-digit lead over Republican rival Donald Trump, regaining ground after the New York billionaire briefly tied her last month, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll released on Friday.....

Some 46 percent of likely voters said they supported Clinton, while 35 percent said they supported Trump, and another 19 percent said they would not support either, according to the survey of 1,421 people conducted between May 30 and June 3.

Trump had briefly tied Clinton in support among likely U.S. voters in mid-May....
This comes as we're reading that Bernie Sanders intends to fight to the bitter end:
Sanders is showing few signs of surrender as end of the primaries loom, pointing out his differences with Clinton and vowing to take his bid to the party's convention in July.

... Sanders is expected to return to his Vermont home on Wednesday and advisers say he intends to ramp up his courtship of the party's superdelegates, a process that is already underway....

Sanders will compete in the District of Columbia primary on June 14, the final contest. Beyond that, Sanders' campaign manager Jeff Weaver said they are considering whether Sanders might appear at more rallies around the country after the primaries and speak in Chicago at a gathering of Sanders' activists on June 17-19.
By contrast Hillary Clinton dropped out of the contest with Barack Obama on June 7, 2008.

Sanders assumes that Clinton can't win without his most fervent supporters. But what if she can? What if Trump continues to run the same slipshod, unprofessional, trash-talking, voting-bloc-alienating campaign he's running now? What if Clinton's well-received anti-Trump speech this week is a sign that she's found her stride?

And wht if, furthermore, she has a plan to try to win without the Bernie-or-Busters -- possibly by targeting moderate Republican voters? There was little in Clinton's Trump speech that would alienate most liberals, but before it was delivered, Amy Chozick of The New York Times -- at the prompting of Clintonites -- described it as outreach to the middle:
Mrs. Clinton’s campaign aides said the speech, which she will deliver in San Diego, would be the start of a persistent assault to portray a potential Trump presidency as a dangerous proposition that would weaken American alliances and embolden enemies....

While Mrs. Clinton must be cautious not to alienate liberal Democrats who oppose some of her hawkish foreign policy stances, her campaign says national security could be the catalyst that drives independents and wavering Republicans to support her this fall....

To that end, the Clinton campaign and its outside advisers have embarked on an effort to reach out to prominent moderate Republicans who could endorse Mrs. Clinton, largely making the case for foreign policy sure-footedness.
If more polls start to show that Clinton has a sizable and persistent lead, and if Trump continues to alienate moderates by campaigning like a bigoted drunk at the end of the bar, then the "no retreat, no surrender" posture of Bernie Sanders miht turn out to be a gamble he loses. Polls make clear that the vast majority of Sanders supporters will back Clinton in the fall -- the only question is whether Clinton will need the diehard remainder. If she doesn't, Clinton might decide that she doesn't need to mollify Sanders on platform issues. She might decide she's moved as far to the left as she's comfortable moving.

She might win doing this. If that happens, how does it advance the revolution?

It seems to me that Sanders really could end this campaign with less influence over the Democratic Party than he would have had if he'd reached out to Clinton sooner. She really might find herself in a position to blow Sanders and his progressives off -- both now and in her presidency. That shouldn't have happened. But if Sanders drives too hard a bargain, and if the Trump campaign never expands beyond his base, I think it might.

24 comments:

Ernest Lamonica said...

In April a Quinnipiac poll found 20% of Republicans would vote for Hillary VS Trump/Cruz. Name GOP'ers then who said that publicly Max Boot. Kagan. Christy Todd Whitman. Meg Whitman to name few I remember. Like you say Trump is acting like drunk bigot in bar and I can not believe after Hillary castrated him on Thursday that more Republicans dont feel that way. I dont really give a shit about Bernie Sanders at all. He can take his Last Hurrah campaign and go chair Senate Committee On Renaming Post Offices for all I care. Petulant White Privileged Finger Waving fossil.I cant wait to see new polls reflecting Hillary's speech.

Unknown said...

With johnson and stein in the race no Hillary, no Trump people will have a place to go. And overall I think this helps Hillary

Jim Snyder said...

I'm getting whiplash, SteveM...


Why Vote for the Lesser Evil?
https://cthulhuforamerica.com

Cathie from Canada said...

I think, at the very least, there are millions of Republican women who will vote for Hillary instead of Trump, whether Hillary's campaign reaches out for them or not.
I can already hear the curled-lip sneers from some of the Sanders supporters to the idea, the very idea!, of Hillary asking Republicans to vote for her. Well, f*ck them if they can't take a joke.

Ten Bears said...

That's the way I look at it: she doesn't need and you people clearly don't want my vote, I can can vote for Sanders, or Jill Stein, with a clear conscious. I've been telling everyone for months to untwist their panties, Clinton will be your next "president". That decision has already been made and all of this is naught but kombutki theater to leave the rubes feeling as if they were somehow participant.

Before you tell me to fuck the fuck off, as has happened here just recently: fuck the fuck off.

Tom Hilton said...

I think you're right: Sanders really has overplayed his hand, and he's going to end up being irrelevant. His supporters who actually care about the fate of the country will vote for Clinton--and I think a lot of them will be turned off by his increasingly bitter and incoherent posturing. A lot of the rest were never Democrats (there's a weird but non-trivial overlap between Paulbots and Sanderistas). And it won't matter because Trump can be goaded into sputtering incoherence by any powerful woman. After this last week I can't see him expanding his share, and I can see him losing some of the more reluctant Republicans.

Rick said...

If you want Republican-lite policies you chase Republican-lite voters. I'm sure that outcome is what hillary would like anyways.

If she loses on that platform we should burn the Democratic party to the ground and start over, if trump leaves anything,that is .

Yastreblyansky said...

Thought I heard some of that effort to appeal to neoconservatives in particular when she got to Iran--"When President Obama took office, Iran was racing toward a nuclear bomb. Some called for military action"--repeating a known falsehood (no international or US agency claimed to be able to assert that). But then I felt reassured because she chose an issue that is in fact dead, since the agreement has been signed and is being observed. She may have learned something from Obama (offer the right something they claimed they wanted desperately, when it's too late to make a difference) after all.

trnc said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
trnc said...

Or you bring republican voters along with an openly liberal platform based on women's rights and reducing inequality.

Blackstone said...

Why vote for the lesser evil? Cause voting for the greater evil is worse, but surely you knew that.

Grung_e_Gene said...

If Hillary wins without the BernieBros support and then ignores there issues, will they then conclude she was the Republican-Lite alternative they always thought she was or will they conclude it's better to work within the appartus of the Democratic Party to move it leftwards? Ultimately, I have a feeling that Bernie or Busters are really glibertarians and Ayn Rand Paul acolytes and don't actually represent any leftwing ideas and will be recalled like PUMAs.

Never Ben Better said...

So after trashing the superdelegates for months as corrupt undemocratic machine pols who should be eradicated, Sanders is going to demand they throw aside the popular-vote winner, the pledged-delegate winner, and crown him the nominee? Or he'll take his ball of Bernie-or-busters and go home?

Screw him.

And if he encourages his followers to riot at the convention he might as well go out and campaign for Trump.

Jim Snyder said...

@Blackstone: Is the Cthulhu reference obscure?

It seemed appropriate in a year when der Drumpenf├╝hrer is the Replicant nominee, but perhaps that's just me.

Blackstone said...

Jim,

It was too obscure for me, but always glad to learn something new.

Jim Snyder said...

@Blackstone: Now and again I see Krugman referred to as "K'thuglhu".

Context suggests the moniker is intended as a tongue-in-cheek compliment.

A related reference: https://xkcd.com/1013/

Cthulhu is one of the Old Ones ("sleeping for tens of thousands of years") in Lovecraft's mythos, IIRC.

And apologies to all for a completely off-thread comment. (In my first comment the reference was intended as a .sig)

Ten Bears said...

Wasn't that his twist, though, on the lesser of evils is none-the-least evil? That the olds ones were a evil but for great necessity left sleeping?

petrilli said...

This post reminds me of Winston Wolf's wise advice to Vincent and Jules when they showed premature confidence during the "Bonnie Situation." Clinton still needs those Sander's supporters. Why? Anything can still happen with Trump's candidacy. After watching Trump's reaction to Clinton's excellent speech, plus his unhinged bigoted fixation on Judge Curiel, It's clear even to conservative republicans that the man is melting down. I'm beginning to think there's an outside chance he won't make it out of the convention if he keeps going like this. What would happen then? Her competency narrative has been catapulted and is unraveling his brand splendidly. But what if Trump is booted out at the convention. I smell an undropped shoe.

Jim Snyder said...

@Ten Bears: Sounds like you know more about the Lovecraft / Cthulhu mythos than I.

I know enough to catch the references and occasionally snark about them, but Lovecraft isn't / wasn't my cup of tea.

IIRC all of the Old Ones were disposed to put humanity on the dinner table, so "lesser of two evils" is nothing to wish for, but happy to be edicated.

I ran across a good Lovecraft pastiche recently which I might be able to find if you're interested. Something about cone snails IIRC.

Ah, here 'tis:

http://www.amazon.com/Equoid-Laundry-Novella-Files/product-reviews/1596066644

I like "computational demonologist".

@petrilli: An intellectual exercise: what bridge-too-far would lead the Replicants to say "Donald, you've gone too far. We're taking our presidential nomination and going home"?

I mean: outright racism isn't a bridge-too-far for Corker or McConnell. If racism isn't that bridge-too-far, what would be?

And would that bridge-too-far for the party be a bridge-too-far for the Tea Bagger base?

Unless the Drumpfenf├╝hrer unexpectedly develops humility and admits that he's not the right guy, he seems unlikely to go quietly into the night should the Replicant Establishment cast him out.

FWIW, someone - Paul Campos, I think - suggests that, should Trump find himself facing a devastating loss in November, he might well bail before the election and blame the RNC and RNC PR BS and Governor Martinez and Cthulhu-knows-who-else for failing Trump and America, in that order. (Think Hitler in the bunker blaming the German Volk for failing him ...)

Campos' theory seems more plausible to me than the Replicants casting out Trump.

Jim Snyder said...

@petrilli: http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2016/6/6/1535189/-Donald-Trump-calls-his-campaign-stupid-staffed-by-people-who-aren-t-that-smart

comment thread all over the question, "will Trump drop out?"

Chai T. Ch'uan said...

Lolz this just in: 85% of young voters are irrelevant, and taunting them as we bring down the convention gavel can only be good for the Democratic Party to keep it free of their foul progressive radicalness! Also too, get off my lawn.

Jim Snyder said...

@Chai T. Ch'uan: reference?

You're Wrong said...

Speaking from the future, it turns out Steve was right. Sanders has remained stubborn and STILL hasn't endorsed Clinton, but he's lost his leverage. Most of his voters now say they'll support Clinton. He's got some influence on the platform, but that seems like a sop to me since the platform doesn't really matter. And media attention to 'the revolution' has dropped to nearly zero.

The one thing liberal commenters have been wrong about is that Clinton has NOT rushed to the center in order to court Republicans. Her speeches and interviews reveal that she remains comfortably on the left. Warren is now campaigning for her. Dems have circled the wagons, Bernie and his sulky dead-enders be damned.

Meanwhile, Trump's campaign continues to implode and hemorrhage support on the right. Clinton doesn't really have to do much other than pay lip service to bipartisanship and remain looking presidential in order to win over Republicans and right-leaning independents.

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