Tuesday, July 26, 2016


Matt Yglesias thinks he knows why Bernie Sanders delegates are angry, rude, and recalcitrant, even though polls show that 90% of consistent Sanders supporters in the electorate now back Hillary Clinton:
Sanders had little control over his delegates, who seemed unwilling to get behind his endorsement of Clinton. This was in part a matter of sloppiness on the part of Sanders’s team in selecting delegates. But as one operative told me, there was another reason Sanders’s delegation was so unruly: Everyone was so afraid to cross Clinton by serving as a Sanders delegate that he couldn't convince the kind of party loyalists who normally take the job to do it.

Instead, many Sanders delegates come from the world of left-wing protest culture rather than party politics. And on the floor of the Wells Fargo Center, they acted like it.
Is it true that party regulars wouldn't become Sanders delegates because they feared the wrath of the Clintons? I have no idea. But if it's true, then Team Clinton is made up of thugs who are really, really bad at thuggery.

If Yglesias's operative is correct, the Clinton campaign scared off ordinary political activists who would have caused few problems for the candidate at the convention -- and saw those operatives replaced by furious activists who are causing a lot of problems for the candidate at the convention. If you're going to use strong-arm tactics, I think you need to be a tad more results-oriented about it.

I suppose the same thing could said about the efforts by Debbie Wasserman Schultz and other pro-Clinton party insiders to structure the primary season in ways that favored Clinton -- yes, Clinton won, but it was a pretty incompetent job of "rigging" the vote, given how many contests Sanders won and how much opportunity he had to stir up his base by castigating Clinton.

A real thug would act more like Donald Trump. When Ted Cruz stood in Trump's way, Trump insulted Cruz's wife's looks on Twitter and threatened to "spill the beans" about unnamed aspects of Mrs. Cruz's life (probably her battle with depression), even as he alleged that Cruz's father was involved in John F. Kennedy's assassination and as his pals at the National Enquirer concocted a Cruz adultery scandal. Cruz kept coming back, but he was effectively neutered. That's thuggery.

I laugh when people talk about "the Clinton crime family," and I used to laugh when they called Bill Clinton "Slick Willie." Slick? He and his wife always get caught. They get caught when they haven't actually done anything wrong. They're among the least slick people in politics.

(Poll link via Steve Benen.)


Feud Turgidson said...

A bigger factor IMO is the % if ALL DNC delegates from the 3 "Left Coast" especially blue states of Washington, Oregan and California, the big kahuna.

My take was from live streaming distance, but still: the impression I get was once the featured speakers were underway, the Sanders voices (if Sanders' they were) were decreasing & selective. They not there in numbers for Michelle Obama's speech, and they were not terribly evident in Sanders' own major speech (certainly nothing like when he'd addressed his delegates only earlier in the day), and it COULD be Sarah Silverman's shot at them hit home.

Again, limited as I am by perspective, and not wanting to question the factor noted by Steve M> as a 'thing', I'm actually not convinced it was at all purely a Sanders delegate phenomenon. I'm inclined to think if you skewed more left coaster, you were vocal. I know some of those voices - they're delegates, but not all Sanders'.

Lit3Bolt said...

Don't worry, Steve. When they boo Hillary Clinton's speech, it will heighten the contradictions so much that a leftist utopia will magically spring up out of angry white voters' racism.

Nate said...

I always thought the slick Willy thing was not that he avoided getting caught, but that he slipped out of any consequences. For example, if memory serves, even at the height of Republican muckraking during the Lewinsky stuff (I hesitate to dignify it with the word "scandal") his approval and favorables were higher than they had been before.

Danp said...

Nate, would that make Cheney Slick Dick?

Anonymous said...

DanP - "Slimy" is more appropriate.

Maxwell's Demon said...

LOL at UNslick WIllie (but how true). And so it's all the better that they're baa-aack! Just make those RWNJ heads be 'splodin'.

KenRight said...

Isn't incompetent thuggery the apt name for US Elite foreign policy
of the past decade and more which Clinton has been in complete line with?
(Of course there are conspiracy theorists who say Clinton and Bush and Wolfowitz and Feith and Perle and Haim Saban wanted the Mideast in long term anarchy, preferred it to for example, a pro-Israel puppet being effectively installed in Iraq, if Israel's stability could be kept intact, but I won't go there.)

As for the Sanders evolution/de-evolution, you can find a variety of
Counterpunch chronologies which had predicted his vote would be calibrated to keep the sheep herded and brought into the fold at crunch time, with Bernie cast as either a willing or unwitting accomplice.

KenRight said...


Incompetent or competent thuggery, another Clinton/Obama war crime.

Procopius said...

"Is it true that party regulars wouldn't become Sanders delegates because they feared the wrath of the Clintons? I have no idea. But if it's true, then Team Clinton is made up of thugs who are really, really bad at thuggery."

Yes. Just look at the comment thread over at Balloon Juice.

Ruthmarie said...

I have always been a democrat, but I will say about the Clintons that there generally isn't that much smoke without a fire. I'm guessing there is plenty in their closet and the intimidation is the very least of it. What the Sanders supporters suffered at the convention was dangerous and frightening. I've heard from a couple of them and they are not unruly types. Yet, they were intimidated, pushed around, forced off the floor and nearly arrested. So people being "afraid" of the Clinton's I believe it.

What I don't understand is why so many democrats give the Clinton's a free pass. They thirst and lust for power and money are so obvious, its pathetic that we actually were stupid enough to nominate them for a 3rd TERM.

This is the first election I will NOT be voting for a democrat. I will have to vote 3rd party.

There is another side to this story and when the history books are closed on this election cycle, the nomination of $hillary will go down as one of the stupidest things the democrats ever did.