Bernie Sanders keeps rolling on

Bernie Sanders won an easy primary victory 54.5% to 45.5% over Hillary Clinton in Oregon while the result in Kentucky is still too close to call although Clinton has a small lead 46.8% to 46.3%. Both these primaries were closed, meaning that only registered Democrats could vote in them and the conventional wisdom has been that such primaries favor Clinton since Sanders is supposedly more popular with independents. Hence his strong showing yesterday must be a source of concern to the Clinton camp.

There is now a gap of nearly three weeks before the next contests. Virgin Islands has caucuses on Saturday, June 4 but only seven delegates are at stake but Puerto Rico’s primary on June 5 has 60 delegates. But then on Tuesday, June 7 we see six states with a huge swathe of delegates up for grabs. The final primary for Washington DC on June 14 is going to be bit of an anti-climax.

There is not much polling on the remaining states except for delegate-rich California and New Jersey where Clinton has leads of around 10% at the moment. But you can be sure that she will pull out all the stops in order to try and get blowout wins in both places to erase the memory of the recent string of discouraging performances.


  1. sonofrojblake says

    erase the memory of the recent string of discouraging performances

    Good job the Republicans won’t be able to make hay with that, distracted as they are by …. er… oh. Their candidate already won.

    The final primary for Washington DC on June 14 is going to be bit of an anti-climax

    You got that right. The Republican race was a three-ring circus from the get-go, endlessly entertaining. The Democrat race has been dull and dispiriting, and the main message that keeps on coming across is that it doesn’t matter how popular Sanders is, doesn’t matter how much he resonates or how many times he pulls surprising wins out of the bag, Clinton has the nomination already stitched up from the inside because superdelegates.

    Whereas on the Republican side the “insiders” were, at every turn, clearly doing their level best and resorting to all sorts of tricks and name-calling to stop the “popular” candidate from getting anywhere… and he won anyway, comfortably. It’s quite a trick, for a billionaire to successfully position himself as “the little guy”.

  2. says

    His showing yesterday ought to be more than a concern for the Clinton camp. She’s winning the nomination with damnably faint praises. O the drama! The two party system loves to make their horse race look like a photo finish.

  3. lorn says

    The simple fact is that the Democratic primaries remaining are all states where the delegates are allocated proportional to the vote count. Bernie would need to win really, really big to catch up in delegates. It isn’t mathematically impossible but he would need to win by better than 60% (as in Bernie 80% and Hilary 20%) in all remaining states to catch up. The odds seem very long.

    I suspect that Bernie is catching some lift off of Clinton’s near lock. A lot of people, knowing that Clinton is most likely the candidate, and understanding that she represents the responsible choice, feel free indulge themselves by voting for Bernie. Once the bills are paid, you can buy yourself a little something special. Live a little.

    How much lift is he getting from this effect? I don’t know. I’m not even sure how you could measure it. I figure, just a WAG, 5-10%.

    I think there is a similar effect when people are polled about a Clinton/Trump contest. People are pissed off and outraged. Trump is essentially a middle finger protest, but not presidential material. A poll is a good place to let off steam. Even if they have no intention of voting for Trump when it counts.

  4. Holms says

    Yeah you mentioned that pet theory of yours a few days ago, lorn. It’s still silly.

  5. Sam N says

    All of us who aren’t delusional already know Bernie Sanders has a minimal chance of being the Democratic nominee and knew that since his underwhelming showings about a month ago after the primaries moved on from the South. It would require a major scandalI hope the lesson being learned by progressive liberals is to engage the Democratic party. I would like to see Bernie Sanders shift the movement into increasing registrations as Democrats and then challenging centrist and right-leaning candidates from the left. Clinton had a huge number of advantages going into this primary race, and Sanders run has exposed that a large proportion of those voting in Democratic primaries do not feel like they are represented. That may not translate into getting a Sanders to the presidency, but it does translate into a lot of congresspersons and senators.

    lorn, if the effect is 5-10% then it’s enormous, I truly doubt that your proposed effect would reach even 1%, and you concede the complete lack of evidence. Though it certainly would be a seductive hypothesis to a Hillary supporter--someone who holds the prior that Clinton is the responsible choice.

  6. Holms says

    Jesus, you even have a nearly word-for-word closing line: “Once the rent and bills are paid you can throw a little money at indulgences that make you feel good about life and yourself.”

  7. doublereed says

    I have no idea this weird tendency to psychoanalyze voters as “protest votes” or… “indulgence votes” (???) that lorn is suggesting. It’s as if people will come up with any sort of rationalization rather than believe people are just voting for someone because they want that person to be president.

  8. anat says

    lorn, FYI, plenty of people voted and caucused for Bernie believing him to be the better choice over Hillary. And I suppose some people with the same views are voting for him now, despite the fact that his chances are likely theoretical at this point.

  9. Randall Lee says

    For all those that “feel the Bern”.

    A liberal and a conservative were walking together, down a sidewalk, when they encountered a homeless man. The conservative reached into his pocket. He pulled out a ten dollar bill, gave it to the man, and told him to go get a hair-cut. He reached into his other pocket, pulled out his business card, gave it to the man, and told him to see him the next day, to get a job. They continued on, and ran into another homeless person. The liberal reached into the CONSERVATIVE’S pocket, grabbed a fifty dollar bill, and gave it to the man. He then reached into his own pocket, pulled out a card, and gave it to the man. It had the address of the local welfare office.
    This $15 min wage is just one example of the clueless Marxist liberals reaching into someone else’ s pocket.

  10. John Morales says

    Randall Lee, your response to a rather dry post about primary vote ratios and trends is a contrived and implausible parable illustrating an irrelevant (and mendacious) claim.

    (Jesus, you’re not)

  11. John Morales says


    PS the preview on this platform is not the same as the result when posted.

    No need for full stops between paragraphs.

  12. doublereed says

    Oooo, calling liberals “Marxist.” You’re clearly a wise one, aren’t you?

  13. Nick Gotts says

    Randall Lee is further from reality than lorn -- which is quite an achievement.

  14. Holms says

    “…you know I’m right. LOL”

    That declaration is perhaps the clearest sign of the paucity of an argument.

    Why would the man need welfare support if he has a job with a livable wage?

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