Dan Froomkin on those opposing Sanders

He argues that when the media portrays ‘Democratic’ concerns about a possible Bernie Sanders capturing the nomination, they are vastly overstating the concern of actual Democrats, and lumping in other actors whose views should not really be given that much weight since they do not have the interests of the Democratic base at heart.

“Dems tormented over how to stop Bernie,” reads the Politico headline.

“Democrats struggle with how directly to knock Sanders,” reads the AP headline.

How can “Democrats” be freaking out about the fact that Democrats are flocking to Sanders?

Well, obviously, it’s only some Democrats.

And it’s also some non-Democrats.

The rising panic about a potential Bernie Sanders nomination is certainly legitimate news — but it has to be put in context. Who exactly is so upset?

So far, at least, the dominant voices are not even “establishment Democrats”; they’re corporate Democrats.

The Politico and AP stories — as well as a similar NBC story — all relied heavily on quotes from Matt Bennett, a co-founder of Third Way. (Thanks to researcher Andrew Perez for pointing this out in a tweet.)

Third Way is a center-right “think tank” that consistently pursues the interests of its funders, who include Wall Street, K Street, Big Pharma, Exxon Mobil and Koch Industries. In other words, the folks who otherwise generously fund Republicans.

As Sanders’s chances of winning the nomination increase, there will and should be a loud and active debate about whether he best represents the party and whether he can beat Trump. There will be plenty of people qualified to opine on both sides.

But for now, journalists should be more transparent about the fact that the media charge against Sanders is being led mostly by Democrats in the employ of the one percent, and people who don’t have the long-term interests of Democrats or the left at heart.

So beware of reports of how many ‘Democrats’ are worried about the Sanders surge. They may be basing their reports on a small percentage of media influencers who are not representative of the party but are trying to pretend as if they have the best interests of the party at heart.


  1. Holms says

    Say, this seems on-topic enough for this post: can someone explain the ‘Bernie bros’ pushback against Bernie Sanders? The meme seems almost ubiquitous, but I’ve not seen any particular evidence of such claims.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *