So, what about the #NeverHillary Democrats?

A light-hearted moment between the candidates: Not intended to reflect actual affinity between their voters.

A light-hearted moment between the candidates: Not intended to reflect actual affinity between their voters.

While that development-that-shall-not-be-discussed becomes Republican reality, it’s easy to forget that Democrats are busy stumbling toward their own loathsome nominee. The party faithful aren’t quite as fractured between Hillary and #NeverHillary factions as Republicans are between The Donald and the #NeverTrump, but Clinton still has work to do in securing the general-election loyalty of some Bernie Sanders’ supporters. And that has implications for the party and the election.

As background, this piece in The Atlantic is instructive. Here’s an excerpt:

“At least some supporters of the Vermont senator insist they won’t vote for Clinton, no matter what. Many view the former secretary of state with her deep ties to the Democratic establishment as the polar opposite of Sanders and his rallying cry of political revolution. Throwing their weight behind her White House bid would feel like a betrayal of everything they believe.

“These voters express unwavering dedication to Sanders on social media, deploying hashtags like NeverClinton and NeverHillary, and circulating petitions like http://www.wontvotehillary.com, which asks visitors to promise ‘under no circumstances will I vote for Hillary Clinton.’ It’s garnered more than 56,500 signatures so far. Many feel alienated by the Democratic Party. They may want unity, but not if it means a stamp of approval for a political status quo they believe is fundamentally flawed and needs to be fixed.

“‘Just pack up your revolution and go home? Really? That’s not going to happen,’ said Tara Margolin, a 50-year-old Sanders supporter and self-described Democrat who lives in Los Angeles. She dismissed the idea that Sanders voters might coalesce behind Clinton. ‘She would cement in place everything we are fighting against. I could never in good conscience vote for Hillary Clinton.'”

Sound familiar? It should. The divisiveness on the Republican side may be stronger and perhaps more durable, but there’s a good bit of overlap between Trump’s and Sanders’ critiques of the political system. It isn’t surprising at all that the same anti-establishment fervor that catapulted Trump to a stunning win isn’t simply dissipating on the Democratic side.

That said, it’s worth noting how the results are different, and not just because Sanders seems highly unlikely to end up with the nomination. For one, Sanders’ brand of populism is making the Democratic Party more ideological, not less. More government intervention in markets; more curtailing of political speech; government consuming a far larger share of economic output — these and more of Sanders’ positions represent a purer version of the leftism that is increasingly attracting younger and more disaffected members of the Democratic Party.

Because Clinton is taking longer to sew up her own nomination — and may, as she indicated on Sunday, give Sanders more say over the party’s platform in order to win over his supporters — that more ideological bent will show up in the general election. The specifics will matter, but just about any scenario in which Clinton loses to Trump has to involve her tacking too far to the left well into the fall, trying to placate the Sanders wing of the party.

A by-product of this leftward tilt could be the impression Clinton’s flexibility lies entirely within the Democratic side of the aisle, whereas Trump’s would allow him to wheel and deal with anyone. It’s hard to imagine now, but if Clinton is seen as negotiating only between the left and further-left parts of the spectrum, Trump could actually become more attractive to independent voters — particularly those who don’t think the pendulum needs to swing even more toward the left after eight years of President Obama. It’s almost incredible to think Trump could come to be viewed as more centrist than Clinton, but that just might happen if the Sanders bloc overplays its hand.

Now, do I think all this represents a likely outcome for 2016? Not really. But we are now in the middle of a political shake-up that will have consequences not just for this election or even the next two to four years, but potentially for much longer than that. Where the Democratic Party gets pulled will shape those consequences just as much as where the GOP gets pushed. And we’re still watching that play out.

Reader Comments 0

89 comments
OnlyBernie
OnlyBernie

Despite the propaganda and disinformation of the corporate media, those of us who live in the information age know that the Dem primary is far from settled, and the two party chokehold may give way to a three or even four way race by the end of summer if certain factions are forced to splinter. 

Bernie will be obligated to do what ever it takes to defeat Mr Trump, and he cannot just drop his revolution off at the bus stop, leaving us to find our own way home. 

True conservatives may continue to drift toward the Libertarian party, which is polling in the double digits for the first time ever.


Mrs. Clinton is doomed, her negatives are going up as fast as her polls are sinking, she only beats Bernie with election fraud, and she will lose to Trump. If the Democrats name her as the nominee, it will be the end of the party. We will follow Bernie anywhere he leads us except to Hillary.


#NeverHillary #HillaryForPrison2016 

#IndictHillary

DaltonbywayofBickley
DaltonbywayofBickley

Curtailing of political speech? You mean Citizens United? Sorry, but this conservative sees that ruling as an utter disaster.

lvg
lvg

At least Hillary acknowledges the need to modify her agenda to accommodate her competition's platform. Trump is a one man show and dictator in the making who could not give a dam- about anyone else's agenda.

Leslie Thaxton
Leslie Thaxton

Democrats need to focus on keeping Trump out of the White House & vote blue no matter who is the nominee!

nomaj
nomaj

Sanders' most diehard supporters will almost certainly NOT vote for Clinton, but they won't vote for Trump either - at least not directly.


Assuming that Sanders won't run a write-in campaign, then his most fervent and strident supporters will vote for another 3rd party candidate, probably for whoever is running as the Green party candidate.


And, just like they did with Nader in 2000, the inflexible left will benefit the right.  But that's okay with them, since purity, not pragmatism is what rings their bell.

Don S. Rowley
Don S. Rowley

oh pls, such nonsense. Hillary may very well end up turning Georgia blue

Desmond Moore
Desmond Moore

You'd be surprised. You're giving the Bernie supporters way more credit than they deserve.

Daniel McDowell
Daniel McDowell

hilarious all these bernie drones crying like lil children

Scott Smith
Scott Smith

The #NeverHillary movement is strong.

omark
omark

Speaking of stories, did you ever hear the one about the Little Red Hen? She planted the wheat, she harvested the wheat, she ground the wheat into flour, she mixed the dough, and baked the bread.

Then the hedge fund managers sat down and ate the whole damned loaf. They did leave a few crumbs for the Little Red Hen though. To do otherwise would be killing the goose that laid golden eggs, but then that’s another story.

omark
omark

In praise of Bernie, his campaign has been nothing short of amazing. The idea that a self- avowed socialist could come so close to claiming the nomination is mind boggling.

At the end of the day, perhaps Bernie was too honest to be president. The term democratic socialist is very common in Europe. Apart from Bernie, it’s political suicide in America. Bernie could’ve been as socialist as he wanted to be without the need to label himself as such. Take canola oil for instance. Americans love the stuff, but you couldn’t give it away when it was called rapeseed oil. If Bernie had chosen to label himself as an independent, and left it at that, I suspect he’d be our next president. Overcoming the socialist label was a bridge a little too far.

Obviously the Republicans would label him as a socialist. They call everybody they don’t like socialist, only this time they’d be right. Ever hear the story about the little boy who cried socialist?

omark
omark

https://theconversation.com/president-trump-not-likely-58758

Trump claims he’s going to win New York this November. The truth is current polls suggest that he’s trailing Hillary in Utah, a state Republicans haven’t lost in over 50 years.

Though the Donald claims that loves the Hispanics, He does allow them to scrub the toilets at his hotels, He loves the blacks, as long as they’re not currently serving as president, He loves the women, he’s married three so far.

Sadly, polling data suggest that these folks just aren’t feeling the Donald. Even if he’s able to clean up his act, he’s not likely to get many let bygones be bygones out of these groups.

Most importantly, despite his tough guy act, he’s never faced an enraged Hillarybeast.  She’s not afraid to alienate Donald’s base. She never counted on the angry white boy vote in the first place.

A few of Bernie’s heart broken supporters might not vote for her, though I suspect most will change their minds when they consider the alternative. Even if they chose to stubbornly stand their ground, I doubt that Hillary will need them in the end.

Yougothatright
Yougothatright

Hillary will not win.  She has the Republican "establishment" behind her.  They would rather a democrat win than have their gravy train dry up.


Trump is the only candidate concerned about the issues of the people.  The repulican elite want their agenda put forth-to hell with what the republican voters want.  And Hillary has repeatedly said she wants the obamba doctrine to continue.


to all those who are astounded that Trump is doing so well, everyone else is astounded that those idiots are astounded.


Fox news- no more for me.  at least you know cnn is liberal- fox is nothing more than talking heads for the republican elite-  fair and balanced -  lol what a joke



For the knee jerkers-  Trump has been straight forward.  The criticism towards him on being bigoted against women, muslims and  Mexicans is ridiculous.  


1)  most people have heard the saying don't wear red around a bull it infuriates him-  

trumps comment seeing red had everything to do w anger and nothing to do with the woman's menstrual  cycle.


2)Ban muslims that are not able to produce any documents what so ever as to who they are, where they come from or what they intend to do in the U.S.


3) build a wall to keep illegals out.  what is wrong with that? Most people have a house with locks on it.  Our country is no different.

RangeRover
RangeRover

@Yougothatright

Well put.

You see, you have integrity unlike those who vote for someone so that can either get something or keep getting something irrespective of the consequences to their fellow citizens our our country.  They are selfish and self centered.

I'm sick of politicians--Republicans, Democrats, Libertarians, independents--period!

Is Trump a loose cannon?  Absolutely!  But here is a man that has become a multibillionaire that has no other agenda than to "make America great again."  So, I'll take a person like this over another politician like Clinton as with her you know what you will get...4 or 8 more years of massive, perhaps insurmountable national debt.

Clinton is running for pure ego; Trump is running to reverse this downward spiral.


TheCentrist
TheCentrist

I had to look something up.  56,000 signed a petition to not vote for Hillary.  By comparison, more than 100,000 signed a petition for Texas to secede from the Union a couple of years ago.

TheCentrist
TheCentrist

The reference is that Trump supporters are anti-establishment because "government' is not supporting their public needs.  That is funny because social conservatives have constantly electing people who do not want government involved at all with the public good that they call "free stuff."  Meanwhile, liberals are anti-establishment because they feel government is not doing enough to support the public good.

RangeRover
RangeRover

@TheCentrist

This is the difference between you and me.   You judge the success of the federal government based on how much assistance is given to our citizens.  I judge the success of government based how much is not needed or necessary to be given to our citizens.   The latter implies people have pride and are earning it.

TheCentrist
TheCentrist

Whenever I see the phrase "at least some," it normally means "very few."

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

Kyle, I really do appreciate your concern about the BernieBros.

It's touching.

DMayr
DMayr

Interesting take on the issue that's effecting both parties, but you're woefully miscalculating the matter of degree in play. The similarities between Sanders and Clinton far outweigh the contrasts, and both of them are well within the Democratic platform. The GOP, on the other hand, is facing a reckoning of near Biblical proportions (pun intended) as they have created nearly irreconcilable factions within their own base. And the demographic difference between the Democratic blocs is between the present (Clinton; traditional) and the future (Sanders, millennials, minorities), the two influential elements of the GOP are essentially two wings of the same demographic segment (older, whiter, evangelical christians) which is shrinking in size and voting power each year. By staunchly refusing to evolve, the GOP is working itself into irrelevance. Hence, the autopsy of 2012 that's been ignored, ridiculed, etc.


Having a policyless, wedge-issue based party is no way to succeed. When even your own leaders can't stand your party's chosen candidate, you're gonna lose, and lose badly. And all the prevaricating, qualifying statements, and hedging in the world can't change this fact. The world has moved on from the culture wars of Karl Rove's and Fox News' GOP, but you cast your lot with red meat Republicans who have too much influence to ignore, yet not nearly enough votes to win. And until they die off, you're stuck with them steering your party off a cliff.


Reality matters. Substance matters. Facts matter. When will you realize this?

Lil_Barry_Bailout
Lil_Barry_Bailout

To claim that the GOP is "policyless" or that the Democrat party doesn't rely on wedge issues reflects a stunning degree of ignorance.

Which is apparently a prerequisite for voting Democrat.

DMayr
DMayr

@Lil_Barry_Bailout "Braaaaaaiiiinsss.... We desperately need braaiiiiinnns..."


The GOP is comedy gold, Jerry! Gold!!

DMayr
DMayr

@Lil_Barry_Bailout Hmmm... As most GOP leadership has pointed out, endless votes to cancel the ACA, senseless votes like HB2 in North Carolina, and virtually all "religious liberty" legislation are all examples of pandering to the GOP base, not real policy. But please feel free to continue insisting the other guys do it too. That's a real productive approach and a surefire winner this Fall.


After another autopsy, can we officially declare the GOP the Zombie party? It keeps on dying, but refuses to stay dead so it can continue haunting the living...


C'mon, November :-)

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@DMayr @Lil_Barry_Bailout

I love how LBB just berated you for not responding to his accusations of "ignorance."

The poor wee troll really can't help himself, you just gotta larf.

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex


@DMayr @Visual_Cortex @Lil_Barry_Bailout 

I especially love the notion that this GOP as currently configured has anything resembling a coherent "policy" beyond relentlessly working to cut or defang any federal program that could possibly help less-well-off folks, and issuing dumb, bellicose threats toward foreign governments that we don't like.

And, of course, the routine promotion of tiresome misogynist and bigoted wedge-issue measures in the form of "religious freedom"; pathetic, blatantly unconstitutional restrictions on abortion; and sleazy voter-disenfranchisement regs.

"Policy."

Lil_Barry_Bailout
Lil_Barry_Bailout

If you're going to take the trouble to respond, perhaps you could respond to things I actually said.

Or is your grasp of logic and critical thinking really this weak?

MarkVV
MarkVV

These latest comments about Mrs. Clinton are the evidence of the intellectual immaturity of the writers.

Lil_Barry_Bailout
Lil_Barry_Bailout

A real sign of maturity would be voting for someone based on how much free stuff they promise.

xxxzzz
xxxzzz

I wonder if it bothers any Democrats that by nominating Hillary we look like a banana republic.  Husband for 8 years, then bring in the wife.

stogiefogey
stogiefogey

@xxxzzz  Hopefully his duties as First Lady, such as selecting the new White House China pattern and working on the menus for state dinners, will keep him occupied.

RafeHollister
RafeHollister

@xxxzzz More like Alabama and Lurleen Wallace.  Only the Marcus' family in the Philippines comes to mind in third world countries.  Emelda was the shoe queen, Hillary pant suits.


Well we also had the Perons in Argentina.  Don't cry for me Hillary!

Lil_Barry_Bailout
Lil_Barry_Bailout

"Public service experience" gave us $9 trillion in new debt in eight years, and gave Iran $100 billion to fund Islamofascist terrorism.

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@xxxzzz

I'm sure the the rest of the world is deeeeply concerned about this business, ever so much more so than the possibility of electing someone with literally zero public service experience.

TheCentrist
TheCentrist

@xxxzzz Let's be clear, Bill harassed one intern, but Mark Foley harassed many...interns.

DebbieDoRight
DebbieDoRight

@xxxzzz - Did it bother you to put TWO Bushes into the Whitehouse? Daddy first then son? 

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@Lil_Barry_Bailout

oh, and about this:

gave Iran $100 billion 

Few things funnier than a Bushie complaining about how frozen funds might be released.

It's like the pallets of shrink-wrapped C-notes never happened in the Eyerack adventure.

xxxzzz
xxxzzz

@TheCentrist @xxxzzz Yes, but Foley represented one congressional district, not a country, and didn't do it in the Oval Office while on the phone doing government business.

xxxzzz
xxxzzz

This goes beyond a dynasty.  Bill will be back in the White House harassing interns.