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Soon, Sanders must step aside and work to unite the party against Trump

Sen. Bernie Sanders
REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Sen. Bernie Sanders greeting supporters outside of a polling station in Dearborn Heights, Michigan, on Tuesday.

Perhaps I haven’t said so for a while, but I admire Sen. Bernie Sanders.

He has strong principles and policy positions, many of which I share — including many on which he is prepared to use more state power to do more good for more people than more cautious liberals (many of whom I also like, because they are hoping to accomplish similar goals at a slower pace that they believe is more politically practical in a country that has generally been terrified of anything that can be called “socialism.”) That’s not Sanders (although it is a tad awkward that he keeps running for the Democratic nomination without being willing to say that he is a member of the party whose nomination he seeks).

Anyway, I respect his principles, his tenacity and his commitment and share many of his goals.

But I certainly hope that, as soon as he realizes that remaining in the race for the Democratic nomination is likely to help Donald Trump more than it will advance his principles, he will drop out, campaign like hell for the nominee and – this is the most important thing – implore and beseech his supporters to close ranks for the balance of the campaign with all those who must unite to end the Trump presidency.


We have a national emergency that is more pressing at the moment than single-payer (or, if you prefer, “Medicare for All”) health care, and that emergency is to defeat You Know Whom, and then pray like hell that it works, and that Trump will leave peacefully.

I see and hear signals among some Sanders supporters that they believe settling for shall-we-say Joe Bidenism is not a compromise worth making. I fear that some disappointed 2016 Sanders supporters either didn’t vote or voted Green or voted Socialist, and I will always defend anyone’s right to make that decision. Their right, but not their calculation.

We have a national emergency. I’m not a Biden enthusiast. I preferred Elizabeth Warren, myself, and was drawn to several of the Democratic candidates for various reasons. But I always believed, and do not expect to believe anything different between now and November, that the continuation of the American experiment with democracy, self-government, and whatever decency we can manage depends on ending Donald John Trump’s occupancy of the Oval Office, his ability to hasten the global climate collapse and  his access to the nuclear codes —and even if it doesn’t come to the use of those codes, his ability to do unimaginable further damage to that above-mentioned experiment.

After a couple more Tuesdays like yesterday, or maybe sooner than that, Sanders will accept that he will not be the nominee. And then he needs to join the all-hands-on-deck refrain: Save the experiment, fight to make it a more successful experiment, but keep it going.

Comments (100)

  1. Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/11/2020 - 09:31 am.

    You all will have to convince me to vote for Biden, who is at least partly responsible for America’s eternal war profiteering complex, global trade pacts that gutted America’s industrial capacity and lead to epic income equality, mass incarceration, the bankruptcy bill that condemned a generation to massive school debt, who is also showing abundant signs of cognitive decline (early dementia)….for some other reason than beating Trump.

    Because I am not really interested in trading in Trump’s kleptroctic arrangements for a bunch of elitists who are going to double-down on all the pathologic things that lead to the rise of Trump.

    • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 03/11/2020 - 09:52 am.

      You know, Trump is pro-pollution, evidently you aren’t so concerned about those pollinators as you suggest!
      https://www.nationalgeographic.com/news/2017/03/how-trump-is-changing-science-environment/

      • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/11/2020 - 10:45 am.

        Pollinator extinction became a problem during Obama’s administration. Monarch butterfly migration collapsed by about 90% then. Yes, Trump is pro-pollution….yet Dems will blame him for pollinator extinction, despite the fact that both parties have protected the right of big corporate Agricultural to pollute without consequence.

        • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 03/11/2020 - 11:02 am.

          As below “better or worse”? Looks like you think National Geographic is fake news, or they have had an anti Trump agenda for the last 132 years?

          • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/11/2020 - 11:25 am.

            No, I don’t. Not at all. What I am saying is, Dems seem to care about “the environment” when Trump is making a mess of it, but when they are in power the earth gets more polluted too. And don’t say Obama was a great president for “the environment” when pretty much all of his ecological work happened in the last year of his admin, by executive order, easily undone by Trump.

            • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 03/11/2020 - 12:35 pm.

              Again, better or worse? Last check Republicans owned both the senate and the house last 2 years of Obama, seems you are suggesting, the left is equally bad on EPA etc as the right. You can only do what you can do. When you got to chose what do you chose?

            • Submitted by Cindy Oberg-Hauser on 03/11/2020 - 12:37 pm.

              Is the blame misplaced here? Any kind of positive environmental legislation was blocked by Republicans during Obama’s tenure. I think Biden’s worth a shot just to see if we can actually get a Democratic Senate majority to go along with the House.

            • Submitted by James Hamilton on 03/11/2020 - 01:58 pm.

              How would you have had Obama do it, given the GOP control of the Senate?

            • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/12/2020 - 07:56 am.

              As to Obama’s enviro record, as I recall, his EPA did a lengthy, years long study on the effects of fracking, leaving out its effect on….water.

              Indeed, the republican record for 50 years on all things ecology can be summed up as ecocide. All of Congress however was Dem for at least two years during the Obama admin, and ecology was an afterthought.

    • Submitted by Laura Summers on 03/11/2020 - 10:41 am.

      As democracies age and societies become more diverse and complicated, elections are more and more about booting the rascals out rather than voting the angels in. Bernie is no longer seen as the nominee required for this moment in spite of his wisdom and vision in many areas. Here is a piece assessing his loss of “edge” in rural areas, especially in Michigan.

      https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/hillary-clinton-bernie-sanders-rural-edge_n_5e685b3ec5b68d61645cb961?

      • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/11/2020 - 11:03 am.

        I went to that link, but to read it I have to give Verizon Media access to all my information on this device. Verizon is a corporation of evil intent, so I declined.

        That said, I would ask rural folk, what has Biden ever done for you? If he resurrects TPP etc trade agreements, how will that work out for you?

        I really don’t understand why Dems think Biden would work for us, instead of say, Verizon? Nor do I understand why they think he can beat Trump.

    • Submitted by Joel Stegner on 03/11/2020 - 07:05 pm.

      All the things you say you dislike, Trump supports. Our country’s survival from Trump is more important than the purity of your theoretical constructions. Trump is evil, Bernie is good – and Biden is a lot closer to Bernie than Trump – and if Biden wins the nomination, through real choices of real people, Bernie will support him, because the type of fascist revolution Trump seeks is the exact opposite of what Bernie proposes.

      • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/12/2020 - 08:50 am.

        Again, on war, income inequality, ecocide, corporatism, banks and billionaires, student debt servitude, from my perspective and many like me, Joe Biden is a lot closer to Trump than Bernie.

        As for fascism, we recognize neoliberal trade policy like the TPP Biden supported, as a kind of creeping corporate fascism, a coercive and dommineering usurpation of democratic principles.

        So from that perspective, it is a choice on one hand of kleptocratic oligarchy, and on the other hand, corporatist plutocratic oligopoly. Pick your poison.

    • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/12/2020 - 08:12 am.

      While I will allow that the Dem party is nominally better (maybe – Dem elite are clueless) on all things ecology, I didn’t even mention Biden’s (mostly nonexistent) record on “the environment” in my original question on this thread, about convincing me to vote for Biden.

      I heard a surrogate of his on NPR yesterday say he had a long history of progressivism, and would be by far the most progressive president in the history of America. I thought, these people will say anything at all, won’t they?

      Again, I am not really interested in being shamed into voting for Joe Biden. Anyone here want to hazard a statement asserting that Biden will be better on this sort of thing, if he is president? Or maybe this is just “Dem policy”?

      “Biden, who is at least partly responsible for America’s eternal war profiteering complex, global trade pacts that gutted America’s industrial capacity and lead to epic income equality, mass incarceration, the bankruptcy bill that condemned a generation to massive school debt, who is also showing abundant signs of cognitive decline (early dementia)….for some other reason than beating Trump.”

    • Submitted by Henk Tobias on 03/12/2020 - 01:18 pm.

      I’m not a Biden fan. I’ve taken to calling him St. Joseph Biden, because the Biden Bros online seem to think he walks on water. Joe is a liar, he lied about his vote to go into Iraq, he lied about being arrested in So. Africa. He’s in the pocket of the Credit Card companies, always has been, he just said he’d veto Medicare For All if it passed, he is exactly the wrong person for these times. Having said all this, if he gets the nomination, which looks likely, I’ll vote for him. I won’t like it but I will. We just can’t afford more Donald.

      We can only hope that the we get more progressives (I prefer Liberals, but…) in the house and the senate and push them to push him to a more progressive path.

      • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 03/12/2020 - 03:53 pm.

        Meanwhile, back in the real world, Biden is the best you’re going to get.
        If Sanders somehow got the nomination (it would take world class finagling) the election would be one extreme against another, and the incumbent usually wins in that situation. Watch out what you wish for — you might get it.

  2. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 03/11/2020 - 09:39 am.

    Amen.

  3. Submitted by Bob Petersen on 03/11/2020 - 09:48 am.

    So you want someone that is full of passion and principles to abandon those things and give into an establishment that pulled one over on him in 2016 and sure looks like it again this cycle.
    And that’s the part that is so distasteful is that the ends justify no matter means it is to get there.
    I also want to note why you’d give credit and like someone who would use much more state power to get government more control over things when you (wrongly) criticize the current administration of being anti-democracy.
    Again, the ends justify the means, I guess.

    • Submitted by Pat Terry on 03/11/2020 - 10:09 am.

      I’m not going to re-hash the nonsense from 2016 when Clinton got millions more votes then Sanders. But I’m not sure what got pulled this time. Again, the problem is that the voters are overwhelmingly choosing someone else.

      Is it that candidates dropped out? Sanders has no entitlement to a fractured opposition. I realize this concept may be foreign to Sanders, but candidates often quit races when it becomes clear they have no path to victory. Warren dropping out didn’t seem to help Sanders any. I expect that a lot of her supporters went to Biden because of the awful treatment she and her supporters got from Sanders supporters.

      Is it that everyone is endorsing Biden? Well, when you go around criticizing the “Democratic establishment” (which really seems to be anyone who is not Bernie Sanders) the people who make up that establishment aren’t going to be inclined to support you. That’s the problem with Sanders’s brand of negative, divisive politics.

      • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/11/2020 - 10:52 am.

        So sad. The only reason for Uncle Joe’s wins have been the endorsement from a Good old boy politician from a Southern State that depends on gobs of Federal funding. But they all hate socialism !!!

        The “modern democratic party”, nothing different from 100 years ago ! I can see Hispanics and the below 40 crowd lining up to vote for Uncle Joe.

        • Submitted by Pat Terry on 03/11/2020 - 11:04 am.

          Typical from a Sanders supporter – the belief that African-American voters can’t think for themselves. They are just sheep who do whatever they are told.

          I know its hard to believe, but people actually think Biden is a better candidate than Sanders. He wasn’t my choice, but was an easy pick over Sanders.

          • Submitted by Matt Haas on 03/11/2020 - 11:34 am.

            So then Biden WON’T be picking an African American running mate to shore up that support then? Because you centrists have SUCH faith in African American agency, you shouldn’t need to right?

            • Submitted by Pat Terry on 03/11/2020 - 12:59 pm.

              I have no idea who Biden is going to pick and I’m not sure why that is relevant to rebutting the idea that African-Americans can’t think for themselves.

          • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/11/2020 - 12:15 pm.

            Who said African American voters d thought for themselves ? They thought the endorsement from Good Ole Boy Clyburn was paramount over any qualifications/ideas by Warren, Bernie, Buttegig, Steyer. They are wholly entitled to that decision, just as i’m entitled to point it out.

            It reflects the state of the Southern Democratic Party, and that’s a truth you can’t digest. Its just a different shade of the good ole boy element of the party you see in Northern States. Wish to deny that ?

            I’m not stating a fantastic theory. Its all over the media.
            https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/clyburn-knew-democrats-needed-a-signal-to-rally-around-biden-his-endorsement-created-a-political-surge/2020/03/04/2f0c0a60-5e33-11ea-b29b-9db42f7803a7_story.html

            • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/11/2020 - 12:16 pm.

              Correction, It should’ve read “Who said African American voters did not think for themselves”

            • Submitted by Pat Terry on 03/11/2020 - 05:39 pm.

              The idea of calling Jim Clyburn a “good ole boy” is both preposterous and incredibly racist.

              • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/12/2020 - 09:43 am.

                Here is Glen Ford, writing about black politics from a black perspective:

                https://www.blackagendareport.com/corporations-and-their-media-strangled-bernie-and-older-black-voters-tied-knot

                “In today’s reality, however, the crisis of capital in general, and the climate crisis in particular, is so acute that any political outcome that does not alter the trajectory of society will result in catastrophe — inevitably, and soon, on all fronts, whichever of the two corporate parties is in power. Capitalism is failing of its own contradictions, and the more folks in the centers of empire cling to it, the worse conditions will become. For African Americans, there looms an ever-deepening bottom.

                “Younger Black people are looking into the abyss, and see nothing in their elders’ flailing machinations that would prevent descent into powerlessness and utter precarity. There is no Black “strategy,” and young Blacks know it. There is only fear — plus the desire of Black elites to preserve and serve the Democratic Party structures that have provided their grasping little class with a degree of status and some limited authority to help manage their own people’s oppression. Joe Biden offers nothing more, and the Black Misleadership Class dares not demand…anything.”

              • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/12/2020 - 09:58 am.

                Clyburn, btw, has come out and said the DNC should just cancel the next Dem debate, or Biden might look bad and do damage to his candidacy. Biden has been conspicuously absent since Super Tuesday, his handlers wanting to keep him out of the public eye and let his “reputation” and surrogates like Clyburn do the talking. What with Clyburn’s connection to big pharma, it is not racist at all to suggest he is a establishment figure protecting his fellow good ol’ boys like Biden.

              • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/12/2020 - 10:26 am.

                Jim Clyburn wants to shut down the primaries now. If a white guy was leading and an upstart African American was challenging him and a call to shut down the primaries and debates came, how would you characterize that ?

                It was a Good Ole Boy endorsement. Nothing wrong with that and nothing wrong with calling it such. DFL hacks would like to raise the race card at their convenience, every time.

        • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 03/11/2020 - 11:11 am.

          So if Clyburn would have supported Bernie you would have been good with the results even if Biden won SC? What is the excuse for Michigan? How about Mississippi? etc. etc. etc.

          • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/11/2020 - 12:09 pm.

            Wish to deny the fact that others got out of the race cause of South Carolina ? If Clyburn supported Bernie and polls confirm that people changed their vote based on that endorsement that still stands.

            If he same thing happened to a black aspirant who was rejected cause the local Good Ole’ boy endorsed his opponent cause “We know Billy Bob”, how would you characterize that ?

            • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 03/11/2020 - 09:02 pm.

              So, not sure your point, if there is one? Folks should not give weight to their local politicians? Folks should only vote the way you suggest they should? Something else?

    • Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 03/11/2020 - 10:28 am.

      According to the exit polls, the “new voter energy” and youth vote has not been turning out for Bernie so far in the primaries.

      How is that “pulling one over” on anybody? If people believe in something/someone, it’s not enough to just go to the (fun) rallies. They also have to commit to the (less fun) actions of getting out and getting in line and voting. If they didn’t turn out to vote, then what do they base their complaints about him not winning on?

      This continues to perplex me . . . . . . . . .

      • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/11/2020 - 11:13 am.

        There were reports from Michigan that the wait at college voting places was three hours or more, just as that has been the case in many states. Maybe because he is the one candidate who has said that he would wipe out student debt and make public college free? There are many forces meaning to keep college expensive and a generation in debt.

        • Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 03/11/2020 - 12:26 pm.

          Even Sanders admitted he’s not getting the youth turnout like he was anticipating:

          https://www.npr.org/2020/03/06/812486517/bernie-sanders-call-for-young-voters-isn-t-working-out-the-way-he-planned

        • Submitted by Connie Sullivan on 03/11/2020 - 12:39 pm.

          The long lines and the waiting at college campus precincts in Michigan were due to the length of time it takes all those young new voters to register to vote.

          I live in one of those college campus precincts in Minneapolis, and although there was no great crush of actual voters (if you were registered already, you zipped right through, because there were lots of voting stations open and moving people quickly), there was a long line of kids who needed to register before they could vote (for Bernie, most of them).

          Take a deep breath, folks. It’s the Republicans who are constantly trying to suppress the college vote across the country. And the black and Latino and Asian votes.

          It’s not the Democratic “establishment”–voters like me, who haven’t missed a primary or a general election in decades–who are suppressing anybody’s vote. And, unlike Bernie Sanders, we are not reluctant or ashamed to be listed and known as Democrats, thank you very much.

          Bernie Sanders does not play well with others; he’s a political loner whose career proves that he prefers to go it alone to joining together for a party and its principles. That’s why he can’t understand why prominent members of the Democratic Party, and the nationwide Democratic electorate of voters like me, are quickly consolidating to elect a presidential nominee who represents us best against Donald Trump.

          These primaries are a Democratic Party affair. They are not yet the general election for president. We Democrats have a right to pick our person.

          Once the Democratic Party, through its voters (inspired or not by endorsements of Joe Biden from former candidates in the party primaries who have now dropped out), has picked its nominee, it remains to be seen how much Sanders supporters are really, really ready, or not, to help Donald Trump get four more years in the White House.

          • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/11/2020 - 03:46 pm.

            I’m glad he does not play well with others. He voted against the Iraq war when everyone else lined up like lemmings.

            “And, unlike Bernie Sanders, we are not reluctant or ashamed to be listed and known as Democrats, thank you very much.”

            Except, when you need his vote in the Senate. Then, suddenly he is a Democrat.

            • Submitted by Pat Terry on 03/11/2020 - 05:41 pm.

              Sometimes, maybe. Sanders is completely incompetent as a legislator. The same problems with his campaign also made him completely worthless as a Senator.

              • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/12/2020 - 08:33 am.

                I think part of the problem here is Sanders supporters feel like the Dem party establishment thinks they are “worthless”.

                • Submitted by Pat Terry on 03/12/2020 - 10:13 am.

                  Its not the supporters. Just Sanders and his long history of accomplishing absolutely nothing.

                  • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/12/2020 - 10:29 am.

                    What has Joe Biden accomplished ? Ah, yes Pat won’t answer that question cause Biden has a track record of failed proposals and legislation. Iraq, Nafta, Crime Bill, Banks.

                    A no vote on Iraq war was a failed legislation ? I’d take that “failure” over any “success” Biden has had. Although, i’ve yet to see one,

            • Submitted by Connie Sullivan on 03/12/2020 - 11:18 am.

              Sorry, Raj. When Bernie Sanders votes with the Democrats in the Senate (who else would he vote with, for Pete’s sake?), he is simply voting with Democrats. that doesn’t make him a Democrat, though. He has refused ever to call himself a Democrat, or join the party officially.

              Nobody in the U.S. Senate calls Bernie Sanders a Democrat, because he mostly votes with them.

              The onus here has always been on Bernie for his pretty cynical use of an established political party he nevertheless refuses to recognize as his own. Major Machiavelli in that, don’t you agree?

              • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/12/2020 - 11:56 am.

                Connie, all the party has to do is force him to register as a Democrat or leave. They can tell him and Angus King, to sit in the Senate as an Independent and run as an Independent. Oh wait, never mind.

      • Submitted by Matt Haas on 03/11/2020 - 11:31 am.

        Well then, you’d better figure out what will, because you won’t be winning without them. Hint, calling them shiftless, lazy, uninformed, naive, “looking for fun”, and “looking for free stuff” (an actual conservative talking point against us all btw), ISN’T gonna do it.

        • Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 03/11/2020 - 12:29 pm.

          “What will what”? I have no idea what you’re talking about, and I wrote virtually none of the things you were apparently attributing to me in your reply.

          • Submitted by Matt Haas on 03/11/2020 - 05:26 pm.

            Turn out the youth vote that you claim Bernie has not. If HE can’t, what’s your plan? You do understand that you will not be electing Joe Biden president, if you can’t figure it out.

        • Submitted by Pat Terry on 03/11/2020 - 05:42 pm.

          No one is saying those things, at least on the Democratic side. Pointing out the fact that young people aren’t coming out for Sanders isn’t the same thing.

    • Submitted by Joel Stegner on 03/11/2020 - 07:08 pm.

      Trump won in 2016, not the establishment. If you cannot detect their difference between Biden and Trump, ask 10 people you respect what they plan to do. I would be surprised if help re-elect Trump is on their list.

  4. Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 03/11/2020 - 09:50 am.

    We agree! Some folks just do not understand what that optometrist is saying when he changes lenses better or worse!

  5. Submitted by Paul Brandon on 03/11/2020 - 10:02 am.

    At a time when we’re facing an existential threat, people want reassurance more than they want revolution.
    There’s a difference between stating admirable goals and being able to achieve them; Bernie will stay in the race as long as he can because he likes his soapbox, but his political career is toast.
    Let’s give him the Cassandra award.

  6. Submitted by Matt Haas on 03/11/2020 - 11:12 am.

    The simple fact of the matter remains. Biden will require ALL of the support he can get from those who supported Sanders and others. The question is, will he attempt to secure that support beyond the lip service he gave last evening, or will he take the tack we see from SOME of his supporters here and demand they fall in line, because they must, and be quiet about their issues. If its the latter, then like 2016, where the same strategy was employed, he’ll lose. It’s really that elementary. To the more vociferous among you, if airing your distaste for your left leaning allies is more important than beating Trump, I ask you, what exactly is it that you’re fighting for?

    • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/11/2020 - 12:06 pm.

      Like my saying somene needs to convince me to vote for Biden despite that his record is corporate and not people friendly….I get accused of being a Trump fanatic.

    • Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 03/11/2020 - 12:40 pm.

      Or they could vote for the Democratic nominee(whoever it happens to be) and continue to be vocal about their issues. One does not necessarily preclude the other.

    • Submitted by Connie Sullivan on 03/11/2020 - 12:47 pm.

      Who ever said that Bernie supporters have to keep quiet about their issues, as they turn to supporting the Democratic Party nominee against Trump? They know that Biden does not support Medicare for All as Bernie proposed it–so what? Is Trump’s No Health Care Plan At All better somehow?

      Nobody said that any American has to abandon their political views. Sanders supporters may have to compromise a bit as they vote in the general election, though. When the alternative to Biden is . . . Donald Trump.

      • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/11/2020 - 03:51 pm.

        Or. Stay home. Why compromise with Uncle Joe who supported the War In Iraq, supported predatory Credit Cards, supports Israeli Apartheid, said Saudi Arabia is not a dictatorship, demeaned and denigrated a black women who complained of harassment. Oh yeah, i know why. Cause Jim Clyburn told he “he knows Joe”

        If i want to vote for a Republican, i’ll vote for one who runs on that ticket.

        • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 03/12/2020 - 08:45 am.

          And if Sanders supporters (and I am one) all decide to stay home and Trump is re-elected, does that mean there won’t be any consequences? Is our self-righteousness and electoral purity going to insulate America from the reign of a re-empowered madman?

          • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/12/2020 - 10:32 am.

            I voted for Obama. I got continual NAFTA, Apartheid in Israel, butchers in Middle East, H1 fraud, NAFTA failure.

            The disappearance of Clinton and her hacks from the party has led to AOC, Pete Buttegig, Omar, a new breed of Democrats who aren’t Clinton hacks.

            Was that failure ? Or would you have preferred the same old set of hacks running the show. Just as Biden will do.

            • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 03/12/2020 - 01:23 pm.

              First, Mayor Buttigieg is more a Clinton-style Democrat than an AOC or Omar-style progressive. Being intelligent and educated, not to mention openly gay, doesn’t mean his politics put him on the left of the spectrum.

              Second, you’re telling me that all we have to do is tough out another four years of Trump, who, not needing to be concerned with a re-election campaign, will feel empowered to do whatever he damn well feels like, with no apparent consequences. After that, maybe there will be a sufficiently progressive Democrat running who can not only reverse the damage wrought by eight years of government-by-narcissistic-idiot, but let us move forward to even better things. All will be well.

              If you believe that scenario, all I can say is that I am from Amazon customer support, and need to verify certain transactions. Please forward to me your credit card number and expiration date.

              • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/12/2020 - 02:04 pm.

                Where did i infer that Pete Buttegeg was a lefty. I want new voices. Not the same old hacks. Pete has interesting ideas, many of which i may not agree with, but i’m repulsed by the idea of him having to step down cause some Good Ole Boy in South Carolina endorsed Biden and every one line up to vote based on that.

                If that is what the Democratic Party has come down to, a nomination by a bunch of backward states in the South with no regard for up and coming voices, then yes i’m ok with loosing. At least then the Party and the Good Ole Boys will realize that unless new voices are in the Party they will not win. Ask Gore, Kerry, Clinton how it worked out for them

                I do believe in that scenario and my
                customer name : NOT ACORPORATE DEMOCRAT
                card no : 1800NAFTASCREWEDME
                expiration Date: 11/1/2016

      • Submitted by Matt Haas on 03/11/2020 - 05:34 pm.

        Some of us have been around awhile, Ms. Sullivan. It’d be rather odd to have folks in your campaign, or in your administration espousing ideas that you don’t support. That’s what we understand, by supporting Biden we necessarily will be frozen out of decisionmaking for the foreseeable future. Its one thing to bring attention to your ideas when one is in the opposition, it’s quite another when doing so conflicts with the chosen agenda of ones supposed allies. It’s not particularly gratifying to be made to beg scraps from folks who seem to enjoy nothing more than explaining how everything you care about is unimportant.

        • Submitted by Connie Sullivan on 03/12/2020 - 11:29 am.

          Here’s how a presidential campaign, for the general election, work, Matt: Those who want the Democratic nominee to beat Donald Trump (erstwhile Republican, but really just a megalomaniac dictator at heart) will look at the two alternatives–not some vague, distant, ideal plans–and vote for the Demorat.

          that doesn’t mean they have to give up their vision or ideals. It means thst we don’t re-elect the megalomaniac for another four years!

          Can we please ask for your help in that, as Joe Biden has already begun to do? Whgeb he’s elected, then you can push for full Medicare for All (only the Democrats will listen to you) and free this and that,

          Giving you time to really study the Danish model Bernie has been promoting, and talk frankly about the really high taxes Danes pay for all that largesse. A discussion, not a war, please.

          • Submitted by Matt Haas on 03/12/2020 - 11:48 am.

            I’m not suicidal, I’ll vote whomever the nominee is, but I also will not be silent about that nominees deficiencies, or the deficiencies in the political strategy employed by that nominee that I feel are going to lead to that candidates defeat. I express cynicism toward the party structure that is empowering this candidate because over and over they seem to be oblivious to these concerns.

      • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 03/12/2020 - 08:31 am.

        “Sanders supporters may have to compromise a bit”

        But to many Sanders supporters, compromise with establishment Dems on Biden sounds like more income inequality, more corporate bank and billionaire power over the people, more climate change and pollinator extinction, more student debt, more war, more surveillance… but at least he isn’t Trump.

    • Submitted by Pat Terry on 03/11/2020 - 01:14 pm.

      What do you suggest? Sanders’s campaign was premised on the idea that he would bring in lots of new young voters, and that didn’t happen. Is Sanders’s message the answer? Seriously, Matt, tell me what you think Biden should do.

      • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/11/2020 - 04:37 pm.

        Joe Bidens campaign was premised on the idea that he was the most prepared to take on Donald Trump. He couldn’t take on a small town mayor in Iowa or NH. His own Good Ole Boy ally Clyburn stated that Joe Biden ran a horse…t campaign,

        However, I guess he becomes the nominee and everyone else forced to drop out cause Jim Clyburn “knows Joe”. Is that the incompetent Joe he’s referring to ?

        • Submitted by Pat Terry on 03/12/2020 - 10:18 am.

          Being prepared to take on Trump means getting more votes (including electoral) than Trump. Winning primaries would suggest than he is capable of doing that. At least far more capable than Sanders is.

      • Submitted by Matt Haas on 03/11/2020 - 05:28 pm.

        I’ve actually thought quite a bit on that, if you’d indulge me the ability to write the book of a post that explaining it would entale, I’d be happy to do so.

        • Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 03/12/2020 - 10:18 am.

          You could always submit a “Community Voices” post.

        • Submitted by Pat Terry on 03/12/2020 - 12:03 pm.

          We have been disagreeing a lot lately, but I think your takes here are generally good, Matt. I would like to read it.

          Also know this: my centrism/moderate-ism/neo-liberalism is rooted in pragmatism and political reality. Progress has always been incremental. We should have universal, affordable healthcare. I just don’t see Sanders as a way to get there.

  7. Submitted by Dan Landherr on 03/11/2020 - 12:54 pm.

    I’m not sure why people are clamoring for the nomination to be over with sooner. The primary season is endless free advertising for a Democratic nominee who is behind in the race for cash. In an era where covering the election as a horse race is the only media coverage you get it is important to give the media a horse race as long as possible. Keep your candidate dominating the news cycle.

    When the horse race is over Bernie will need to remind his supporters that the Democratic party is the only one of the two major parties that has a progressive wing and that progressive votes will be necessary to pass legislation in a divided Congress. A Biden presidency gives Bernie more political power than four more years of Trump.

  8. Submitted by Brian Simon on 03/11/2020 - 01:10 pm.

    Eric says that Sanders’s “remaining in the race for the Democratic nomination is likely to help Donald Trump more than it will advance his principles.”

    What evidence is there to support this opinion? I suspect it’s based on the misinterpretation of the 2016 outcome by blaming Sanders for not doing enough to help Clinton, rather than acknowledging that Clinton was not a great candidate. It’s the same sloppy thinking that has led the Dems to flock to the old moderate white guy instead of rallying around smeone with a more progressive vision, like Booker or Warren.

    To be sure, I agree with the premise that DJT has to go. But in choosing to challenge him with Biden, the party is addressing the symptom & ignoring the underlying problem that allowed Trumpism to flourish. There was evidence of the problem during the Obama administration, in the manifestation of the Tea Party & the Occupy Wall Street movements. But establishment Dems, starting with the Obama-Biden administration, chose to ignore evidence of popular unrest, and plowed forward with the misguided notion that rebranding moderate Republicanism as Third Way New Democratism was the way to win elections.

    While Biden may indeed beat Trump, and that will, indeed, be a good thing; it will likely also produce future dem losses to the next populist, and they’ll be left, scratching heads, wondering what they got wrong this time. Meanwhile the working majority will continue toiling away in a sisyphean struggle to reach the American dream, watching that rock roll back downhill while the coddled elite point to their “lack of effort.”

  9. Submitted by James Hamilton on 03/11/2020 - 02:18 pm.

    National polling consistently has indicated voters’ preference for a moderate candidate, by a margin of 4-6% as I recall. Sanders has done well in caucus states, in which most candidates true believers are most likely to participate, but has tended to fare less well in primary states. That’s the people speaking, not “the establishment.”

    Frankly, I have been surprised by how little experience and one’s resume have counted for over the past year. I cast my vote for Biden last week, primarily because I sat down and asked myself who was the best qualified to take office and start to reverse the crimes of the past three years while moving ahead on the major issues that have been neglected under Trump and a Republican Senate. No, I don’t agree with every cote he’s ever made or every statement he’s ever made. Neither do I hold things like his vote on Iraq against him. Congress and the American public were stampeded into that war. The opposition (of which I was a member) were too few to stem the tide of misdirected blood lust.

    I set aside questions of policy and electability to answer that question, in large part because I also considered what a Democratic president would have to work with in the House and Senate.Too often too many of us forget that the Democratic party covers a broad political spectrum, from Ilhan Omar in Minneapolis to Collin “Purple” Peterson in the 7th Congressional District.

    If you want major changes in our society on an accelerated schedule, you’d best make sure that you have the House and Senate to support your candidate. I don’t see Bernie’s coattails as being that long. If he doesn’t get the nomination, stay involved just as I will if he does, both to elect the Democratic nominee and those who will support the nominee we send to the White House.

  10. Submitted by joe smith on 03/11/2020 - 02:23 pm.

    Only die hard leftists were going to vote for Bernie in a matchup versus President Trump in November, no chance of winning for Democrats. If Bernie beats up Joe Biden on NAFTA (historically bad deal for American blue collar workers), 94 crime bill (which President Trump changed), war in Iraq and TPP he will bruise Joe badly. Bernie is not getting out because he knows DNC once again joined forces to stop him. Bernie staying in and calling Biden out over his record will be a prelude to what President Trump will do to him. Should be interesting.

  11. Submitted by Roy Everson on 03/11/2020 - 03:23 pm.

    Social democrats and democratic socialists should take seriously the “democratic’ half of that label and vote for the pro-democracy candidate over the pro-authoritarian leader. This is indeed what happened in France in 2002. The conservative, Chirac survived the runoff, along with the nationalist bigot LePen. The socialists were eliminated, but for the final vote their leadership endorsed Chirac to bolster democratic institutions. Chirac won, and although he wasn’t a socialist fave he was the most prominent opponent of Bush-Cheney’s war on Iraq, and for that we should thank the socialists who supported democracy.

    Supporters of Sanders (to whom this former McGovernite and Sandernista can relate) may take some time to reach this conclusion, but if they value democracy and consider Trump a threat they’ll eventually be ridin’ with Joe.

    Be assuaged also by the reality that once a person becomes president it’s not entirely predictable in what directions he’ll govern. Remember, FDR was the mainstream moderate when he first ran for president, not the progressive icon he later became.

  12. Submitted by Mike Schumann on 03/11/2020 - 03:26 pm.

    Biden is toast, just like Hilary was. People support Sanders for exactly the same reason they supported Trump: A vote against the establishment. Biden has been part of the problem for decades. He was part of the government that created the mess in the Middle East over the last 50 years. He help get rid of all the usury laws around the country, so loansharking is now a legitimate Wall Street business, and the average Joe is in perpetual economic servitude. He helped create a college loan system that enables gullible students and parents to borrow unlimited amounts of money that they will never be able to pay back, and then prevents them from discharging the loans thru bankruptcy, while guaranteeing that the banks get paid 100 cents on the dollar, financed by the taxes of the same people who can’t afford to repay the loans.

    The only reason people support Biden, is to get rid of Trump. That’s not a winning strategy.

  13. Submitted by Jon Kingstad on 03/11/2020 - 04:05 pm.

    What does “soon” mean? Does that mean next week or next month? There’s no reason to believe or assume that if he fails to gain the needed delegates, Bernie Sanders will not gracefully withdraw from his candidacy, as he did in 2016 at the Democratic National Convention. Bernie publicly and enthusiastically voiced his support for Hillary Clinton and urged his supporters to do likewise.

    But as long as he does remain in the campaign, Bernie Sanders is needed to keep the Democratic Party honest by keeping the heat turned up. He can do so by demanding what Joe Biden is going to do as President Biden. How will future President Biden look any different from Senator or VP Biden, stalwart of the conservative DNC. For some of us, Bernie is running against Biden’s record of 47 years in the US Senate where he’s made deal after deal compromising principle (like New Deal principles) in the name of bipartisanship that has moved this country to its most conservative position in one hundred years.

    I’m encouraged to learn that Biden has owned some of his record and regrets some of his votes as being a mistake. Bernie has a valid role in forcing Biden to clarify his position on his record and how he proposes to move the country forward into what many see as a dark future.

    • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 03/11/2020 - 09:10 pm.

      There is a military saying, you can plan all you want about a war/battle, but once the first shot is fired, all the plans go to hell. Folks need to ask themselves one question, will the needle point more towards what they want with a Biden or with a Trump, Vote accordingly. You know: “You can’t always get what you want, But if you try sometime you find, You get what you need”

  14. Submitted by Tom Anderson on 03/11/2020 - 05:00 pm.

    It is too bad that President Trump can’t win the 2020 election because, after four years, when the “national emergency” was over and civilization as we know it (according to Speaker Pelosi) didn’t end, I could come back and say “I told you so.” Alas, we’ll never know.

    At least the author hasn’t jumped on the other “national emergency” that all other media is obsessing about.

  15. Submitted by Henry Johnson on 03/11/2020 - 09:37 pm.

    I’m afraid Trump and Trump-publicans have a real ally in the left-leaning wing of the democratic party.

    I say this because despite all the strident and supposedly passionate ‘desire for change’ or ‘revolution’ the left wing expresses, probably 20% of their number actually help republicans by either staying at home on election day, throwing their vote away on a ‘green party’ candidate, or worse, the article below indicates that 12% of Sanders supporters actually voted for Trump in 2016! Yikes!

    No wonder Trump is pretending to be sympathetic to Sanders, he as a right-winger ironically was helped in 2016 by the votes of Sanders left-wing supporters, and he hopes for that again in 2020!

    https://www.newsweek.com/bernie-sanders-trump-2016-election-654320

    So when push comes to shove, that 20% of left-wingers lets republicans win, and then complains about it later!

    And to rub salt in the wounds of moderate democrats, they will then make vague and totally unsubstantiated claims on boards like this that somehow moderates, not they, are responsible for the rise of right-wing extremism and republican electoral victories! Yeah right!

    It wasn’t moderates who got George W Bush elected by voting for Ralph Nader! That was the left-wing folks.

    And not moderates fault that 20% of Bernie supporters stayed at home on election day in 2016, or voted for Jill Stein, or for pete’s sake, voted for Donald Trump!

    Talk about the ultimate ‘failure to oppose’ right-wing extremism!

    I see a number of articles the last few days saying that Biden should agree to support many of Sanders policy positions – IN EXCHANGE FOR THE VOTES OF SANDERS SUPPORTERS IN THE GENERAL ELECTION.

    Really? If Bernie looked like he was probably going to win the nomination, would we hear people saying Bernie should adopt Biden positions, in exchange for getting the general election votes of Biden supporters?

    No, I don’t think so!

    They wouldn’t need to ask for that because they know Biden supporters are true blue democrats, and their support of the party candidate IS NOT CONDITIONAL, and they will vote for the party nominee including Bernie, instead of letting DJT have a second term – unlike the 20% of socialist who seem to be hinting they may stay at home pouting about how their guy didn’t get the nomination instead of voting for the nominee of their own party.

    And then go march in a protest parade afterwards when that republican then wins!

    I saw multiple TV interviews in January 2017 where repeatedly liberals who marched in an 2017 inauguration protest parade admitted they hadn’t voted!

    IMO, the protest parades should have been against stay-at-home or I voted for Jill Stein or Donald Trump voting left-wingers, since they helped Trump win.

    If Bernie is the nominee, moderates might suggest he tone-down his policies to have a better chance in the general election, but they wouldn’t ask that Bernie PRETEND TO BE A MODERATE or otherwise they themselves would plan to stay at home and not vote for him in the general election!

    It’s time to grow up – political power is a battle, and often imperfect, like many things in life, you vote for the lesser of two evils today and then try to move your party closer to your desired positions and candidates over time in the future.

    You shouldn’t IMO give political power to a party with the OPPOSITE of all your beliefs, because you can’t get over the fact that your preferred candidate didn’t win your own party’s nomination.

    And like Al Gore was nothing like ‘let’s-invade-Iraq’ George W Bush (and BTW he’s done a hell of a lot more for the global warming issue than green party Ralph Nader ever did!) – Joe Biden is nothing like Donald Trump.

    So is he an improvement over what we have now? – yes, definitely!

    So that’s worth voting for instead of failing to support your own party’s candidate, and then whining about four more years of Trump later!

    My guess is that Bernie Sanders message of ‘revolution’ didn’t play that well in a country where probably the predominate desire of more people is a return to sanity and normalcy, and I think that is showing in the primary results.

    That doesn’t mean that Bernie’s positions can’t be taken up and perhaps succeed in a future election, but with the current psychology of much of the country, the messaging just doesn’t appear to be working that well at this time.

    Better to accept that failure of the message to resonate widely enough at this point in time, whenever the nomination process is over that is, and to get behind a candidate you are lukewarm about who can defeat the republicans, than to give a 2nd term to Donald Trump.

    Just as moderates would get behind Bernie If he is the nominee and vote for him if ‘revolution’ is being received better with the electorate in 2020, than the ‘return to normalcy’ viewpoint.

    An important thing – we also see that Biden has been cleaning up in the rural states – and the democratic party needs to win a few of those to win the senate!

    And reality check – without control of the Senate, NO democratic party positions, no matter how small, medium, or large, are going to be passed and become the law of the land.

    • Submitted by Pat Terry on 03/12/2020 - 12:06 pm.

      Great comment!

    • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/13/2020 - 05:29 am.

      A comment that is the poster child of why we got Presidents Gore, Kerry Hillary Clinton and soon to be President Biden.

      If you’re going to blame lefties who stayed home for all of the above losses that indicates the pathetic state of the Good Old Boy Democratic Party. They told us how so, so, so, so, qualified Gore and Kerry were over dumbass Bush and how Hillary was among the most qualified persons ever to run for President. And now they blame the small margin of lefties who stayed home ?!!!

      If your going to game the nomination system by forcing everyone to get after Jim Clyburn “knows Joe” and Clyburn himself acknowledged that Joe Biden ran a horseshit campaign, then why blame people who loose interest in the party. The Democratic Party is like the California Republican party which won every election as long as it had the old angry white guy vote. Then it fell off the cliff.

      Two thirds of people under forty vote AGAINST Uncle Joe. Ok, great you got all the old folks to vote in larger numbers. However, you don’t have enough old folks to get past the finish line in November. So the younger vote you believe will compromise cause some Good Ole Boy in the south from a backward state endorsed Uncle Joe ? Dream On.

      Uncle Joe is the anti thesis of the younger party. He supports apartheid, supported Dictators who killed their own people by the tens of thousands, supported usurious credit card companies.

      Oh yeah he’s gonna line up with a bunch of Union folks to show hes for the common man. There’s a problem the “common man” Union guy has a fat pension, while the younger crowd is screwed by Uncle Joe and his hacks. The Chicago Police Chief who was FIRED is going to get $170K in PENSION a year. Sure Joe is for the “common man”

      Don’t game the primary process and wonder why people stay home.

      • Submitted by Raj Maddali on 03/13/2020 - 05:30 am.

        “Two thirds of people under forty vote AGAINST Uncle Joe.” should read
        Two thirds of people in Michigan under forty vote AGAINST Uncle Joe.

  16. Submitted by Karen Sandness on 03/12/2020 - 12:20 pm.

    You know, thirty and forty years ago, I had opportunities to emigrate to countries (Norway, Australia, Japan) where Bernie Sanders’ ideas are not considered wild-eyed radicalism but just plain common sense. I passed on these opportunities, partly because I never imagined things would get this bad in the U.S. and partly because moving thousands of miles and adjusting to a new society is a daunting prospect. Yes, to put it briefly and bluntly, I was scared.

    Now I’m too old to be considered a desirable immigrant in any of these places, and I could kick myself around the world twice for not taking these opportunities when I had them. The only countries that would take me now are Third World countries that like American retirees for the money they bring to the local economy.

    Come November, I’ll vote for Biden, if he’s the nominee. I’m a good sport, I haven’t been able to vote for my first choice in the general since 1976. But I am increasingly angry at the systems and circumstances that are preventing America from following the rest of the Western industrialized world into 21st-century standards of infrastructure, education, health care, environmental concern, and general quality of life.

    • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 03/12/2020 - 01:08 pm.

      Well Karen there are a lot of us that have a problem with NIH (Not Invented Here) and have seen great ideas through out the world. But, like Trump & his voters, if it isn’t their idea and they don’t personally get all the benefits, it can’t be a good one! So all we can do is try and push the needle in the direction we think is more conducive to intelligent thinking.

  17. Submitted by Tim Smith on 03/12/2020 - 02:48 pm.

    Sanders would have destroyed the economy and hurt those he pretends to want to help, at best he would have helped a few at the expense of the many.

    Biden is well connected and has many billionaire friends, 44 at last count have contributed to his campaign so far. He wouldnt hurt them, just grant them favors.if ave Joe gets the nuclear codes, remains to be seen, am very comfortable as he couldn’t pull it off if had to.

    • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 03/12/2020 - 05:36 pm.

      “Sanders would have destroyed the economy”
      Little late don’t you think, Trump and gangs failure to properly prepare for the C-Virus has already cratered the stock market, and rapidly working on the economy. Thought you would be our celebrating the success of the great disrupter, Isn’t that what all the Trumpies voted for “disruption”?

      “Biden is well connected and has many billionaire friends”
      So you are saying he will give them $1.5T like Trump? Any support for that, or just normal prophetic BS?

  18. Submitted by Norm Champ on 03/12/2020 - 06:21 pm.

    Late to the party here, but appreciate reaction to this (Month old) Quote from David Brooks in the NYT:

    “Only 53 percent of Sanders voters say they will certainly support whoever is the Democratic nominee. This is no idle threat. In 2016, in Pennsylvania, 117,000 Sanders primary voters went for Trump in the general, and Trump won the state by 44,292 ballots. In Michigan, 48,000 Sanders voters went for Trump, and Trump won the state by 10,704. In Wisconsin, 51,300 Sanders voters went for Trump, and Trump won the state by 22,748. In short, Sanders voters helped elect Trump.”

    Please don’t let this happen again!

    • Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 03/13/2020 - 08:24 am.

      “Please don’t let this happen again!”

      Not clear on what solution you’re proposing.You might mean “Please don’t let this happen again! Make sure Bernie is the nominee!”

      Or instead you might mean “Please don’t let this happen again, Bernie voters! If he’s not the nominee, come out and vote for the Democrat who is (presumably Biden).”

      Which scenario are you calling for in your comment?

  19. Submitted by Joe Musich on 03/12/2020 - 07:07 pm.

    In the debate Biden’s feet need to be held to the progressive fire. If he flinches all will see it.

  20. Submitted by Julie Stroeve on 03/14/2020 - 04:10 pm.

    Eric, you hit a nerve here! I think Bernie will exercise the high road approach to the delegate count. Go strong until the last primary vote is counted. Then go to Milwaukee and get crazy support from his supporters. The Establishment will look like fools (even more than they do today) for supporting Biden. A brokered convention will be very disconbobbulating for the party and it could act as the wake-up for the DNC and its SuperDelegates. Bernie’s going to ask all his supporters to vote for the nominee whomever it is — even if it’s not him — and they better follow his instruction! A vote for a 3rd party candidate or staying home and not voting is the surest way to 4 more years with the idiot in the Oval Office. So I’m saying later…not sooner. Bernie gets this.

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