Everyone has an opinion on Bernie Sanders. As the race for 2020 heats up, so do the criticisms that candidates must endure. Somehow, the Democratic field is still crowded going into South Carolina on February 29, and then Super Tuesday on March 3 — when many of the nation’s delegates are up for grabs. Sanders is currently the clear frontrunner, but there are plenty of opinion pieces cropping up about how his apparent lead is a mirage. Are they right?
Short answer: No.
The longer answer requires a closer look at those criticisms. We’ve all heard about how his win in New Hampshire is blunted because it was so much more decisive in 2016, when he won against Hillary Clinton by more than twenty points. But how is that fair? How is that a sensible criticism? In 2016, it was basically one man, one woman race. In 2020, there are at least seven candidates who could still claim delegates on Super Tuesday!
Another common criticism says that Bernie’s winning streak is only due to the delegate split between opposing moderate candidates. That also makes little sense based on the information that we have.
First, polls don’t just request information on who participants would like to see win the Democratic nomination. Those polls request information on second choices. The data shows something peculiar: even Joe Biden’s supporters would split off to the Bernie camp in a plurality over other candidates. Moderates dropping out of the race wouldn’t necessarily hurt his chances of winning.
One has to ask why that’s the case. Well, we know the answer to that too. Polls also show us that voters want the person most likely to beat Trump in 2020 to win the nomination — which is why they’re still supporting moderates. What happens if they realize that Sanders has won in head to head matchups against Trump for five years running? According to most polls, he’s got the best shot of beating Trump even if no one realizes it.
And anyone with half a brain knows what happens when Elizabeth Warren drops out of the race, as she will almost certainly do after Super Tuesday. Her supporters are also far more likely to follow Bernie. His lead over the other candidates is extremely solid — and much of the mainstream media (MSM) isn’t giving him the credit where it is due.
Many also contend that Sanders has no support. In Congress, that may be true. But that’s a symptom of a legislative branch that won’t actually represent the people more than a single senator who doesn’t have the support of the people. Bernie has the support. Congress just doesn’t care.
For information on bills that Bernie Sanders has written or cosponsored, check his Govtrack page.