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Posted by on Feb 6, 2016 in 2016 Elections, 2016 Presidential Election, Politics | 12 comments

Poll: Sanders and Clinton are now virtually tied nationally

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The Democrat race for the 2016 nomination has now been transformed. Former Secretary of State is as much a frontrunner with as awesome a lead nationally as seh was with her her impressive margin of victory in the Iowa caucuses.

Which means: NOT!

Sanders and Clinton are now locked in a virtual dead heat:

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and former secretary of state Hillary Clinton are running even in a new national poll tracking support for the Democratic presidential race.

Clinton garnered 44% to Sanders’ 42%, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Friday. A sizeable 11% say they are undecided.

The poll appears to signal a dramatic tightening of the Democratic race following Clinton’s razor-thin victory over Sanders in the Iowa caucuses.

The Quinnipiac poll is one of the first national surveys released since the Iowa results, so it is important to note it could represent statistical noise — trends won’t be clear until more national polling emerges.

National polls conducted before the Iowa caucuses showed the Democratic race tightening, but with Clinton still leading Sanders by double digits. CNN’s own national Poll of Polls from just before Iowa found Clinton at 53%, Sanders at 36% and former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley at 2%.

Clinton will have her work cut out for her. Right now it seems as if Sanders has what George H.W. Bush called “Big Mo.” Also, Sanders and many of his supporters are now trying to within the Democratic Party to do to the word “moderate” what Republicans and conservative talk show hosts successfully have done to the word “liberal.” The label “liberal” was indeed embraced with pride by liberals for years. After all, who SAYS it’s intrinsically better for someone to be conservatives (OOPS! conservatives!)? Conservative politicians, writers and talk show hosts hammered the sneering, disdainful use of the word, and rather than stand by it, American liberals gave up and started to use the word “progressive.” Even the liberal talk channel on Sirius XM became “progressive” talk.

So the word “progressive” was used (sort of like the use of “pre-owned cars” versus “used cars), with usual defense lawyer spins on why (because so many Democrats truly wanted to shed the liberal word and use the word progressive), but the reality is that GOPers and conservatives in particular turned it into a dirty word. Now Sanders and many of his supporters seem to be doing the same thing to the word “moderate.”

I suspect very soon we’ll be hearing the phrase DINO if this trend continues. (On a personal note, as an independent voter and someone who on SOME issues is moderate but on others more to the left and right I can’t listen to Sanders when he starts using moderate a put down, even though he says some of my best friends are moderates. Why would I vote for someone who is openly using the phrase “moderate” to try and discredit someone. This basically now means that both political parties use the word “moderate” as a way to discredit politicos and effectively turn off people who consider themselves moderates.)

The reality is YES no one is inevitable in President races.
External factors could intervene. A candidate who was a front runner could stumble, the person then taking the lead after could do or say something that’s a serious mistake — even say or do something in a primary that dooms his/her candidacy in the general.

Probes into Clinton’s emails could be painted as treason, before any real verdict is in. On Twitter, some Republicans are already calling Socialist Sanders a “communist”; in these days of nuance who cares that socialist governments in Europe and elsewhere have almost always been enemies of communism and have in many ways provided effective government that better takes care of some needs that American government cannot and will not.

YES given some circumstances we could have a President Sanders, or a big Republican victory. We could have a President Hillary Clinton. We could have a President Donald Trump. All the pundits that say “impossible” have had to (out of sight) eat their previously self-confidentially expressed words as this (and other) Presidential cycle has show many of their predictions to be guess work or opinions based on elections that don’t apply to this year.

The poll shows how the Democratic Party is now effectively split. The Democratic establishment also fears Sanders will hurt races down the ticket and, according to The Hill, has started to “gang up on Sanders.”

As the race stands today two things have come out via new reporting: 1)Sanders is expected to win big in New Hampshire and needs a big win and 2)Clinton has basically given up on New Hampshire and is quickly moving to shore herself up for the next battlegrounds.

Given Democrats’ historic propensity for sitting out an election to teach their party a lesson because their favored candidate did not win, or (laughingly) suggesting there is no difference between the Democrat who they didn’t support and a Republican (thus frittering away their advantage on the Supreme Court — which may offer the next President three appointee slots) will this be an updated nursery ryhme?

Bernie and Hillary sat on a wall,
(INSERT HAME OF WINNER HERE) had a great fall,
No DNC bigwigs and no Obama friends,
Could put the Democratic Party together again.

For years the talk has been about the great GOP divide, now accentuated by the rise of nationalist-populist-exclusionary politician Donald Trump.

Now it’s time to seriously wonder if the Democrats will pull together in the end or decide to teach their party a lesson and give GOPers a chance to consolidate their party’s hold on the Supreme Court. To the victors go the spoils; after the election — as the winning party keeps its promises to those who vote for it — to the losers go the whines.

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  • For now I’m waiting for another post to show the same trend, questioning if this is an outlier. If this poll is correct, then Sanders would be catching up with Clinton in the national polls even more quickly than Obama did after the Iowa caucus (and with a virtual tie as opposed to a clear win which Obama had).

    As for the progressive vs. moderate thing, it is far more meaningful to look at the issues than labels–although it does only make Clinton look more dishonest when claiming to be a progressive when the whole DLC thing she subscribed to was to move the Democratic Party to the right and reject the left.

    What matters is not whether Clinton is a centrist but that she is a neocon on foreign policy, she is far right on civil liberties issues, she is too conservative on economic matters, and (with the exception of women’s issues) she is too conservative on social/cultural issues. She has a long history of opposing government transparency and supporting increased power for the Executive Branch. Take away her views on abortion and her relatively recent change in attitude on gay marriage and she is basically a George Bush Republican.

    Progressives oppose Clinton not because of whether she has a moderate label, but because she represents pretty much everything we oppose.

  • JSpencer

    ” it’s time to seriously wonder if the Democrats will pull together in the end”

    If they don’t, then it will tell us we are a lot more #*%$ed up than we think we are. A Cruz, Trump, or Rubio as Commander in Chief is by any halfway reasonable yardstick, unthinkable.

  • dduck

    How many are MINOs at TMV. I think there are very few, if any. Because, a true moderate should not lean to the right or the left, except on some issues. True liberals and conservatives, of course have the luxury and cover to defend their party’s positions and members to the death (of reason), and it is loyalty and protecting the American way and its values.
    Lonely is the moderate, or the soon to be MINOs, they have to swim upstream against the tide of partisan rhetoric. 🙂

    • Bob Munck

      Because, a true moderate should not lean to the right or the left

      You’re using “moderate” as if it meant a position on the political spectrum, the position for which I would use the word “centrist.” To me “moderate” is a measure of intensity, halfway between “uninterested” and “b*tsh*t crazy.” I believe the definitions in dictionaries back me up. In the Hilbert Space of political discourse, the intensity axis on which “moderate” appears is at right angles to the axis on which “right wing” and “left wing” appear. Thus it is possible to be a moderate tea partier, a moderate communist, or a moderate centrist.

      • While the word is used in different ways, Clinton and Sanders were using moderate as meaning centrist in the context of this disagreement.

      • dduck

        I guess I should have put in a couple of more smileys. My comment was BS and was just so I could open a discussion the concept of MINOs (as in going up stream). of course, I have never met a political moderate, or even a unicorn, so I don’t know how they should act.

        • Bob Munck

          My comment was BS

          So many snarky rejoinders, so little time.

    • EEhh… a real moderate gets to enjoy watching partisans wrap themselves into pretzels in defense of their party…or favorite candidate. You dont have to defend anyone…just call it as you see it.

      as for leaning left or right… i refuse to acknowledge the American “left and right” as logical constructs. The framework in which American politics operates is a twisted mess created by lobbyists, politicians and an ignorant electorate.

  • A second poll shows Sanders narrowing the gap and coming within the margin of error.

  • “Now it’s time to seriously wonder if the Democrats will pull together in the end or decide to teach their party a lesson…”

    That is the mindset which is destroying the Democratic Party. It is the job of the party to field candidates who people will turn out to vote for. Democrats should have learned that lesson in 2010 and 2014 when they ran as Republican-lite and lost badly. Thanks to such strategy, Republicans control Congress and the majority of state governments.

    If they run a candidate like Clinton who lacks the judgement to be president. who is ethically unfit to be president, and whose views are out of step with so many potential Democratic voters, then it is the fault of the party if turnout is down and they lose. Crying that the other party is worse is no answer, and doesn’t change anything if they lose.

    Democrats need to remember the warnings of Harry Truman that “If it’s a choice between a genuine Republican, and a Republican in Democratic clothing, the people will choose the genuine article, every time; that is, they will take a Republican before they will a phony Democrat.”

    • “Crying that the other party is worse is no answer, and doesn’t change anything if they lose. ”

      except for who chooses the next 3 justices… because hey… Clinton would choose the exact same people Ted Cruz would choose.

      • That misses the point. We would be in the mess of a Republican picking the next Supreme Court justices largely because of the mismanagement of the Democratic Party which leads to people not turning out to vote for Democratic candidates.

        The Democratic Party must stand for something to get people to turn out to vote. Running as Republican-lite does not work very well.

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