Stephen Bush: Would Bernie Sanders have done better against Donald Trump?

Will Truman

Will Truman is the Editor-in-Chief of Ordinary Times. He is also on Twitter.

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18 Responses

  1. PD Shaw says:

    So by this reasoning Trump had difficulty with the most conservative elements of the Republican Party in the primaries, particularly those religious-identifiers, and therefore Trump was bound to have trouble in the general election.Report

    • El Muneco in reply to PD Shaw says:

      Is it a secret that rightward drift coalesces on a relative few poles (that are not unwilling to form coalitions of convenience), while leftward drift fractures into the People’s Front of Judea (and are not unwilling to form circular firing squads)?
      It’s a particular dysfunction of the Left, but by its very nature it means that the situations are not symmetrical.Report

      • Morat20 in reply to El Muneco says:

        The election of Trump has brought out the left-wing firing squads like crazy.

        It’s funny, in all the screaming, it’s like 60 million Trump voters don’t even exist. They’re quick to blame Clinton, the DNC, the ‘tone’ of liberals, the ACA, Bernie Sanders, any platform you can imagine….

        But on the fact that 60 million people voted for Trump? Apparently they have no agency.Report

  2. Brent F says:

    There are going to be people that are going to those that point to Bernie’s excellent poll numbers recently, but that ignores that he just spent a long time with pretty much everyone either carrying his water or refraining from going after him. Clinton’s people needed him as a surrogate so they never wanted to take him down (unless he started to look like he would have won the primary). The Republicans on the other hand wanted to boost him up as this fine upstanding man who got treated so unfairly by Crooked Hilary. Nobody was pulling out their opposition research on him this year.Report

    • Kim in reply to Brent F says:

      Hillary’s backers weren’t quite so nice to Mr. Sanders as you might think. They apparently had to resort to some rather extreme measures to make certain he’d say their script.

      (Why hillary’s team thought that just because they had convinced him to smoke the mirrors, that all his “followers” would show up and mindlessly vote for her? They don’t understand people who aren’t mindless sheep).Report

      • Brent F in reply to Kim says:

        In public they had to be nice to him for strategic reasons. What they did or didn’t do in back rooms in reality or Kimmie-land isn’t relevant to my thesis.Report

        • Kim in reply to Brent F says:

          True enough. What is relevant, now that I’m thinking of it, is that most attacks against Bernie run on Seriously Old Propaganda.
          Stuff the boomers buy (having been exposed to it ad infinitum), but that the Millenials say “come again? What’s a socialist, and why is it a bad thing?”Report

  3. LeeEsq says:

    I think this depends. Clinton won around 85% of the African-American vote. Thats what a generic Democratic candidate usually gets among the African-American vote if not more. Sanders would have probably gotten the same. The argument that Sanders would have done better than Trump comes from the fact that he did better than Clinton in the crucial states where Clinton lost to Trump by a razor thin margin. Sanders might have won Ohio, Michigan, and Pennsylvania by razor thin margins.Report

    • Kim in reply to LeeEsq says:

      Sanders would have won PA in a walk. 8% lower democratic turnout.

      People who think that a horribly rigged primary means anything about Black Conservadems liking bernie? Nutso.
      Conservadems differ from normal dems in that they’re more approving of torture, mainly. And punishment in general. Possibly a little more scared of terrorists.

      Bernie’s not going to run on repealing the death penalty, dudes!Report

    • Dark Matter in reply to LeeEsq says:

      Sanders might have won Ohio, Michigan, and Pennsylvania by razor thin margins.

      Sanders would have convinced me to vote for Trump rather than Johnson. One of the hallmarks of socialism is food shortages. That makes my involvement personal and is a big enough threat that Trump easily becomes the lesser evil.

      Also Sanders never had bricks thrown at him. The DNC and RNC both went really light on him, if he’d been the actual nominee the gloves would have come off.Report

      • El Muneco in reply to Dark Matter says:

        World average: 2780 calories/day.

        Belgium: 3690 (#5)
        Ireland: 3530 (#11)
        Canada: 3530 (#13)
        Norway: 3460 (#16)
        Denmark: 3400 (#22)
        Cuba: 3300 (#27)
        Netherlands: 3240 (#31)
        Finland: 3220 (#35)
        New Zealand: 3150 (#39)
        Sweden: 3120 (#44)
        China: 2970 (!)

        Hellholes, all…

        You need to separate causes. An authoritarian paramilitary dystopia that is nominally capitalistic is going to look a lot like an authoritarian paramilitary dystopia that is nominally socialist. Namely empty shelves and people disappearing. And truly Communist states have a history of problems when the Supreme Leader is an idiot, which is about 100% of the time, historically.
        Thing is, it doesn’t seem to torpedo the economy of a developed country when they put their thumb on the scale a bit harder and make a social democracy a bit more socialist. Possibly even the reverse, in some contexts. It’s certainly not something to be feared out of hand.Report

    • Stillwater in reply to LeeEsq says:

      I think Sanders “criminal justice reform” position woulda played really well amongst blacks, whites, hispanics, everyone, in the general, myself. Better than … what were Hillary’s views on that stuff? I can’t remember. And that’s especially so in contrast to Trump’s “whatcha gotta lose? Stop and Frisk!” policy position.

      I also think Sanders message about trade, taxes, the 1%, all that, woulda played much better against Trump than “If you like Obama’s policies then vote for me!”.

      Counterfactuals are, by definition, hard to factually counter, tho…Report