Too Many Candidates Spoil The Election Campaign

More Democrats don’t want Bernie than those who don’t want Pete, Biden, or Warren, but opposition to Bernie is splintering.

Jackson Lanier [CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)]

Bernie Sanders might be leading the polls and set for a victory in New Hampshire. He might have the highest support from African-Americans of any of the Democratic candidates. It might well seem as though there is no stopping Bernie from winning the nomination.

But it seems clear, from the political positions of the other candidates, that most Democrats still don’t want Bernie Sanders to be the nominee — much more so than the disapproval of Pete Buttigieg or Joe Biden, for example.

It’s hard to imagine many Klobuchar, Biden, Buttigieg, Yang, Steyer, or Bloomberg supporters going for Bernie. These candidates poll collectively at almost 55%. Biden and Warren, by contrast, reach just 35% combined — and, even then, a good chunk of Warren supporters wouldn’t want to vote Bernie either.

While a good proportion of the Democrats who wouldn’t vote for Bernie certainly would vote for him in the general election if he were to become the nominee, the fact is that they would be doing so more reluctantly than for other candidates. Add to that the outrage that Bernie would cause among the Trump base, and there’s a recipe for disaster in the general election.

More than anything, though, Democrats need a nominee with a wide range of support within the party — with Buttigieg and Klobuchar the best-placed — to unite progressives, moderates, and the few remaining conservatives.

Too many cooks are spoiling the moderate broth — and, in turn, will spoil the campaign to oust Trump.

Politics nerd, policy wonk | Founder, medium.com/politics-fast-and-slow | Editor, politika.org.uk | twitter.com/dave_olsen16 | Policy Paper: https://rb.gy/7coyj

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