There a new, clearer version of this post here.
May 14, 2016. Yesterday, the NY Times (and Politico) revealed a brave group of a Sanders workers and volunteers with a plan for Sanders to suspend his nomination bid after the CA primary. They say this would have a tremendous advantage for Bernie’s progressive movement.
But their plan is under attack from Bernie’s trolls and insiders. They need support from truly-progressive Bernie supporters and Clinton supporters. That’s the point of this analysis and the MoveOn petition just below.
The MoveOn platform could be a game changer if those concerned with winning Congress and beating Trump take advantage of it. The media would devour such a signal from Bernie’s main base of support. This could prevent the head-on collision (documented below) that would be a huge win for Trump and the Republicans.
The problem for Bernie is that he is now behind by 276 elected (pledged) delegates (9%) and is losing the popular vote by 16%. He agrees he will almost certainly lose in the end on both counts. But he and a quarter million of his supporters have demanded that the (unelected) superdelegates “let the voters decide.” If he sticks by this, they will have to decide for the voters and against Bernie. He will lose.
So instead of sticking with this demand, Bernie has vowed to fight to get superdelegates to reject the voters and nominate him! (Yes, Bernie says this. Read on.)
Obviously if he succeeds in getting the unelected supers to reject the will of the voters, this will irreparably damage his reputation, cause enormous division within the Democratic party, and likely ensure the victory of Donald Trump.
So the only hope for Bernie and the Democrats is to back a win-win proposal like from this new group and free Bernie and his movement to prove their mettle beating Trump. You can kick-start this right here. It may not take off, but it’s so easy and so important that you owe it to yourself, to Hillary, to Sanders and to the progressive movement to give it a shot.
You can sign here (fewer blanks to fill in). Or click to MoveOn and sign it there. Be an early signer and get the ball rolling.
I started this petition so real progressives (on both sides) could take a stand without being attacked (Bernie’s trolls attack me instead of you).
But I need you to help protect Hillary and the Democrats from a planned assault after the CA primary, June 7 (see below).
Signing this petition also signs you up to MoveOn. But they are nice about letting you control how many emails you get, or you can easily unsubscribe any time or when you get an email. MoveOn is Bernie’s main base of support. It is hosting (not endorsing) this petition to help Bernie do the right thing (and stop damaging Hillary and the Democratic Party).
Now, back to the story. This petition is only saying, “Bernie, if and when the voters decide against you, then by your own logic, you have lost fair and square. So do the honorable thing. Conceded, and fight Trump not the Democrats.”
The petition is needed, because Bernie has recently flip-flopped on “let the voters decide.” He said this explicitly on May 1 at the National Press Club when Mary Alice Williams from NJ public television popped the question.
Mary Alice: “If you do not secure the majority of pledged delegates, do you still believe that superdelegates should switch [Bernie nods yes] and back you [yeah] as in rejecting the will of the voters?
Bernie: Yeah, well you know it’s a funny thing. … I hope that we will win the pledged delegates, … but at the end of the day if those superdelegates conclude that Bernie Sanders is the best candidate, … yes I would very much welcome their support.” (Watch. This Q&A has not been reported elsewhere.)
Jeff Weaver, Bernie’s Campaign Manager, announced this strategy back on April 19—to use the superdelegates if the voters reject Bernie. That was the night Bernie badly lost the New York primary. And ever since, he has been consistently signalling that this is his new position. (On May 6, Tad Devine, Sanders’ senior adviser, said that after losing, “outreach” would be even more “aggressive.“)
If Bernie did reject the will of the voters and get the supers to nominate him (not likely) after losing the popular vote, he would look like nothing more than a self-centered politician and sore loser, crushing his hopes for the future. This would only help Trump
Back in 2008 on June 7th, the very day of this year’s California primary, Hillary Clinton said I “extend my congratulations to Senator Obama and my support for his candidacy. This has been a long and hard-fought campaign, but as I have always said, my differences with Senator Obama are small compared to the differences we have with Senator McCain and the Republicans.” Having just lost to an almost complete unknown, that showed incredible grace and dedication to the progressive cause.
And Hillary was as good as her word. That very day, she set up a meeting with Obama, who suddenly disappeared from his scheduled flight, leaving a befuddled gaggle of reporters to fly to Chicago without him. At that meeting they began planning their joint victory. That’s how the left defeated the Republicans then, and that’s how they could defeat them now.
But as Howard Dean, the 2004 anti-establishment candidate and Bernie’s fellow Vermonter, has said, Bernie is “even more competitive than I am. He couldn’t stand to lose a pickup basketball game in Burlington. He doesn’t apologize. He doesn’t back down. It’s not in his nature. This is going to be a hard transition for him.”
We need to make it easy for Bernie to do the right thing. And this new group of his supporters is making that look as enticing as possible. But they are already under attack from Bernie’s inner circle.
Full disclosure: I like Bernie’s goal of dramatically helping ordinary folks with money wasted by the top 1%. But I’ve given Hillary, not Bernie, my small donations. I have no political connections, and receive no money from anyone for doing this.