I am so totally getting my Bernie Bro on… again!
I’m not a member of any political party; I’m one of those “independents” who pollsters, pundits and politicians are perpetually pontificating upon. During the last presidential primary season four years ago, because I could vote in the primary of either major party, I decided that for the first time in my life I’d cast a vote for a Dem/socialist, and decided to do so for the Bern, Bernie Sanders. I even wrote about it at the time (“Are unicorns real?” June 6, 2016.)
Well, here we are again, for Super-Duper Tuesday (the New and Expanded Super Tuesday), and since my new home in Colorado participates in that event, with Trump having the GOP nod tied up, I’ve decided to throw my support to the Bern once again.
You’ve got to hand it to the Bern. At least he’s honest. He doesn’t deny his socialism, in contrast to virtually everyone else in that sorry political party, all of whom constantly bleat that the “progressive” policies they’re constantly trying to shove down our throats are anything — ANYTHING — other than blatant socialism, if not outright communism.
The results of the Super Duper Tuesday event add even more delicious drama to the ongoing soap opera that is the Dem/socialist primary process. Sanders’ seemingly unstoppable momentum ran into a brick wall in the South, while Joe Biden’s previously moribund and all-but-embalmed campaign was resuscitated by his sweep of those same southern states.
Liz Warren only took third place in her own home state of Massachusetts while Mike Bloomberg was only able to win American Samoa. In fact, he’s already “suspended” – read “ended” – his ridiculous effort to buy an election, throwing his support – for whatever that’s worth – to Biden. Warren has also dropped out, though as of my writing this column she hasn’t yet endorsed any other candidate.
Now the real fun starts.
At this point it looks like the ultimate nominee will be either Biden or Sanders. The Democrat Party national convention meets in Milwaukee starting on July 13, and if either Sanders or Biden have secured a majority of the delegates at that point then presumably that person will win the nomination on the first ballot. The process will be complete and the nominee selected.
However, if neither has won a clear majority in the state primary process, either directly through state voting or indirectly via deals struck with other candidates who have agreed to support him by pledging their own delegates, then they’ll have a contested, or “brokered,” convention leading to subsequent ballots. That’s when the knives come out. “Super delegates” – party poohbahs – get to participate in the selection process, and those people are pretty much all “establishment” drones, the very people scared to death of Sanders dragging their electoral hopes down the drain. The same folks who threw the 2016 nomination to Clinton and infuriated the Bernie Bros back then.
I think this is a real possibility, particularly given the preference of that party’s “establishment.”
If this year’s Dem/socialist convention is brokered and Biden wins, particularly if that win is viewed by the Bernie Bros as being a rerun of 2016, the outrage from that faction will be palpable and consequential, costing Biden vital support in the general election in November.
There’s rich irony in the fact that, for a party so immersed in identity politics, their 2020 nominee, whoever wins, is going to be a rich, old, white guy in his late 70s. For the hard-left faction, Biden is too “establishment” and doesn’t check off any of the required “social justice” criteria. For the “establishment” types, Sanders is a scary communist who’ll drag the entire party into political oblivion and irrelevancy. The question then becomes whether “orange man bad” is enough motivation to stimulate the angry faction to vote for a candidate they don’t otherwise support.
Come November, Trump will be facing either a Marxist who wants to turn the USA into Venezuela, or a doddering geezer who seems to be suffering from memory loss.
Brian Baker is a former Saugus resident.