Bernie Sanders said in his victory speech in California after winning the Oregon primary that he could still win the Democratic nomination for President.
It will be a steep climb, but we have the possibility of going to Philadelphia with a majority of pledged delegates pic.twitter.com/dY6zZd4dQu
— People For Bernie (@People4Bernie) May 18, 2016
He’s pedaling a fantasy.
While Sanders could *technically* still beat Hillary Clinton (and I could *technically* still make the NBA), he has close to no room for error. Neither does the country.
While Sanders is waging an ideological fight to further he and his enthusiastic supporters’ agenda, the United States is starting down the horrifying possibility of a Donald Trump presidency.
The time for high school civics games is over with. Bernie Sanders should drop out of the race and immediately endorse Clinton so that she can have more time to unite the Democratic Party and prepare for the long election fight to come.
Sanders has repeatedly said that the number one priority should be to stop Trump from being President. This is the correct priority. After all, Trump is a barbarian who is willing to do just about anything to get elected.
Clinton has been careful in recent weeks (after it became clear that Sanders didn’t really have a winning path) not to anger Sanders supporters by calling for him to drop out. She also stayed in until all the votes were cast in the 2008 primary when she lost to then Sen. Barack Obama.
But that was a very different situation (high levels of excitement in the Democratic primary) and the stakes didn’t feel quite as high as they do now, with the specter of Trump on the horizon.
While Clinton has rightfully not called for Sanders to drop out, he should still do it on his own. I’m sure he won’t and a strong case can be made for his staying in the race until he is mathematically eliminated. But what good would that really do for the party and for the Sanders movement?
Bernie has made his point. And the party will never be the same because of his hugely successful and revolutionary campaign. It would be a real shame if his actions over the course of the next few weeks gave Trump the cover needed to score important victories on Clinton.
And just for the sake of argument, Sanders doesn’t really have one anymore. He is running as a figurehead of a movement and not as a legitimate candidate for the Democratic nomination.
That’s great, but he can do it from another platform and not as a candidate that is causing resources to be devoted from Clinton that should be used on Trump.
Before any Sanders supporters say something nasty in the comments, lets just get all the facts out there.
Sanders is behind Clinton by more than three million raw votes.
Sanders is behind Clinton by nearly 300 pledged delegates.
Sanders is behind Clinton by nearly 500 super delegates.
Before entering Tuesday night (where Sanders narrowly won Oregon and narrowly lost Kentucky), he would have had to win 90% of the remaining delegates to win.
Clinton would basically have to have her name taken off the ballot in the remaining states for Sanders to win, and even then he still might lose it.
Bernie has lost his argument for staying in the race and its time for the real fight to begin.
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Cover Photo Credit: Phil Roeder/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)