By now, I am sure you’re all familiar with the shit show that the Nevada Democratic Convention became over the weekend. If not, here’s a story about it so you can be on the same page I am for this.
I pasted the WaPo article so that no one accuses me of shilling for Bernie in my little rant here. The article, to me anyway, had a bit of a pro-Hillary slant. But that’s not really the point. I actually just want to answer a simple question here.
Do Hillary supporters think she can win on the strength of registered Democratic voters who voted in closed primaries alone?
It’s a pretty simple “yes or no” type of question, isn’t it? And I think what we’re seeing more and more from Hillary supporters is that their answer would be, “Yes.” That’s why they are seemingly unaware of why it would severely piss off Sanders supporters to be treated like they were in Nevada. Yes, the DNC has every right to run their elections how they see fit, but if you watch the videos from the convention, it’s really obvious that there was a concerted effort to rush rule changes through that benefited only one candidate, and that candidate happens to be who the party machine is pushing, surprise of all surprises.
Maybe to you that doesn’t mean anything. Maybe to you, winning is all that matters and being democratic in the Democratic Party doesn’t matter to you as long as you’re beating the Republicans. I get it. I love baseball, and the Dodgers are my team. I love it when umpires miss calls in my team’s favor, and I hate it when the calls go against them. But…is that really a wise approach for a political party that is absolutely dependent on new blood to keep it going, generation after generation?
Hell, is that really a solid strategy when it’s not just Democrats and Republicans who vote in elections? It seems like time and again, whether it’s closing primaries or setting the registration deadline six months ahead of time, that the DNC is thoroughly unconvinced they need independents and FDR-wing Democrats to win and are therefore more concerned with making sure their candidate wins than litearlly anything else. That, to me, is shortsighted, dangerous, and stupid.
Cue the cries of, “He’s a purist and a left-wing tea bagger!” in 3…2…1…
But the thing is, I’m not arguing that Sanders should have won in Nevada, nor that he’s going to eventually be the nominee. My point here is that it seems like Democrats are making a terrible mistake by condescending to and attempting to bully Sanders supporters to push their guy to drop out before all the votes are cast. You combine that with the bullshit in Arizona, New York, and now Nevada’s Democratic convention, and I start to wonder how many long-time Democrats are going to wind-up burning their registrations when it’s all said and done.
…and then how much this will all cost the Dems in November remains to be seen.
Would it have been so hard for the Nevada DNC chair to just recognize the Bernie supporters? You know, give their voices a chance to be heard, like…in a democracy, the root of the name of the “Democratic” Party? That’s what I keep coming back to…the party literally has a derivative of “democracy” in its name, but it can’t fucking get out of its own way and simply treat dissenting voices with respect.
This is what it looks like when desperation sinks in on both sides. Sanders supporters are desperate to have their voices heard, and yes, desperate to turn back the tide of seeming inevitability. But clearly Clinton and her team and their supporters in the party are just as desperate. Otherwise, they’d probably not try to cram rules changes down everyone’s throats behind doors. Otherwise, they might just stop and listen to Sanders supporters. Otherwise, maybe, just maybe, they’d behave as if they recalled the fact that they literally just worked in concert with a ton of Sanders fans to get Obama elected. Twice.
Can a desperate party win a pivotal election? I don’t know, but I do know that it got ugly in Nevada for a lot of reasons, and blaming it squarely on Sanders supporters’ “ignorance” is condescending and untrue. You can’t be ignorant of rule changes that aren’t made public.
Buckle up out there, it’s probably going to get bumpier before this thing resolves itself.