Hand me my Xanax

Nikole West's Company

At this point, it’s really a matter of math. But there will be a lot of smoke and mirrors in the next couple of week to obscure the inevitable outcome:

Mark my words: We’re going to face a very ugly few weeks on social media. The nastiness will begin this weekend and last through April 26, when five states will hold primaries with a big delegate haul in the balance.

Here’s why: We have five states coming up in which Bernie Sanders will probably do very, very well. It’s not inconceivable that he could sweep them all. But even a sweep won’t change the structure of the race in any way. Three of the five (Hawaii, Wyoming and Alaska) are states with relatively few delegates. The Democratic contests are all proportional, so Hillary Clinton will get a share of delegates even if she gets shut out.

Political reporters know that all five of these contests, combined, will account for fewer delegates (286) than will New York alone on April 19 (291). Clinton is up by 48 points in the latest poll of New York, and by 33 points in 538’s weighted polling average. Things may change, but it’s looking like a blowout at this point.

Then, one week after New York goes, 462 delegates will be awarded in five mid-Atlantic states. Clinton is the favorite in four of them, and one, Rhode Island (which has a tiny delegate count), is essentially a toss-up.

So we have 286 delegates that will be awarded in prime Sanders territory between this Saturday and April 9, followed by a 10-day pause, and then 753 more delegates will be awarded in a two-week period in what’s looking, at this point, like solid Clinton country.

This stretch of primaries is going to set off a war-of-words between Sanders supporters – and liberal media outlets that back the Vermont Senator — and more neutral political reporters, especially data-based journalists who keep an eye on the delegate count and the calendar. That’s because there’s going to be a natural disconnect between what appears to be a lot of momentum on Sanders’ side, and the way the mainstream media will characterize the race.

Serious reporters know that the next five contests will shave some delegates off of Clinton’s healthy lead – she’s currently up by 303 pledged delegates according to Real Clear Politics‘ count – which still leaves her well ahead as the fight for the nomination moves to friendlier ground for the Clinton campaign.

10 thoughts on “Hand me my Xanax

  1. I still want Bernie to stay in all the way to Philadelphia to keep the pressure on Hillary to stay to the left. I am a Democrat and will vote for the nominee regardless, but I totally reject any idea that he should get out one millisecond before the nomination is awarded. it’s about having influence on the platform and the policies. Besides, if she can’t win it without him leaving prematurely, how can she beat Trump or Cruz.

    I am just saying….

  2. It’s not about the math, but instead about your assumptions that Clinton will continue to hold leads she has in polls, which frequently have proved to be dead wrong. It is literally insane to decide this before the voters have.

  3. More exercises in math: All the math currently shows that in a contest between Trump and Clinton, Trump wins, while in a contest between Trump and Sanders, Sanders wins.

    Hillary Clinton should decided today that because of the math she needs to withdraw from the race and throw all of her support to Bernie Sanders. Hopefully, Hillary will “do the math” and make this decision which will save the Democratic Party as well as the country.

  4. Not true. Both Clinton and Sanders beat Trump in the polls. And remember, there haven’t been any negative ads against Bernie yet.

  5. This particular sentiment is hard to take for those of us who remember male Dems screaming at Clinton to get out of the primary when she was only 108 delegates behind Obama. Bernie is, what, 300+ behind? Even if he wins the next 5 or 6, he still won’t have enough delegates. Steve, I have to wonder how old you were when the Clintons were in office — she’s the left-wing Clinton, and was crucified for it when he was in office. In other words, the times have finally caught up to the things she wanted to do. Nobody has to “make” her do what she’s promised.

    Plus, there is the very real task of building the state infrastructure for the down-ticket races. She’s raised $27 million for the party so far; he’s raised squat. She’s spending money to run against him that could be better used for winning the general election.

  6. (W00T. The following is what I’ve been trying to post.)

    And we’re going to have to keep hearing about the “enthusiasm gap” in support of the boring “establishment” candidate versus the interesting old white male.

    The enthusiasm gap wouldn’t have anything to do with what happens when Clinton supporters show enthusiasm.

    Peter Daou: “Over the course of the past year, I have been subjected to some of the most aggressive trolling and personal attacks of my 15 year political career. Virtually all of it stems from my advocacy for Hillary Clinton.” (h ttp: / / peterdaou.com/2016/03/why-i-plan-to-pursue-defamation-action/ (remove spaces))

    Lena Dunham: “has received “more hostility” for supporting and campaigning for Hillary Clinton than she has ever gotten from the American right.” (h ttp: / / variety.com/2016/biz/news/lena-dunham-hillary-clinton-bernie-sanders-1201734952/)

    But for some reason Clinton supporters just keep their heads down and vote.

  7. (Yes, thanks, Susie! I know that about links, but it was preventing plain text, too, and the message wasn’t saying the comment was going to moderation. What I got was this, on a plain white page:

    “Not Acceptable!
    An appropriate representation of the requested resource could not be found on this server. This error was generated by Mod_Security.”)

  8. I’m with you, Susie, on the Obama supporters in 2008 shouting at Hillary to GET OUT GET OUT GET OUT!

    I actually think they’re the same people, now telling Bernie to stay in.

    Hypocrisy isn’t just a Republican trait.

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