Opinions, Column

Why Clinton Isn’t Inevitable

Hillary Clinton is not the inevitable nominee for the Democratic Party in 2016. She was not inevitable in 2008, and she is not now.

Democratic voters as well as Independents will vote for the candidate who shares their values and views so long as they still believe that candidate can win in the general election. Most mainstream media outlets have propagated the idea that Hillary Clinton is inevitable, and that voters should rally behind her immediately to save her chances in the general election. Generally, these pundits’ arguments rely on beliefs that Hillary is the moderate candidate who can sway people away from Trump.

It is not over for Bernie. Sanders has extremely passionate supporters, and he has consistently polled better than Clinton in hypothetical general-election matchups against the Republican frontrunners. As of March 18, Hillary Clinton has 1,147 pledged delegates, and Bernie Sanders has 830 pledged delegates of the 2,383 needed to get the democratic nomination. In total there are approximately 4,768 delegates, pledged and unpledged, which means that there are plenty more to go around. But Sanders will need bigger wins in states such as Arizona and Washington in the coming months in order to make up his current deficit.

Sanders will have a difficult final stretch in the primary season. While he has maintained significantly higher favorability among younger voters, the young are generally less likely to turn out to vote than the old. Politico recently pointed out that between March 5 and March 26, over 500,000 college students are on spring break when campaigns will be heading to campuses. Early primaries and caucuses are predominantly Southern, and the proliferation of voter identification laws is disproportionately preventing young voters from voting, even when they’ve already registered. Charles Blow of The New York Times recently pointed out that Sanders’ civil rights advocacy is “strangely devoid of southern touchstones,” and that hurt his numbers among black voters in the South.

The best thing that Sanders can do to get ahead of Hillary is to accentuate their differences.

Sanders has stood up for liberal values for a much longer time than Clinton. He was arrested in Aug. 1963 for protesting segregated housing owned by the University of Chicago, while Clinton campaigned for Barry Goldwater who supported repealing the Civil Rights Act in 1964. On May 11, 1995, Sanders accosted a representative on the floor of the house for his derogatory use of his phrase “Homos in the military,” referring to homosexual men and women whom Sanders said were being denied their basic human rights. Hillary supported the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, and has only supported gay marraige since 2013 despite her previous claims that she believes marriage is a sacred bond between a man and a woman. The most radical difference is that Sanders intends to remove the corrupting influence of corporate money from politics.

Sanders’ intense focus on getting money out of politics completely contrasts with the efforts of Clinton. Sanders has raised the vast majority of his money in small contributions directly from individuals. Clinton and many other politicians rely on political action committees that can receive unlimited amounts of money to fund major campaign activities. To evade laws prohibiting direct coordination with PACs, campaigns usually put out hours of footage and audio of the candidates that PACs can edit on their own.

Clinton has said that she wants to get money out of politics, too, but this can be seen as disingenuous. Sanders has called her out on her claim numerous times. He has talked about how a certain “other candidate” in the race has super PACs and most of the individual contributions to her campaign come in the form of the maximum amount of $2,700. Sander’s average contribution is only $27. Nobody really wants to spend all of their waking hours fundraising, but if she were really serious about getting the corrupting influence of money out of politics, Clinton would lead by example like Sanders.

The companies that portray Clinton as the inevitable nominee would be best served by her hypothetical pro-business administration. Clinton is the business candidate. It is plain to see that she is beholden to the Wall Street firms, private prison companies, and the other special interests that donate to her campaign, philanthropic organization, and super PACs.

The recent debate in Flint, Mich. encapsulated exactly what kind of politicians Clinton and Sanders are. Clinton has attempted to deceive the public about Sanders’ record by picking out negative components of larger pieces of legislation in order to make Sanders look like he is against the policies and interests which he has always claimed to work for. Most notably, she twisted Sanders’ universal health care plan by arguing that it would eliminate people’s insurance policies under the Affordable Care Act.

Clinton is always very well-rehearsed, and she usually goes for the easy one-liner. She does this to get political points, while Sanders says what he believes.

Featured Image by Carolyn Kaster / AP Photo

March 20, 2016

9 COMMENTS ON THIS POST To “Why Clinton Isn’t Inevitable”

  1. If you call Bernie Sanders “Bernie” and Hillary Clinton “Clinton”, as you’ve done in this opinion piece, we know right off the bat that you’re a biased “Bernie Bro”. Did you know that even the women at your college are sick of bernie bros? We get that you’re an angry young white guy. We get that you don’t read enough to know anything about what socialism brings. We get that you know nothing about delegate math. What we don’t get is how you were allowed to do a column for anyone, anywhere.

    PS – “Bernie” doesn’t know you, wouldn’t recognize you, and couldn’t care less about you personally. Call him Mr. Sanders; he’s 74 years old.

    • Did you know that college-aged women are more likely to support Sanders than Clinton? Stop perpetuating the Bernie bros myth. By the way, almost everyone colloquially refers to Sanders as “Bernie.”

      P.S.: Your comment is far more biased than this article. It is pro-Hillary, anti-socialist, and stereotypes Bernie supporters.

      • And the many college women that don’t constantly complain about the pressure they are subjected to. Sanders himself had to discipline the “Bernie Bros” and everyone tires of them. Denying they exist is the same as imagining that “almost everyone refers to Sanders as ‘Bernie'”. Perhaps in your small, white, male, biased circle, Bro.

        • You insulted a writer for his column for being biased in mister sanders favor, not based off of his general writing, but off of the names he used for the candidates, as well as steriotypes of average college students; you additionally insulted him for being in a “small, white, male, biased circle” (Biased Guy 4); even if you proved you were in a “large, race and gender diverse circle” you would remain a hypocrite until for being a hateful biased person towards “bernie bros” the boy writes for a good school with a good campus, not ITT tech with online campus; he probably has more interaction with humans than you, considering he took the time to write about something that he cares about for a college paper, and you were the one to take the time to aimlessly insult him on comments instead of writing something substancial. I’m curious to know where you came up with him being “an angry young white guy”, assuming you tricked yourself into believing that, and you aren`t just pulling the trump card because you dont like what he said. P.S. – if you knew anything about socialism either you would know education is socialism. Total Socialism is popular where all hope of a better life is destroyed, because it promises equality for everyone. I am not preaching for socialism, but i am making the point because a little socialism can be good. Socialism is good because it can bring everyone up to a common ground, and capitalism is good because gives people insentive to achieve something greater for themselves, jowhen the two are put together properly, anyone can reach their full potential. Alot of the countries with a higher standard of living think progressively, instead of all this one sided, intractable, my way or the highway thinking that gets us all nowhere. If i am wrong, let me know by writing something with well thought out substance, instead of insulting me because you dont like that i defended a “bernie bro”, bro.

          Best regards,

          • This isn’t college – this is the real world. Competing to show the other party is a biased hater is tiresome and ineffective. Your pointless “essay” notwithstanding, you know nothing about socialism that you didn’t read in a particularly stupid book, that much is obvious. Try talking to someone who actually lived in a socialist country. Learn how in Russia you lined up for hours to be given a pair of shoes, and they never fit, you had to trade and barter until you got shoes that fit. Talk to the people who had cousins, uncles, brothers, whole families die under the yoke of socialism, because they dared to expose the evils and corruption that inevitably follow socialism. You won’t of course, because then you’d have to open your mind and stop repeating the same nonsense with your bros. You don’t fool me with your childish attempt at using syntax to wash socialism of its lack of efficacy. You just prove that you are a classic fool, you “know not that you know not. “

          • First off, your second sentence contradicts your first 3 paragraphs “competing to show the other party is a biased hater is tiresome and innefective”. Whether or not it is the real world or some imaginary world, you should have some manners, unless you grew up a juvenile delinquent your younger self would be appalled at your lack thereof. If you took as much time to read what i said as you did to point out the problems in my argument with your clever insults you should then realize you didnt understand what i am saying. I do not believe the government should be in control of making shoes or any other industry, that is an awful idea. Families die under the yoke of socialism in russia because there are 3 guys taking a coffee break for every 1 guy working his ass off (that is similiar to having a 75% unemployment rate- which at that rate it would be 3 times as bad as the great depression) making as many shoes as he can to meet a quota, usually resulting in poorly made shoes (who do you know that can do the job of 4 people by himself well)… and then that money is pooled among the 4 of them equally. I am clearly against all of this. There is corruption in socialism as well as in capitalism. But that is not what this is about. A free market is good because the people who do the best job will thrive, and the people who can find a way to do it better thrive even more. When that is taken away as in full on socialist countries, all that good work dissapears, but the leaders continue with their luxurious lifestyles, and their corruption is highlighted by a huge gap in classes-poor people, and an exceedingly wealthy totalitarian dictator. In america, many leaders will cheat to amass great wealth, without doing so by restricting peoples rights or in a blatantly corrupt way, but it is still corruption and it is still wrong. But for totalitarian socialism, where hardly anyone is doing any real work because they are stuck wherever they are whether or not they do anything, if rights were given to those peoples, they would almost all surely leave to find somewhere they can work for their own benefit, and the totalitarian leader would no longer recieve so great dividends of the capital their country produces (see why they have to be so strict?). Corruption is inherent in all forms of government, more or less. In that aspect, socialism is worse on so very many levels, worse. There is already socialism in america, think Social Security and education first and foremost; these are great things, and there is plenty more that can be added to this list. But it has to be done well, it has to be well thought out, it has to work as it should. If i wanted to live in a total, real socialist country like you’re talking about to prove im wrong, i would. But i want a country that will find a way to provide a great education, healthcare, retirement, for me, these aspects of socialism are good in america and can be improved upon to make america even greater, but russia will not change, because it cant. Capitalism and democracy needs to be the base for some socialist aspects. A capitalist country can do socialism better than any socialist country. Dont get me wrong, i am still only talking about these essential things things like education of all levels, social security, etc. Your father says “the ketchup is right in front of you, just look for it”.
            Best Regards,
            Jojo Popo

            P.S.- i will be repeating the same nonsense with my bros when you reply. Also, just because most of what you say about socialism is right, doesent mean it is relevant to what we are all talking about. To ignore the flaws of capitalism and the pros of socialism, and vise versa, is to be a fool. I want to have a good education and make my own money. If you dont need no education, and you want to make your own money at minimum wage (oh wait, thats a socialist concept too) i guess you can deal with less because socialism is evil, thats fine by me, ill still be hanging out with my bros getting the best of both worlds.

      • Incorrect, and the typical wishful thinking of the 25 year old leftist white male. As poor Mister Sanders slowly fades into irrelevance, we expect a few of his most deluded supporters, whom everyone knows as “Bernie Bros”, to experience psychological pain, and to lash out on the Internet, their only source of human contact.