Bernie Sanders’ rhetoric is hot, but there are hints he is starting the end game

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks to supporters at the Cross Insurance Arena in Portland in July. Troy R. Bennett | BDN

In the final weeks of the Democratic Party’s presidential primaries, Bernie Sanders’ rhetoric has been fiery. Moreover, he continues to say he will likely fight until the convention. All this happens as Sanders declines versus Clinton in national polls and polls in the biggest states to come — New Jersey and California — look bad […]

Looks like support for Bernie Sanders is declining

HuffPost Pollster poll aggregate, Clinton vs Sanders

All the Democratic primaries are nearly done. Clinton should win nearly all contests remaining* and by June 7 will reach a majority of pledged delegates, those awarded from people participating in primaries and caucuses. Sanders’ only path to the nomination would be for superdelegates to overturn the pledged delegates, something early in the race his campaign […]

Why the GOP schism matters more than the Democratic divide

Are both parties divided? Well, to some extent, sure. Protestors in California shouted at Hillary Clinton and her supporters and your social media feed may be full of angry claims from some who so Feel the Bern that they don’t ever want to vote for Clinton. Meanwhile, the only living former Republican presidents announced they won’t […]

5 lessons for Democrats from the Clinton vs. Sanders fight

Hillary Clinton will be the Democratic Party nominee for president. Before the Indiana primary, for Bernie Sanders to tie among pledged delegates awarded from primaries and caucuses, he has to win everywhere by an average of 30 percentage points. Every time Sanders underperforms, he needs even bigger wins to get most pledged delegates. That’s because […]

Whatever Sanders says, there can’t be a contested Democratic National Convention

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks to supporters at the Cross Insurance Arena in Portland in July. Troy R. Bennett | BDN

Political pundits and junkies alike thrill to the prospect of contested conventions, with multiple votes needed to pick a nominee. And, while Senator Bernie Sanders says this is going to happen at the Democratic National Convention, there’s no way it can. Sanders hangs his claim on defining “contested convention” in a way it never has […]

Why Maine Democrats can’t change who superdelegates choose

Diane M. Russell (D-Portland)

Democrats are again discussing the rules for choosing delegates to their national party convention. It used to be that primaries and caucuses didn’t choose many delegates but that changed for the 1972 nomination. Starting then, the vast majority of delegates came from the decisions of caucus goers and primary voters. Lots of other things changed […]

Why Hillary Clinton is favored in the New York primary

Hillary_Clinton_official_Secretary_of_State_portrait_crop

Next week there arrives a clarifying moment for the Democratic nomination fight. All current polling shows Clinton over 50%, with an average 14 point lead over Sanders. The first fact is more important, since it’s harder to move voters already with a candidate. Sanders continues to do poorly with some significant voting blocs.The NBC/Wall St./Marist […]

After the Wisconsin primary, what about voter id and contested conventions?

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks to supporters at the Cross Insurance Arena in Portland in July. Troy R. Bennett | BDN

The Wisconsin primary is now in the books, with Sen. Ted Cruz and Sen. Bernie Sanders winning with similar margins of 12-13 percentage points. Voter id in Wisconsin As I’ve discussed, the Wisconsin primary featured an onerous voter id law that analysts believed would most affect elderly and disabled people, students and black voters. Turnout […]