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Why Sanders Will Not be the Democratic Nominee, No Matter What Happens in the Primaries

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If you think Bernie Sanders will be the Democratic nominee for President in 2016, you’re out of your mind.

There is no way the Democratic Party will allow that to happen, for two main reasons.

First, this is Hillary’s turn to be the nominee. And although that’s pretty distasteful for many of Bernie’ supporters, it’s the truth and has been decided by people who actually matter in the party’s hierarchy (read: not you).

Second, it is simply impossible that a neoliberal, right-wing political party like the Democrats in a country with a nominally right-leaning electorate will allow their standard bearer to be a self-described socialist.

Putting aside the fact that Sanders is not a socialist, and at best a slightly right-of-center social democrat, he still is able to identify as one in American politics. The Democratic Party will not allow themselves to be identified as “socialist” for the next generation. Won’t happen, guys.

The Democrats, like the Republicans, are faced with an insurgent campaign in 2016. Luckily for the Democrats, their insurgency is being led by one of the greatest political cowards in history (Sanders).

Sanders, in a December, 2014, interview with New York Magazine, said that he would not run as an independent and “play spoiler” like Ralph Nader did.

Setting aside the fact that Nader’s candidacy had nothing to do with the election results in Florida (a bunch of retired Jews didn’t vote for Buchanan, y’all, something else went down there), Sanders’ refusal to consider the only chip he could cash in for actual political power before his candidacy even took off tells you all you need to know about him.

Of course, things are different now. Sanders has a lot of political support on the ground and may eke out a few victories in early primary states. Clinton’s support appears too strong for him to make a dent, but time will tell.

It’s possible Sanders could win a majority of the primaries. But he still won’t be the Democratic nominee. The Democratic Party will never allow it.

See, the Democratic National Convention, where the Democratic nominee will be decided, is under no obligation to assign delegates to the winners of primary states. In fact, the rules don’t even specify that the primary results be taken into account when deciding on the nominee.

You may remember this from the last time Clinton ran for president in 2008. The Clintons made noise about a floor fight to wrest the nomination away from upstart Barack Obama, who had a plurality of delegates.

The Clinton team pointed out to the media through back channels that although Obama had won more primaries, it didn’t really matter in the end. Hillary Clinton could still be nominated without winning.

Clinton decided against that floor fight. Obama went on to become president.

This year, Clinton’s lead in superdelegates is already insurmountable. Sanders doesn’t have a chance.

Have fun voting for Clinton in eleven months, Berniebros.

More articles by:

Eoin Higgins has a master’s degree in history from Fordham University. He lives in New York.

CounterPunch Magazine

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