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The Democratic Party machine, along with the Clinton campaign wants voters to believe the nomination is a sure thing, and while it may be all but clinched barring a miracle for the Sanders campaign. Mathematically speaking it’s pretty locked in for Clinton. The obstacles Bernie Sanders must overcome to secure the nomination are seemingly insurmountable, needing to win nearly 80 percent of the remaining delegates and then convincing Super Delegates to swap from the party elite to his revolutionary comparing.
Yet, with all air of confidence coming from the Clinton camp, they have descended upon a strange campaign strategy; convince voters that the Sanders campaign and supporters are inseparable from the Trump campaign.
They are accomplishing this by exploiting the inexcusable actions of a small number of individuals in Nevada who apparently sent threatening voicemails and text messages to Nevada Democratic Party Chair, Roberta Lang. Sanders quickly condemned these actions, writing in a press release, “I condemn any and all forms of violence, including the personal harassment of individuals.”
However, the Democratic Party elite continue to tell the media and voters that Sanders has yet to condone these actions and apologize for them. These comments come in the form of comparisons to what voters have seen from Trump rallies, and wonder why Sanders would allow such a thing to happen, as if he has any control over these individuals.
As it turns out, the acts of violence that Sanders apologized for turned out to be a false report by Clinton supporter Jon Ralston. Ralston took to Twitter to claim that chairs had been thrown after Sanders supporters rushed the stage.
CounterPunch’s own Doug Johnson Hatlem highlighted the issues with Ralston’s report when he wrote:
As it turned out, Ralston finally admitted last night that he hadn’t seen this himself but was relying especially on local reporter Andrew Davey. Davey first said he had still frames showing the chair throwing which he would publish. He has not produced the stills in question, but did retweet a still image of a chair held high that was initially posted on Reddit. I spoke with the person who posted it to Reddit and confirmed that it was grabbed from the video now widely seen which shows that other Sanders supporters quickly took away the chair in question.
So while Sanders condemns the harassment and apologized for violence that never took place, the media, the Clinton camp, and especially her supporters are claiming the Sanders crowd is no better than Trump supporters and furthering the mythical creation of “Bernie Bros,” an early creation by the Clinton campaign to accuse any criticism of Clinton’s hawkish record as sexist. Those who followed the 2008 race between then Senators Clinton and Barack Obama will remember the same tactic being used by the Clinton campaign against Obama supporters.
With such confidence that the race is secured, why is so much effort being used to discredit Sanders and vilify his supporters? With a Fox News poll being released on Wednesday afternoon showing Trump leading Clinton by 3 points nationwide, one would think Clinton would be pandering to the Sanders base for the much-needed votes she needs to win. Clinton’s campaign has released a few ads attacking Trump but still seems to be heavily focused on a candidate they want voters to believe has already lost.
The reality, however, is much different and it seems Clinton is fine with disenfranchising the Sanders voters. This strategy seems to have two possible uses. First, the Clinton campaign is so confident in their victory they don’t believe they need Sanders supports, or secondly, they are less confident than they appear and need to push a good number of Sanders voters into the Green Party or ignite a large enough Bernie Sanders write-in campaign that they create a needed scapegoat for when Trump wins the national election.
The truth is, Clinton’s camp should be scared. They are polling poorly nationally, even in polls they are winning they are still within the margin of error. Clinton is also while still maintaining a strong lead, losing primary after primary. This shows her campaign, even when being touted as the nominee by every media outlet known to man, cannot carry the states she will need to win the general.
There is still a lesson here for Sanders supporters. The Democratic Party base has shown in this election they are comfortable with voter suppression, voter fraud, and a rigged political system as long as it secures the nomination of the political elite. With this knowledge, these voters fighting for change must realize you cannot be revolutionary in a counter-revolutionary party.
Those angry in Nevada and elsewhere should shun the practices of harassment from a small minority of supporters and should instead turn their sites on walking out. Abandon the party that decades ago abandoned them. Take to the streets, rally behind politicians and parties that are not interested in maintaining the status quo.
Stop listening to the party elites who want you to believe that Sanders is responsible for rogue followers who are using tactics that Sanders has loudly spoken out against and put your anger and frustration to good use. Activism is much better served with people who care about progress and making the world a better place and the Democratic Party is no longer filled with those people.