I’m voting for Bernie Sanders!
With Bernie, I don’t know if he’s “unpopular” so much as unknown to a great extent. I do believe that when he starts debating he will pick up more votes because more will have seen and heard him. And, as Bernie says, the candidate with the best ideas should win.
In any event, I think people go through a political calculus. In other words, with the Democrats, we think Candidate X is much more likely to beat any Republican candidate than Candidate Y. It isn’t that we don’t like Candidate Y — we just don’t believe that enough of our fellow voters are going to vote for Candidate Y and the Republican candidate will win. So, we opt for Candidate X because “I’d rather have Candidate X as President than the Republican.”
I think my own evolution on that idea began in the 2004 election. In that election, the political calculus was that John Kerry had a better chance of beating George W. Bush largely because he had been to war and could speak credibly on the War in Iraq. At the time, I actually liked Dennis Kucinich (my favorite little martian). Kucinich had evolved into a true progressive candidate. Later in the campaign, Bush asked for a “yes-or-no answer to the question of whether he would have supported the invasion ‘knowing what we know now’ about the failure to find weapons of mass destruction.” Kerry, after consulting his campaign advisers for two days, came to the stunning conclusion that, yes, he would have voted the same way. Kerry undermined his own campaign and essentially screwed his supporters. I wish I’d voted for Kucinich — he would not have given that dumb answer and he wouldn’t have taken two days to answer either (in my estimation). And, despite everyone’s political calculus, Bush won anyway (with a little help from Bush’s Swift Boaters and, again, Kerry’s baffling inability to defend his own war record with the righteous anger that he rightly should have had).
I don’t have any of those concerns with Bernie. Bernie knows who he is and I have full confidence that he will defend his positions and beliefs to the utmost. And, I have faith that our fellow Americans will see the same, wonderful, credible candidate that we see.