If superdelegates steal the Democratic presidential nomination for Hillary Clinton in 2016, her “nomination” won’t be worth having.
That’s a view I’ve been hearing again and again in conversations with Democratic voters over the past two days, voters who do what they can to live as comfortably as they can manage these days in the quiet suburban streets ringing the giant hotel-casinos that form the empty, rigged, voracious heart of Las Vegas.
It’s a view I’ve encountered so often, in my role as as an out-of-state helper for the Sanders campaign, that I feel obligated to bring it up, for whatever consideration anyone might think it’s worth.
But the truth is that I feel stunned by just how many regular Democrats have volunteered to me over the past two days that they’ll never vote for HRC. A woman I talked today named Mary Ann just shook her head and said this: “She’s been around too long. I’m tired of her. Besides,” she added darkly, “Hillary has blood on her hands.”
A 66-year-old union guy named Duane told me that, even though his union leadership (“suck-ups,” he called them) endorsed Hillary, he’ll never vote for her. “I’d rather see Trump in there,” he admitted.
Most Bernie supporters, though, seem much more buoyantly pro-Bernie than anti-Clinton, although their optimism seems guarded, tentative, as if they recognize that Bernie’s little political-revolution-that-could might ultimately be derailed by power-politics-as-usual players from the past.
Then what? Head shakes. No one knows. We’ll cross that trestle when we come to it.
Others, though, are unabashed in their disdain for Hillary, and aren’t afraid to say so. They’re so, um, out there, and so willing to share it, that I was able to use the intensity of their dislike for HRC as a reason to caucus FOR Bernie.
“There’s only one way you can stand up against Hillary this week,” I told three different voters today. “And that’s to stand up FOR Bernie Sanders. Because he’s the only one running against her.”
That might seem a helluva piss-poor, superficial reason to vote for anyone, much less a cool, democratic socialist from Vermont with all the amazing bona fides that Bernie Sanders has accumulated over a lifetime of selfless public service, but the fact remains: There are a helluva lot of Democrats who genuinely don’t like Hillary Clinton.
And worse, there seems to be a helluva lot of insider Democrats set on tilting the outcome to her who are completely oblivious to that fact.
But no one ever accuses them of listening to people like me. They listen to big-dollar donors and each other.
That’s why I predict that if the Democratic Party nominates Hillary Clinton instead of Bernie Sanders in 2016 because of insider deals involving superdelegates, they will lose the election to someone named Trump or Cruz or Rubio or Bloomberg and they’ll never even know what hit them.
And here’s the real hell of it: They won’t even know they were holding a winning hand until they throw it all away.