Can Someone Like Bernie Sanders AND Joe Biden at the same time?

Welcome to TaraElla Report Radio, a podcast style program where we discuss big ideas to see if they can contribute to more individual liberty and equal opportunity. Unlike many popular channels out there, this show is a dedicated non echo-chamber, where we look at things from a truly independent perspective. I hope you subscribe if you are interested.

Tonight, the second round of the first debate for the 2020 Democratic candidates will take place, and it is the round most people are excited about, because there will be many big names like Andrew Yang, Kamala Harris, Pete Buttigieg, Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden. Speaking of Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden, they are not the only two oldest and most experienced candidates in the race, they are also probably the most polarizing ones. It sometimes seems like if you love Bernie you must hate Uncle Joe, or vice versa. But then, there are plenty of people who have indicated to pollsters that they either have Bernie as their first choice and Biden as their second, or vice versa. Today, I’m going to ask this question: can somebody actually like Sanders and Biden at the same time. I guess I’m in a good position to look at this, because neither of them are my favorite, but both are in my Top 5. Furthermore, I also once looked at if someone can like Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump at the same time, so this looks like a fitting follow-up.

So why would someone like Bernie and Biden at the same time? Most of the people who have this preference seem to not be active in the internet political scene, so we can’t know what they think for sure. At least Sanders-Trump fans are more outspoken. But Sanders-Biden fans tend to not be similarly outspoken for some reason. Some people have hypothesized that people holding this preference could just be due to name recognition. But then, plenty of big names have already received lots of media coverage, so if it was true back in January, it can’t still be true now. Others have suggested these people would only support men, possibly due to sexism. Again, I don’t think this is right. I have never met a single person in my whole life who would only vote for men as a rule. Besides, there are plenty of other men in the running, and we don’t see nearly as many people going Biden-Buttigieg or Sanders-O’Rourke, for example. But Biden-Sanders, or Sanders-Biden, seem to be quite common.

I guess there are plenty of things that Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden actually share, that are not as important to many activists, but could be quite important to your average voter. From the top of my head, I can think of experience, perceived reliability, and a lack of identity politics as three big things they share. Firstly, most voters value experience, and both Sanders and Biden have lots of it. In fact, if either were elected President in 2020, they would be the oldest newly elected president in US history. Secondly, experience also links with perceived reliability. The longer one can maintain a track record without serious stuff-ups, the better the perceived reliability. Finally, an under-appreciated factor is the widespread loathing of identity politics throughout America and most Western countries. I know this is an unpopular opinion, but I firmly believe that Hillary lost in 2016 because of identity politics. I mean, it was stupid for Hillary to go with identity politics, there was already the example of a certain leader of another English speaking country who tried a similar thing a few years earlier with disasterous results, so I don’t know why Hillary would choose to go there. But even in the 2020 race, we still see several big name contenders who like to play up their identity politics, as if they want to become the new Hillary. Against this background, Bernie and Biden both look like the way to escape a repeat of Hillary 2016. I should add that, if escaping from identity politics is important to you, you should probably also check out Andrew Yang and Tulsi Gabbard, both excellent candidates who never play identity politics.

That’s all for today. I’ll be back next time to discuss another big idea. Subscribe if you want to follow our story. And remember to resist the hive mind and stay individualistic. The world depends on it.

Originally published at

TaraElla is a singer-songwriter, independent journalist and author, who is passionate about free speech, liberty and equality. She is the author of the Moral Libertarian Horizon books, which focus on developing a moral case for freedom-based politics in the 21st century.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store


Author & musician. Moral Libertarian. Disrupting the woke vs anti-woke echo chambers and making the West truly liberal again.