He Shall Not Be Moved

The epithets flying around U.S. politics these days are startlingly injurious.

“War-monger.”

“Repugnant.”

“Legal and political nightmare.”

“Pathetic.”

And that’s got nothing to do with Donald Trump. These are the comments directed towards Hillary Clinton by feminists with a so-called “class analysis.”

Donald Trump has made his supporters a bunch of foul-mouthed thugs who don’t need any attachment to reality to spout off.

WARREN, MI - MARCH 05: Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT) speaks to guests during a rally at Macomb Community College on March 5, 2016 in Warren, Michigan. Voters in Michigan will go to the polls on March 8 to vote in their state's primary. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

WARREN, MI – MARCH 05: Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders speaks to guests during a rally at Macomb Community College on March 5, 2016 in Warren, Michigan.  (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Bernie Saunders has done the same thing.

Similar in style to Trump supporters, Bernie’s people are happily re-writing history to suit their own sense of grievance. And Bernie is all too happy to let them have a go at it.

Bernie supporters have now graduated to calling anyone who supports Hilary Clinton, people such as Elizabeth Warren and Gloria Steinem, “outmoded,” “a disappointment,” or the aforementioned, “so lacking in class analysis.”

To date, 15,729,913 people voting in the Democratic primary have voted for Hilary Clinton and 12,009,562 people voting in the Democratic primary have voted for Bernie Sanders. The difference is a spread of 3.72 million, which has translated into the number of committed delegates Hilary Clinton needs to win the nomination.

Hilary Clinton is the nominee because more Democrats voted for her.

“California was stolen from Bernie.”

Really?

Clinton won by over 423,000 votes in California.

In the 2008 Democratic primary, by contrast, the one in which Hilary Clinton conceded to Barack Obama, 18,857,501 (48%) people voted for her as opposed to the 17,584,692 (47.3%) people who voted for Barack Obama. But the delegate count didn’t go Hilary Clinton’s way. Obama had captured 2,286 of the delegates to Clinton’s 1,973.

And what did Hilary Clinton do?

She swallowed what must have been a bitter political pill and conceded the nomination to Barack Obama. She did what women often do. She played nice. And she went on to fight for Barack Obama in the general election. Obama understands just what Hilary Clinton’s support meant to him and now he’s doing the right thing by her.

“The worse thing is that [Clinton] will have her finger on that button,” says a Bernie Sanders’ supporter.

Really? That’s an accurate deduction you think you can make about Hilary Clinton? It sounds more like crazy talk.

Clinton’s current lead in an average of compiled national polls is 14.4 percentage points, the widest it has been since mid-February, says FiveThirtyEight.

And what does Bernie Sanders do? He refuses to acknowledge Hilary Clinton. He refuses to concede and by the looks of it now, he will try to limp into the Convention with his campaign team and 10 million compromise-phobic acolytes with the goal of doing heaven knows what. He calls for universal health care, a portfolio not exactly ignored by the previous administration. And we think Bernie Sanders will have better luck with Congress?

He also supports the NRA, although the campaign hasn’t made such a big deal about that.

What Bernie Sanders’ supporters are saying tells you a lot about Bernie Sanders.

They are vitriolicly opposed to Hilary Clinton. “I hate Hilary Clinton.”

They refuse to acknowledge this part of the election—the primary part—is over.

They question the legitimacy of the vote.

They denigrate Clinton’s historical championing of women’s rights.

They denigrate Hilary Clinton personally.

They demonize her.

They belittle her experience.

They blame her for her husband’s flaws, going so far as to blame her for his behaviour.

They say she’s not a “real” feminist.

They offer value-like alternatives iterated in short phrases. “Feel the Bern?”

And why do Bernie Sanders’ supporters’ say all that. Because that’s what Bernie Sanders says. The same reason Donald Trump supporters say the things they do. Because that’s what leaders do. They lead the way.

Bernie Sanders opted to play the game he is in. No one forced him to get into the primary race. Presumably, he knew the rules going in.

The fact that he’s now refusing to play by them is indicative of the shaky moral ground he, and his supporters, continue to claim.

Old Bern has had a taste of real power. Now, he can’t get himself off the drip.

 

 

Author Photo 01 Sandy Tam Photography

Gail Picco is a strategist and nonprofit executive who has worked in the charity sector for 25 years, most of which as President of Gail Picco Associates. Prior to establishing Gail Picco Associates, she spent eight years working in a shelter for assaulted women and children. She is the author of What the Enemy Thinks, a recent novel set in the nonprofit sector, of Your Working Girl, a blog of memoir and commentary on politics, charity and popular culture, and writes a regular column for Hilborn Charity News. She is a Principal with The Osborne Group in Toronto and Chair of the Regent Park Film Festival.

 

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