View Poll Results: Will Bernie beat Trump in the 2020 presidential election?
Yes 71 33.18%
No 143 66.82%
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  #1  
Old 02-24-2020, 09:50 AM
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Do you believe that Bernie will beat Trump?


I originally considered "can" instead of "will" in the title but I don't want to cloud this thread with "If such and such happens", then he "can" win. I want to know if you think that he will beat Trump. So look into your crystal ball and vote.

Obviously this assumes that Bernie wins the nomination. Please don't fight the hypothetical.
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  #2  
Old 02-24-2020, 10:22 AM
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I'd like to see some cites that bernie has ever not been beating trinp in polls.
  #3  
Old 02-24-2020, 10:27 AM
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Yes.
  #4  
Old 02-24-2020, 10:28 AM
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Bernie is not even winning a majority of his own party at the moment. I think he's the easiest candidate for Trump to beat. Recent elections in my state showed the GOP successfully brand a Dem candidate who aired commercials showing the candidate carrying his own pistol and sighting in a deer rifle as an "extreme liberal" akin to Pelosi, AOC, and Sanders. This particular candidate would be considered moderate/conservative in most parts of the country. If they can do that to him, they're going to destroy Bernie with the same sort of attacks.
  #5  
Old 02-24-2020, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Oakminster View Post
Bernie is not even winning a majority of his own party at the moment. I think he's the easiest candidate for Trump to beat. Recent elections in my state showed the GOP successfully brand a Dem candidate who aired commercials showing the candidate carrying his own pistol and sighting in a deer rifle as an "extreme liberal" akin to Pelosi, AOC, and Sanders. This particular candidate would be considered moderate/conservative in most parts of the country. If they can do that to him, they're going to destroy Bernie with the same sort of attacks.
That's one interpretation. The other interpretation is that the reality of a candidate's actual views is immaterial to Republican attacks, and that Republicans would launch the same stupid attacks against Bloomberg and Biden that they'd launch against Warren or Sanders.

The question isn't how will they attack the candidate. The question is how the candidate will respond.
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Old 02-24-2020, 10:44 AM
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That's one interpretation. The other interpretation is that the reality of a candidate's actual views is immaterial to Republican attacks, and that Republicans would launch the same stupid attacks against Bloomberg and Biden that they'd launch against Warren or Sanders.

The question isn't how will they attack the candidate. The question is how the candidate will respond.
True, and when pressed with the question "Are you a socialist" some candidates will respond "No, I'm not" while Bernie will respond "Yes I am, but..."
  #7  
Old 02-24-2020, 11:02 AM
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Republicans will call Bernie "socialist", but it won't actually hurt his candidacy. Trump has damaged the conservative label so much that socialist is a reasonable alternative now.
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Old 02-24-2020, 11:35 AM
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Republicans will call Bernie "socialist", but it won't actually hurt his candidacy. Trump has damaged the conservative label so much that socialist is a reasonable alternative now.
Only among those who are educated as to the subtleties of what socialist means. For others its just another version or radicalism. Back in 2018-2019, I was thinking that a Democrat could win the white house with the simple slogan "return to sanity". Unfortunately Sanders can't use that slogan. Americans are fed up with the drama uncertainty and acrimony that the political system has become and is exemplified by Trump, and Sanders just offers more drama, uncertainty and acrimony, just focused in a different (albeit much better) direction.

Last edited by Buck Godot; 02-24-2020 at 11:37 AM.
  #9  
Old 02-24-2020, 02:36 PM
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Only among those who are educated as to the subtleties of what socialist means. For others its just another version or radicalism. Back in 2018-2019, I was thinking that a Democrat could win the white house with the simple slogan "return to sanity". Unfortunately Sanders can't use that slogan. Americans are fed up with the drama uncertainty and acrimony that the political system has become and is exemplified by Trump, and Sanders just offers more drama, uncertainty and acrimony, just focused in a different (albeit much better) direction.
I think Bernie can use a “return to normalcy” type message. It’ll sound like “make the economy work for everyone, not just Trump’s rich friends”, “don’t worry about healthcare, you’ll be covered”, and “Trump wants to whine instead of work for you”. It just has to sound truthy.

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What do you believe has changed in 4 years?
The American people have listened to the idiot in chief rant for four years instead of making anyone’s life better.
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Old 02-24-2020, 11:38 AM
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That's one interpretation. The other interpretation is that the reality of a candidate's actual views is immaterial to Republican attacks, and that Republicans would launch the same stupid attacks against Bloomberg and Biden that they'd launch against Warren or Sanders.

The question isn't how will they attack the candidate. The question is how the candidate will respond.
I think just stating Bernie’s actual views with some ominous music will be enough to lose the election. Vast expansion of the government, raising taxes and being a socialist. I’m not sure how well he will be able to respond to himself.
  #11  
Old 02-24-2020, 11:47 AM
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That's one interpretation. The other interpretation is that the reality of a candidate's actual views is immaterial to Republican attacks, and that Republicans would launch the same stupid attacks against Bloomberg and Biden that they'd launch against Warren or Sanders.
The Republicans would have a much more difficult time painting Bloomberg or Biden as a socialist than they would have with Sanders.

And that's not Sanders' only baggage. He's Jewish, which will fire up the Christian Right. He may not be racist, but it's going to be really easy to make him look like a racist. Given the fact that Trump's only five years younger, they'll probably go light on the age issue but the Republicans will whisper about his heart attack.
  #12  
Old 02-24-2020, 12:05 PM
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And that's not Sanders' only baggage. He's Jewish, which will fire up the Christian Right. He may not be racist, but it's going to be really easy to make him look like a racist. Given the fact that Trump's only five years younger, they'll probably go light on the age issue but the Republicans will whisper about his heart attack.
Worse than being Jewish in a nationwide election is being atheist. He has been all over the map with his comments on his own personal religion. He tries to steer it toward spirituality but other quotes make it seem like he’s a non-believer. I certainly have no problem with that. Some of my favorite people that I see in the mirror are non-religious. But it’s a big liability in elections. A recent poll I posted in another thread looked at the biggest liabilities in elections in ethnicity, beliefs and creeds over the years. It had to do with the percentage of people who would never vote for someone who is black or Jewish etc. The two biggest liabilities? Socialist and atheist.

https://news.gallup.com/poll/285563/...abilities.aspx

Last edited by Loach; 02-24-2020 at 12:09 PM.
  #13  
Old 02-24-2020, 12:32 PM
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If Sanders' chance is only 49% we should vote No? I fear his chance is much worse than that.

A lot can happen over the next eight months, but I'm afraid developments will favor Trump. The GOP will crank up its Lie Machine and has a huge campaign fund ready to go; some moderate Ds may give only lukewarm support to Bernie; Putin may find a way to give his puppet a pop in popularity. The Ds are not adept at the political game, I'm afraid; for example, they should have handled the impeachment better.

A recession may be America's best hope, but time is running out and, anyway, I expect Trump to take measures to "goose" the economy in the near term.
  #14  
Old 02-24-2020, 02:28 PM
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The Republicans would have a much more difficult time painting Bloomberg or Biden as a socialist than they would have with Sanders.
I'm not sure they will: when you're willing to lie outright, and when your base is so willing to believe the lies, your path is pretty easy.

Sanders is much less likely to say, "No I'm not." He's a lot likelier to say, "I'm socialist if you think that public schools and public firefighters and public roads are socialist."

No doubt, this is gonna be his biggest negative, and he's gonna have an uphill climb to overcome it. But it's not like he's "Biden, only socialist." His strong views are his biggest strength as well as his biggest disadvantage: because he's not changing what he says with polls, he's willing to say things that people find outrageous, and also things that people find inspiring.

I got no idea whether he'll beat Trump. I could see it being a blowout election in either direction. But I think he has a better chance of beating Trump, by virtue of undermining Trump's support in working-class white neighborhoods, than other candidates do.
  #15  
Old 02-24-2020, 03:59 PM
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I'm not sure they will: when you're willing to lie outright, and when your base is so willing to believe the lies, your path is pretty easy.
It's not the base they're going to be talking to. Trump's already got the base locked up. And Sanders has a lot of people in his base that are guaranteed to vote for him.

The election will be decided by the other people. Those who will be deciding who they're going to vote for between now and November. These are people who won't believe anything the Republicans say - but they will listen to what the Republicans are saying.
  #16  
Old 02-24-2020, 02:57 PM
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Bernie is not even winning a majority of his own party at the moment.

Okay, so because Bernie is not winning a majority of the primary votes, therefore someone else, who is winning significantly fewer votes than Bernie in the primaries, and clearly not a majority, is more suited to beat Trump?

This line of thinking really makes no sense. No one really wins a majority of a contested multi-part race. Otherwise it wouldn't really be competitive.




Anyway, to answer the OP's question: I think Bernie could win a fair election against Trump. I do not believe that is what we will have. The GOP has not been de-funding, de-tasking, and otherwise making it easier to rig our elections for no reason. They fully intend, both internally and with external help, to rig the 2020 election. Since democrats have been offering feeble resistance, our news media will not talk about the issue, and no one else is going to save us from this, there is every reason to believe the 2020 election will be flat out rigged. Not just propaganda and influence, not just "legitimate" tools like Gerrymandering, but flat out rigged vote totals. We do not audit our election, and we've only tried to weaken election security even though we know our elections are under attack. Republicans know, now, that they are above the law, and there's no one to stop them. The 2020 election will be 100% rigged like a banana republic.

And there won't even be any consequence for it. No one will get violent, maybe a few little marches here and there. Our corporate owned media will assure is that even though foreign actors clearly wanted to interfere with the election, and even though there's no reason to think they'd stop at propaganda, that don't worry, we're sure no actual vote counts were changed even though we've done nothing whatsoever to verify this.
  #17  
Old 02-24-2020, 03:15 PM
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Okay, so because Bernie is not winning a majority of the primary votes, therefore someone else, who is winning significantly fewer votes than Bernie in the primaries, and clearly not a majority, is more suited to beat Trump?

This line of thinking really makes no sense. No one really wins a majority of a contested multi-part race. Otherwise it wouldn't really be competitive.
The point being that 70% of Dem primary/caucus voters prefer someone who is not Bernie. Figuring Bernie is the most extreme liberal still in the race, an overwhelming amount of his party want someone more moderate than Bernie. They do not necessarily agree on which of the moderate options are best.
  #18  
Old 02-24-2020, 03:23 PM
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The point being that 70% of Dem primary/caucus voters prefer someone who is not Bernie. Figuring Bernie is the most extreme liberal still in the race, an overwhelming amount of his party want someone more moderate than Bernie. They do not necessarily agree on which of the moderate options are best.
I linked in a different thread to a chart showing that Bernie is the second choice of more people than any other candidate, as well. And he has a higher approval rating than any other candidate, as well.

I think it's hard for moderates-to-conservatives to hear, but his message of making the economy work for everyone appears to be resonating with a lot of Americans.
  #19  
Old 02-24-2020, 03:35 PM
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Bernie takes it all. The Senate flips too.
Right. And I will be able to get back into the jeans I wore in college.

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...Anyway, to answer the OP's question: I think Bernie could win a fair election against Trump. I do not believe that is what we will have. The GOP has not been de-funding, de-tasking, and otherwise making it easier to rig our elections for no reason. They fully intend, both internally and with external help, to rig the 2020 election. Since democrats have been offering feeble resistance, our news media will not talk about the issue, and no one else is going to save us from this, there is every reason to believe the 2020 election will be flat out rigged. Not just propaganda and influence, not just "legitimate" tools like Gerrymandering, but flat out rigged vote totals. We do not audit our election, and we've only tried to weaken election security even though we know our elections are under attack. Republicans know, now, that they are above the law, and there's no one to stop them. The 2020 election will be 100% rigged like a banana republic.

And there won't even be any consequence for it. No one will get violent, maybe a few little marches here and there. Our corporate owned media will assure is that even though foreign actors clearly wanted to interfere with the election, and even though there's no reason to think they'd stop at propaganda, that don't worry, we're sure no actual vote counts were changed even though we've done nothing whatsoever to verify this.
This is it in a nutshell. The election will not be fair. It will be rigged, skewed, dishonest, fucked up. The results will not reflect the desires of voters. Just like the last one didn't. Only it will be even worse this time.

And broken record: if the Dems don't take the Senate and keep the House, it doesn't matter what Bernie or anyone else stands for. Moscow Mitch will see to that.
  #20  
Old 02-24-2020, 03:40 PM
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And broken record: if the Dems don't take the Senate and keep the House, it doesn't matter what Bernie or anyone else stands for. Moscow Mitch will see to that.
Very much this, and goodbye yellow brick road.
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  #21  
Old 02-24-2020, 06:26 PM
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The Dems are going to screw Bernie again
  #22  
Old 02-24-2020, 09:21 PM
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Ironically, I don't think Trump and the GOP will be able to hurt Bernie; I think Bernie will be a victim of his own success. Bernie will probably get close to Trump in terms of polling, and maybe even some polls will have Bernie slightly ahead.

But Sanders will absolutely motivate Trump's base to show up at the polls - absolutely. That's one problem, though I think that's true of any Dem opponent.

But the bigger problem is that people will start to wonder, "Is this fucker for real?" You mean Bernie really wants to change the whole goddamn system and he's polling at 50%? He wants free college and he's polling at 50%? He wants free childcare and he's polling at 50%?

Ordinary people know damn well that Mitch McConnell and the Republicans aren't going to pass even a fraction of the massive taxes that would be required, and at some point people are going to start asking how it's going to be paid for. And unlike the Bros, people will want answers.

Sanders is a movement, but a movement isn't necessarily a president.
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Old 02-24-2020, 09:37 PM
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After Bernie is subjected to a carpet-bombing GOP ad campaign as to his honeymoon in Soviet Moscow, his (democratic) socialism, his past praise of Castro and Ortega, insulting comments about the Democratic Party, and his plans to raise taxes and drastically cut military spending, I'm afraid that Trump will smugly - infuriatingly - be able to look forward to a second term.
  #24  
Old 02-28-2020, 07:33 AM
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I have come to the conclusion that we are doomed.

Too many of the Trump voters I know (and there are quite a few) believe all the superlatives Trump throws around. Try and get them to look at the markets' trajectories, or job growth, and they simply reject any data they don't like. Try to point out that we have been shedding manufacturing jobs, and they won't believe it. Try to point out that coal's decline has been going on for 70+ years, and that natural gas will kill it, and they will tell you Trump's deregulation push has reinvigorated coal.

On the other side, I am noticing a lot of my less informed* acquaintances on the left think the Democrats are a bunch of idiots, and that somehow "politicians are all the same" and I see a lot of them disengaged.

The nature of my job is such that I regularly interact with people from every walk of life. From minimum wage couriers in the deep south to NYC billionaires. I'm definitely not in a bubble.

*I'm surprised at how many people don't really understand what the Ukraine call was really about, or what Stone did, etc. They have a very simplistic understanding; and they assume that there's an equality of shame, in that Hunter and Joe Biden surely did something wrong.
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Old 02-24-2020, 04:13 PM
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The results will not reflect the desires of voters.
They are not supposed to. The results should reflect how the voters vote.
Not their ruminations prior to entering the polling booth, nor what they say in the exit-poll.
  #26  
Old 02-25-2020, 10:27 AM
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This is it in a nutshell. The election will not be fair. It will be rigged, skewed, dishonest, fucked up. The results will not reflect the desires of voters. Just like the last one didn't. Only it will be even worse this time.
I am not so sure of this. I think that any attempt to rig the election that actually succeeds will be by definition so obvious and egregious that Trump and Co. could never get away with it. IOW, its ability to succeed would be its downfall. I hope.
  #27  
Old 02-24-2020, 10:47 AM
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I would give him around a 1/3 chance of beating Trump.
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Old 02-24-2020, 05:05 PM
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I would give him around a 1/3 chance of beating Trump.
Sounds as good as any guess to me.

I can't see Sanders doing as well in the popular vote as Hillary did. But Bernie's base of support varies enough from Hillary's that the electoral college could be shuffled differently. A recent study estimated that the Democratic ticket has a 35 percent chance of winning in a photo finish. Not a bad fit with your estimated chances!

I am going to, at slight risk of having to eat my words, rule out Bernie Sanders getting a majority, or having positive coattails for the House and Senate.

Sanders and Trump are both weak candidates due to motivating their opponent's supporters to get off their duff and vote.

P.S. As I've posted before, I'm skeptical that Mike Pence would name Bernie the winner at the joint electoral vote counting session on January 6. But I take the OP question to concern who would legitimately win.
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Old 02-24-2020, 10:54 AM
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I think he has a good chance of winning so I went with yes. It seems that attacks against Democratic candidates for POTUS fall into two different categories. There’s the type launched against Obama calling him a secret Muslim atheist who was born in Kenya but was also hiding his “long form” birth certificate from Hawaii. Then there’s Clinton and her e-mails and Biden with the whole Ukraine / Burisma stuff. I think that the attacks against Bernie are more likely to end up being the former type than the latter, and will thus be less effective. If Bernie ends up the nominee he can win as long as moderates fall in line and show up to vote. All it would take to convince them is if Obama, Biden, Clinton, and so on turn out to campaign for Bernie. If they do, Bernie wins. If they instead give tepid endorsements and don’t hit the trail, then Bernie will lose.
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Old 02-24-2020, 11:04 AM
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I think he has a good chance of winning so I went with yes. It seems that attacks against Democratic candidates for POTUS fall into two different categories. There’s the type launched against Obama calling him a secret Muslim atheist who was born in Kenya but was also hiding his “long form” birth certificate from Hawaii. Then there’s Clinton and her e-mails and Biden with the whole Ukraine / Burisma stuff. I think that the attacks against Bernie are more likely to end up being the former type than the latter, and will thus be less effective. If Bernie ends up the nominee he can win as long as moderates fall in line and show up to vote. All it would take to convince them is if Obama, Biden, Clinton, and so on turn out to campaign for Bernie. If they do, Bernie wins. If they instead give tepid endorsements and don’t hit the trail, then Bernie will lose.
Except no evidence of Obama being a Muslim or Kenyan was ever produced. There is recorded evidence of Bernie calling himself a socialist and complimenting Castro. So I think attacks on Bernie will definitely fall into the latter category, rather than the former. Thereby being much more effective.
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Old 02-24-2020, 11:33 AM
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It's a tougher road for Bernie than for Biden but I think he can. I start with the states we can pencil in blue or red right now:

That leaves 10 states and 2 congressional districts in ME and NE that could in theory go either way. I rate them from likeliest to least likely to turn blue:
1 Minnesota 10
2 Maine CD 1
3 Virginia 13
4 Michigan 16
5 Wisconsin 10
6 Iowa 6
7 Pennsylvania 20
8 North Carolina 15
9 Arizona 11
10 Ohio 18
11 Florida 29
12 Nebraska CD 1

I see the tipping point as Pennsylvania- I can easily see him winning the first 5 on my list, after that it's a little tougher. If it was Biden, PA becomes a given D pickup and the path is much easier.
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Old 02-24-2020, 11:42 AM
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It's a tougher road for Bernie than for Biden but I think he can. I start with the states we can pencil in blue or red right now:

That leaves 10 states and 2 congressional districts in ME and NE that could in theory go either way. I rate them from likeliest to least likely to turn blue:
1 Minnesota 10
2 Maine CD 1
3 Virginia 13
4 Michigan 16
5 Wisconsin 10
6 Iowa 6
7 Pennsylvania 20
8 North Carolina 15
9 Arizona 11
10 Ohio 18
11 Florida 29
12 Nebraska CD 1

I see the tipping point as Pennsylvania- I can easily see him winning the first 5 on my list, after that it's a little tougher. If it was Biden, PA becomes a given D pickup and the path is much easier.
Someone may want to tell Bernie to stop telling Western Pennsylvania they are going to have to find new jobs if he gets elected.
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Old 02-24-2020, 11:48 AM
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Someone may want to tell Bernie to stop telling Western Pennsylvania they are going to have to find new jobs if he gets elected.
That's an issue. DJT told the coal miners that their jobs were going to come back and King Coal was going to reign again. Of course it didn't happen but that's what they want to hear. But I thnk there are more votes to be had in one Philadelphia ward than could be reached among the coal miners.
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Old 02-24-2020, 10:59 AM
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I think Sanders would be a good president for the USA; however, I don't think he can win. Of course, I don't think any of the nominees can win. I believe Trump will win re-election. The fact is there are too many Americans who simply do not care that Trump is a criminal and a conman. Once Trump's campaign starts with the lies the swing voters will vote for him because ultimately the country has not burnt down, so Trump's not that bad, right? Ignoring, of course, his assault on everything that makes the USA, the USA. I'm sure the Democrats will do their best to try to point it out, but really if somebody hasn't clued it yet, I don't think anything will make them get it.
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Old 02-24-2020, 02:53 PM
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Once Trump's campaign starts with the lies the swing voters will vote for him because ultimately the country has not burnt down, so Trump's not that bad, right?
That's my fear- the place hasn't burst into flame, and Sanders' relatively extreme left-wing positions are going to be frightening, or at least generate a little unease in the swing voters, and as a result, the swing voters are going to go with the devil they know.

I honestly think Sanders is the worst possible candidate of the remaining ones because he's extreme; making it a contest of far-left extreme positions vs. Trump isn't a winning one. IMO a better plan would be to make it a relatively moderate, sane, dignified candidate vs. unhinged asshole Trump would be better, especially if they can goad him into acting crazy at every opportunity.
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Old 02-24-2020, 10:59 AM
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Not a chance in Hell. Bernie hasn’t even won the nomination and he’s spouting off stupid shit about Castro on national TV as if he was a professor at the liberal arts college his wife managed to bankrupt.
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Old 02-24-2020, 12:21 PM
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I think it depends on a number of things that he does in the general election campaign.

1. Don't say the word "millionaire", and don't even say the word "billionaire." Say instead "the billionaire class" or "an inner circle of billionaires." He needs to lean into the idea that the billionaires are on a tier WAAAAAAAY above even the millionaires, and certainly way above the middle class. He needs to promote the idea that the billionaires are an elitist cabal. He should talk about the Skull & Bones and the Bilderberg Group and the Bohemian Grove. I know this stuff overlaps with conspiracy theory bullshit, but that's part of its appeal. Bernie has already cemented the idea that he's fighting the billionaires. OK. Now he needs to make America hate the billionaires. We already know that they're villains to him. If he's going to win, they need to be the villains to US. They cannot merely be an abstraction.

2. He cannot merely be the "angry yelling man." He NEEDS for his speeches to also incorporate some humor, some levity, some level-headed optimistic talk - he needs to warm peoples' hearts, he can't just be raising the blood pressure every time he talks. Some anger is OK. 100% anger all the time is NOT OK. Remember that Trump did not campaign on 100% anger. He was angry at a lot of things but he also threw in a lot of humor, sarcasm, and "aren't you folks beautiful?" flattery.

3. He needs to make it REALLY clear that he is not a communist. If the topic ever comes up, he NEEDS to have a simple and effective rebuttal to the conflation of socialism with communism. Just saying "we need to be more like Sweden and Denmark" is not going to cut it. He needs to explain why his ideas for America are NOT communism, they are NOT related in any way to the Soviet Union or to any communist dictatorship.

4. Above all: he needs to refute the idea that he wants to "burn it all down." I repeatedly hear people describe Sanders this way. It's bullshit. He doesn't want to burn it all down. The things he wants to implement ALREADY EXIST IN MANY OTHER COUNTRIES.
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Old 02-24-2020, 12:28 PM
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All good points, Lamoral. This is one time the debates might make a difference- seeing a pretty bright guy (regardless of who is nominated) vs a babbling idiot may turn the tide.
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Old 02-24-2020, 12:37 PM
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... This is one time the debates might make a difference- seeing a pretty bright guy (regardless of who is nominated) vs a babbling idiot may turn the tide.
Trump blustered his way to the top against Rubio, Kasich, JEB etc., and then bullied his way against Hillary.

Debating Trump successfully has nothing to do with smarts. What's required is to call out his tantrums as rude and infantile, while remaining calm. I hope Bernie is the man to do that.
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Old 02-24-2020, 12:41 PM
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I hope Bernie is the man to do that.
Bernie will debate Trump EXACTLY the way we see him debate now. With much hand-waving and yelling. He'll be right, of course. But he's unlikely to convince anyone that isn't already convinced.
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Old 02-24-2020, 04:36 PM
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Trump blustered his way to the top against Rubio, Kasich, JEB etc., and then bullied his way against Hillary.

Debating Trump successfully has nothing to do with smarts. What's required is to call out his tantrums as rude and infantile, while remaining calm. I hope Bernie is the man to do that.
Trump has already made noises about not doing debates, "because of the biased media". In reality he's scared to death of having to face someone with passion and truth behind him/her, because that person will rip him to shreds. If it's Buttigieg or Bloomberg, he'll debate; if it's Sanders, Warren or Biden, he'll pass.
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Old 02-24-2020, 04:38 PM
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If it's Buttigieg or Bloomberg, he'll debate; if it's Sanders, Warren or Biden, he'll pass.
You want to make a wager on that? Just between us? I have Paypal, Venmo and Zelle. I swear to God I will pay out if you're right. How's $200? PM me if you really want to do this.
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Old 02-24-2020, 12:38 PM
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All good points, Lamoral. This is one time the debates might make a difference- seeing a pretty bright guy (regardless of who is nominated) vs a babbling idiot may turn the tide.
HRC was pretty bright. But the country voted for the babbling idiot.

What do you believe has changed in 4 years?

Trump will like nothing better than to be on stage with Sanders. He'll be Biff to Sander's McFly. And the MAGAcult will eat it up.

Or Trump will refuse to debate. And the MAGAcult will eat that up too.
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Old 02-24-2020, 01:33 PM
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Or Trump will refuse to debate. And the MAGAcult will eat that up too.
I hear this repeatedly on this board and I have to wonder what reality the people are living in who put forth the idea that Trump would not debate his opponent. Trump LIVES for that stage. He would sooner cut off his own dick with a pair of pruning shears than miss an opportunity for the whole country to see him shit-talk the Democratic nominee. He's GOING to be on that goddamn stage and whoever debates him is going to have to prepare very, very hard for it.
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Old 02-24-2020, 01:41 PM
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I hear this repeatedly on this board and I have to wonder what reality the people are living in who put forth the idea that Trump would not debate his opponent. Trump LIVES for that stage. He would sooner cut off his own dick with a pair of pruning shears than miss an opportunity for the whole country to see him shit-talk the Democratic nominee. He's GOING to be on that goddamn stage and whoever debates him is going to have to prepare very, very hard for it.
I think Trump is a bigger coward than he is a narcissist. Or rather, his narcissism will not allow him to expose himself to embarrassment. I doubt he'd debate someone like Buttigieg or Warren. I think he's much less afraid of facing off against Sanders or Biden.
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Old 02-24-2020, 12:29 PM
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Only among those who are educated as to the subtleties of what socialist means. For others its just another version or radicalism. Back in 2018-2019, I was thinking that a Democrat could win the white house with the simple slogan "return to sanity". Unfortunately Sanders can't use that slogan. Americans are fed up with the drama uncertainty and acrimony that the political system has become and is exemplified by Trump, and Sanders just offers more drama, uncertainty and acrimony, just focused in a different (albeit much better) direction.
Wish we had a UPVOTE button. I'd give this 1,000 upvotes.
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Old 02-24-2020, 12:33 PM
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4. Above all: he needs to refute the idea that he wants to "burn it all down." I repeatedly hear people describe Sanders this way. It's bullshit. He doesn't want to burn it all down. The things he wants to implement ALREADY EXIST IN MANY OTHER COUNTRIES.
Hell, they exist IN THIS COUNTRY.
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Old 02-24-2020, 04:23 PM
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I think it depends on a number of things that he does in the general election campaign.

1. Don't say the word "millionaire", and don't even say the word "billionaire."... OK. Now he needs to make America hate the billionaires. We already know that they're villains to him. If he's going to win, they need to be the villains to US.

2. He cannot merely be the "angry yelling man." He NEEDS for his speeches to also incorporate some humor, some levity, some level-headed optimistic talk - he needs to warm peoples' hearts...

3. He needs to make it REALLY clear that he is not a communist.

4. Above all: he needs to refute the idea that he wants to "burn it all down." I repeatedly hear people describe Sanders this way. It's bullshit. He doesn't want to burn it all down. The things he wants to implement ALREADY EXIST IN MANY OTHER COUNTRIES.
I see some contradiction in 1 and 2. Running explicitly on making any group, even 'the billionaire class', 'villains' is angry. I think Sanders would say, and believes, and you seem to agree, 'we' have to be angry. But negative appeals like that are why Sanders is viewed as a shouting angry person. I'm not sure how you do 1. non-angrily.

And as to the pure stylistic aspects of 2, that's just who he is. Trump and he are pretty different people overall but both old men with a good deal of success in their respective spheres with their respective personal styles. That type of person is usually pretty resistant to trying to changing that style. The guy might really have virtually no sense of humor, as one would assume listening to his public speech (maybe in private he does have one; HRC is by many accounts a warm person with her friends, but trying to be that publicly didn't work for her, and for anyone there's a risk of not appearing true to yourself; up to now appearing true to himself is a big Sanders strength).

For 3 if you're arguing in a US general national election that you're not a Communist, you're not in a good place. Even mentioning the word I think would be a bad idea.

The claim in 3&4 that Sanders' proposals are conventional in other rich countries will surely be part of his pitch. That's already a standard pitch in defense of progressive proposals in US politics by all kinds of people. Although, the appeal to some key US voter groups or 'look at foreigners' might be questioned. Anyway it's true *to some extent*, is a reasonable argument to the ears of some voters and he will use this argument I'm sure.

But, Sanders is really quite far left on some things. For example no country has a wealth tax with % anywhere near as high as the 8% max Sanders proposes. The US would move far to the left of any country if that were actually implemented. Not every rich country even has an estate tax (Canada, Sweden and Norway don't among others) and none have a rate approaching the 77% max Sanders proposes. Many people support Sanders but doubt those proposals would pass without being severely watered down, if at all, but the candidate himself can't use that argument.

On the billionaire issue it's really a matter of arguing the US has a bigger problem with very wealthy people and has to take much more radical action than any other other country so far. The Sanders base likes to hear that, but I really doubt it could resonate a lot more broadly. OTOH Sanders could steer more away from talking about billionaires and stick more to talking about greater social welfare benefits ('free' health care, college, etc), but not paid for by higher taxes on most voters. The billionaire part is still implicit (they have to pay, again to the extent one thinks the proposals could pass and Sanders math holds up even if) but IMO a mistake to emphasize trying to turn the average voters' attitude into the average Sanders' base voter's attitude toward billionaires.

Last edited by Corry El; 02-24-2020 at 04:25 PM.
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Old 02-24-2020, 04:36 PM
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I see some contradiction in 1 and 2. Running explicitly on making any group, even 'the billionaire class', 'villains' is angry. I think Sanders would say, and believes, and you seem to agree, 'we' have to be angry. But negative appeals like that are why Sanders is viewed as a shouting angry person. I'm not sure how you do 1. non-angrily.
Well, it's actually pretty easy. Just don't shout so much.

I'm completely serious - the tone of someone's voice is extremely important to how they and their ideas are perceived. If Sanders can discuss the rapacious greed of the billionaire class in a calm way without raising his voice, he can make more of an impact than he would be able to if he stuck with his angry hectoring style.
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Old 02-25-2020, 04:03 PM
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Well, it's actually pretty easy. Just don't shout so much.

I'm completely serious - the tone of someone's voice is extremely important to how they and their ideas are perceived. If Sanders can discuss the rapacious greed of the billionaire class in a calm way without raising his voice, he can make more of an impact than he would be able to if he stuck with his angry hectoring style.
That particular suggestion I agree is simple. I'm not sure it's easy though for him. Again, not to take the comparison too far, lots of people somewhat sympathetic to Trump's general political positioning really wish he'd modify basic elements of his personal style. But he just can't/won't. Again I think that's generally typical of old people whose styles have worked for them, generally.

Anyway do you really think that one thing would go that far? I think the more important point actually is that a lot of what Sanders proposes really *doesn't* fit into the template 'every other rich country does it'. The general idea of a more socialized health system being standard everywhere else is reasonably true as political claims go (though the US system is far from 100% private now, more like 50/50, and some other rich country systems also have a big private component). Taking 8% of anyone's assets per yr or 77% at death really isn't standard anywhere, that's way past what's done anywhere else. So 'nicely explaining' the Sanders idea is still US going from (at least supposedly, also not 100% true on every issue now) most rightist rich country to most leftist on some pretty major issues. It's fair to wonder if that's really just a matter of how it's explained, or whether Sanders could run into a more fundamental problem in the general which isn't reflected in (often 'registered voter') polls when most people still aren't paying attention.

Though lots of elections turn out close, so it can't be ruled out that little things could make a difference. And the whole situation is not entirely predictable. Say Covid 19 turns into a huge issue and it can be plausibly argued the govt mishandled it. That's not predictable.
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