Saturday, November 12, 2016

Bernie and Hillary

There's a useless argument going on among people on the left is whether Bernie Sanders could have won the general election. It's useless because we can't know. There are valid arguments on both sides frankly.

Basically, they amount to Bernie did better in popular polling against Republicans did at that time versus that changing once the sites of the right were placed directly against Bernie. I think there's valid points to both really and a terrific number of variables. Not only do we not know how successful the right could have been at attacking Bernie, we can't say how successful he could have been at defending or counter-attacking.

And nearly all of it is based on the same original assumptions we all had six-months ago, which seems like an especially dumb way to play this particular game.

So, if you insist on playing, here's the thing I'd throw in, because Hillary voters seem to be willfully determined to keep their original narrative, which needs to be obliterated if the left is going to find any way to recover in 2018 and 2020.

Hillary Clinton was not electable. Let's move that shit right off the table. If she couldn't win this election, she couldn't win any presidential election ever.

As I said before, there are good and bad reasons for that. We all know most of them and how good or bad we think they are.

So, worst case scenario in the Bernie vs. Hillary hypothetical is that they were equally unelectable. There is no longer any "she was electable, he wasn't" option. You need to take that shit off the table. If you were a Hillary supporter in the primaries who insisted that point of view, you were at least half wrong and need to start owning that.

It seems weird to me, though, that in an election that was clearly decided in part by people embracing a perceived outsider with ideas that broke from the mainstream ideas that we've been bickering over for decades, that it isn't at least a little possible that Bernie had a chance where Hillary didn't.

The importance here isn't the parlor game, which is useless, but in deciding how we're going to move forward.

We keep fighting over the same 5-10 percent of voters who have difficulty deciding, but maybe it's time to figure out how to drive the nearly half of eligible voters who don't show up to come out and support us. We now know something that doesn't work.

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