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If you think that supporters of Bernie Sanders are first and foremost angry about matters of policy -- for instance, the way our broken campaign finance laws, market regulations, and trade policies are destroying the hopes and ambitions of most of America -- you're absolutely right.
But that's the long view.
In the short-term, there's an incredible amount of anger being directed toward the media by the roughly half of the Democratic Party that supports Bernie Sanders.
Clinton supporters and many self-professed "neutral" journalists sagely inform the rest of us that this anger is little more than sour grapes or denial-stage grief; it's the numbers that matter -- they say -- and if only Sanders supporters cared about hard data in the same way that Clinton supporters and (say) "neutral" bloggers for The Washington Post do, or even the editors at The New York Times, everyone would just calm down and accept the incipient inevitability of the ugliest and least substantive general-election campaign in the history of the United States: Donald Trump versus Hillary Clinton.
The thing is, I'm a hard-data guy myself. Always have been. And so are many of the Sanders supporters I know and interact with daily. What's actually making them angry right now is not that Hillary Clinton yesterday termed Bernie Sanders "the latest flavor of the month" on union issues -- when Sanders had already been a pro-union progressive for a decade by the time Hillary eased herself out of being a proud Goldwater Republican in the late 1960s -- nor is it that the candidate they support faces a truly monumental task in trying to become the Democratic candidate for President.
What Sanders supporters are angry about is hard data.
And not just any hard data, but hard data supplied by irrefutably objective sources and challenged as to its validity by absolutely no one.
Hard data so objective and undeniably accurate that its absence in public discussion of the presidential election is not just puzzling or downright bizarre but absolutely infuriating.
Here are a dozen pieces of hard data that Sanders supporters are particularly exercised about right now, primarily because most Sanders supporters believe Donald Trump to be a clear and present danger to the nation, and therefore can't imagine why Democrats remain unable to have an honest conversation about who could -- or will -- be in a position to stop him.
1. Sanders leads Clinton in the most recent national poll.
Bloomberg has Sanders beating Clinton nationally, 49% to 48%. Coverage of this poll was dwarfed by coverage of how it's obviously time for Sanders and his supporters to accept the fact that the Senator is just much less popular than Hillary is.
2. Sanders decimates Clinton in head-to-head battleground-state polling involving Donald Trump.
Such data is available for twelve battleground states (some of them battleground states that are only battlegrounds because Trump is the likely Republican nominee). In nine of those states, Sanders outperforms Clinton against Trump:
- North Carolina
- New Hampshire
In three of those states, Clinton and Sanders perform equally well against Trump (that is, their performances are within the margin of error):
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