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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 3/26/16

Bernie Sanders: "I Am That Candidate" Who Can Beat Trump

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Confronting the idea head-on put out by the Hillary campaign, contrary to all evidence, that Clinton is the Democratic candidate best positioned and equipped to beat Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders in an interview with the LA Times had this to say:

...you know, people want to vote for Hillary Clinton, that's fine. But it is not fine when people say Hillary Clinton is the one who is going to beat Donald Trump. I would urge you, go to your website, look up virtually all of the current polls. Bernie Sanders versus Donald Trump. Just so happens, what do I have in front of me, by complete coincidence, a poll that took place just a few days ago [from] CNN. And this is just one of many. All the same thing.

Donald Trump -- Clinton beats Trump, 53-41, 12 points. I beat him 58-38, 20 points. John Kasich beats Hillary Clinton, 51-45. She loses by 6; I beat him by 6. Ted Cruz is tied 48-48 with Clinton. I beat him by 13 points. And that is absolutely consistent with virtually every poll that's out there. Why? Well, we obviously are going to get all the Democrats. But we get a lot of the independents that Trump will get if Clinton is in the race.

So one of the arguments that I have been making -- I made it this morning, we had a press conference in San Diego -- if Democrats want to defeat a Republican candidate, Trump or anybody else, I think the evidence is overwhelming: I am that candidate. And it's not just polls. The truth is also Democrats will do well when the voter turnout is high, Republicans do well when the voter turnout is low. I don't think anybody imagines that Hillary Clinton will be able to bring out more people than I can. We have the excitement. We have the energy. We have the non-traditional voters. So that is one of the arguments that I have been making.

So Sanders at last comes out and addresses what has been on many Democratic voters' minds: I like Bernie better, but can he beat Trump? The answer is, he may be the only candidate who can. Latest polls show Trump closing on Hillary, and he has not even started attacking her on her legal troubles yet. A recent Reuters study showed Trump closing the gap on Hillary with stark rapidity. But against Sanders, Trump falls far behind. The general electorate seems to trust Sanders more than Trump by a margin of 20%.

Reuters Poll

Furthermore, close election watchers can discern that Hillary has a problem: in some polls she is losing important parts of New York state to Trump, although against Bernie in the primary she is miles ahead.

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What this means is she is popular in Democratic circles, but not among the independent and cross-over voters she would need to keep New York's Electoral College votes from Trump. And no Democrat can win a general election without New York, and certainly not against a candidate who is upsetting the usual electoral math like Trump. Sanders, on the other hand, holds New York solidly against Trump. He is, after all, himself a native New Yorker.

The pattern is upheld by multiple polls in the past. For many reasons too many people will not pull the lever for Hillary. But old Bernie they will give a chance.

Related OpedNews articles: "Listen Carefully, Hillary People, One More Time: Only Bernie Can Beat Trump - You Will be Responsible"

(Article changed on March 26, 2016 at 19:45)

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Ralph Lopez majored in Economics and Political Science at Yale University. He writes for Truth Out, Alternet, Consortium News, Op-Ed News, and other Internet media. He reported from Afghanistan in 2009 and produced a short documentary film on (more...)

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