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HORIST: Is Sanders an albatross around the neck of the Democratic Party?

HORIST: Is Sanders an albatross around the neck of the Democratic Party?

As it was in the Republican primaries in 2016, the game of political whack-a-mole is continuing to keep the Democratic Party staggering like a punch-drunk boxer.  A number of promising candidates have gotten whacked entirely out of the race – such as California Senator Kamala Harris and New Jersey Senator Cory Booker.  Other leading candidates have gotten whacked into the second division – such as Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren and former Vice President Joe Biden.

This has left room for second-tier candidates to move into the major league – including South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar and the Madison Avenue Wonder former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.  As the Nevada and South Carolina caucuses approach, polls suggest that Biden may again pop up while Buttigieg and Klobuchar get whacked.

So far, there has only been one candidate who has consistently performed at the top level – and arguably at the top of the top level.  Of course, that is Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.  He has a very real chance at being the Democrat standard bearer in the 2020 General Election.  In fact, many Democrats and pundits suggest – and even say outright – that Bloomberg is all that stands in Sanders’ path.  The answer to that question will become clearer after Super Tuesday, when 15 states and territories hold primaries.

Establishment, moderate and rational Democrats see Sanders as a sure loser to President Trump in a 2020 match-up.  They believe that when matched-up with Trump’s obnoxious personality, Sanders’ looney proposals will even drive a lot of nose-holding Democrats into the Trump camp.

But what happens if Sanders is not the nominee?  That may be as great a peril for the Democratic Party than if he is.  If Sanders is taken out by billionaire Bloomberg, you can safely bet that a very high percentage of the Vermont senator’s supporters will stay home on Election Day – that is if they are not still protesting in the streets.

While moderate Democrats might cross over to Trump when the only other choice is Sanders, the latter’s supporters have not committed to the political process – nor do they value voting as a civic duty.  They are not party partisans and not all that interested in downline candidates. They are political revolutionaries – a cult of personality.  They are more likely to stay home than those unhappy if Sanders was the nominee.

Anecdotally, I communicate – in person or via social media – with a wide range of potential voters.  The majority of Sanders’ supporters with whom I chat tell me that they will not vote if he is not the candidate. They have the feeling that the powers-that-be will have rigged the process against Sanders for the second time – and they may be correct.

The fact that Sanders has become an early frontrunner deepens their emotional investment.  Had the senator been running in fourth place in these early primaries, they would not have gotten their hopes up.  Right now, they are sensing a victory that can only be denied by political skullduggery.  Even Sanders, himself, will not be able to convince his followers to get behind the Democrat candidate.

The absolute worst outcome for the Democratic Party is to have Sanders go into the convention as the frontrunner, but without enough delegates to win on the first ballot – and then have those 750 super delegates (the party establishment) flip the nomination to Biden or Bloomberg when the Super Delegates are allowed to vote on subsequent ballots.  The anger will be palpable and very likely felt in the streets.

Whether Sanders secures the nomination or not, he may very well be the albatross around the neck of the Democratic Party in November.

So, there ‘tis.

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry Horist Larry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.


  1. Rich

    Bernie is a couple of decades ahead of the DNC schedule; i.e., they want to go full Socialist, but they need a couple more decades of brainwashing in our education system to turn America into the USSA.

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  3. Karen K

    He isn’t an albatross about the necks of the Demonrats, he’s right there amongst them in their stupid ideas. For instance, Bernie Sanders doing all this talk about free medical insurance, free college, blah, blah, blah!
    Where the heck is the money going to come from for this to happen? I’ll tell you where! From the taxpayer’s freakin pockets, that’s where! The more I hear what the Dumborats are for, the more I’m glad I’m voting for President Trump! TRUMP 2020 BABY!

  4. Haugen

    The DNC and the Party bosses are letting their true colors show.
    They are pushing a socialist agenda, driving toward the very things Sanders is preaching, but then play favorites to a billionaire in exchange for money to pocket. Strange that the “TAX the RICH out of existence ” And the Make the Rich pay their Fair Share” party suddenly jumps to the tune of Mike Bloomberg. The stench of hypocrisy is strong in these folks.

  5. Laura Wagner

    The main problem with Bernie not getting the nomination (Demokraut cheating or not) is that his followers have threatened to burn down Milwaukee if he isn’t. Now to me, (and I am by no means advocating this type of violence) it would make more sense to go into the DNC convention and string up those that voted against Sanders. Direct the violence at the people guilty of depriving Bernie of his chance, rather than innocents in the city of beer. Again, I say that makes more sense to me, but what do I know?

  6. David Barron

    NO! The albatross around the neck of the Democratic Party is Pelosi, Harris, Boxer, Waters, Warren, Biden, Feinstein, McCaskill, Mireno, Schumer, Heitkami, Booker, Klobuchar, Gillibrand, AOC, Tlaib, Nader, and of course our favorite current traitor Adam Schiff. Of course the continued presence of HRC is always present. Get these people out of Washington and the Democratic Party might just recover.

    • Joe Gilbertson

      So you think that Bernie or someone like him was inevitable and the D Party is doomed no matter what?

  7. Philip C Majerus

    The DNC and party establishment have already accepted the fact that none of their candidates can beat Trump — and the super delegates cannot risk the cries of corruption by swinging the outcome. They have no response to Trump’s economic and international performance. Their plan is to put up a straw-candidate (the more extreme the better) who will lose by landslide. They will then reinvent themselves, with hat in hand, as having heard the message and beg forgiveness while espousing enlightenment. Their policies will not necessarily change, they’ll just be cloaked in more sophisticated rhetoric and/or not fully revealed till after acquiring office — whether in legislative or the executive branches. Obama will be the architect. They realize the pendulum is swinging but cannot, at this point in time, stop the leftward momentum destroying their party and aspirations of dominance and control. Subterfuge will be the new modus operandi. They’re willing to lose a battle in order to win the war. This fight ain’t over yet.

  8. Kristin

    Since the House demonrats realized how Pelosi was leading them down a wrong path with the impeachment, why can’t the other demonrats back off their past actions also & just go back to how they used to be. Then they would accomplish alot more than the last term demonrats did, which was NOTHING! It used to be that the Republicans & Democrats would not agree on all things, but they would sit & debate or talk it over then finally take a vote after making afew changes to the bill to please each party. Give & take by each party was all it took, not for the Democrats to act like children & throw a temper tantrum when they didn’t get their EXACT way.