Despite media spin, Bernie Sanders race is far from over

March 16, 2016
Bernie Sanders at a Los Angeles rally.

The media has trumpeted Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton's apparently certain nomination after the March 15 caucuses, but the race is far from over. Tom Cahill writes, in a piece abridged from US Uncut, on why.

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Despite Bernie Sanders losing all five states in the March 15 Democratic primary contests, he is within striking distance of Clinton. And if the self-proclaimed socialist senator from Vermont wins the upcoming Western primaries, he could erase Clinton's lead and become the new front-runner for the nomination.

At the end of the night, Clinton increased her delegate lead by about 100, still leaving Sanders plenty of room to eliminate her advantage in the 24 remaining states. A candidate needs 2383 delegates to clinch the Democratic nomination. As of March 16, Clinton only has 1139 delegates to Sanders' 825. Less than half of the pledged delegates have been selected thus far.

All of the states most favourable to Clinton have already voted, including the entire Deep South. The states most favourable to Sanders are still on the calendar.

Going into these favourable states, Sanders only needs 58% of the remaining pledged delegates. Considering he picked up 67.7% of the vote in Kansas, 64.3% in Maine, and a thundering 86.1% in his home state of Vermont — shutting out Clinton entirely from the 15% delegate threshold — this is not as impossible as the doomsayers predict.

He also squeaked above the 58% figure with 59% of the vote in Colorado and 61.6% in Minnesota, and he scored a respectable 57.1% in Nebraska. He received 60% back in New Hampshire and has come in virtual ties in many other states outside of the South thus far, meaning he's beaten the target a total of six times.

On March 15, among groups that hold special significance in general elections, like young voters and independents, Sanders performed particularly well. For example, 70% of independents in Illinois voted for Sanders over Clinton. And despite Clinton pulling out a narrow win in Illinois, Sanders still won the under-45 bloc by a vast margin.

The remaining states all have large populations of Democratic-leaning independents and voters under 45.

If Sanders and Clinton are neck-and-neck in national polls, Sanders can still win the nomination if he wins the upcoming Western contests by comfortable margins. Six of the top 10 cities that donate the most money per capita to the Sanders campaign are in Western states that have yet to vote.

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