The News Notices the News: Clinton's Electability Argument "Flies in the Face" of Polling Data
Bernie Sanders says he's the Democrats' most electable candidate. Watch more: http://on.msnbc.com/1RiaBmh
Posted by Morning Joe on Monday, January 11, 2016
by Gaius Publius
It's really hard to pick turning points until after the game, but this might just be one. Watch the video at the top (direct link here if the embed fails). Then note — the news is not the polling data. After all, Howie covered it here and I added on here. The news is that the news is covering it.
This piece isn't about the poll. It's about the media. If the media ever discovers that...
- Sanders essentially doubles Clinton's lead against important Republican candidates, and
- Sanders wins against them when she narrowly loses, and
- Sanders has nearly double her support among independents
Things remain extremely close on the Democratic side, with Hillary Clinton at 47% to 44% for Bernie Sanders, and 3% for Martin O'Malley. There's an incredible divide between the Democrats and independents planning to vote in the primary- Clinton leads Sanders 55/36 with Democrats, but Sanders almost completely cancels that out with a 59/29 advantage among non-Democrats planning to vote in the primary.These results among independents are not at all uncommon. And frankly, if African Americans notice in large numbers that Clinton's history with "black lives (and prison sentences)" issues is very mixed at best, her campaign could be in real trouble as early as Super Tuesday, or even earlier, in South Carolina. As Mark Halperin notes in the video above (my emphasis):
She [Clinton] has a new ad saying she's the one who can stop the Republicans from winning. That flies in the face of the latest poll data from NBC...and:
[Sanders] sees what's going on and he's confident of winning. Don't count her out, but if we wake up the night of New Hampshire and he's won them both, it's a totally different world.Of course that's true; Halerin is right. I'm shocked, though pleased, that he's saying it ... out loud with the on-air light still lit. Stay tuned; the race is getting more than interesting.
This News Is Making News
Again, my point isn't about the candidates. What's been true about them has been true for a while, though noticed only in the side lanes and frontage roads that run next to the mainstream media highway. Remember this from one of those side lanes?
Ann Coulter and Bill Maher discuss Clinton and Sanders
The real electability story's been out there for a while. The news is that the bigger news is telling it. I find that fascinating, even intriguing, perhaps telling. Notice that even the banner under the Morning Joe Halperin interview underscores the point: "Sanders says he's Democrats' most electable candidate." A week or so ago, that was a secret, and neither Sanders nor the media were saying it with any force. Will other "bigger news" shows follow suit? Will MSNBC? Will Meet the Press and all its clones and cousins?
If so, if "big news" makes this a thing, it could mark a turning point. After all, validation does drive votes, and we're less than a month away from Iowa and New Hampshire (full schedule here). If Sanders wins both state contests, to quote Mr. Halperin, "It's a totally different world."
Why the news is making news like this is almost more intriguing. But that's a subject for a different day, since it will take some thought. For example, I can see them tanking Clinton, but why would they sell Sanders? Wheels within wheels (for a peek, scroll down to the Update here).
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