Thursday, December 03, 2015

Poll: Sanders Is More Electable than Clinton in the General Election


Recent Quinnipiac poll results (source; click to enlarge)

by Gaius Publius

I've covered this story before, but the latest Quinnipiac poll confirms it. Bernie Sanders is not unelectable — just the opposite, in fact. Sanders is more electable than Clinton in head-to-head polling against Republican candidates in the general election.

But to win in the general, he has to survive the Democrats, including the many in the party whose support for Clinton hinges on the "fact" that "Bernie's got nice policies, but he can't win." He can't win against Clinton if the Democratic Party unites against him. But his electability against the Republican is beyond question at this point.

Quinnipiac has a write-up here, with a click-through to the pdf of the data. But the bottom line is well captured in the graphic above. 
  • Against Trump — Sanders +8, Clinton +6
  • Against Cruz — Sanders +10, Clinton +5
  • Against Carson — Sanders +6, Clinton +3
  • Against Rubio — Sanders +1, Clinton +1
The first two results especially are significant, since these are, at this point, the most likely nominees. (Quinnipiac has Trump leading handily at 27% with the remaining three clustered about about 17%.)

In the head-to-head with Clinton, Sanders' is losing some ground. The spread is now 30 points in her favor, 60%–30%.

Sanders Captures More Republican Voters than Clinton

As I've predicted (and I'm not alone by a long shot), Sanders and his message have greater appeal to Republican voters. Drilling down into the results (pdf), we find that while Clinton loses Republican voters against Trump 7%–82% (question 6), Sanders does better, 11%–80% (question 10). Sanders also gets 52% of Independents versus Clinton's 45%.

These results are similar to those against Cruz. Sanders gets almost 10% more of the independent vote versus Cruz than Clinton does — 51% goes to Sanders versus 43% to Clinton. In addition, Sanders' net favorable rating is +13, the highest of all candidates, to Clinton's –7 (and Trump's –22).

Bottom line: It's impossible to make the case that Sanders can't win in the general election, at least based on data to date. I understand that competing campaigns — Clinton's, O'Malley's — have a reason to perpetuate that illusion. But for the media to treat it as factual is journalistic malpractice at best, or loading the dice at worse.

Are the Dice Loaded Against Sanders?

I think it's clear they are, and not based just on the behavior of Debbie Wasserman Schultz and the DNC's debate scheduling. More than one Democratic insider has touted Clinton's greater electability, or worse, Sanders' unelectability, as if they were facts. This clearly loads the dice.

Why? There are likely many reasons, from the Clinton campaign's arm-twisting to people's desire to curry favor to the person they see as their next bread-and-butterer — their next employment opportunity, media-access gatekeeper, or party-advancement skid-greaser.

But beyond that there's this, a factor I consider the most powerful of all. Just as the climate-solutions world is largely invested in incrementalist proposals — proposals that don't disrupt the current economic or political order — so the world of political insiders, inhabited by both parties, is invested in keeping the rigged money flowing, and flowing to both parties, from the rigged "insider game." This story's been told on these pages more times than can be counted — for example, here. The fact is sad but true:
Everyone else who's running [for president], on both sides, is an insider playing within — and supporting — the "insider game," the one that keeps insiders wealthy and outsiders struggling, the one where the wealthy and their retainers operate government for their benefit only. What sets Sanders apart is his determination to dismantle that game, to take it apart and send its players home (back to the private sector) or to jail.
As much as anything else, Sanders' threat to take apart the insider game accounts for his great popularity. It also represents one of Clinton's greatest vulnerabilities.

Two friends talking

But Sanders will have to defeat the Democratic insiders protecting that game to get into the general election. You can help.

First, explode the myth that he can't be elected, every chance you get. It's a fairy tale and deserves fairy-tale treatment. Second, click to help him here, if you're so inclined. (You can adjusts the split any way you like at the link.) Thanks!


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At 1:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Which is stronger in the USA, antisemitism or misogyny?????

At 7:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Misogyny definitely.

At 12:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

1) yeah, misogyny is bigger.

2) The other, better reason Bernie is more electable in the general is because he would give a lot of the 60M who don't vote a reason to show up. A lot like candidate Obama in 2008, who attracted 15M more to vote because he ran as the anti-fascist candidate. After he immediately morphed into obamanation (as soon as he nom'd his cabinet), those 15M knew they'd been betrayed and stayed home in 2010 and on. Those 15M (plus maybe 10M more) know hilbillary is a canard and won't likely show up... unless it's to prevent an American fuhrer, Herr Trump, from raising the hakkencruiz over the gates of the islam camps.

3) it doesn't really matter how many idiots who would normally vote R switch to Bernie. You want the 15M back... for good. And that means Bernie can't morph ala obamanation.

4) since the entire D process is fixed for the money's gal, and Bernie should have known it, I was greatly disappointed that he didn't run as an I from the beginning. As we shall find out shortly, D voters are imbeciles AND the convention is rigged anyway, so there is no effin' way Bernie will be allowed to gain the D nom. If Bernie ran as an I from day 1, he would be speaking no differently and to no smaller crowds than today. But he COULD have been the catalyst for a movement away from hilbillary, DW-S, money and fascism and (back) toward a republic. Maybe even a new party, made up of the dozen or so moderate R voters, and 80M of former Ds and those who haven't had anyone to vote for since 1980.

I said in 2008 that I would gladly vote for a woman for prez... just not Hillary. I said in 2012 that I would gladly vote for a black for prez... just not obamanation (I didn't vote for him either time because... rezko, et al).

I'll happily vote for a social-democrat and/or a jew for prez... and I hope I get to do so in November. And I hope he doesn't sell out like obamanation did.


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