What does it take for a woman to win the Democratic nomination for President of the United States in 2016? Answer: A lot more than any man, apparently. Even then, the doubters will say that the fix was in, the establishment gave it to her, she stole it, or whatever, to undermine her accomplishment.
Sen. Bernie Sanders, when asked why he was losing to Secretary Hillary Clinton, stated that "Secretary Clinton cleaned our clock in the Deep South, no question about it." But, he went on to say, his campaign is winning in other places.
Well, not exactly.
In the South alone, Clinton also won Florida, Texas, North Carolina and Virginia by large margins. According to Nate Silver's website FiveThirtyEight, Clinton beat Sanders by 211 delegates in other Southern states we usually don't think of as the "Deep South." And winning Florida, North Carolina and Virginia is critical for any Democrat to win the White House in November.
Silver also points out that if you look at the diversity of states won by Clinton, she "has won or is favored to win almost every state where the turnout demographics strongly resemble those of Democrats as a whole." And he made that statement before her wins in Pennsylvania, Maryland and New York. In other words, Clinton is winning in states where Democrats must win in November.
Clinton has won 26 states to Sanders' 21 victories. Clinton now leads Sanders by 3 million votes or 57 percent of the primary votes cast compared to 43 percent for Sanders. National polling shows that Democrats support Clinton over Sanders by an average of 6.5 points, according to the most recent RealClearPolitics data. And Clinton has secured 2 million more primary votes than Donald Trump, while Trump has over a million more votes than Sanders.
Clinton has also secured a majority of the superdelegates because she is winning the majority of Democratic voters. Meanwhile, the Sanders' campaign wants to override the will of the voters and allow the superdelegates to decide the winner at the Democratic convention. So much for his anti-establishment message.
Sanders thinks that the superdelegates should support the candidate who won the popular vote of their home state. Fair enough. But as stated by Michael Cohen writing for the Boston Globe, even if the rules were changed so late in the game for the benefit of the Sanders' campaign, "Clinton would still have a 363-to-147 advantage in superdelegates" because Clinton has won more states, especially big states with more votes and delegates.
No matter how you look at it — by the number of votes, by the number of states, by the number of regular delegates, and by the number of superdelegates — Secretary Clinton is winning and she is winning by a large margin. Her margin is significantly larger than Barack Obama's margin when he beat Clinton in 2008.
Clinton gracefully bowed out in 2008 and gave her full support to Obama. Will Sanders do the same? It doesn't look like it. As stated by Cohen, "Instead of coming to grips with the overwhelming evidence that Democratic primary voters prefer Hillary Clinton be the party's 2016 presidential nominee, Bernie Sanders continues to create his own political reality — devising new and creative excuses to explain why he's losing to her and why he should be the party's standard-bearer in November."
Clinton needs to save her resources for a general election against a billionaire named Trump. Sanders doesn't need to worry about saving funds for a general election and he knows it. He can continue to run for president and pour millions of dollars into television advertising, as he did in Indiana where Clinton did not run a single ad, and where Trump will certainly win in November.
So when you hear from Sanders and his supporters how corrupt the system is because the voters don't count, remember that Clinton is winning because she has secured the votes of significantly more voters than anyone else running, Democrat or Republican, with or without super-delegates. It is Sanders, not Clinton, who is trying to undermine the will of the voters. Simply put, the person getting the most votes is winning, as it should be in a democracy, and she happens to be a woman.
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Tom Zirpoli writes from Westminster. He is the program coordinator for the human services management graduate program at McDaniel College. His column appears on Wednesdays. Email him at email@example.com.