April 28, 2016 by Chris Kite
First, I want to make several things very clear.
Number one: I voted for Bernie Sanders.
Number two: I would love to see President Bernie Sanders.
Number three: If Bernie Sanders doesn’t win the nomination, I will not hesitate to vote for Hillary Clinton.
Number four: Did I mention that I voted for Bernie Sanders and would love for him to become President.
But this is not going to happen. The math just doesn’t work. Sure. It is still possible. He is not mathematically eliminated yet. But he has been falling behind not catching up.
After the New York primary, many hard core Bernie Sanders supporters were declaring the race far from over. Hillary Clinton only won 57.9% of the delegates they said, proving Bernie Sanders was still within striking distance. He was only down by 277 delegates.
And, of course, they referenced a few polls that show Bernie Sanders has a lead nationally.
But here is the thing. A national poll has virtually no meaning. He isn’t running against Hillary Clinton on a national level. He is running against Hillary Clinton in state primaries.
And winning anything less than a majority of the delegates puts Bernie Sanders further behind. There is no hocus pocus there. It’s simple math.
Currently, Hillary Clinton has 1632 pledged delegates and Bernie Sanders has 1299. These are regular delegates, not including pledged super delegates.
Looking at the state primaries that are left, there are 1016 “regular” delegates left. I’ve removed super delegates assuming that the winner of the majority of regular delegates will get the super delegates.
In order to win a majority of regular delegates, the winner needs 2023 regular delegates.
Hillary Clinton needs 391 delegates, or 38.5% of remaining delegates to secure the nomination. Bernie Sanders needs 724 or 72.3% or remaining delegates to secure the nomination. A few weeks ago, he needed around 55%. Those would be some monumental wins and, unfortunately for Bernie Sanders, that number is going in the wrong direction.
Just as important, are the results so far by Sanders. Of the primary contests he’s won, only four have topped 70%: Vermont at 100%; Utah at 81.8%; Alaska at 81.3%; and Idaho at 72%. So it seems virtually impossible that Bernie Sanders is going to win over 70% of remaining delegates.
So the math is definitely not in Bernie Sanders favor. For all practical purposes, the Democratic primary is over.
I’m still excited that he took the party in a more progressive direction. I was tired of the rightward drift forced by a Republican Party that has moved so far right, that Barry Goldwater would be a moderate!
I see Sanders staying in the election as a positive thing. He’s driving good dialogue and forcing Hillary Clinton to be more liberal. That’s good for the Democratic Party and good for the country.