Yesterday N.Y. Times/”Upshot” columnists Nate Cohn and Toni Monkovic explained why those new polls showing Bernie Sanders doing much better against Donald Trump than Hillary Clinton should be regarded askance. One mitigating factor, Cohn points out, is that “Sanders supporters are a big reason Clinton is doing worse in her polling against Trump. The second is that Sanders hasn’t faced any major attacks on his record. The Republicans have cheered him on against Clinton, whom they realize they’re inevitably going to face. Clinton never really attacked him, either — no big negative television ad buys, for example — in no small part because she didn’t want to alienate his supporters.”
What Cohn and Monkovic fail to mention, of course, is this: while Sanders, who is essentially an FDR-style New Dealer, would be clobbered by Trump for being a “Communist” (an actual Trump description) who will make their lives miserable with higher taxes, Clinton, whose negatives are nearly as high as Trump’s, is going to be hammered just as brutally for all of her alleged transgressions (including, of course, the email thing, for which the FBI will probably not indict her).
We all know that a certain portion of the hazy-minded fence-sitters will probably lean against voting for her as a result of the Trump attacks. People without much education have always been malleable. Clearly this is not the greatest year for a secretive-minded, Wall Street-friendly politician with a checkered past to run for president.
The delegate arithmetic says Sanders can’t be nominated, of course, and he won’t be. But these recent polls are not just a snapshot. The general election is going to be a neck-and-neck battle between two intensely disliked candidates, and given the massive discontent out there and as horrifying as this sounds, Trump, whose irreverence has clearly struck a chord, could conceivably win. I’ll be voting for Hillary (what sane person would do otherwise?) but with my nose held and my fingers crossed. Cenk Uygur‘s assessment of the situation [above] is not wrong. We may indeed be headed for an iceberg.