Bernie and Hillary: A few thoughts

By Craig McDermott, crossposted from Random Musings

Hi everybody!  It’s been a while since I posted (work getting in the way) and an even longer while since I posted something that was pure commentary.

With the start of Democratic National Convention however, it’s time for some commentary.


To supporters of Bernie Sanders:

Don’t be asses.

Hillary Clinton won the primary.

Throwing a temper tantrum now, booing Hillary Clinton, booing Bernie Sanders himself after he pleaded with his supporters to support Clinton, isn’t going to change the results of the primary.

Look, we can support Clinton, or not, as our individual consciences dictate.

But, whatever we each decide for ourselves, it doesn’t help anyone to be asses about it.


To supporters of Hillary Clinton:

Let me be up front about it –

I am not Hillary Clinton’s biggest fan.

When I cast my vote for Sanders in the primary, I voted for the person I thought would do the best job of working for the people, *all* of the people of America.

I haven’t heard or seen any evidence that shows that criteria to be an incorrect one, or that my evaluation using that criteria was incorrect.

In short, I’m still a Bernie fan.


With that caveat/disclaimer out of the way, on to the “commentary” portion of the program.

As with the message for Sanders’ supporters, the message can be summarized thusly –


Don’t be asses.


Longer version:

Candidate Clinton’s biggest weakness is not her.

It’s not even her husband (he’s still great on the stump, though sometimes, his leash should be shorter).


It’s you.


There’s a certain arrogance in her camp.  A rather off-putting arrogance.

A big part of that arrogance is manifested in a “How DARE you?!?” attitude toward anyone who isn’t wholly and unthinkingly in the Clinton camp.

I’ve heard this from people, Hillary supporters, who I’ve known, liked, and respected for years.

Speaking personally, I do NOT respond well to “How DARE you?!?”.

Not even people that I have heretofore liked and respected.

In this, I don’t claim to speak for anyone else, but something tells me that I am not alone in this feeling.

Oh, and another thing that I don’t respond well to: “By not voting for Clinton, you’re voting for Trump”.

That’s just a modern version of “if you aren’t with us, you’re against us”.

Which was complete crap when George W. Bush said it.

It’s still complete crap.


Among Sanders’ supporters, there are people who will never vote for Clinton, no matter what.

Among Sanders’ supporters, there are people who will look at Trump and then cast their vote for the Democratic nominee, no matter what.

Among Sanders’ supporters, there are people (like me) who want to vote for Clinton, but can be pushed away.

While I will never vote for Trump (he’s evil) or Jill Stein or Gary Johnson (they’re ideologues who fail the “will work for the people of America” test), I *can* skip the race completely (I’ve already decided to skip the CD9 race in November).

And while one person not voting in the race won’t make a big difference in the race, thousands or hundreds of thousands skipping the race could definitely impact the race.


My recommendations:

Don’t gloat, don’t belittle Sanders supporters, don’t denigrate people whose opinions are different than yours.

Leave that to Republicans and other Trump supporters.



To the Clinton campaign (and her supporters):

Don’t *demand* the votes of Sanders’ supporters; *earn* them.  Failing that, at least ask for them (without the guilt trip stuff added in).

Give people a reason to vote *for* Hillary Clinton, not just reasons to vote *against* Donald Trump.

Surrogates like Elizabeth Warren (and wiseasses everywhere) can handle that chore (let’s face it, Trump’s main contribution to pop culture is a steady stream of punchline material.)

Caveat: Trump will, a couple of times, offer up something so despicable, so egregious, that the campaign should take notice and make a direct comment.  Pick those occasions wisely.



To everyone in both camps:

When you come across someone who is belittling one candidate or the other (or their respective supporters), when you are tempted to just classify them as a “Hillbot” or “Berniebro” and move on, ignore them.

Unless the vitriol is from someone you know personally.

Then ask them to do one of two things –

Explain, or pull their heads out of their asses.

8 thoughts on “Bernie and Hillary: A few thoughts”

  1. Dear Not Tom,

    Either you misread what I wrote, or you are deliberately misrepresenting it.

    I’m not trying to “bring everyone together”. That will happen, or not, as it will; my ability to influence that is admittedly very limited.

    I simply advised every Sanders supporter and Clinton supporter to act like an adult – not getting your way is not grounds for a temper tantrum, and getting your way is not grounds for a gloatfest.

    Dear everyone,

    There is a difference between advising, in a general way, people to not act like asses and pointing at specific people and telling them that they are acting like asses.

    I will do that last on the day when I think that it is called for, but today isn’t that day.



    • Sorry Craig, I may be getting punchy. For a year I’ve been lectured and/or advised on why I should be supporting Hillary over Bernie, like it’s a beauty pageant, sometimes in very insulting ways.

      It’s not about either “person”. It’s not about Bernie the person or Hillary the person, it’s about what they stand for, the issues.

      So anytime anyone even looks like they’re going to tell me to grow up and vote for Hillary, it’s an insult to my intelligence.

      When Hillary move about two more miles to the left I’ll be onboard.

      If I misread your post I apologize. I just won’t click on any more Hillary vs. Bernie posts and save us both some grief.

      And BTW, even if I disagree with one of you BforAZ folks, I still appreciate this site very much. Thank you.

      • No problem. For the record, I did and do support Bernie, and will NEVER tell anyone to “grow up” and vote for Hillary.

  2. I have a great deal of compassion for the Bernie Sander’s delegates who walked out of the convention and for those peacefully protesting outside the convention. These are people who believe in things that are essentially good, and they invested their time, money, hearts, minds, and souls trying to affect national politics and the future of this country. And they tried to work within the system.

    But they ran up against the political machine that was fully geared to promote their choice for a presidential nominee. They learned that politics is dirty business and not much else, and that political parties are often run by wretched little power seekers who intend to ride the coattails of their candidate into the White House. And they learned there is a seemingly infinite supply of party flunkies who line up for this task. They learned that the corrupt dealings within the party leadership are limited only by the imagination of the perpetrators.

    If Bernie Sander’s supporters choose to protest Hillary’s nomination, so be it. If they choose not to support Hillary, so be it. At this point they are just voters spread over 50 states.

    If I were advising those who want to win this election for Hillary, my advice would be to stop preaching. The convention will be over soon. That leaves you with three months to get out the vote.

    Start banging on doors in battleground states.

  3. The writer’s of this kind of crap want to be seen as the Adult in the Room who Brings Everyone Together.

    You are not the Great Uniter, no matter what your ego says, and in fact you are having the opposite effect. We are not all Happy Democrats, and we won’t be Happy Democrats until the Democratic Party stops acting like Republicans.

    Maybe next you could lecture the BLM folks on how to run their movement.

    Yeah, that how offensive this crap is.

    • The election is over for me, I know what I will do in November. I hope that the Democratic nominee’s supporters soon realize how ineffective all of this scolding is, because yes, it has become offensive.

  4. And I don’t respond well to being told I’m an ass, because I support Bernie Sanders. Mrs. Clinton’s win will always be tainted by DWS and the DNC’s behavior. Clinton and Obama had 26 debates. Clinton and Sanders had nine and she ducked out of a debate before CA. Several media outlets have reported the lack of coverage Sanders received. I changed my party registration after 45 yrs to NPP. Let me know when the DNC cleans house.

  5. iraq war vote for personel gain deal breaker. the constitution was designed to deal with fools like trump it is called impeachment. it has a harder time dealing with knaves. what if trump wins will take office before he is impeached? and a two for. clinton wing corporatists are discredited and hopefully run out of the party.

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