Bernie Sanders Hints He’s Not in It to Win It Anymore

Bernie Sanders Wipes Brow John Sommers II Getty
John Sommers II/Getty

Say it ‘aint so, Bernie!

The socialist senator from Vermont said in his concession speech last night that he is no longer seeking to win the Democratic nomination, but rather is just trying to bring enough delegates to the convention to have a say on various matters, like a potential $15 minimum wage.

Said Sanders:

The people in every state in this country should have the right to determine who they want as president and what the agenda of the Democratic Party should be. That’s why we are in this race until the last vote is cast. That is why this campaign is going to the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia with as many delegates as possible to fight for a progressive party platform that calls for a $15 an hour minimum wage, an end to our disastrous trade policies, a Medicare-for-all health care system, breaking up Wall Street financial institutions, ending fracking in our country, making public colleges and universities tuition free and passing a carbon tax so we can effectively address the planetary crisis of climate change.

Sanders lost badly to Hillary Clinton last night. Clinton won four states including Pennsylvania, with Sanders only picking up Rhode Island. Though Sanders galvanized young progressives (who he said in his speech were smarter than political experts thought), he was never really able to win black votes in the South or Hispanics. Thus, he did not pack the progressive plus racial punch that Barack Obama did in 2008.

Nevertheless, Bernie had his moment in the sun, and might have weakened Clinton on issues like Wall Street reform. It remains to be seen whether Sanders supporters will turn out for Hillary in the general. Here’s what I reported from New Hampshire when Sanders won his victory in that state’s primary in February:

Internet social justice warriors don’t respect campus legacies. They just wonder why “New Democrat” Bill Clinton signed the Defense of Marriage Act and didn’t do anything about mass black incarceration. An entire progressive movement happened while the Clintons were palling around with Goldman Sachs. And the new movement is hostile to anything in American culture that came before it.

The cultural Left is done with the Clintons. As evidenced by Sanders’ cameo opposite Larry David on the last Saturday Night Live, Bernie is the new Obama. Even Chelsea Clinton slipped up and referred to Bernie as “President Sanders.”

Cachet, at least in politics, can only be gained once. And even if the Clintons manage to win the delegate count against Bernie in the end, they’ve lost a commodity that can never, ever be returned.