‘Energizer Bernie’: Sanders Packs California Campaign Schedule

Bernie Sanders
The Associated Press

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders’s energetic presidential campaign is showing no signs of slowing down in the final days of the fight for the Democrat Party nomination.

Sanders announced a robust California schedule on Wednesday, with seven rallies scheduled between Thursday and Sunday. As the June 7 California primary approaches, he is charging towards the finish line, hoping to upset former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Clinton is certain to clinch the 2,383-delegate majority in California, but will have to rely on “superdelegates” — party insiders — to do so. A defeat in California would cast her as a weak nominee, and possibly prompt some superdelegates to reconsider. Sanders has caught her in the polls, and hopes to win by bringing new voters and independent voters to the polls.

Sanders’s schedule would be difficult for a forty-year-old to keep up with, let alone a seventy-four-year-old man. He will travel nearly four hundred miles all around Southern California in the course of the next several days. On Friday, he will be in Los Angeles for the Harbor Union Rally. Saturday, Sanders has are three rallies planned: one in Santa Barbara, the second in Santa Maria, and the third in Bakersfield. On Sunday, Sanders will speak at a rally in Fresno.

The contrast between Sanders’s schedule and Clinton’s more measured campaign is evokes questions about the the 68-year-old former Secretary of State’s heath. Her constant coughing fits and needing to rest for days after a major rally suggests that Bernie Sanders, at seventy-four, is the more vigorous of the two.

Even if Sanders does not win in California, he hopes to leave an impression of broad popular support that will help him exert maximum leverage over the party’s platform. Sanders’s appointees to the party’s platform committee intend to shift the Democrats even further left than they have moved under Obama.