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What History Can Tell Us About Hardcore Bernie Sanders' Supporters

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | May 31, 2016 |

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | May 31, 2016 |

Name this Democratic Presidential candidate:

— Refused to bow out even after the outcome was all but certain, vowing instead to stay in the race to maintain leverage at the convention and allow supporters’ voices to be heard.

— Had a sizable lead among white, working class voters, but badly lost among African-American voters.

— In some polls, up to 50 percent of candidate’s supporters said they’d either refuse to vote for the winning Democrat, vote Republican, or not vote at all.

— National polls suggested the losing Democratic candidate would fare better against the Republican in the fall than the winning Democratic candidate

Sounds an awful lot like Bernie Sanders, doesn’t it?

It’s not. In fact, only 25 percent of Bernie supporters say they wouldn’t vote for Hillary Clinton in the fall’s general election, a much lower number than the HillaryOrBust voters of 2008.

The candidate described above is actually Hillary Clinton, who refused to drop out in 2008 despite an outcome that was all but certain. She vowed to stay in so the voice of her 18 million supporters would be heard at the Democratic convention. However, most of those voters were working-class white folks. Of those 18 million Hillary Clinton supporters, up to 50 percent said they would not vote for Obama in the fall’s general election. Though Obama was beating her handily in the Democratic race, Clinton actually fared better against John McCain than Obama, according to the polls in the late spring of 2008.

History is an ever-repeating cycle, especially when it comes to politics. This is why Democrats need not really worry about the Bernie or Bust crowd. Eighty-nine percent of Democrats ultimately voted for Barack Obama in 2008. Expect the same percentage of Democrats to vote for Hillary in the fall, or even more considering how much less palatable Donald Trump is than John McCain.

Of course, there’s one bombshell that has yet to be dropped: Trump is a shape-shifting lizard.

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.

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