I’m not trying to be hyperbolic, but I’m also not sure it’s an exaggeration to describe this week as the worst week for Democrats since election night 2016. The sheer number of defeats they’ve taken, from the Iowa caucus debacle, to Bernie Sanders’ surge, to Trump’s triumphant SOTU, to impeachment completely failing, it’s been a string of days everyone on the left would prefer to forget.
Well, things are on track to get a heck of a lot worse because, with Bernie’s victory in Iowa (and his coming one in New Hampshire), the second most likely outcome of the Democratic primary is now a brokered convention.
No one 27%
— Political Polls (@PpollingNumbers) February 5, 2020
Bernie being the favorite for the nomination is bad enough. That’s already left the Democratic establishment scrambling to sandbag him as they run around with their arms flailing in sheer panic. But a brokered convention would be much, much worse.
Why? Because it would be an almost certainty that Bernie would lead in delegates in that scenario despite not having the required 2015 needed. What happens then is a bunch of horse-trading and a situation where the DNC loses no matter what. If they honor the plurality winner and make Bernie the nominee, they now have a literal communist as their standard-bearer. That would be a nightmare for Democrats, although I would never underestimate Bernie’s ability to win the general (after 2016, no one should scoff at another candidate’s chances). But repercussions of his socialist ideology would be felt well down the ticket, likely costing Democrats those suburban districts they gained in 2018.
But the alternative might be even less desirable for the Democrat party. Let’s imagine that Biden and Buttigieg get to a brokered convention as the 2nd and 3rd place finishers. They could conceivably pool their delegates together and effectively “steal” the nomination out from under Bernie. Does anyone think Bernie voters are going to just shrug and unify behind a nominee who just pulled that kind of screw job on them? It would be total pandemonium and 1968 all over again.
Right now, the DNC is in full freak out mode and they have no way out. No one should feel sympathy for them, though. They made this bed, flirting with Bernie’s socialism for short term gain, and now they get to lie in it. Meanwhile, Republicans get to sit back and root for injuries.