Wednesday, June 8, 2016


If you have been getting your primary-season news from CNN and MSNBC, you may think that the results of the California Democratic Presidential primary -- Hillary winning big, 56.0% to 43.1%, with 69% of the vote counted, Hillary with 1,841,285 so far and Bernie with 1,416,742 -- are jarringly at odds with the polls, which had shown Hillary up by 2 points or even trailing Bernie slightly. If you have been getting your primary-season news from this blog, however, you know that in addition to those polls, other polls continued to show Hillary with a double-digit lead right up to the end. Not even I, however, have been able to answer the question of why the polls saying it was close in California got so much more news coverage than the ones predicting a blowout for Hillary.

Here are some more numbers: there are about 125 million households in the US. The great majority, 116 million, receive cable, satellite or telco TV -- pay TV, that is. More channels than just broadcast. Only about 36 1/2 million get HBO. That's because HBO is expensive. But talking heads on MSNBC and people writing for Mother Jones have been comparing the 2016 Presidential campaign to the HBO series "Game of Thrones" as if everyone got HBO and would know what they're talking about. That assumption seems rather elitist for media outlets which are supposedly progressive.

Hillary clinched the majority of pledged delegates last night in California. There are 4046 pledged delegates in the Democratic Presidential primary, 2023 is exactly half. CNN currently shows Hillary with 2168. More will be added to that total as late returns come in. Not enough to give Hillary 2383 pledged delegates, but close. 2383 pledged delegates for Hillary would mean that it was absolutely impossible for Bernie to take the nomination away from her even if he got every single one of the 719 superdelegates. It would mean that claims that Bernie could still win the nomination, that Hillary has not completely lead-pipe clinched it, had finally crossed that fine line between completely silly and no-excuses insane.

So, how is Bernie's campaign to win over the superdelegates going? It continues to go not good: CNN shows Hillary with 572 and Bernie with 47. Superdelegates Bernie has flipped so far? Holding at 0. (I keep hoping that more of Bernie's superdelegates will switch to Hillary, to help to give him that hint hint, nudge nudge, but apparently the number who have done so remains 1. But let's keep an eye on that, see if any of the 47 he currently has fly the coop.)

Number of Bernie's supporters, both journalists and Democratic politicians, calling on Bernie to concede and help to unify the Democratic Party? I don't have any raw numbers there, but the number is huge and growing very rapidly. The allusion to "Game of Thrones" in Mother Jones to which I alluded above compared Trump to the Winter King and Democratic unity to unity of the Kingdoms of the North. (Those are "Game of Thrones" things.)

Number of people who know Bernie personally who assure the public that Bernie will do the right thing, soon: very big. *shrug* Okay. They know him personally. I don't.

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