Friday Question of the Day – Which Presidential Candidate do you support?

friday question
Photo by PoPville flickr user Pablo Raw

I know we have some vocal GOP supporters, please let us know who you support in the comments, but for today I’m interested in registered Democrat voters for the poll. I’m super curious about this because my friends are all over the place on this one and I’m dying to know where you guys stand – Hillary or Bernie?


198 Comment

  • Vermin Supreme 2016

  • Why is Deez Nuts not included in this poll?

    Also, of course Hillary is winning in DC….

  • well this will be a fun thread. Anyway, I’m unofficially team no one. I’m voting whoever gets the Democratoc nomination. However I’m voting Hilary in the primaries. While I’m not really feeling either candidate, I’m feeling Bernie less. And I’ve encountered too many Bernie Bro’s, which is coloring my opinion of him.

    • Policy positions > candidate’s supporter’s “vibe” if you ask me.

      • Agreed. Disliking a candidate for who they are/their positions is one thing. But all these people hung up on disliking a candidates supporters doesn’t make sense to me. (I don’t like middle-aged rich, white women very much, tbh, but I’d still vote for Hillary over a Republican if that’s what it came down to.)

      • phl2dc

        Uh yeah, you can’t hold someone responsible for their supporters acting like douchebags… Bernie himself said he’s not ok with Bernie Bros.

        • “Bernie Bros” is a media fiction spoon fed to journalists who can barely write their own articles without input directly from the campaigns. In exchange, they get a modicum of access. The talk about “Bernie Bros” is just as absurd and as offensive as if someone were to start writing about “Hillary Harpies.”
          PS – the most vocal Bernie supporters I personally know are nearly all women. At least in my circle of colleagues and friends.

          • What I believe is not media fiction is that age appears to be much more of a dividing line than gender.

          • The polling shows that Bernie wins younger demographics vs. Hillary scoring higher with older demographics. That said, I don’t think a lot of people have settled on a decision yet. Bernie’s numbers increase as respective primaries get closer. Frankly, I think a lot of more casual and swing voters are still not familiar with Bernie’s platform. Outside IA, NH, and DC, most people have not been paying attention.

    • I voted unsure because, if t looks for sure like Hilary is going to win the DC primary, I’ll vote for Bernie. I like that he’s pulling her left. But, I want Hilary to be the nominee, so if it’s up in the air, I’ll vote for her.

  • Independent, aka self-disenfranchised.

    • Me too. I consider registering every year, but frankly, I don’t want to officially align myself with the Democrats (or anyone else) and I most definitely don’t want to get on anyone’s mailing list. I read that if you don’t aggressively unsubscribe/ filter you get more than a dozen increasingly frantic and hyperbolic emails every day.

    • Just curious — question for Jojo, wdc, HaileUnlikely, and anyone else who’s left-leaning or centrist but not a registered Democrat:
      .
      Given that the mayoral election and ward councilmember elections generally get decided during the Democratic primary, don’t you feel like you’re missing out?
      .
      WDC: For what it’s worth, registering as a ______ won’t put you on anyone’s e-mail list. It might result in a flurry of snail-mail flyer things when there’s a hotly contested council election, but otherwise it won’t make a difference.

      • HaileUnlikely

        Yes, I do, and it does make me reconsider registering as a Dem from time to time. I am embarrassed to admit that I did not know that DC had a closed primary system until I showed up to vote for Fenty the year when Gray ended up ousting him.

      • More a matter of principle than pragmatism.

  • Clinton. I am not fervently against Bernie, but his tax plan is a tax hike on households making over 250k.

    When you account for the high cost of living in DC and the fact that student loan payments are not tax deductible (only interest is deductible and only if you make less than ~80k), a family making 250k is not a wealthy family (its about equivalent to two mid career government employees… certainly comfortable, but by no means wealthy considering other life expenses like childcare, college education, etc.).

    He also wants to tax capital gains and dividends at ordinary income rates for households with incomes over $250,000. Again, this is not a wealthy family in DC.

    I understand the concept that things like single payer healthcare and free state college tuition would presumably make up for the difference.. but color me skeptical on these ever happening. Not to mention that the bulk of college expenses for state schools are not actual tuition but rather living expenses and fees.

    I am glad however that both campaigns have embraced allowing those with student debt to refinance at lower rates. We have a ticking student debt bomb that will threaten to slow the macro economic outlook of our country by suppressing spending by the middle class once those millennials with huge debt burdens start having kids.

    • >a tax hike on households making over 250k.

      I suppose you are familiar with the graduated tax plan, in that a “tax hike on income over 250k” would only be on the monies made *above* 250k?

      So if you were making $250k exactly, your taxes actually would not go up at all.

      And if taxes were raised to 40% from 33% and your household made say, $400k, your total tax burden would only increase by about 2% instead of the full 7%.

      • It’s nuts how many educated, reasonably well-to-do people don’t understand how marginal tax rates work. Every year reporters find some dentist who claims he’ll stop working once he gets to $250K or whatever. Makes me wonder how just how rigorous dental school is.

        • It’s always been the joke among doctors that those who can’t cut it in medical school switch to the dental school after their first year.
          And this is something that people should learn in high school economics or civics class. It’s crazy to hear otherwise educated people spout off this idiocy.

          • I understand marginal tax rates. My point remains.

            My household income seems high, but then takes a major hit considering student loan debt. Imagine another 10% on top of taxes for 25 years…

          • SouthwestDC

            What high schools have economics or civics classes? Depending on your major you might not even encounter those courses in college.

    • Jerry Grundle

      ^ This is actually a very clear illustration of how many DC residents are less liberal than they think they are, at least fiscally.

      • ^ You nailed it. $250K annually “not wealthy?” Tell that to people making $12.50 per hour.

        • No kidding. I’ve lived here since 1980, have a good job and am paid well. But $250,000? Yikes! Who on earth makes that kind of money?

          • Pretty high for an individual, but I think it’s quite common for professional couples. Even in public service, two senior GS-15s could make that.

          • binpetworth

            (In response to sproc) Is it common for professional couples, though? I don’t know many GS-15s myself, and among couples I know where one is pulling six figures (and that’s usually in the low $100s), the other partner is often in a much lower paying job (nonprofit, yoga instructor, teacher, etc.). But my worldview could be limited, as I myself work in the nonprofit world and have never pulled in close to six figures, therefore my “professional” circle is not lawyers, etc.

          • @binpetworth: Perhaps not overwhelmingly common, but this is exactly the kind of area that attracts highly educated/professionally credentialed couples with high earning potential. Especially if they remain childless and work in fields with higher compensation, household gross income exceeding $250k mid-career seems unremarkable to me.

          • The city is full of people making more than 250k. Certainly couples making over 250 and I imagine over 400 isn’t uncommon.

            Senior associates can hit 250, lobbyists 2-3 yrs out of the admin or off the hill can hit 250, association execs, surgeons, etc. hell as someone noted gs14s and 15s make more than 125, so a family making 250 isn’t rare at all.

            That said, my household income is far in excess of 250, and I wouldn’t mind paying a couple pts higher on my marginal income over that threshold. I live quite comfortably. However, I think the carried interest loophole and cap gains deserves attention before the marginal rates.

          • Senior GS-15s are likely at a point in their lives that their student loans are paid off (or forgiven…thanks to loan forgiveness for working for the government) and probably own a house (tax deductions) and maybe have kids (more tax deductions) and are likely also in a place to contribute a lot to their TSP/IRAs/other 401ks (MORE tax deductions)…so I’m not buying it that senior GS-15s aren’t significantly more wealthy than, say, a couple who are both lawyers or doctors that just graduated from law/medical school with combined $300-500k in student loans. I think *that* is a better example of a not-actually-wealthy couple that officially makes $250k.

          • “Even in public service, two senior GS-15s could make that.” Yeah, but the numbers of GS-14 and GS-15 positions are pretty small compared to the numbers of GS-7 through GS-12ish (at least in the agencies I’ve worked in). A lot of positions max out at GS-12 or GS-13, and there is intense competition for the few jobs higher than that.
            .
            I’m not arguing that two senior GS-15s couldn’t make $250K combined. But I _am_ arguing that most federal employees aren’t GS-15s, so most fed/fed couples are going to be pulling in considerably less.

          • I’m a low-30s, unmarried, early level GS-15. I still have crazy student loans (1300/month). I would say most of my lawyer friends who are married are making a combined income over 250k, but still have loans. Also, most are mid-level GS-14s or GS-15s if they are in the government. So the idea that GS-15s are only older government employees is definitely not correct. Lawyers at big firms (start at 160k) are def. better off (financially) than a GS-15 (caps at 160k after 15-20 years).

          • Accountering

            About 308,000 federal employees took home more than $100,000 in salary in 2014, according to a partial database of pay information.

          • Anon lawyer — Hmm, that’s interesting. I wonder if maybe your agency has (proportionally) more GS-14s/15s, and/or if lawyers have a better shot of getting to GS-14/15 than other professions. (What GS level do laywers usually start at? I would hope it’s a high one, given the time and cost of law school.)
            .
            It’s just that in most offices I’ve been it, the org chart is very pyramid-like — there aren’t all that many spots near the top.

          • Most lawyers start at 11 or 12, but have promotion potential to 14 or 15. It really just depends on career ladder. Some agencies can give a grade per year (instead of steps).

          • Median household income in DC for 2015 was $90,000 a year and was one of the highest in the United States. $250,000 is absolutely wealthy.

        • The problem with this question (the one implicitly posed in the comment, not the PoP question) is the baseline definition of wealthy that each individual brings to the table. If your conception of wealthy is being able to purchase a home, fully fund retirement accounts, save for your kids’ college educations, take a couple of vacations a year, and eat out on a regular basis, this comment is ridiculous and tone deaf, bordering on abhorrent. If your definition of wealthy is a house in Spring Valley, luxurious vacations, and never really worrying about money, it’s reasonable. If your definition of wealthy is private jets and 8-9 figure trust funds, it’s spot on.

        • I usually equate “wealthy” with total capital accumulation (money on hand that would enable a person to live their lifestyles without working if they didn’t want to), i.e. homes are paid off and a few million in the bank. We’re mostly talking varying degrees of middle class.

          Your argument is really a race to the bottom:

          >$12.50 “not wealthy?” Tell that to people living in the streets, or say, in Bangledesh…

          • “Tell that to people living in the streets, or say, in Bangledesh…”
            .
            And that is completely irrelevant. It is not a race to the bottom. If you’re making enough to enable you to take care of your health, eat well, support a family, and afford some luxuries (vacation, cars, etc.) you are privileged — there is no doubt about that. I recommend that anyone who thinks otherwise to try living at poverty levels, on a minimum or even “living wage” income for a couple weeks. There are so many things that are just not financially feasible until you cross that ~$40,000-ish threshold (I believe we’ve had this discussion on PoPville before). $250,000 is well above what most people make.

          • Perhaps it’s a little more attenuated, but when you trot out the “wealthy by comparison” argument (“$250,000 is wealthy compared to someone making $12.50 per hour”) it’s a little disingenuous to immediately dismiss that same point when it’s turned around on you ($12.50 per hour is wealthy compared do [someone in far inferior circumstances].
            .
            “If you can actually have children, eat out periodically, pay for college (or pay off student loans), or go on a vacation one or twice a year, you are a hell of a lot better of than MANY people.”
            .
            This illustrates my point above. I don’t consider the circumstances described as wealthy – more middle to upper-middle class.

        • I completely agree. I can honestly say I have never personally known a family who has made over $250,000 anywhere I have lived. I certainly have never seen that kind of money. If you can actually have children, eat out periodically, pay for college (or pay off student loans), or go on a vacation one or twice a year, you are a hell of a lot better of than MANY people.

          • You probably do personally know someone making that much. DC is full of middle class people making well north of $250k. Any attorney in the city working for more than five or so years is bringing in that much.

          • Perhaps it’s an age thing – if I had to guess, I’d say more that 70% of the families I know have an HHI of more than $250,000. In many families, both partners make that. It may not be typical, but it’s not all that uncommon – do you have any idea how many lawyers and lobbyists there are in DC?

          • HaileUnlikely

            I think it is probably an age thing and social circles thing, as the social circles of a lawyer and, say, a social worker, tend to differ somewhat. I’m in my late 30’s, work for a non-profit, and live in a neighborhood that has not really been gentrified. I’d estimate the proportion of families I know with HHIs above $250K is probably about 5-10%. The only family I know who earns a *lot* more than that is the family of the guy who founded the company that I buy my electricity from. I suspect the only people my mother knows with HHIs over $250K are the doctors in the medical practice where she does medical transcription for roughly $30k/year, and she quite reasonably perceives the doctors as being extremely wealthy.

          • HaileUnlikely

            p.s. regarding social circles, I am confident that I know zero families in which both partners make $250K/year individually.

          • Maybe I don’t know enough families in DC….

          • I do know a few (as in, maybe three tops) families who make $250k combined, or individually. But I know far, far more who do not make this much. Also, I think that this is a real DC phenomenon, with the exception of a few other cities (San Fran, NYC… is that it?!) where it would be common.
            The fact is, living in DC, I think we get insulated from poverty and from middle America. I don’t make much by DC standards, but I am fully cognizant of the fact that all I have to do is go about 40 miles outside of the beltway to be making excellent money for a two-earner household.

          • “I am fully cognizant of the fact that all I have to do is go about 40 miles outside of the beltway to be making excellent money for a two-earner household.”
            .
            Sure – but could you find a job making the same money 40 miles outside the beltway? My house would be about 1/5 of the cost if I moved that far out, but my income would probably drop by about 2/3.

          • Nope; even moving to Baltimore, my salary would drop up to 20%. There’s a major difference between DC pay scale and even Baltimore pay scale. This is exactly why so many people chose to commute. However, there are some fields in which it would stay the same, but they are few and far between.

      • Never claimed to be super liberal. Certainly have a bit of self interest. When faced with candidates that are so similar on most policy areas, I’m going with the one that aligns more with what makes sense for me.

    • I’m pretty sure it’s $250,000 in AGI., not net Many households in that category actually make in the $300,000+ range. Especially in DC where local taxes and mortgage interest are relatively high.

      • My friends & I are all in the museum world, where $100,000 salary is a major deal. We’re lucky to hit $75,000 after years of work. But good to know that the lawyers and lobbyists are happyilly wondering around in their $250,000+ worlds.

        I’ll take the museum world & the $75,000 any day.

        • A $100,000 salary is a big deal in the engineering world too! My partner and I are mid-career tech professionals and we bring in about $150,000 annually, which is plenty even after spending $3,500 a month on mortgage.

          • Not to derail, but those numbers took me aback. Assuming a relatively equal distribution of income, that would be a little tight for my tastes. Do those numbers permit you to fully fund retirement accounts? Do you have children? (Sorry, I don’t mean to pry, but I am in the process of adjusting to a new budget, and I find it helpful/interesting how other people view spending and savings. Feel free to ignore my questions.)

          • What do you mean by fully funded? I put 13% in a 401k and I think my partner does 10%. We don’t have or want to have kids– I do think it would be challenging on our salaries unless we downgraded to a condo or something. But we have more than enough for hobbies, pets, a car, and a couple international trips a year.

          • To me, fully funded means maxing out each year, so $18,000 each.

          • Is that what you’re supposed to do? I’m only putting in half that much, but I’ve done retirement calculations and it seemed to be fine. Of course we have money in savings accounts too.

        • My boyfriend is 5 years into his career as an IP attorney. He loves his job and works extremely hard. I’m very glad you are so happy for the career path he has chosen. I’m also sure you’re even more happy to know he paid almost as much as I make in a year in taxes in 2015.

    • HaileUnlikely

      When factoring the question of “how will this policy affect me personally?” into whether or not to support it, I think it is fair to take into consideration that the city where we choose to live is a very atypical place with respect to cost of living and distribution of incomes. One can live large for considerably less than $250K per year in most of the rest of the country outside of a few very expensive cities on the coasts. To most of the rest of the country, that people have conversations like this in DC is evidence of how out of touch with the rest of the country the rich liberal elite in urban coastal cities are. This the same “I know its good for the country as a whole and for basically everyone who is less well off than I am, but it might set me back a little bit, so I won’t support it” thought process that the left always accuses the right of applying when opposing Obamacare and such.
      .
      On another note, at this end of the income distribution, we get lots of tax breaks that reduce our taxable income a whole lot. To be affect at all by a tax increase on incomes over $250K, one would have to either be grossing much more than that, not taking advantage of many available tax deductions (retirement contributions, savings for children’s education, mortgage interest deduction, charitable contributions, etc), or have most of those not apply (own house outright, no children thus no children’s educational expenses, no charitable contributions). And as “Tax Math” above notes, this would only affect taxes on your 250,001th dollar and beyond, not your first $250,000 dollars of income. To be materially impacted by a tax increase of the size proposed on income beyond $250K, you’d have to be earning a whole lot more than that AND probably doing your taxes wrong.

      • ” To most of the rest of the country, that people have conversations like this in DC is evidence of how out of touch with the rest of the country the rich liberal elite in urban coastal cities are.”
        .
        +100000 thank you for this point, I’m so glad to feel like I’m not alone sitting here with my eyes popping out of my head at this (my household income is way higher than I ever expected it to be, which would classify us as “wealthy” to our families back in the Midwest, but it’s nowhere near 250k!)

        • +1000 my eyes are also popping out of my head at comments on here this morning.

          • I know right? “Just because I make $250k doesn’t make me WEALTHY!” Well fine, but it does make you able to contribute another couple percent in taxes without feeling it.

        • +1 to what eggs said re. out-of-touch-ness.
          .
          And I agree with this too:
          “This the same ‘I know its good for the country as a whole and for basically everyone who is less well off than I am, but it might set me back a little bit, so I won’t support it’ thought process that the left always accuses the right of applying when opposing Obamacare and such.”

          • Agreed. We owe thousands of dollars in taxes this year (didn’t do additional withholding on our W-4s when we both switched jobs last year, our mistake) and when we were talking to Mr. Eggs’ mom, her response was “well you can thank all those people getting welfare and free healthcare and cell phones for that!” Our response was no, we do NOT mind our money going towards the public good and those programs, we just want it to be taken out of our paychecks correctly. As we make more, I certainly won’t mind contributing more, because we CAN afford it (even though we’re certainly not wealthy) and in my opinion, it’s up to those who can afford it to pay a bit more in for the general good.
            .
            Signed,
            not a Bernie supporter…just a person who cares about other people

          • I totally agree. My DH grew up very low-income and I’ve worked a lot with low-income individuals. Talk like this I find really disappointing. You are not middle class if you are making over $250K. It may feel that way because we live in a very expensive area–but I’m guessing the “middle class” struggles of the $250K+ subset are very very different than the middle class struggles of the real middle class. My spouse and I have a very good HHI–higher than we ever thought possible (certainly not $250K though), but it’s still difficult for us to own a house in such an expensive area. And we aren’t looking forward to eventual child care payments. But we have had a wonderful life in DC while paying off loans, actively saving for a house and putting a lot away into retirement. We owe taxes for the first time in DC, and we are fine with that. We constantly remind ourselves that we are well off because this city can really put you out of touch.

          • Eggs: Regarding “her response was ‘well you can thank all those people getting welfare and free healthcare and cell phones for that!'” — it’s more like “Well, you can thank all of those defense contractors getting cushy deals with DoD for that!”

        • You are comparing apple to oranges. What does a home cost where you come from in the midwest? What are the tax rates? What is the cost of living? What kind of student loans do these friends of yours in the midwest have? If I could take my salary and move to the middle of no where, I could live like a king. But I wouldn’t make what I make if I was there, so it’s a different scale.

          • HaileUnlikely

            What you said is true as far as you went with it, however, here is the part that got left out: the decrease in your cost of living if you moved to the midwest (just to continue with the example) would probably be equal to or larger than the decrease in your pay, so your standard of living would probably be roughly similar to or better than what it is here, despite lower pay (for some of us at the very high end of the income distribution that may not be the case – fewer openings for lobbyists, pay would probably drop more in both dollars and percent for a lawyer than for a teacher, etc). However, most in DC who b*tch and moan about not being able to afford a modest tax increase on income above $250K could live similarly well elsewhere at an income much lower than $250K, not be affected by such a tax increase, and without having lived ever lived in DC or NYC or San Fran, probably not even be able to comprehend how it can be that somebody could make upwards of $250K perceive themselves as just getting by.
            .
            To put it a different way, I think it is more harmful to the country that somebody making $250K in DC can’t empathize with the plight of somebody making $35K in the midwest than that somebody making $35K in the midwest can’t empathize with the plight of somebody making $250K in DC.

          • This has nothing to do with empathy. Looking at someone’s salary exclusively to determine wealth is foolish. There are a variety of factors that go into wealth beyond salary, so saying “my friends in the midwest think I am wealthy because I make $X” doesn’t add anything to the conversation. I am willing to bet there are plenty of people in DC who make less than me, but have more disposable income because they don’t have student loans. I agree that from an outsiders perspective people might not understand the differences of cost of living, but that is not what we are talking about.

          • HaileUnlikely

            I understand that wealth and income are fundamentally different things and that the word “wealthy” is being misused throughout this entire discussion. I’m not a pedant though and am not going to get sidetracked by that detail. This entire discussion is clearly really about income not wealth, as we’re talking about the implications of a tax on marginal *income* over a certain amout.
            .
            My point is that if one is in a situation in which one is earning $250K and would be materially impacted by a tax increase on marginal income beyond $250K, it is because of voluntary choices–which I am not judging you for–just pointing out the consequences of. Anybody making $250K here could move to lots of other places, earn maybe $100K-$150K (yes, big pay cut acknowledged), live basically the same lifestyle or better, and be waaay far below the threshold of being impacted by the tax increase aimed at marginal income above $250K. You choose not to, though, you choose to live here. That’s cool, I don’t have any beef with that. But you have to accept that one consequence of the decision to live in one of the most expensive cities on the planet is that despite living a modest lifestyle and not having a ton of disposable income, you are in the same tax bracket as somebody making the same amount of money in Toledo.

          • Actually, nonymous @11:30am, that IS what we’re talking about, because the comment I responded to Haile’s comment about “To most of the rest of the country, that people have conversations like this in DC is evidence of how out of touch with the rest of the country the rich liberal elite in urban coastal cities are.”
            .
            So yes, the topic of discussion on this small section of the comments is about the perception issue and not understanding the differences of cost of living, which makes us (I hate putting myself in this category but I suppose I belong there) look arrogant, out of touch, and greedy. Is that right or not? Depends on who you talk to. What we’re talking about is that perception and how it’s harmful.

          • Fun fact: I got my student loans from the Midwest! Six figures of em! So if I am in that category, I guarantee I’m not the only one. The only way I can afford to pay mine is by living in an area like this, because even though things are tight with cost of living here, I simply could not make a high enough income in the Midwest to afford my loan payments.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Finally, back to my original point, the fact that we residents of one of the most liberal and most expensive cities in the world are are having a serious debate about whether $250K is or is not a boatload of money is about as good of an example as I can think of as to how liberal elite has grown so far out of touch with the general population of the country that we are now in a situation where we actually have to wonder whether the democratic nominee can manage to beat a Donald Trump or a Ted Cruz in the general election.

          • When we talk about cost of living being high in DC, we’re mostly talking about housing. But if you own your house it’s part of your net worth, and a house in DC has probably increased significantly in value since you bought it. For example– I’ve owned my house for 5 years and have paid about $330k in closing costs and mortgage so far. I have about $550k left on my loan. But I could turn around and sell it for $1.1 million, so I’d still net around $200k from it.
            Of course this doesn’t apply to renters. But if your household is making $250k and plan on being here a few years there shouldn’t be anything stopping you from buying.

      • All good points. The income distribution in DC is probably the inverse of the Bell Curve (or something else that’s oddly shaped). Our local economy is out of wack, not only with the rest of the country but also between zip codes.

      • Cost of living and buying power should not factor into a definition of wealthy. Median income in this are is 109k for a family of four. If you pull 250k for a family of four that is more than double the median. I am sorry, but that is wealthy. Similarly, median net worth is under 100k in the US, if you have a net worth that is double that, then you are wealthy.
        .
        I get that DC is pricy, but because you choose to be house poor and send your children to private schools does not bring you back into the middle class. It means a lot of us in DC are wealthy.

    • If can’t see how 250k for a household is extremely wealthy then you’re delusional. Learn something about poverty in this country.

      • Accountering

        I don’t agree that 250k in HHI is extremely wealthy, and I consider myself a well educated, sensible person. Certainly not delusional. Thanks for painting people who are in different circumstances and with different viewpoints than yourself with such a broad brush though!

        • It’s not “extremely wealthy” but it’s certainly wealthy enough to be solidly upper-middle class [although I agree with everyone else here that DC is far more expensive and so that $250,000 doesn’t go as far].

      • If they both have 200k in loans, childcare costs, etc. it greatly reduces your spending power. Then you need to factor in high cost-of-living (rent/mortgage, food, etc.). They are not hurting for money, but they are not “extremely wealthy” either. DINKs making 250k with no loans, on the other hand, are probably pretty wealthy. Salary doesn’t tell the whole story.

      • I wouldn’t say it’s extremely wealthy (and if you look at my comments on this already, I’m not defending those who are do make that much by any means) but it’s certainly overly comfortable. Upper middle class. Extremely wealthy to me (and to many people I’d imagine) is at least seven figure income.

      • Not extremely wealthy… but wealthy, IMO.

    • Data from the 2014 American Community Survey at http://www.census.gov:
      12.8% of households in DC had $200,000 or more in annual income.
      19.7% of families in DC had $200,000 or more in annual income.
      33.3% of married-couple households in DC had $200,000 or more in annual income.
      .
      Unfortunately, there are no further thresholds in the data above $200,000. But even for married couple households, 66.7% make less than $200,000, and probably more than 70% make less than $250,000 and won’t be affected by this.

    • I don’t get this – even in DC, harrumphing that $250k is not a lot of money makes no sense to me. I suspect that people who make these kinds of comments are deciding to spend their money on more luxurious items (fancier cars, nicer clothes, dinners out), are purchasing a home in an affluent area of town, taking nice vacations etc. And then, they look around and think that they are not making enough money for this city. I am a lawyer, I make less than $250k, and I am married to someone who makes far less than I do. But, we are ok. We own a home. We can, more or less, do the things we want to do. We are incredibly fortunate. And, we are willing to pay more in taxes if it means that the tax money will go to the greater good for our fellow citizens – to improve infrastructure, educational opportunities, and health care resources. Maybe it’s not in my personal “self interest,” but I consider these kinds of programs to be investments in my country, which will pay dividends for all of us down the line.

      • “[E]ven in DC, harrumphing that $250k is not a lot of money makes no sense to me.” I feel similarly, maybe because I arrived in the D.C. area as a grad student with a stipend of $10,500 a year and my first job after grad school had a salary roughly equivalent to the GS-7 salary at the time.
        .
        I understand that the cost of living is higher now, thanks to rising rents and skyrocketing real estate prices, but still.
        .
        A co-worker in a previous federal job had come to that job straight from grad school… and yet was complaining that his GS-13 salary was so inadequate. To me, it didn’t compute.

        • If you’ve never had to live in this area off of a small amount, there’s no way of understanding.
          .
          I’d also say that if you’ve never had to (not wanted to for extra money, but HAD to) have more than one job at a time for more than a year at a time, you also likely don’t understand. (not aiming that at you textdoc, it’s a general you!)

      • Exactly. DC is full of wealthy people that choose to spend exorbitant amounts on small plates, skinny houses, and exclusive schools. Maybe they save very little doing this, but they should recognize they could live farther away, or in a worse neighborhood, or send their children to a more diverse school, and they would save a lot more.

    • Just gotta say that there aren’t many places where the folks making 250k+ and the folks making 45k can have a frank discussion about their perspectives, and that’s one of the things I appreciate about Popville. Hearing from both sides helps me keep perspective as the years go by.

    • n3 @ 9:27 Am – your income does not seem high, it is high. As for your student loan debt? That’s on you, 100%. It’s a luxury burden that YOU decided to take on. That’s like a VC guy complaining “yeah ” i make this much but the maserati payments kill my lifetsyle.

  • Bernie, though.

    Clinton will say whatever it takes to get elected. She’ll move left during the primaries, then right for the general. Pick someone who actually has a consistent ideology.

    • “I have more respect for a man who lets me know where he stands, even if he’s wrong, than the one who comes up like an angel and is nothing but a devil.”

      Can Sanders win? I doubt it.

      A Trump/Sanders race is fine with me, because neither one of them will get us involved in another stupid, useless, middle-eastern war.

      • Trump wouldn’t “get us involved in another … middle-eastern war.” I’m sorry, you must be talking about another Donald Trump.

      • Trump wouldn’t “get us involved in another … middle-eastern war.” I’m sorry, you must be talking about another Donald Trump.

      • A Trump-Sanders race is the case for a Bloomberg entrance. Who knows where that three way race would end up. But it’ll be Hillary on the Dem side since she already has something like 15% of what she needs in superdelegates alone. She was popularly trounced in NH and walked away with only one less delegate, when NH superdelegates who have endorsed a candidate are included.

        For my part, I’ll probably write in Obama. Not that it matters since my vote doesn’t count for anything here in DC.

        • I have to say, I would vote for Bloomberg in this instance.

          • HaileUnlikely

            I would strongly consider that as well, in the general election, if the republican nominee was Bush or Kasich. If the republican nominee is Trump, Cruz, or Rubio, I’m pretty terrified of Bloomberg entering, splitting the democratic vote, and giving us a President Trump, President Cruz, or President Rubio. But the risk of a President Bush or President Kasich is a risk that I can live with, and yeah, I’d strongly consider voting for Bloomberg over Sanders or Clinton.

          • HaileUnlikely

            this was intended to be a reply to Anonamom’s post immediately above mine

          • My comment was for Tinker Taylors above… something is wonky with the comments down here. But, to your point, Haile, I agree.

          • “If the republican nominee is Trump, Cruz, or Rubio, I’m pretty terrified of Bloomberg entering, splitting the democratic vote” — Me too. If primary voters keep voting for the more extreme Republican candidates (and if the Republican establishment doesn’t swoop in and do some kind of brokered nomination), I think Sanders could win — I think he’s electable against Trump and Cruz, and probably against Rubio. But if Bloomberg enters the race, that throws off the calculus completely.

          • Oops… my 11:16 post was supposed to be a response to HaileUnlikely’s post here:
            http://www.popville.com/2016/02/friday-question-of-the-day-which-presidential-candidate-do-you-support/#comment-1088658
            .
            Not sure why it’s not threading properly.

          • I like Bloomberg’s pragmatism on many domestic issues, but he’d get us sucked into more ME quagmires. He and J Street are peas in a pod. And, frankly, the guy is straight up racist. It will suck to be a person of color under a Bloomberg administration.

        • Au contraire — we all know how it will end. With a Republican President.

        • Accountering

          We know exactly where this would wind up – with a Republican president.

    • consistent ideology = trounced in the general. Ted Cruz has a consistent ideology and I hope he gets the nomination so the Dems win.

  • I’ll hold my nose and vote for Hillary. I don’t like her, but think she’s far more qualified than Bernie. I wish we had the Democratic equivalent of Kasich or Jeb Bush (without the dynasty). I’d really like a moderate Dem governor, but we’re stuck with Bernie or Hillary. Either are far, far, far better than someone like Rubio, Cruz, or Trump.

    • Ding! No more calls, folks, we have a winner.

    • HaileUnlikely

      Agreed. I am registered as an independent and thus don’t have to choose who to vote for in the primary, but if I were voting in the democratic primary, this is what I would do and the reason why I would do it.

    • Same here. I don’t especially like Hillary (or Bill). Policy-wise, I think she is too hawkish, and I’m more liberal than she is on domestic policy. Personality-wise, I think she and Bill are both extremely deceitful, and I find their naked greed really off-putting. That said, I think she’s whip-smart, highly competent, and battle-tested. I think she’ll be a pretty good president, and much better than the rest of the field.
      .
      I like Bernie’s policy ideas, but his path to actually implementing them is non-existent. His tax and spending plans are as hand-wavy and implausible as the republicans’, and there’s simply no way he gets something like single-payer through congress. His lack of foreign policy knowledge is downright dangerous. If we elect President Sanders we get a guy who doesn’t know what he’s doing internationally and is paralyzed by an obstructionist congress domestically. Where does that leave us?

      • Very well said, jcm

      • I guess i dont understand what you are talking about when you say the path to bernie’s policy is hampered by congress. Do you honestly think, HONESTLY, that Hilary CLINTON has political capital to push progressive policies through congress? A congress that is still fileld with people who voted to IMPEACH HER HUSBAND?

        You are nuts to think her policies have any better chance of passing then Bernie’s. This is a fiction created by the media. No matter what, if Dems dont retake the Senate, we will have another 4 years of a do nothing Congress and very little will get done. At least a Bernie presidency moves the goal posts and gives true progressive politics a wider reach. This is the beginning, not the end.

        • Exactly. No way Hillary is getting anything passed in Congress either.

        • Accountering

          The reason people are supporting Hillary is because she has a path to win a general election. I agree, neither has much chance of making huge progress, but a candidate who runs on “yes, we are going to raise taxes on the middle class” is not going to win a general election. Given that they will both accomplish identical things while in office, I am going with the one that has the better chance of actually getting in office.

        • it’s not necessarily that Hillary will get more passed in a Republican congress, it’s that she will be more competent on foreign policy, and will look like the more reasonable person when nothing gets accomplished by a congress that opposes her on anything (see, e.g. Obama, Barack). If she proposes moderate reforms and a Republican congress blocks them, she’ll get reelected in 2020. If Bernie proposes radical reforms and a Republican congress blocks them, he will lose reelection and the Republicans will gain seats.

      • Generally agreed with jcm here.

    • Since we have so many parents on this board who are very invested in their childrens’ educations, I’d recommend anyone willing to vote for Kasich to read this (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/answer-sheet/wp/2016/02/10/the-education-mess-in-ohio-under-gov-john-kasich/). Being from Ohio, I can’t advocate enough against him. I’m probably fairly biased, though, as many of my friends in Ohio are teachers who have personally felt like their jobs have been threatened by him over the past few years.

    • Sums up my sentiments exactly.

  • This 50-something woman is all about feeling the Bern. And getting tired of folks like Albright giving grief about it. Didn’t support Hillary in ’08 and don’t now. Send in Elizabeth Warren and it’s a whole different story. It’s not about guy vs. gal, it’s about the right gal.

    • Thank you!! This!

    • I really think she would’ve won the nomination…Hindsight is 20/20? But so many were already lukewarm towards Hillary to begin with so I’m surprised the DNC didn’t have more foresight. Unfortunately I’m not feeling the bern either. Warren would’ve done it for me for sure. I keep thinking of the West Wing in season 6 the last two episodes where there was no clear nominee and they moved to a brokered convention and then there was movement to draft a brand new candidate–maybe it should be #DraftWarren? Anyways, those episodes were fascinating and in general I’m wondering if the Republicans will end up with a brokered convention if things keep going with as many candidates as they have.

      • I don’t think Warren could win a general election. She’s attracted enough ire from the political right in her current (and previous) positions — they’d paint her as a dangerous, extreme lefty. (And a strident woman to boot.)

  • In a city full of policy wonks and political operatives it’s hard to see who would actually support Bernie. His policies are neither practical from a monetary stand point (i.e. You’d have to raise taxes a lot more to pay for everything to be budget neutral) or practical from a political standpoint (i.e. What majority of congress would ever vote for any of this, even watered down and severely compromised through sausage making). This is ignoring his electability against even the scariest of republicans. So I’m left with one conclusion, if elected bernie sanders will do nothing. If nominated, it’s hard to see him being elected. Not to mention, it would be a great message to send the world, and the haters occupying federal buildings and their ilk, that we elect a woman on the heels of a black guy.

    Been ready for Hillary since 2007.

    • And another thought, Bernie is attracting the same type of person that trump and Cruz are attracting. Those that are angry and think that complex problems can be addressed with easy answers. Why don’t we have single payer healthcare? Why can’t we keep Isis in a box? Why are our borders so porous and college so expensive? These are very complicated questions and the simplistic answers rooted in hate, jealousy, and scape goating isn’t the answer. Mexicans didn’t take your job and rich people aren’t keeping you from succeeding. It’s easy on the brain to blame things on easy fall guys, but the truth, and how to solve these problems, is far more complex.

      • This is fantastic point. Bernie says, “single payer health care” and legions of progressives swoon. Trump says “build a wall and deport all the illegals,” and those same progressives erupt with scorn.
        .
        Note – I am not saying they’re equivalent positions. Obviously. One is laudable, the other morally reprehensible. But they embody the same disregard for feasibility and practicality, and the attitudes of the supporters are different kinds of the same coin – “I like this position, so I’m going to completely disregard that it is impossible at this point in time, both politically and practically.”

        • Why is single payer healthcare impossible? They do it elsewhere in the world. I get that we have a very large population, but that means more people paying into it. Can people please explain why it is impossible? Repeating that over and over doesn’t make it true.

          • Quite simply, single payer isn’t going to happen here because you could only convince, at best, 50% of people that they want it. I mean, look at the shitshow over the ACA… The public option was basically a nonstarter in the deliberative body.

            Beyond that, it’s not a great idea from a policy perspective. We can do better. Single payer doesn’t magically make people thrilled with their healthcare. It also controls costs in a very inefficient manner.

            The point is, it sounds great but it’s a lot more complicated than Bernie makes it sound.

          • The plague of low expectations and cynicism.
            “If you will it, it is no dream.”

          • OK, I don’t think you understand the point of Sanders candidacy. He openly admits he probably won’t be able to implement his economic agenda, but wants to push the conversation forward and show that people want things like healthcare and education as a right, not a privilege. The ACA has a lot more problems than single payer, but it was lightyears ahead of what we had in this country. Pushing for single payer doesn’t mean tossing our progress out the window. I’m sorry, I just don’t accept “it’s too hard” as a reason not to push for it.

          • Why it’s impossible: (i) it will never pass the currently constituted House or Senate. The Democrats would have to control the house (with a significant pad to account for defections, and have a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate (again, with a pad for defections); (ii) Sanders’ fiscal estimates are wildly optimistic – the non-partisan scoring estimates I’ve seen indicate this would cost around $3 trillion dollars a year above any anticipated savings. That requires a large tax increase. Also, while single payer has worked elsewhere, the American ethos is different, and raises significant obstacles.
            .
            “Can people please explain why it is impossible? Repeating that over and over doesn’t make it true.” The irony, it burns. It’s the obligation of the proponent of a policy to explain how it is possible (with a little more detail than, “We’ll start a Revolution!”) Bernie hasn’t done that, at all (at least, using real numbers). So, please tell me – how’s he going to get it passed, and how’s he going to pay for it?

          • It’s not cynicism. Dems have few choices to get things done because of a terrible congressional map. Bernie wants to talk about great ideas and Hillary wants to do them. That’s the contrast and all the Bernie supporters put their finger on it when they say Bernie wants to change the conversation. We have been having the conversation for a long time and it takes incremental steps to get somewhere.

          • “OK, I don’t think you understand the point of Sanders candidacy. He openly admits he probably won’t be able to implement his economic agenda, but wants to push the conversation forward and show that people want things like healthcare and education as a right, not a privilege.”
            .
            That’s all well and good – and even serves a valuable function for the party and country – for a fringe candidate who has no chance of winning. (FWIW, this is precisely how I would describe the Huckabee and Graham candidacies – single issue candidates (God and foreign policy, respectively) who realistically have no chance at willing but want to advance a specific agenda.) But Bernie has moved beyond that. While he still has a very small chance at securing the nomination, he’s one off two candidates left, and he has outperformed HRC to date. So serious governing proposals and platforms are required at this point. We can’t afford a president whose entire agenda is a non-starter – the country needs to be governed. To think otherwise is to endorse the liberal equivalent of the House Freedom Caucus – advancing principle, at the cost of a functioning government. That’s ridiculous when the GOP does it, and equally ridiculous if democrats were to do it, notwithstanding that his/their motives are far more appealing.

          • Accountering

            More importantly, we are talking about a candidate with a platform, virtually all of which has a zero percent chance of actually being implemented if elected. Contrasted to another candidate with a much better chance in the general election, a general election that is SO SO important, to avoid a R president, R congress, and R supreme court. Can you imagine the type of Justice Ted Cruz would nominate (and would be quickly confirmed by a R Senate?!)

          • I hear a lot of false equivalence with the Republican Party. Bernie Sanders is not saying “Give us what we want, or nothing will get done.” He is not trying to hijack the country like the extremists on the other side. He’s saying we should be working towards these goals. Obviously, we are not going to get his plan passed in the next 4 years, and probably not 4 years after that. But guess what, having a President voted in that supports programs that will bring us closer to the rest of the civilized world, will effect local elections and garner more popular support. People will start seeing these things as a possibility, you know like Hillary Clinton used to. I don’t know about you, but I would like to see my children not have to worry about paying themselves out of health care or education debt in my lifetime.

          • A single-payer system would be great, but I don’t think you realize how much political power the health insurance industry has. Max Baucus — a Democrat — was closely allied with them and basically managed to kill the “public option” while it was still in committee.
            .
            The Affordable Care Act ended up being significantly watered down from what was originally envisioned. And even with that watered-down version, Republicans are up in arms about repealing it and many people oppose it without fully understanding it. I sort of feel like we were lucky to accomplish even that much, and thus single-payer is probably out of reach for the near future.

          • “I hear a lot of false equivalence with the Republican Party. Bernie Sanders is not saying ‘Give us what we want, or nothing will get done.'” I don’t think anyone here is alleging that he is, just saying that Republicans — particularly House Republicans — are going to do their best to stymie him from getting his proposals actually realized.

          • “OK, I don’t think you understand the point of Sanders candidacy.”
            .
            ?, I don’t think you understand the point of the election.

      • There are some similarities, but very large differences. The difference between Trump and Sanders is Trump chooses racism and anger. Sanders is actually using facts and living in the real world. The income inequality gap keeps growing over time and it’s because people naturally use their power (money) to keep themselves in power (more moneyful). He’s just saying that needs to stop. It’s not hate of the upper class, it’s a desire to prevent the US from becoming a country full of peasants.

        • Two thoughts here…one income inequality is growing, but from a historical perspective, we are still much improved than anytime in our history, except recent history… And a lot of the 70s and 80s weren’t great because of slow or no growth and a disappearing job base. So really the high point was the 50s and we are a lot better off on the whole than we were then because you know civil rights and equal rights and all that.

          Again, Bernie is promoting easy answers for a complex problem. Growing inequality can’t be made to go away by high tax rates, more government services, and increasing the minimum wage. At best, those are temporary band aids.

          We are in the nadir of a retooling of our economy. Once millennials hit their prime earning age, a lot of this gap will start to fade. Right now we have an aging blue collar class clustered in areas of the country that used to be booming. It takes a lot of time to absorb these changes.

          • I don’t know where you are getting your information, but everywhere I have seen, the gap has been rapidly growing since the Reagan administration. We are much higher now, than we ever have been.

          • American History didnt start in 1984. The growing gap is the result of a massive realignment of our economy and changes like this take a long time to shake out. Over human history, its happened basically once before, leading up to, during, and immediately after the industrial revolution. The working class gradually moved out of fields and the downstairs of Downton Abbey and into factories. The income inequality in the US between the civil war and ww II was SUBSTANTIALLY higher. People like Jay Gould and the Vanderbilts had enormous wealth. The compounds that they built for their own personal use makes what billionaires do today seem middle class.

            Bernie is selling false hope. Everyone cant be equally well off. There will be poor people and rich people. The idea is to make sure the poor people have a path to become rich and you cant do that by waving a magic wand and redistributing wealth over a 4 year time frame. It takes incremental change that keeps people healthy, allows them to become educated, and empowers their children to know that they can achieve more than their parents because the world is getting better.

            Trump and Bernie both are selling a version of current America that is nostalgic for a.) the time before mexicans or b.) when there was a chicken in every pot. They both want to convince you that the temporary pain you or someone around you is feeling is permanent and is someone else’s fault. They have easy answers to fix it and it involves scape goating someone who is different.

            But all this America is on the precipice of a great fall rhetoric from Bernie and Trump is based on a false narrative. America has never been a better place than it is right now. We can be better and in many ways we are trailing our peers in europe, but we are healthier, wealthier, more equal, and fairer than we ever have been before.

            That doesnt mean the work is done – but we’re a hell of a lot better off because of pragmatic people like LBJ, WJ Clinton, and Obama than we would be if America elected lofty minded idealists like Bernie.

  • Well, we in DC are not voting until June, so by then the complexion of the race will be very different. I expect that by that time Hillary will have already won the nomination, so that I can safely vote for Bernie as a protest vote to keep the Democrats honest in their progressiveness.

  • LisaT

    No contest. Jed Bartlet.

  • Frankly, I’m not overly excited about either candidate. I like many of Bernie’s ideas, but I don’t think there’s a snowball’s chance in hell they’d ever get passed in Congress. So that said, I’ll be voting for Hillary. I think she’s definitely qualified and has the political know-how to maneuver on the Hill. I agree with many, but not all, of her policy positions and I feel like she’d be more likely to get more of her agenda accomplished. When I think how’d I’d like my next President to represent the American people on the world stage, I’d rather see Hillary’s well-polished poise than Bernie’s “crazy uncle.”

  • The whole Bernie think strikes me as an act of reality denial equal to or exceeding supporting Trump. His foreign policy is non-existent and his domestic policy is based on rants and fantasy. The fact that he will be stomped in the general election, allowing the Ted Cruz Administration to literally destroy the American Dream through economic policy and Supreme Court appointments is also a consideration. The man is a pox.

    • Said more eloquently than I could manage. I completely agree.

    • Accountering

      I am just going to +1 this. This is VERY similar to the republicans whining after 2012 that they just need a more solid conservative if they want to win the presidency.

    • Cruz absolutely terrifies me…. just terrifying.

    • Except Bernie does better among Independents than Hillary does. If you want electability, you’re pointing the wrong way.

      • Bernie does better among independents until the second you start telling them what his policies are (I have a very good friend who does political data all day, every day) at which point his support collapses. Right now he’s the gruff uncle who will take on Wall Street. By November, he’d be the guy who wants to take away your doctor — remember that Obamacare is still under water. and raise your taxes substantially (both true, not Republican fantasies).

      • I was just looking at final vote totals for the Iowa and NH primaries today, and in both states turnout for the Dem primary was substantially down from 2008. So if all these people are feeling the Bern and ready to turn out to vote for Sanders and bring about that revolution, where in the hell are they?

    • I wouldn’t call him a pox, because I think his initial impulse to join the primary to force a conversation on income inequality was a good and necessary move. But he’s turned it into an actual campaign that can only end in flames and has the majority of his followers bragging about how they’ll gleefully burn down the party on the way out if they don’t get their way, so … I’d say he’s become pox-adjacent.

  • Accountering

    I am for a candidate who will win the general election, and prevent the republicans from controlling the Legislative and Executive branches, and then getting to appoint enough justices that they will have a stranglehold on the judicial branches for 30 years.
    .
    Does anyone think that they people appointed by Trump, or Kasich, or Bush to the supreme court will be any older than 50? People foolishly voting for Bernie today, will be rueing that decision for the next 30 years as they lose Supreme Court decision after Supreme Court decision, to say nothing of the destruction that a Republican president and congress could cause. This election is just WAY too important. I refuse to let the perfect be the enemy of the good, when the alternative is disaster. I support Hillary Clinton.

    • If you want a candidate that will win the general, Clinton is a bad choice for you. Her unfavorable ratings are through the roof. She is just a bad politician. She continually commits unforced error after unforced error that give endless ammunition to her opponents and cause people to dislike and/or distrust her (e.g., private server emails, Goldman Sachs pay days, all the way back to her derogatory comments about stay-at-home cookie-baking moms in the 90’s). How many times has she actually won an election? Once??

      • Accountering

        You’ve got to be kidding me. So I guess you are smarter than all of the pundits, pollsters, and money (people putting actual dollars on the line) because of an email server, and a few speeches to Goldman Sachs?!
        .
        Do you disagree that a Super Pac ad focusing on Bernie saying he will raise taxes on the middle class would work very… VERY well?

        • The problem for Clinton is there is no path to 50%. This does not mean she can’t win the electoral college, but lets not kid ourselves, she has about a 45-47% limit in terms of the popular vote. I think Clinton kills if a third party is involved (even a self funding Trump if he ultimately doesn’t get the nomination) but in a heads up, she is going to win/lose by such a close margin. I find it amazing that people think she’s a lock for the general. She is so loathed by the right, many independents, and democrats that I find it difficult to believe she can get people to the polls in a close race. We’ll see. Just for the record, I’m a single household making 55k a year and I consider myself pretty well off. I probably make more than my parents combined, take at least 1 or 2 vacations a year, go to multiple shows a month, go out to dinner once a week, don’t own a car, don’t plan to have kids, and don’t want a house, well, at least not in DC. Sanders has my vote.

          • You said it yourself – it’s the electoral college. 50%+ of the popular vote would be nice, but it’s window dressing. This election comes down to a half dozen, maybe 8 states, and about 200,000 votes in each of those states. People’s opinion of her electability is informed by past performance and trends in those states, and the numbers trends that make it difficult for Republicans to have a path to the White House. It’s just math.
            .
            But, you can’t just substitute Sanders in for Clinton in those states. Like it or not, his socialist, I want to raise your taxes mantra just won’t play in many of those states.
            .
            Now, I’ll freely admit that I have no flippin’ idea how it shakes out if it’s Trump v. Sanders. And that’s why I don’t want Bernie – moderate Republicans will defect from a Trump candidacy, and to a lesser extent, a Cruz candidacy, to Clinton, or at a minimum stay home. But that won’t defect to Sanders, and may not stay home.

        • I put very little faith in what pundits and pollsters say. Those kinds of DC insiders have their own conflicts and biases that aren’t hard to spot. (And I actually don’t think that most of them are particularly brilliant, so I guess we will have to disagree there too. For example, none of them predicted the rise of Trump at the time of his announcement.) Sounds like you were one of the people insisting that Dems needed to vote for Kerry in the primaries back in 2004 because he was so obviously the most electable. That turned out well, didn’t it?

          • That sounds a lot like the Romney campaign before the 2012 election – they didn’t believe the polls either, and were genuinely shocked when Mitt lost.
            .
            But, I repeat, the national numbers don’t matter. I’d love it if Bernie supporters could give me reasons he is more likely to with Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia, North Carolina, Colorado, and Nevada than HRC is.

          • I don’t know specifically which polls you’re referring to, but I’m sure you have seen the national polls showing Bernie doing better than Clinton head-to-head against Trump, no? Or do you not believe those polls? I haven’t been looking at state-specific hypothetical polling at the general election level (if there is any); I don’t think many people have at this point. One reason Bernie could win states that Clinton couldn’t is because a huge percentage of the population in many competitive states fundamentally dislikes Clinton. Those people are not ever going to be persuaded to vote for her.

          • Just to explain myself better: When I say I don’t have faith in DC insiders like pundits, I mean generally speaking. If there is a specific, objective piece of data they put forth (such as the results of a well executed poll), I am happy to take that into account.

      • This is absolutely, unequivocally true. (And something that gives me heartburn, for all the reasons that Accountering mentioned above.) And yet, she’s still more electable in the United States circa 2016 than Bernie.

        • Accountering

          All your points are correct, and she is certainly not a saint, but Bernie just cannot win a general. If this goes on much longer, I could see the republicans supporting Bernie in the primary, so they can face him in the general. Much like the democrats supported Akin in the Missouri primary, and that got McCaskill elected in the general.

          • I’m a Republican and I would love to Sanders run.

          • Accountering

            Thank you. You summed up in one sentence why supporting Sanders is a mistake IMO.

          • I think you are under-estimating Bernie. Democrats are saying the same thing about Cruz and Trump as Repubs are saying about Bernie. At the end of the day, Dems will vote Dem and Repubs will vote Repub. It comes down to independents, who I would guess are more likely to lean left (especially socially). The wrench with Bernie is if a third person enters and splits the vote. In a two-horse race, I think he could absolutely beat a far-right Repub.

          • I know at least two Rs in my office who have donated $50+ to Sanders’ campaign. It’s fascinating.

  • Clinton’s unfavorable rating continues to climb (52.8%) and she is considered untrustworthy by 60% of the voters, even less trustworthy then Donald Trump. When she campaigned against Obama there was near consensus she was unelectable. Her numbers have only gotten worse.

    http://elections.huffingtonpost.com/pollster/hillary-clinton-favorable-rating#!
    http://www.quinnipiac.edu/news-and-events/quinnipiac-university-poll/national/release-detail?ReleaseID=2299

  • I look at it like this: I like Bernie, I don’t feel the bern per se, but I like him. He’s passionate. Unfortunately, if he’s the President and we’re still under Republican control, none of what he’s talking about now will ever get passed. He has no clue about foreign policy, so basically why did we elect him? He’d just be another politician who over promised and under delivered. I think a lot of people are in love with the idea of healthcare for all and free colleges/universities, it’s an amazing idea. I’m more of a realist, this will never happen, at least not in our lifetime. So when Hillary squashes that notion and presents facts, she’s deemed a buzzkill. I don’t understand, I don’t think her intent is to shit on Bernie’s policies, rather she’s telling us to open our eyes and think about how unrealistic a lot of this is.
    Having said all that, Hillary isn’t the lesser of two evils. I think she’s the best candidate, she can run laps on him when it comes to foreign policy while he tries to get the discussion back to Wall Street and income inequality. There’s only so much “I didn’t vote for the Iraq War” that I could take before I start calling him Rubio-lite. There’s too much vagueness w/Bernie whereas Hillary at least puts a price tag on it like she did last night.
    I just hope people think about things realistically and not vote for Bernie because he’s not Hillary or because he’s going to make colleges free. The latter is incredibly hard to pull off.

  • How about adding an option for Dems like myself who plan to vote for neither Bernie or Hilary?

  • Re: the poll results so far

    It’s hard to see the peasants’ revolt from inside of the castle walls.

    • Please, after flip-flopping on the abortion for everybody platform, how could you even trust him? I was inspired by Kodos’s twirling, and will thus be voting for him.

  • As someone who self-identifies as a Socialist, I will be voting for Hilary. While I align more with Bernie, I do not think he is electable. I think that a Sanders-Trump race, or a Sanders-anyone Republican race for that matter, will equal a Sanders loss. The fact is, he is too divisive (as are the republicans IMO). Also, while I would LOVE to see some Socialism up in this country starting with Nationalized Health, the one thing ACA has shown us is that this will not occur without a groundswell of public opinion. The Revolution simply has to start from the bottom or it will fail. Unfortunately, I think a Sanders presidency will lead to four years of no movement whatsoever legislatively, more crazy ass right wingers doing crazy ass right wing shit, and I don’t want to even think about foreign policy.

    • I’m not a socialist, but I completely agree with your analysis. Not enough people agree with what Bernie wants to do. thats not a value judgment on his policies – its just a statement of fact. The America that needs to exist to do even 10% of what he wants just doesnt exist today.

  • Bottom line is you vote your conscious in the primary, and you vote your party in the general. Its unfortunate, but its true. I dont know any bernie supproters who wont vote for clinton in the general.

    Will say this… The Clinton Ambition is scary. They are House of Cards.

    • Ugh, I do. I’ve had more than one registered Democrat tell me that they would vote for Trump over Hillary. Its scares me.

      • That boggles the mind. How do you go from Bernie to Trump?

        • both are populists that in their own way are saying, “F the system!” Totally makes sense to me. I’d be tempted to vote for Trump over Hillary, not because I support him but I am really turned off by her tone deafness and her really poor judgement on SO many things. She and Bill created the modern day Dem party more or less, and I’m sick of it. I’m not the only one that feels that way either (hence Sanders doing so well so far). That being said, I’d choose Hillary over any other GOP candidate, since they all have also made a mess of their own party.

      • so these friends dont give a fuck, they just want to see the world burn. interesting. I hate on Hilary a lot, and think a lot of the troubles we have had in the last 10 years or so are directly related to Bill’s presidency, but let’s be real here.

  • I am torn. After watching last night’s debate, I am starting to “feel the Bern,” even though I’d initially dismissed Sanders as unelectable.
    .
    I like that he’s principled, that he’s calling out how industry/money/lobbyists semi-control the government, etc. And his supporters have the same fervor as Obama supporters in 2008 — people enthusiastic about a different kind of candidate who could really make a difference.
    .
    I voted for Hillary Clinton in 2008, because I thought Obama was too inexperienced and wouldn’t win in a general election. The more I see of Hillary Clinton in this campaign, though, the less impressed I am — she’s constantly realigning her positions to tell people what they want to hear (rather than changing her mind after serious reflection). She seems very slick.
    .
    I think it’s very important that the next president not be Trump, Cruz, or Rubio, and I want a Democratic candidate who’s electable. I’m starting to think that maybe I should support Sanders after all… but I’m torn as to whether I think he can actually win.

  • Neither candidate moves me. Might be the first time that I do not vote.

  • I will never forgive Clinton’s Iraq vote. I spent more than 2 years in Iraq and saw firsthand the misery she enabled. She made that vote because she wanted to look tough on foreign policy, she knew it was the wrong vote. She could have put her personal ambition aside, stood up and voiced her opposition to Bush and his war, but when it was time show real courage and stand up for what was right, she cast a craven vote for her own political career.

    • I totally agree. That was by far the most important foreign policy decision she has ever made, and she got it dead wrong. She has also been really wrong on Libya and Syria. There will undoubtedly be more bombs dropped on her watch than there would be on Bernie’s (or perhaps even Trump’s).

      • Not only did she get it wrong, she knew it was the wrong call. I have no doubt in my mind that she made some pathetic rationalization in her mind that she would vote yes on this measure because it was going to pass anyway and when she was in the Oval Office it wall would be for the greater good. I had a good friend who was killed by an IED in Iraq, his child had been born while he was deployed and he never got to hold her. That is just one piece of the collateral damage of her vote, one dead guy, one widow, one kid with out a dad; never mind the thousands upon thousands of Iraqis who had their lives made even worse by that war. Damn her.

  • anonymouse_dianne

    I liked Clinton in 2008 but liked Obama more. Why is Bernie have the only one with the chutzpah to run against her. Now I like Clinton even less. Not that its such a grave sin, but as a Fed we sign an oath about using Fed vs personal emails. Having her own person email server is just another example of her arrogance and sense of entitlement.

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