Monday, June 6, 2016

Can Bernie Win?

In a word, no.

Hillary’s got this baby pretty wrapped up. And it’s not just the super-delegate thing either. In fact, Hillary’s leading Bern in a number of different ways. Let’s take a look …

Delegates – No big surprise here. We all know that Hillary leads. The actual numbers are 1,812 to 1,521. That’s 54% of all committed delegates so far. Advantage: Hillary

Delegates minus super-delegates – We all probably also know that, if you take the super-delegates away, Hillary is no longer in front. And the numbers for that are 1,264 to 1,475, or just 46% for Clinton. Advantage: Bernie

Super-delegates – Well, it’s not too surprising that Hillary’s killing when it comes to these. In particular, it’s 548 to 46, 92% to 8%. Advantage: Hillary

So, I can certainly see why the Bernie supporters are upset. There are, however, a couple of other ways to look at this.

Popular vote – You’d think this would have to be in Bernie’s favor, right? Well, Clinton’s got a 3 million advantage. She’s leading 13 million to 10 million, or 57% to 43%. That’s the strongest plurality yet. Advantage: Hillary

Electoral college – Well, why don’t we just cut to the chase and see how these two would do if we did this the way they do the actual presidential election? As you probably know, that’s just winner-takes-all for each state. Once again, Hillary’s out in front, 319 to 133. That’s an even stronger plurality, at 71% (and 59% of all states whether they’ve held their primary or not). Advantage: Hillary

Number of states – Just for fun, let’s take a look at how many states each candidate has won. Off the top of my head, my guess would be that this is probably pretty close. Indeed, Hillary is still leading, but at a much more reasonable 55% (or, more specifically, 24 states to 20). Advantage: Hillary

And what those last two tell me is that all Bernie’s really been able to do is cherry-pick some of the smaller states that the Dems have carried easily (Vermont, Colorado, Hawaii) or haven’t had much luck in (Kansas, Nebraska, Utah).

Hillary’s the one who’s taken the big states that matter and that actually will be in play (Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York). She’s also done strongly in the South. Though the South's red tendencies may be too much to overcome, Clinton's popularity with African-Americans might cause at least some states (NC, FL, and VA perhaps) to break blue.