Are Democrats flirting with a 1972 repeat?

(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Mark Penn, a Democratic pollster writing an essay for The Hill newspaper, poses a serious question that Democrats need to take seriously.

Are they flirting with a re-run of an electoral disaster by nominating a “democratic socialist” to run for president of the United States?

Penn writes about Sen. Bernie Sanders, the current Democratic frontrunner for the party’s 2020 presidential nomination: Sanders is an avowed democratic socialist whose “free college” mantra has captured the party’s youth vote, despite his having turned 78 years old. For decades he has lectured against the problems of big banks, an economy that works for the few and the need for revolutionary change. It is odd — in a time of such great prosperity, low unemployment and rising wages — that his message would resonate.

Yikes, man!

He seems to suggest in his essay that Democrats could face a blowout similar to what befell them when they nominated Sen. George McGovern in 1972 to run against President Nixon. McGovern lost 49 of 50 states to Nixon. I was a college student at the time. I was dedicated to electing George McGovern to be president. I was deflated quickly after the first polls closed on Election Night 1972; the networks called it almost immediately.

I am not willing to believe Donald Trump is going to blow Sanders out the way Nixon pummeled McGovern. I fear, though, that the president would cruise to re-election, which is an outcome I sincerely do not want to happen.

If Democrats are sincere in their belief that their nominee must be the most electable person they can find, they surely can do better than to elect someone such as Sanders. He isn’t a Democrat; his Senate career has produced next to zero legislative accomplishment; he talks a good game but doesn’t deliver the goods in the form of responsible legislation.

Sure, Sanders is drawing big, boisterous crowds. So did Sen. McGovern. The 1972 crowds cheered themselves hoarse urging McGovern to go after President Nixon. He tried. He failed … badly.

Check out Penn’s essay here.

Then ask yourself, if you are as devoted to Donald Trump’s defeat as I am: Is this the candidate who can actually win this most consequential election?

One thought on “Are Democrats flirting with a 1972 repeat?”

  1. Sanders has captured the “something for nothing” bracket. Sadly, that groups seems to be growing. Like you said, he doesn’t have one real piece of legislation to him name. That’s extremely poor considering how long he’s been there. Even top members of the DNC came out and stated they stole the nomination from him last time. We’ll see how they do it again. They are trying already by changing the rules for Bloomberg. I wonder how much that rule change cost him?

    One of your readers wrote something the Democrats needing a great deal of money to beat Trump. That’s not actually true. Clinton spent considerably more than Trump in the last election. Trump was smart and got on TV through the media that was trying to bash him. But, instead of bashing, regular folks saw through it and he gained tremendous traction. The media is still playing the same game, except this time, Trump is gaining his own traction with more rallies than before and timing them to coincide where democratic candidates are campaigning. And, he’s getting larger audiences in comparison where realistically, he shouldn’t.

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