A lot has been made about how Bernie Sanders’ coalition, built almost entirely out of people under 40, is the future of the Democratic party and quite possibly the country. Journalists and “journalists” across the political spectrum all seem to agree on one thing: Hillary Clinton may win this battle, but Bernie Sanders will almost certainly win the war.
There’s just one problem with this analysis: the whole scenario is conditional upon Hillary Clinton becoming the next President of the United States.
“Nonsense!” you cry. “A leftist America is inevitable! The old politics is dead, or at least will be soon!”
Well, consider this: the next president may well choose three or even four more Supreme Court justices. Have you seen what a right-wing court did to voting rights in the last few years? Now imagine if Donald Trump was picking the replacements for Antonin Scalia, Anthony Kennedy, Stephen Breyer, and Notorious RBG. Welcome to “swing” justice Samuel Alito, my friends. John Roberts would be considered part of the “liberal” wing.
Watch the entire Voting Rights Act be ruled unconstitutional, alongside the Civil Rights Act, National Voter Registration Act, Violence Against Women Act, Title IX, you name it. States will have the ability to restrict voting rights however they please. Poll taxes? Sure. ID laws that accept only NRA or AARP membership cards as valid forms of ID? Hey, whatever. States’ rights are paramount, man.
Am I being hyperbolic? I wouldn’t count on it. The Court was itching to strike down the entire VRA before Scalia died, and had already lined up cases that would allow them to basically end unionization forever. You think Sanders voters and their priorities are the future of the country? Not with a 7-2 conservative Supreme Court, they’re not. Watch millions of Democratic voters get mysteriously dropped from voting rolls without any hope of winning a lawsuit to reinstate their voting rights. Did you see that story about the post-ID-law closing of DMV’s in minority neighborhoods in Alabama? Expect a lot more of that.
But hey, at least after four to eight years of Donald Trump, the country will be ready for political revolution, right? Hahahahahahahaha, no.
By then, expect electoral votes to be allocated by congressional district nationwide, with the principle of One Person, One Vote out the window and no restrictions on how gerrymandered districts are allowed to be. Today, Republicans have total control (legislatures + governors) over 24 states’ governments – Democrats have total control over seven. Expect those numbers to be enshrined forevermore.
So look, if Sanders were actually winning the Democratic nomination (and I know some people have some pretty fanciful notions on that front), this article would be directed at intransigent Hillary supporters. But he’s not, he’s losing, and it’s his supporters who are threatening to vote Trump or third-party or write in Sanders’ name or spend voting day at home trying to build a time machine or whatever.
To those people, I say this: if you care about any liberal or left-wing cause at all, you cannot stand by and watch Donald Trump win. Vote for Sanders in the primary – it’s your right and your obligation to vote for the person you think would make the best president. But if you ever want your vote to count again, a Democrat must become the next President of the United States. And let’s face it, that Democrat is going to be Hillary Clinton.