Michael Maiello's picture

    UPDATED Sanders Has No Business Debating Trump

    In Rolling Stone a wise friend wrote that one of Donald Trump's great weaknesses is his inability to back down from a fight. Because he's so predictable in that regard, Hillary Clinton will be able to employ numerous surrogates to attack Trump on the theory that he will find himself embroiled in fights with some or all of them. Trump's eagerness to debate Bernie Sanders in California seems evidence of that.  Why on Earth would Trump want to debate the guy who is not going to be the Democratic nominee for president?

    But Trump isn't a sucker here.  He has his reasons.  First, it plays on Hillary's refusal to have a pointless debate with Sanders, which is something he can harp on during the event.  Second, he knows that Sanders is going to attack Clinton during such a debate, not carry water for her.  He is very much trying to win California and I don't see him taking Hillary's side as polls their tighten.  If this happens, Clinton might well wish she were in the room to defend herself.  Third, Trump is hoping to diminish Clinton's standing by taking Sanders seriously. Fourth, I believe Trump might try to use this debate to highlight, of all things, areas of commonality with Sanders to see if his own anti-immigration and trade stances might peel off some of the independent support that Sanders would have were he to reach the general election.

    I don't think there's a way for Sanders to do this debate without helping Trump.  While it may look like the easily distracted Trump is tilting at the wrong windmill here, it's actually Sanders who is the one out of place.  Sanders will not be the party's nominee.  Trump will be the Republican nominees.  Sanders should not take it on himself to represent Democrats against Trump while he's still contesting states with Clinton.

    Unless Sanders is going to go all in for Hillary, he has no reason to be on a stage with Trump.  


    Trump backed out, issuing the following statement:

    Based on the fact that the Democratic nominating process is totally rigged and Crooked Hillary Clinton and Deborah Wasserman Schultz will not allow Bernie Sanders to win, and now that I am the presumptive Republican nominee, it seems inappropriate that I would debate the second place finisher.

    Trump got exactly what he wanted.  He called Clinton and the DNC corrupt while calling Sanders a loser. It was a big mistake for Sanders to have engaged Trump in the first place. With Trump I assume very little is planned and that he is just good on his feet, but it looks like Sanders wandered into a trap.



    Of course there is no way to 'do the debate without helping Trump' and damaging Hillary.

    Bernie has always been all about Bernie. I am afraid we would see that illuminated in bright lights if he was on the stage with Trump.

    The Bern is about The Bern.

    He might even glow in velvet gloved, golden Trump pandering of Bernie, about his democratic struggle for the little guy....against 'Wall Street, big money, can't be trusted, war monger, corrupt establishment Hillary'.

    Of course, Trump would politely agree, stating he has the same goals...yet...could do it.....of course....better.

    Bernie has been divisive and damaging to the Democratic Party, most recently with his appointments to the Democratic Platform Committee.

    Bernie is not a coalition builder, has no idea where this is all going, is not a 'leader of a revolution'. It seems he doesn't care as long as he gets a platform to broadcast his hot air.


    And Bernie got hit in the face.

    Sanders had the most to gain from this debate, especially in California, but even the hoopla without the debate may help him in that race. Clinton's refusal to debate as promised is the real story because it would only further increase her negatives possibly even more that skipping the embarrassment of a pointed Sanders' attack that she would have to directly respond to.

    I think it's wishful thinking to believe Clinton's surrogates/minions/quislings will have much effect on this contest. Her point-woman Warren has rated a few tweets and a dismissal as 'The Indian' and the others who will follow will probably be delegated to Trump surrogates such as Chris Christy.

    Why on Earth should Clinton debate somebody she has already beaten? She might as well debate Martin O'Malley.

    I think we can all see that Sanders is an egomaniac who will create havoc in the Democratic Party for his personal pleasure. He demands removal of two members of the Democratic Platform Committee through surrogates. He is willing to see Trump elected President to usher in his "revolution". Sanders is a man without honor willing to see others suffer to fulfill his ill-conceived "Progressive" paradise.

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