Meanwhile in his Wall Street Journal column Jason L. Riley explains how Bernie Sanders could become the Democratic presidential nominee:
Bernie Sanders significantly outraised his Democratic presidential rivals in the final three months of 2019. He is very much in the hunt for the first three contests of the primary season. He has run second, behind Joe Biden, in national polls for most of the past year and matches up better head-to-head against President Trump than either Elizabeth Warren or Pete Buttigieg. When Sanders supporters complain that the political press isn’t giving their guy the attention he deserves, they have a point.
Odds are that the Vermont senator won’t be the next president, but it isn’t out of the question. The RealClearPolitics polling average has him leading in Iowa and New Hampshire and less than a point out of second place in Nevada, the third contest. If he were to win a couple of these early races, he could lose the fourth in South Carolina, where he trails badly, and still have some momentum going into Super Tuesday on March 3.
How he could beat Joe Biden:
Right now, black voters are solidly behind Mr. Biden, not only because he was Barack Obama’s vice president but also because they believe he can beat Mr. Trump. Should Mr. Biden stumble, it’s anyone’s guess where they might turn.
How he could beat Elizabeth Warren:
When it comes to Ms. Warren, the issue for black voters may boil down to her character, and here Mr. Sanders has the advantage of sincerity and consistency. By contrast, Ms. Warren raised millions from wealthy people to run for office and now denounces others who do the same. She sent one of her two children to a private school but wants to limit the choices for low-income families who lack her resources. She spent her adulthood posing as a Native American to advance her career by taking advantage of policies designed to help racial minorities. Mr. Trump thinks this is a laugh line, but black voters might not find it so funny.
How he could beat Pete Buttigieg:
James Clyburn, a black congressman from South Carolina, told CNN in November that blacks are ambivalent about Mr. Buttigieg because he is openly gay and many older blacks still hold socially conservative views about homosexuality. “I know a lot of people my age who feel that way,” said the 79-year-old Democrat. “I’m not going to sit here and tell you otherwise. I think everybody knows that’s an issue.”
What he’s not taking into account is the Democratic leadership. You must understand that the entire primary system is set up so that the leadership casts the deciding vote and I am highly skeptical that they will allow Bernie Sanders to become the nominee for two reasons. The first is that was their modus operandi the last time around. Have things changed enough since 2016 that they won’t pull out all of the stops as they did then to prevent his becoming the Democratic nominee? I just don’t see it.
The second reason is that is would be an extremely risky move and I don’t see the leadership as risk-takers. Bernie Sanders is not a Democrat. Nominating him would be the equivalent of saying “we don’t really care whether you’re a Democrat or not” which has not been their view to date.