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These results are confusing... or are intentionally misread by some in the
Sanders camp. They can only be understood correctly by understanding that
the right wing of the party has four candidates and the "left" has two. On
the "left" are Sanders and Warren, although it's charitable to call Warren
on the left since she's beating a steady path to the center. On the right
are Biden, Buttigieg, Klobuchar and Bloomberg. When taken together, the
"left" wing has 39% and the right wing has 46%. If there were one single
candidate from each side (with Sanders representing the "left"), the right
wing would be in the clear lead.

It was also interesting to see the other results from this poll. They give
all candidates a clear lead over Trump, but they also give Trump a
favorability rating of 43% approval vs. 53% disapproval. A Gallup poll of
the last few days gave Trump a 49% approval rating vs. 50% disapproval. It
is not that unusual for the different polling companies to come up with
different results. Rasmussen, for example, consistently has results more
favorable to Trump than any of the other companies. We will have to see
what other polls say.

Finally, I am not at all certain whether in an actual election Sanders
would beat Trump that easily if at all. His Democratic rivals don't want to
really attack him because they will need his activist base if they are to
defeat Trump, and I get the feeling that the Trump campaign is largely
waiting in the tall grass to really go after him when (if) he wins the
nomination. Polls show there is about a 20% support for eliminating all
private health insurance companies and maybe about 30% in favor of giving
Medicare to undocumented immigrants. Does anybody think Trump won't ride
those horses to death in a general election should Trump become the
Democratic nominee?

Also, has Sanders ever come up with a concrete plan for how to pay for
Medicare for All, other than just to say that if other countries can afford
something similar, so can the US?

In addition, many analysts make a point that sounds pretty valid to me: As
this Quinnipiac poll shows (and as do all others), most voters say they are
economically better off today then they were a year ago. Yet it is exactly
the economic issue that is Sanders' main point. Sure, this plays well to
his youth base, whose economic future is still pretty bleak. But how about
the rest of the voters? How much will it appeal to them? Or put another
way: Can Sanders expand his active base much beyond its present one?

John Reimann

*“In politics, abstract terms conceal treachery.” *from "The Black
Jacobins" by C. L. R. James
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