A new poll by Yahoo News / YouGov shows that Senator Bernie Sanders would defeat each of the other Democratic presidential candidates in a single race – in many cases with double-digit profit margins.
Sanders won the most votes in Iowa and New Hampshire and is now leading in national polls. The mainstream Democrats, however, seem to think that the Vermont democratic socialist is a weak leader who would be easy to send if only the rest of the party stopped dividing his vote among several candidates and a single, more moderate one Alternative to consolidate.
The Yahoo News / YouGov poll suggests they may be wrong.
In a series of hypothetical head-to-head encounters, Sanders was 15 points ahead of former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg (53 to 38 percent). ahead of former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg by 17 points (54 to 37 percent); and 21 points ahead of Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar (54 to 33 percent). Sander’s closest competitors were former Vice President Joe Biden, who left him 4 points (48 to 44 percent) behind, and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, who left him 2 points (44 to 42 percent) behind.
Of course, the democratic area code is not a two-way race. Eight candidates are still fighting for the nomination and splitting the votes in a complex way. But the upcoming primaries are likely to take the field, and the poll shows that if there were only two candidates left, more Democrats would side with Sanders than anyone else – no matter who his last remaining rival was.
This runs counter to conventional wisdom about democratic competition, which has long said that Sanders is a faction candidate with a low support ceiling and that most primary democratic voters would prefer a more moderate candidate. In fact, the three moderates that have recently risen in the polls – Bloomberg, Buttigieg, and Klobuchar – performed worst in the Yahoo News / YouGov poll.
Bloomberg, who interrupted the early primaries and rallies while campaigning heavily in the larger states scheduled to vote on Super Tuesday (March 3), was by far the weakest individual artist and lost to any of his other top Democrats rivals with a clear lead: Warren with 14 points, Biden with 13 points, Buttigieg with 7 points and Klobuchar with 5 points. If Bloomberg’s plan is to wait in the starting blocks for who will survive the early states – and then be forgotten about its only remaining rival with its $ 60 billion fortune – it could go into shock.
Despite early successes in Iowa and New Hampshire, Buttigieg and Klobuchar wouldn’t do much better in a one-on-one competition. Bloomberg is the only candidate Buttigieg would beat; Otherwise he would lose 3 points against Biden, 12 points for Klobuchar and 14 points for Warren. Klobuchar would displace Biden by 1 point, but Warren would beat her by 19 points.
In addition to Sanders, Warren would be the toughest individual artist. The only other candidate who comes from her within 10 percentage points is Biden, who leaves her 8 points behind. Given the ideological intersection of Warren and Sanders – they are the most advanced candidates in the race – this further implies that primary democratic voters are not necessarily in the moderation market.
However, the survey isn’t just good news for Sanders. Many progressives seem to believe that the Vermont senator would defeat Donald Trump if only the democratic establishment avoided him and gave him the party’s presidential candidacy.
Nevertheless, there can be problems. 62 percent of Americans – and nearly identical 61 percent of the independents – say Sanders is a “socialist”. Only a quarter of Americans (26 percent) view socialism as positive, while almost half (47 percent) have an unfavorable opinion.
Sanders describes himself as a democratic socialist and formulates his agenda – Medicare for All, free public university, Green New Deal – as a continuation of liberalism in the FDR style.
However, voters do not necessarily understand the distinction between socialism and democratic socialism. When asked whether the two ideologies are the same or different, 38 percent of Americans said “same” and 38 percent “different”. Another 24 percent said they were unsure.
Regardless, only 35 percent of Americans said they would even consider voting in a general election for a candidate who describes himself as a “democratic socialist.” 46 percent said no, another 18 percent said they were unsure. Among the independents, these figures were even more unfavorable for Sanders: 31 percent yes, 47 percent no and 22 percent not sure. In the meantime, most Americans (52 percent) said that only “some” or “some” of their colleagues would consider voting for a democratic socialist.
No other candidate characteristic in the survey seemed to have such a strong negative impact on eligibility. 60 percent of Americans said they would consider voting for a gay candidate (like Buttigieg). Sixty-seven percent said they were considering voting for a billionaire (like Bloomberg and Tom Steyer and Trump on their own word). 54 percent said they would consider voting for a candidate with no previous experience in the national government (such as Buttigieg, Bloomberg, and Steyer). Forty-seven percent said they would consider voting for a candidate over 75 (like Sanders, Biden, and Bloomberg). 64 percent said they would consider voting for a candidate under 40 (like Buttigieg). Eighty-three percent said they would consider voting for a woman (like Warren and Klobuchar). 84 percent said they would consider voting for a Jewish candidate (like Sanders and Bloomberg). And 44 percent said they would vote for a Muslim candidate (there is none this year) – nearly 10 points more than the number who said they would vote for a democratic socialist.
At the moment, Sanders Trump beats head-to-head and beats almost as moderate moderates like Biden and Bloomberg. So if Sanders wins the Democratic nomination, it remains to be seen whether Trump and his republican allies can defeat him by exploiting America’s ambivalence towards democratic socialism. You will definitely try it.
Meanwhile, the Yahoo News / YouGov poll shows a dilemma at the heart of the democratic primary school. Sanders appears to be in the strongest position when it comes to the struggle for nomination. But he could start the November general election with greater weakness than any of his rivals.
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