Some time ago I came to the conclusion that Donald Trump - actually any of the GOP contenders - would be so dangerous for the nation that I would support Hillary Clinton for the simple reason that I believed that she has the best chance of stopping the GOP candidate. It was a case of pragmatism over enthusiasm which all too often is what one must resort to. Thankfully, many progressives have come to this realization with Hillary Clinton's clinch of the Democrat nomination. That said, there remain some Sanders supporters who would rather refuse to back Clinton and endanger the nation - much like petulant children having a tantrum. The irony is that a Trump presidency would be an unmitigated disaster for the policies and programs they claim to support. A piece in Politico looks at the phenomenon. Here are highlights:
The Democratic convention that will nominate Hillary Clinton for president is just a week away, but you wouldn’t have known it at the annual Netroots Nation Conference this year.
The scene at the three-day conference was emblematic of the uneasy truce between Clinton and many of the pro-Bernie Sanders progressives who came for the training sessions and to sit in on panels featuring liberal luminaries like billionaire environmentalist Tom Steyer and Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin. There was little enthusiasm for the presumptive Democratic nominee, only a grim recognition of the need to join together to stop Donald Trump in November.
The lingering bitterness among many activists, candidates and elected officials who backed Sanders wasn’t far from the surface. But in more than a dozen interviews, nearly all of these progressives mentioned the urgency of defeating Trump. They’ll worry about Clinton later.
For most of them, the idea of sitting out the election wasn’t an option — a promising sign for Democrats who worried that many of Sanders’ supporters might not return to the party fold after the contentious primary.
“Trump is just so bad,” said Netroots Nation Executive Director Raven Brooks. “Everyone recognizes what a clear and present danger he is to the country, and then you look at what’s going on around us; the police are essentially executing black men right now. People just realize that there are more important things to do than fight over a couple of candidates.”
“Bottom line is I believe I can work with Hillary Clinton especially with the wide-awake movement that’s present,” said Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison, one of the first elected officials to support Sanders and an appointee to the DNC platform committee. “If we have these young people who are like ‘it’s not about the person, it is about the platform, it is about the issues,’ and if we can get some unity on the issues, then Clinton has to deal with the issues.”
Ellison, who now supports Clinton, also pointed to the prospect of the presumptive GOP nominee. “Trump is a danger to the republic,” he said.
“The feeling is that everyone is going to vote for her,” said Jim Dean, chairman of Democracy for America, who couldn’t go five feet at Netroots without running into an old pal or some friend from his brother Howard’s 2004 presidential campaign. “Some will work for her, while some will work for other candidates whose thinking they’re more comfortable with.”
Dean, whose organization gave Sanders a massive boost when it endorsed him last December, said he’ll vote for Clinton come November and he hopes the rank-and-file members of DFA do as well — because of Trump.
Greg Connor, a former Sanders volunteer, represents the worst case scenario for Clinton. Sitting outside the convention center, Connor was still wearing his Sanders for President shirt along with lime-green shorts and a backwards hat. Sanders may have endorsed Hillary but, in Connor’s view, he hasn’t conceded the race. The Democratic National Committee wronged the Vermont senator, the media kept him off the airwaves, and Clinton provokes a visceral sense of dread, because of her “deceit,” he said. So will he vote for the presumptive Democratic nominee? “No chance,” he said.
I will be blunt. In my view, Connor is an ass.