UPDATE: According to Gallop, 42 percent of voters now identify themselves as Independent rather than affiliated with one of the two major political parties. Self-identified Democrats accounted for 29 percent of the electorate, and Republicans only 26 percent. And Bernie Sanders fares better than Clinton with Independents, and most polls show Sanders beating Trump by wider margins than Clinton (Sanders at 50.8% vs. Trump at 40.8% and Clinton at 47.3% vs. Trump at 41.0%)
But . . . New York’s strict closed-primary rules state that only registered Democrats can vote for Democratic presidential candidates, and only registered Republicans can vote for Republicans. So far in the primaries, Bernie Sanders has had more Independent voters that both Clinton and Trump COMBINED in State primaries that weren't closed to Independents.
Previous voters in New York had until October 9, 2015 to file a change-of-party deadline (the earliest in America.) New, previously unregistered voters had until March 25, 2016 to file registrations and could choose whichever party they wanted. That is bad news for Sanders and Trump in New York.
More than 3 million people — about 27 percent of the state’s voters — were registered outside the Republican and Democratic parties as of April. In a presidential campaign marked by popular non-establishment candidates and high independent voter turnout, those Independent voters could swing the primary results significantly.
So if Clinton were to win the Democratic nomination without Bernie's Independents in New York, they may not vote as Independent for Hillary in the general election, losing to Cruz or Trump.
Evidently, being a damn Socialist wasn't enough to destroy Bernie Sanders' honest and issue-oriented campaign, so the Clinton team is now digging deeper into their bag of dirty tricks to come up with a newer strategy, and possibly using some of the same tactics that she tried to use in the past to bring down Obama in 2008 (who said she lied in their debates).
The Clinton campaign is running out of patience with Bernie Sanders, because lately he keeps winning so damn much! According the Clinton's media team (CNN and MSNBC) this wasn't supposed to happen — while sometimes airing Trump's rallies but ignoring Sanders' — or only airing short sound bites. (Not long ago on Fox News, Megyn Ryan sat through an entire hour with a split screen waiting for Trump to show up at one of his rallies. Trump was running late, and probably on purpose for that very reason.)
At first, for several months, the Clinton campaign and their media accomplices had a simple "PLAN A" strategy: Speak politely (but condescendingly) of Bernie Sanders, but then ignore and dismiss him.
But that hasn't worked out very well. Bernie's enthusiastic crowds still remain huge at all his rallies (similar to Trump's, which are usually 10 times larger than Clinton's). And Bernie's fundraising has also out-performed Clinton's over the past three consecutive months. After Clinton locked up the Black votes in the South (in States that usually vote Republican in general elections), Bernie has been winning most of the remaining States. The Clinton campaign and their media arm (pundits like MSNBC's Joan Walsh) always criticize Bernie's campaign for doing so well with the White vote.
Clinton (if not remaining even), has declined in many polls — while Bernie's poll ratings have continually been on the rise ever since he first entered the race. And as more people get to know him better, his polls continue to rise — including favorability and honestly ratings (while Clinton's remain abysmal).
After Clinton's recent double-digit loss in Wisconsin, the Clinton campaign will now be going head-long into Bernie, right up and until the New York Primary. They will attack Bernie on several fronts, including on the issue of guns (such as on the gun bill that Bernie voted on that Clinton's husband had signed into law).
Hillary Clinton has already used the parents of the children killed at Sandy Hook as campaign props and weapons against her political opponent. And just as she's behaved in the past, there is no ploy she wouldn't use in her ruthless and hyper-ambitious quest for a third term in the White House (only this time, as president).
So now (as was reported on CNN) the Clinton campaign has been deploying a new "PLAN B" strategy against Bernie: "Disqualify him, defeat him, and unify the party later." And you can be sure to expect her media pals at MSNBC and CNN to be very willing allies. Already (if I had to guess, because I monitor both channels every day) their pro-Clinton pundits have outnumbered the pro-Bernie pundits by about 7 to 1.
But the biggest problem with the Clinton campaign's new strategy is, not disqualifying him (because that is laughable), but the part about "reuniting the party later", because it won't work. Even if Bernie were to lose the Democratic nomination in July (and if he didn't run as a third party candidate), Bernie could appeal to his supporters to back Hillary Clinton, but already 33% already say that under no circumstances would they vote for her.
And because Clinton has been so nasty and so deceitful in her very artful smears and innuendos — and so dishonest and cunning — that as the primary campaign progresses, more and more of Bernie's supporters will drop her as a second choice. I wouldn't be surprised if some become so disgusted with the whole election process, and feel so abandoned by the Democratic Party in general, that they may vote for Donald Trump out of spite (or just stay home and not vote at all).
Hillary Clinton is up to her old dirty tricks again, just like when her campaign attacked Obama in 2008, aiming to, in their words, "make him appear un-American" — as it was reported on NBC by Andrea Mitchell.
Clinton's campaign, after first saying they would have the votes to end the contest with Bernie Sanders in March, now find themselves in April having panic attacks. Having failed with "PLAN A", they are now looking at other desperate measures (because, evidently, winning just on the issues isn't enough). Hillary is now feverishly having to defend her adopted state of New York, which was originally seen as a guaranteed win for her. But no more.
She is also running low on money, which is forcing her to fly hopscotch around the country to hit big-dollar fund raisers from Wall Street brokers and super-rich celebrities to try and gather enough money to cover her decline in the poll numbers in New York State. (They would probably drop more if stories in the New York Daily News wouldn't slander Sanders.)
Panic has set in, demonstrated by — not only by her lashing out at a young Greenpeace activist when asked a simple question — but also by her leaving Wisconsin a week early to go back to New York in an attempt to defend her sinking poll numbers. The very idea of Clinton soundly defeating Bernie Sanders in his home state (where he, not her, was actually born and raised) is now looking very unlikely.
Clinton was even forced to have a debate before the New York Primary in order to try and shore up her flat-lining poll numbers; but even that may be too late, as momentum has clearly shifted to Sanders' side after winning nearly all of the recent primaries and caucuses by huge margins.
Now Clinton is saying that Bernie would be better than Trump or Cruz, which is a step up for Bernie (being a Socialist and all).
The last time Hillary Clinton had panicked in an election, she had invoked Bobby Kennedy's "assassination" in regards to Obama, and why she was remaining in the race through June — as reported by Keith Olbermann on MSNBC.
So one can only imagine what she might do now with her numbers slipping, and hit with sagging enthusiasm as New York state and national polls continue to show Bernie Sanders eating away her once-tremendous lead.
* The short video below has all the relevant media clips to all the comments referenced in this post.