Anyone who followed my blog and Facebook during the election season saw how frustrated I was with “Bernie Or Busters.” These people were risking a Trump presidency because they wanted the more pure candidate or an epic disaster. The reasoning never made sense and Trump ended up winning.
But it was always hard to really know how much of an impact these “Bernie or Busters” really had on the election. The rhetoric definitely hurt, but how many votes did it really impact? I was no fan of Jill Stein, but her supporters probably did not cost Hillary the election. Green Party voters often stay home instead of voting Democrat. However, Bernie ran as a Democrat and explicitly told his supporters to vote for Hillary because Trump would be a disaster.
I get that some Bernie voters didn’t like “the establishment” Hillary Clinton. I don’t agree with it, but I could see their unease with Hillary. However, it made NO SENSE TO VOTE FOR TRUMP INSTEAD. Bernie and Trump were essentially polar opposites on so many things except for “being against the establishment.” But importantly, Trump has definitely been pro-establishment. Anyone who thought the billionaire would go against the system that he has benefited from was sorely mistaken.
But some Bernie supporters still voted Trump. The question was exactly how many. Now we have the numbers of some estimates and it doesn’t look good. Up to 12% of Bernie supporters ended up voting for Trump. Even if half of that was true, it still would have easily been enough to cost Hillary the election.
Sanders -> Trump voters…Trump win margin…
— G Elliott Morris
The above Tweet is going on the Cooperative Congressional Election Study which suggests 12% of Bernie supporters voted for Trump. However, the RAND Presidential Election Panel Survey found that the figure could be closer to 6%. Even if we use the more conservative 6% number, the Bernie supporters who voted Trump would have been enough to swing each of those crucial states.
So there you have it. There was a considerable amount of Bernie supporters who ended up voting Trump. And it looks like this was enough to cost Hillary the election. Again, I have no idea how you can support Bernie Sanders, someone who was very much against Donald Trump, and then vote for Trump when Bernie was no longer an option. I guess those people were just unhappy with Hillary and wanted to watch the world burn. I hope they feel good about themselves as that is now our reality.