Democratic National Committee drops the ball

Gaby Cedeno

When I cast my vote for Hillary Clinton, I wasn’t exactly over the moon about it. While some of my friends on Facebook were posting all these articles on why she was so great and typing #ImWithHer, I was thinking, why isn’t Sanders on the ballot? In my mind, he had a better chance of taking down Trump. 

Even though media outlets were boasting about Clinton’s lead over Trump in the polls up until the day of the election, I kind of figured it was too good to be true. There was just no way she would win in a landslide. 

A couple days before Election Day I came across a poll conducted by University of Southern California (USC) economist and expert on public opinion, Arie Kapteyn, in the Los Angeles Times predicting Trump’s victory. When I mentioned Kapteyn’s poll to a friend of mine, she told me it was wrong because FiveThirtyEight had Clinton winning by a landslide. A lot of my friends at Whittier College had complete faith in FiveThirtyEight’s election forecast. I didn’t. I couldn’t trust any of the polls to predict the outcome of the election because polls always have some kind of error. Turns out, I was right not to trust them because most of them ended up being wrong and Trump won.  

After the election, FiveThirtyEight writers Carl Bialik and Harry Enten explained why polls, including theirs, got it wrong. They stated, “Every poll has an error, some from statistical noise and some from factors more difficult to quantify, such as nonresponse bias.” 

What is nonresponse bias? It is when people do not to respond to polls for whatever reason. A week before the election, the Quaker Campus had a difficult time tracking down Trump supporters for an interview. Some of those we did track down requested to remain anonymous because they feared that they would be harassed for sharing their opinion. This is a problem thatmany people on the left side of the political spectrum have; they won’t listen to what the other side has to say. Sure, you can argue that the right is the same way, but in states like California, we have almost completely silenced the right, which explains why a lot of people were so surprised by this.

In a video following the election, UK News Reporter Jonathan Pie is caught getting ready to report the news, when suddenly he goes on a rant about the left. “F*cking Donald Trump,” he says angrily to the cameraman recording him. “The left is responsible for this result. Because the left have now decided that any other opinion, any other way of looking at the world is unacceptable … So, now if you’re on the right or even against the prevailing view, you are attacked for raising your opinion. That’s why people wait until they are in the voting booth.”

If Democrats were really smart, they would have nominated Senator Bernie Sanders because, unlike Clinton, he had brought new ideas to the table. Even Pie says at the beginning of his rant, “Where was Sanders? Why wasn’t he on the ticket? I have no doubt in my mind that Sanders would have beat Trump hands down.” 

Not choosing Sanders as the Democratic nominee is one of the biggest mistakes the DNC made this election. For me, and many other people, Sanders was the guy we voted for in the primaries. He was the guy we wanted to see on the ballot for the Presidential Election.The only reason I voted for Clinton was because I was scared of Trump. I think that’s why a lot of people voted for her, actually. Most of the people I know wanted Sanders. 

Even though we don’t know whether or not Sanders could have actually beat Trump, he sure as heck had a better shot at winning the election than Clinton did. Why? Well, because Clinton is everything that Americans are sick of. Choosing Clinton to be the nominee was an awful mistake. Sure, she had experience as a politician and was more qualified than Trump, but most of the public cannot stand her, to the point where they would rather have someone like Trump as President. 

Sanders wanted to make a better world for all of us, regardless of who we were voting for whereas Clinton insulted Trump supporters. At a fundraiser Clinton said, “To just be grossly generalistic, you can put half of Trump supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. Right? Racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic, you name it.” 

I understand she was trying to call out bigotry in Trump’s campaign, but to call half of them racist or sexist is just awful. In his rant, Pie addresses this problem about Clinton. He says, “We don’t debate anymore because the left have won the cultural war. So if you’re on the right, you’re a freak; you’re evil; you’re racist; you’re stupid; you are a ‘basket of deplorables’. How do you think people are going to vote when you talk to them like that? When has anyone been persuaded by being insulted or labeled?” 

A lot of Trump supporters are just as fed up with the political system as the rest of us, which is something that Sanders understood and Clinton failed to see. Just days before the election, Sanders took to Twitter to stand up for Trump supporters and try to explain where he thought they were coming from. “I do not believe that most of the people who are thinking about voting for Mr. Trump are racist or sexist,” he tweeted. “Some are, but I think most are people who are hurting, they’re worried about their kids, they’re working longer hours for lower wages.”

After being asked by several members of the DNC why people think Clinton is corrupt, host of the online news show, The Young Turks, Cenk Uygur made an episode explaining why people believe Clinton is crooked. “Even though she might not be the most corrupt, she is a symbol of that corruption,” he explains. “She’s a living embodiment of the establishment, the status quo, this system that the whole country believes has been corrupted. Over 90 percent of Americans believe money corrupts politics … [The Clintons] have taken the most amount of money. $3 billion.” Sanders, on the other hand, was able to find the money he needed without selling out.  

Of all the candidates in the final stretch of this election, Clinton had raised the most money. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, the total amount of outside money she received, that is — money from groups supporting her, was $189,453,103. Not even Trump accepted that much money. The amount of outside money he received totaled $59,389,531. In the public’s eye, the amount of donations Clinton accepted was absurd, especially considering the amount of wealth she already has.  

The worst part is that everyone was so sure that Clinton was going to save us from Trump. Most people could not wrap their head around the idea of Trump winning. It just seemed impossible, but given Clinton’s track record, how could we have been so sure she would win? Yes, Trump had a lot of scandals unveiled during his campaign, but Clinton was already a disliked figure in the public eye. It wasn’t just her emails that destroyed her, it was the money she had from banks and corporations that made her appear greedy; it was the fact that she admitted to being two-faced. That’s right, she did. 

In a 2013 speech to the National Multifamily Housing Council, Clinton is on record saying, “Politics is like sausage being made. It is unsavory, and it always has been that way, but we usually end up where we need to be. But if everybody’s watching all of the back-room discussions and the deals, then people get a little nervous, to say the least. So you need both a public and a private position.” How can you expect everyone to vote for someone who admits to lying to the public? Choosing the lesser of two evils was hard this election. Both candidates were awful. Sanders probably had a far better chance than Clinton. 

“Here’s how many scandals Bernie Sanders had, zero,” Host of Secular Talk Radio Kyle Kulinski said. “Here’s how many people Bernie Sanders would have taken away from Donald Trump; all the people that are voting solely based on NAFTA (North America Trade Agreement), TPP (Trans-Pacific Trade), were against the corruption. The main argument that actually resonated that Donald Trump made against Hillary Clinton was, ‘oh, TPP; oh, NAFTA; oh, you’re corrupt; oh, you’re an ultimate insider.’ You can’t make those arguments against Bernie Sanders. They don’t work.” 

What was the DNC thinking? Well, though they won’t admit it, there has been speculations that perhaps the DNC chose Clinton because she promised them that they would be a part of her team once she took over the White House. “Do you think all those guys in the building are dumb? They’re not,” Uygur explains. “It’s self-interest. They think, ‘Well, if Bernie Sanders won, he wouldn’t give me the job that Hillary Clinton was going to give me in her administration … Bernie Sanders is going to want to put progressives in there …’ To them, Bernie was the enemy … They think, ‘I want a job … after I’m done with the government job, I want a lobbyist job that pays me even better ... ‘Bernie Sanders and the real progressives would up end that system … ”

What we needed was a populist progressive candidate, but the self-interest of those at the DNC messed everything up. “[The DNC] pushed a candidate that was deeply flawed,”  co-host of the online news show The Ring of Fire, Farron Cousins said with a look of utter disappointment. “She had more skeletons in her closet than a horror movie and couldn’t beat — Again! And I’m going to say this a thousand times! Couldn’t beat the least popular candidate in American history. That’s pathetic, Democratic National Committee. ‘Cause you are pathetic. Clean house.”  

Not only did the DNC lose the White House, but they lost the House of Representatives and the Senate. That is a huge blow to the Democratic party and I agree with Cousins, the DNC needs to clean house and restructure itself. 

I am so frustrated with the DNC; they have completely screwed us over. Even though I don’t like the fact that people threw their votes away on the Third Party candidates, I couldn’t blame them. Yes, it could have been a game changer had they voted for Clinton, but you should vote for someone whose views are aligned with yours. Thanks for nothing, DNC. I hope that you’ll get it together by 2020.