Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders won in the primaries in Michigan on Tuesday, and since then he has been vocal about how the victory is proof that he has what it takes to become the party’s nominee.
Speaking at a debate in Miami on Wednesday, Sanders claimed that his win in Michigan can be considered as “one of the major political upsets in modern American history.”
The senator also pointed out that the Michigan win was not reflected by recent polls in the state, which makes it even more surprising. In those polls, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton led by double digits.
Bernie Sanders has a lot of momentum — and a lot of $$$$ — following his upset win in Michiganhttps://t.co/kSgHNE05Q4
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) March 10, 2016
Sanders also said that his win in Michigan could potentially change the minds of super delegates who have sided with Clinton. Currently, Sanders trails Clinton by a huge margin in delegates: 1,223 to 574.
Sanders’ campaign is definitely hyped up with the narrow win, and the candidate already told his supporters that there is a possibility that he will win the nomination. He also said that he is used to climbing “steep hills.”
“Stay tuned. I think we are going to go further and we have a good chance to pull off the biggest political upset in the modern history of America. We can win this thing,” Bernie Sanders told Ari Shapiro of National Public Radio.
— KPLU Public Radio (@KPLU) March 10, 2016
In addition, Sanders has consistently claimed that he is more capable of beating Republican frontrunner Donald Trump in the general elections.
In fact, a report states that only about 33 percent of Sanders’ supporters would vote for Clinton if she wins the nomination, which would definitely hurt her chances against Trump if he continues with his streak.
Unfortunately, it is easier said than done, as Sanders needs to win big in the upcoming primaries.
According to an analysis from the report, even if the Vermont senator wins 55 percent of the delegates in Florida, Illinois, Missouri, and Ohio, if Clinton gets 60 percent of delegates in North Carolina, Sanders will slip further.
In such a scenario, he would need to win 54 percent of the delegates from all remaining states.
The Democratic candidate has already admitted that his campaign has been found wanting in southern states, mainly because they are mostly conservative.
“It’s not surprising. The South is a pretty conservative area, I’m not a conservative,” he said.
— CNN (@CNN) March 9, 2016
Regardless, he remains optimistic that he will win in New York, California, Oregon, Hawaii, and other smaller states.
However, even if the senator manages to pull off a series of upsets (60 percent of delegates) in the coming weeks, he would still need to get 51 percent of all remaining delegates.
Another hurdle that Bernie Sanders has to overcome is the fact that his win in Michigan was not due to support from the African American community. While he earned 30 percent of his total votes from African Americans, that is still pretty small for a state such as Michigan.
If Sanders wants to push for the bigger states in the next couple of weeks, he would need to reach out to black Americans in a manner similar to what Clinton has accomplished in recent years.
— The Week (@TheWeek) February 29, 2016
“I don’t think it’s a question of us winning over black voters, I think it is a question of Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton having very strong support in the African-American community,” Sanders said. “I congratulate them.”
One aspect that Bernie Sanders thinks would be key is his advocacy against poverty. Whether it is “white poverty,” “black poverty,” or “Latino poverty,” it is something that should be taken into consideration not only by primary voters, but the media as well.
[Image by Scott Olson, Getty Images]