Mainstream News Media Can’t Block Reality Of Bernie Sanders’ Success

Reno Berkeley

Mainstream media just can’t block the reality of a Bernie Sanders success. Despite drawing tens of thousands of people to rallies on a consistent basis, winning 19 contests, and showing higher approval ratings, Sanders continues to be persona non grata with highly paid pundits. What the the media is doing is the equivalent of sticking its fingers in its ears and yelling, “La la la!” in an attempt to aggressively ignore the Sanders phenomenon.

This is dangerous for the Democratic Party. With Trump a surefire win for the GOP nomination, the Democratic Party leadership, through news media outlets that appear to favor Clinton, are pushing the nomination of the weakest, most reviled candidate they possibly could. With all appearances of neutrality out the window, even the Philadelphia convention chairman warned Sanders supporters to behave themselves after Clinton wins the nomination.

This, despite the fact that neither Democratic candidate has enough pledged delegates to secure a win outright. And it’s why just about every mainstream media outlet tacks on the superdelegate count to increase her numbers. The fact remains, however, that superdelegates are not pledged until they actually vote at the convention, which means they could realistically switch over to Bernie Sanders if they believe he is the strong candidate to beat Trump in November.

West Virginia’s exit polls are interesting, but not surprising. According to an ABC News poll, those who voted in the Democratic primary are primarily worried about the direction of the nation’s economy. A majority believed trade with other countries diminishes job opportunities in the U.S., and nearly a third of households that voted have a coal miner in the family. Fifty-five percent of those with coal miners in the family voted for Sanders.

But that’s not the most interesting part of the exit polls. Forty percent of the state’s Democratic primary voters said they wanted less liberal policies than Obama, yet 62 percent of those same voters cast a ballot for Bernie Sanders. This is perhaps due to two significant factors: Clinton’s flip-flopping on the coal industry and voters’ desire for a candidate that expresses empathy or honesty. Empathy and honesty are especially important for West Virginians, as many residents have been hard hit by the downturn in the coal mining industry.

ABC‘s exit poll also showed that Sanders would outperform Clinton in a general election in the state, taking 52 percent of the vote over Trump, versus Clinton’s 45 percent.

Over the last several days, Sanders has drawn crowds at his rallies in New Jersey, California, and Oregon. His Sacramento rally attracted more than 20,000 people. Some estimate the attendance — including overflow crowd — to be as high as 27,000.

His poll numbers are rising as well. A recent Quinnipiac Poll puts Sanders comfortably ahead of Trump during a general election with likely voters from Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. An NBC News/Survey Monkey Poll has Sanders 13 points ahead of Trump, with Clinton ahead only five points. In poll after poll, Sanders performs better than Clinton against Trump by several points, but the mainstream news media continues to tout her as the better, stronger candidate.

Still, the national news media outlets continue to act as though Sanders’ rival is the presumptive nominee and should now begin to focus her campaign on attacking Trump.

After a search on CNN‘s website, no story about any of his California rallies were found. MSNBC did a live stream of his Stockton rally, but had no follow-up story. Its YouTube channel is also conspicuously lacking in any evidence that Sanders has been on the West Coast campaigning.

The only news reporting Bernie Sanders rallies are local news channels. KCRA 3 News in Sacramento reported that thousands turned out to Cal Expo Monday to attend the rally. Interestingly, the local news outlets have been more neutral in their coverage of the Democratic primary than their national counterparts.

Bernie Sanders at Stockton, CA, rally
Bernie Sanders greets supporters at Stockton, CA, rally. [Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]
Uncommitted superdelegate Alexandra Rooker told the news channel that she’d received a lot of calls, emails, and other messages regarding both Sanders and Clinton.

“I’ve gotten some very emotional phone calls. I get emails all the time. I’ve gotten a few pro-Hillary — but mostly Bernie folks.”

She noted that the Sanders supporters were thanking her for refraining from supporting any candidate until the June primary.

National news media outlets ignoring Bernie Sanders is not only a disservice to the Sanders campaign, but it is also dangerous to the entire democratic process because Sanders is, quite simply, the stronger candidate.

On Wednesday, MSNBC‘s page of videos going back one week shows Donald Trump dominating various topics, with Bernie Sanders and even Hillary Clinton woefully underrepresented. It goes to the argument that Trump’s success could be in large part due to the massive amount of free press mainstream news has given him.

On Morning Joe after Sanders’ victory in West Virginia, for example, Joe Scarborough said Clinton must “go all the way in on Donald Trump.” The panel of pundits discussed how much Sanders has “damaged” Clinton and the reality is sinking in that she is the “favored” candidate. Hillary is already looking toward the general election, as news media are reporting that she essentially has the nomination in the bag.

Yet, the fact remains: California, Kentucky, Oregon, and several other states, including DC, have yet to vote. As reported earlier by the Inquisitr, California has experienced a massive surge in voter registration in recent weeks, with more than 850,000 new voters registered in the first quarter of 2016 alone. You won’t hear about that from the national news networks, though. You’ll have to sift through social media and alternative news sites for that. This does an injustice to those people who do not have access to the internet, or to those who rely on basic cable television to get the majority of their news. It also projects Bernie Sanders’ chances to actually win at the convention as impossible when he is still very much in the running.

On June 7, the turnout for California is likely to be much higher than in previous years. When he wins the state, the news media will have no choice but to sit up and take notice.

[Photo by Mel Evans/AP Images]