Bernie Sanders Attributes Primary Losses To Poor People’s Inability To Vote

Bernie Sanders is still behind Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton, and in a recent interview, he attributed his primary losses to the failure of poor people to cast their votes.

During his appearance on NBC’s Meet The Press, host Chuck Todd asked the Vermont senator why he thought that of the 17 states, which are known for having large wealth gaps, 16 were won by the former Secretary of State. Bernie Sanders said, “Well, because poor people don’t vote. I mean, that’s just a fact.”

He added that poor people’s inability to vote is the “sad reality of American society.” Sanders continued to say that his campaign team has done a good job of bringing in young people to vote but in America, he cited that in the 2014 elections, 80 percent of poor people didn’t vote.

Bernie Sanders also shared, “So many people have given up on the political process, including a whole lot of low-income people where the voting rates are low. Young people who aren’t voting in large numbers. Our job is to bring people into the political process, to create a government that represents all of us, not just the one percent.”

The Vermont senator’s policy director, Warren Gunnels, echoed his statements by saying that according to Demos, an advocacy group that uses data from the Census Bureau, only one in four of people earning less than $10,000 voted in 2014. For the turnout of 18 to 24-year-olds who are earning less than $30,000, it was recorded that only 12 percent voted in 2014. That means around 75 percent of people in the lowest income bracket didn’t vote in the last elections.

Sean McElwee, a policy analyst with Demos said, “Sanders is indeed correct to highlight low turnout among the poor as an important factor that biases policy in favor of the wealthy.”

However, reports such as that of a 2015 Pew Center survey, said that financial security is defined as having a credit card, a savings account, or a checking account as well as having a retirement and an investment plan. Financially secure people also do not need to borrow money, do not fall behind on bills, and aren’t receiving food assistance or Medicaid benefits. The survey highlighted that 20 percent of the least financially secure people were “likely voters” back in 2014, as compared to the 69 percent of voters for the most financially secure.

Also, it might not be right for Bernie Sanders to compare the White House elections to the midterm elections since the turnout of voters normally drops during the midterm elections. However, the 2014 midterm elections was the worst in 72 years.

Sanders has received support from a record number of grassroots donors. Their small contributions have consistently added up to monthly fundraising totals that exceed that of Hillary Clinton.

Bernie Sanders rejected calls for him to drop out of the race. He believes that the superdelegates voting for Hillary Clinton could flip come the July convention.

This June 7, California and five other states will hold their Democratic contests and the last voting will be in Washington, D.C., a week after the six states’ primaries.

After the New York primaries, Hillary Clinton has 1,941 delegates while Bernie Sanders has 1,191. There are 1,633 votes still available and a Democratic nominee has to have 2,383 delegates needed to cement his or her nomination for the Democratic Party.

There are 513 superdelegates supporting the Secretary of State, while 38 superdelegates have pledged to vote for Bernie Sanders.

[Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images]