Who Will Win the Nomination: Democratic Edition

Not Martin O'Malley, that's for sure.

The race right now is between Senator Sanders, socialist-democratic Senator from Vermont, and Secretary Hillary Clinton, former Senator from New York, former Secretary of State, and former presidential candidate. Who do I think is going to win?

Let's just say I'm not #FeelingTheBern and I don't think this country is #OverTheHillz. Hillary Clinton is outpolling Bernie Sanders by 16 points, according to a recent NBC poll. Recently, Senator Sanders hit a new high, with 33% of Democratic voters saying they would support him. But compare that to the 49% of Democratic voters saying they would support Secretary Clinton, and it's a little less impressive. In Iowa specifically, Bernie is polling at 40%, impressive, but still distant behind Clinton's 51%

But won't Bernie Sanders get more support? He's energizing millennials! If they all come out to vote for him, he can win!

Personally, I think Senator Sanders (I-VT) has his ceiling of support. Yes, he is polling very well in certain states, but not in certain demographics. Namely, Senator Sanders is polling well white white voters, and poorly with black ones. As of October, Senator Sanders had a 13 point lead over Secretary Clinton with white voters in South Carolina. This speaks to his increasingly popular rhetoric, and his ability to motivate the often-ignored progressive white faction of the party.

However, Secretary Clinton was 55 points ahead of Senator Sanders when you looked at just black voters. Nationally, Secretary Clinton is outpolling Senator Sanders 57% to 10% among non-white Democrats. Why is he doing so well in Iowa and New Hampshire, even beating Clinton in NH? Because those states are almost (or over) 90% white.

Overall, in South Carolina, the third primary, Clinton is maintaining a 48 point lead over Senator Sanders. And just because a candidate is polling well in Iowa and New Hampshire doesn't mean they are a shoe-in for the election. Remember Howard Dean?

Barring an outrageous scandal, I predict the nomination will go to Hillary Clinton. And I think she will pick Julian Castro as her running mate, because Marco Rubio will be a tough opponent, especially since he does have legitimate opinions on immigration.

Before I go, a word to my Bernie supporting friends. I hear you. Bernie Sanders is an incredibly compelling candidate. I love his ideas, I appreciate that he's bringing Hillary further to the left on a lot of issues. I think the debate schedule is unfair for him, and there's a possibility the media isn't covering him the way they should. But I'm not supporting Bernie in the primary. I think that the economic issues Bernie stands for are important, but I think Hillary is more experienced on foreign affairs. 

And here's the best kept secret: by some measures, Hillary Clinton is as liberal as Elizabeth Warren, and only slightly more moderate than Bernie Sanders. Secretary Clinton's voting and public statement record make her a very liberal candidate, and she secured a lot of votes from very liberal people in the 2008 election.

No, she's not a socialist. But in my mind, she has the experience to be a great president, paired with progressive ideals that I support. And even if she doesn't win, I'll throw my support behind whichever Democrat does get the nomination, because to me, it's most important to keep the White House blue for at least four more years.

First Published: December 18, 2015