On the Democratic side, the only real surprise last night was the margin of victory for Bernie Sanders. It was huge. Bernie Sanders seems to have hit a nerve with many Democratic voters. Yet, we must also remember that in New Hampshire, Independents can vote and Bernie got a lot of independent votes. In other states, you must declare party affiliation in order to vote in the Primaries.
On the Republican side, the results were predicted as well, except for the idea of Kasich coming in second. Cruz finished third, which is no surprise since New Hampshire doesn’t have the evangelical population like Iowa has.
Of course, Cruz is claiming “victory” because he came in third. I never understood how you can be the winner when you lost. But, that is politics for you. Even if you don’t win, you can claim “victory”.
The one thing that came out of this primary is evidence that politics is not dead in America. According to what I have read and saw, New Hampshire’s primary resulted in a record number of people casting a ballot. That is truly good news. Hopefully, the remaining states will have record turnouts as well, right through November.
There are also some disturbing things that came out of New Hampshire. Those disturbing things come from the Republican side. The biggest disturbing thing to me is that during an exit poll, two-thirds of New Hampshire Republican voters believe Muslims should be barred from coming to this country.
When you take that into consideration, it is little wonder some consider the fact that only 40% of those same people believe that Mexicans should be deported. But then Mexicans aren’t Muslim are they?
There has been a lot of conversation about the “establishment” wings of both parties being upset over the results. After last night, the Republican Establishment is being told to support Kasich instead of Rubio who finished fifth. I don’t see Kasich as being compassionate or “moderate” like some other pundits like to call him. Kasich has proven to be just as “conservative” as Cruz and the other wing-nuts in the party.
Kasich faces the same problem that Sanders faces moving forward. He got a lot of “independent” voters to back him. In many of the upcoming primaries, he won’t have that luxury. The Republicans are even more strict about independents than the Democrats are. Therefore, it is way too early to say Kasich can hang on and be a viable contender to Trump and Cruz.
That is the real problem. It appears that Trump and Cruz are going to be the last men standing on the Republican side. We will have a choice from Republicans that is disturbing at best. One is a white supremacist, nativist, fascist who likes torture as a means of “interrogation” and wants to keep every foreigner who is not white out of the country. The other is a bigot who believes that anyone who is not a follower of his religion, which really doesn’t exist, a traitor to America and wants to establish the Jim Crow days again but including not just blacks but non-white people of any kind, gays, and women.
Between the two, they garnered over 40% of the New Hampshire primary votes. That is even more depressing than their views. To believe that over 40% of people in New Hampshire think like they do.
The next primary in South Carolina will be interesting to watch. Cruz’ main support comes from social issue evangelicals. Trump’s main support comes from white supremacists and nativists. South Carolina has a very large evangelical population. But it is also known for their white supremacists and nativists. It will be interesting to see if the evangelicals or white supremacists win out.
On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton needs to come up with something viable to run on. As one pundit put it last night, Bernie Sanders wants to become president because he hates income inequality and is fighting for the poor and middle-class. Hillary Clinton is running because she would do a good job. That isn’t a very good campaign slogan.
Bernie Sanders has found something to get his supporters fired up. Hillary Clinton has not found that, yet. If she can get her supporters fired up about something, she will probably get the nomination. If not, we could see Bernie Sanders as the Democratic candidate.
In either case, we now have two political parties that are polar opposites. One party, the Democrats, have remained true to the values of the poor, working poor, and the middle class and civil rights. They look to move the country forward in ways that will benefit everyone.
On the other hand, the Republican Party has become a party of fear and hate. They want you to be afraid of everyone and everything. Their motives are to keep the oligarchs in power and are happy to be their mouthpieces. You, the common person don’t count.
The things these Republican candidates believe in are very scary. They believe in torture, racism, poor education for the non-elites, closed borders, second-class citizenship for those “others” in our society, and constant wars. They believe that is how we “make America great”.
All you need to do is look at the leading candidates for each party, and you will see I am right. On the Republican side, last night proved the “shirts” keep marching along!