California’s presidential primary isn’t going to matter nearly as much as it once appeared.
Donald Trump is the presumptive Republican nominee, and he has gotten there by running a cynical and destructive campaign. Instead of policies to move America forward, he offers empty platitudes. Worse, he sows division and encourages discrimination. We fear he would be a disaster as president.
California remains somewhat important on the Democratic side. While Hillary Clinton is way ahead in delegates (2,297-1,527), Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont continues to campaign – despite having virtually no path to the nomination – heading into the Puerto Rico, California and New Jersey voting.
And even though Clinton has all virtually sewn up the nomination, she needs to do well with California voters June 7 to start building momentum for her expected showdown against Trump in November.
We recommend Clinton because she is, by far, the more qualified, experienced and prepared candidate.
Indeed, the former first lady, U.S. senator and secretary of state may be the most ready to become president on that first day of anyone in recent history. Besides the domestic and economic policies Sanders focuses on, the job also means being commander in chief. There’s no doubt that she is more knowledgeable and better equipped than Sanders for the world stage.
Clinton may not be the most passionate or inspirational of politicians, and she must do all she can to earn the public’s trust after the email scandal and other missteps. But she has the right priorities to rebuild the middle class, for instance. She is more likely to actually get things done in Washington, D.C., and offers the hope of helping to unite the country.
Democrats should embrace this historic opportunity for our nation to have its first woman president.
Sanders deserves credit for energizing new and younger voters and focusing attention on the power of Wall Street, the twisted campaign finance system and the widening gap between the super-rich and the rest of us.
Yet Sanders, a self-avowed democratic socialist, holds views far to the left of most Americans. Many of his proposals are unaffordable and unlikely to be enacted without his “political revolution.” Without a like-minded majority in Congress, it’s a recipe for more frustrating and damaging gridlock.
The Sanders camp points to polls suggesting he would do better in November against Trump, but these hypothetical match-ups are meaningless at this point.
For one thing, Clinton has been thoroughly vetted and battle-tested. This is Sanders’ first national campaign, so he has not undergone that excruciating process, making it more likely that something politically toxic will be unearthed.
Very few voters, for instance, know that he once praised Cuban dictator Fidel Castro and the Sandinista rebels in Nicaragua. He made those remarks 30 years ago, but he declined to disavow them when they came up briefly during a March debate.
Clinton has avoided going after Sanders on those kinds of issues. Trump wouldn’t hesitate to rip into Sanders.
Trump will attack Clinton viciously, too. That’s what he does. But she has weathered attacks before.
Some Democrats’ hearts are with Sanders. But he would be a huge risk as a candidate against Trump and as a leader. Clinton is the far wiser choice. A Trump presidency is the scariest prospect of all.