Even with the Democrat establishment, led by Debbie Wasserman Schulz, doing everything in its power to handicap Hillary Clinton’s competition, it appears the presumed anointed one is not a shoe-in for the Democrat nomination after all. Numerous polls show Bernie Sanders neck-and-neck — or even leading — Hillary Clinton in Iowa and New Hampshire.
So competitive is the Democrat primary race shaping up to be that the smug Clinton campaign has made the shocking admission that it is starting to get nervous.
Via ABC News:
The Clinton campaign appears to be getting nervous.
While from the start Hillary Clinton‘s campaign has said they were not taking anything for granted, the Democratic frontrunner didn’t always act that way -– for months carrying on as though her challenger, Bernie Sanders, didn’t exist.Over time, however, the 74-year-old Vermont senator has risen in the polls and gained growing support that eventually became too big for Clinton to ignore. Now, just a few weeks until the first voting begins in Iowa and New Hampshire, her campaign is showing signs they’re more anxious than ever about the outcome of these races.
“There’s a situation developing in Iowa and New Hampshire that could change the course of this election,” Mook wrote in the e-mail, noting that Sanders’ campaign is outspending Clinton in TV ads in the two early states.
Two days later, the campaign sent another fundraising email mentioning the “(seriously!) tight” polls in New Hampshire.
The e-mail came after Fox News released a poll showing Sanders, who is from neighboring Vermont, ahead of Clinton in New Hampshire by 13 points.
In light of tightening polls, the Clinton campaign has also ramped up its aggressive opposition against Sanders.
And the new poll of likely voters released today by NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist polls won’t likely give Hillary’s campaign any comfort, either. It shows the Queen in a tight race against challenger Bernie Sanders in both New Hampshire and Iowa. And what’s even more shocking (and troubling, not just for Hillary, but for all of us) is that it shows the socialist Sanders outperforms his more moderate rival in general election matchups. As NBC News reports:
Three weeks until the first presidential nominating contest, Donald Trump and Ted Cruz are running neck and neck in Iowa, while Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are also locked in a tight race in the Hawkeye State.
What’s more, Clinton and Sanders are within the margin of error in New Hampshire, while Trump has built a 16-point lead in the same state.
Those are the results of two brand-new NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist polls – the first NBC/WSJ/Marist early-state surveys of 2016, which for the first time measure likely voters.
NBC reports that in Iowa, frontrunner Hillary Clinton holds just a three-point lead among likely voters over Bernie Sanders, 48 percent to 45 percent, while Martin O’Malley gets 5 percent. In New Hampshire, Sanders is ahead of Clinton by four points among likely primary voters, 50 percent to 46 percent, which is within the margin of error of plus-minus 4.8 percentage points. O’Malley is at 1 percent.
The NBC/WSJ/Marist polls also show that Sanders outperforms Clinton in hypothetical general-election matchups in these two presidential battleground states – something other surveys have found, too.
- Clinton leads Trump by eight points among registered voters (48 percent to 40 percent), but Sanders is ahead of him by 13 (51 percent to 38 percent);
- Cruz tops Clinton by four points (47 percent to 43 percent), but Sanders beats him by five (47 percent to 42 percent);
- And up Rubio is up by five points over Clinton (47 percent to 42 percent), while he’s tied with Sanders (44 percent to 44 percent).
In New Hampshire:
- Clinton is ahead of Trump by just one point (45 percent to 44 percent), but Sanders tops him by 19 points (56 percent to 37 percent);
- Cruz beats Clinton by four points (48 percent to 44 percent), but Sanders leads him by another 19 points (55 percent to 36 percent);
- And Rubio bests Clinton by 12 points (52 percent to 40 percent), while Sanders leads him by nine points (50 percent to 41 percent).
Just how well Sanders is doing, despite the DNC’s best efforts, perhaps is another sign of just how dissatisfied people are with both the establishment in general and Hillary Clinton in particular. (The same reasons, perhaps that so many Democrats seem to be jumping ship to support Donald Trump.)
It is, however, hard to believe Sanders is actually leading any of the GOP candidates by as much as this poll suggests. Even if we assume for a moment that the poll is a good and true indication of the wider reality of actual voter sentiment (yes, I know, that’s quite an assumption), I’m confident that once either of the leading Democrat candidates has to stand up to debate with their rival GOP candidate, any leads they may have will quickly start to diminish. With the embarrassments that are the Democrat candidates, it’s no wonder the Democrat strategy is to keep them hidden — with tactics like holding debates on Saturday night during the holiday season — for as long as possible.
Will be interesting to watch what happens to poll numbers once any semblance of scrutiny is applied to the Dems.
[Note: This article was written by Michelle Jesse, Associate Editor]