Posted: 07/27/16 00:11
by Dave Mindeman
My respect for Senator Sanders has only grown during this convention. Although some of his supporters have been less than cordial during the process, Sanders himself has done everything possible to change the dynamic of division.
He has been gracious and fair and looks like he will be a powerful surrogate on the campaign trail.
But we need to also acknowledge that Hillary Clinton has treated him and his support base with the utmost respect. In some extreme radical cases, much more than they deserved.
The Clinton campaign did compromise after compromise on the platform. They modified the rules to give the Sanders candidacy equal footing. And during the roll call vote, her campaign simply ignored the usual celebration when a candidate goes over the top - they even ignored the traditional maneuvering to allow a certain near and dear state of the candidate to put up the final delegates for the nomination.
Instead, they went through a systematic roll call. Allowed every state and territory to record their vote - and then allowed Vermont to end that roll call. And only after every single vote was tabulated did Bernie move to make Clinton the official nominee.
Keep in mind that Sanders was much farther behind in delegate count than Clinton was in her contest with Barack Obama.
But Bernie played his part in this drama to perfection. He gave a gracious speech on the first night. He spoke to his delegations and attempted to help them understand the reality of the situation. And he left the Democratic stage with his dignity and movement intact.
Hillary and Bernie treated each other with respect. Yes, there is still some tension (how could there not be), but they worked it out as adults. Not like that sandbox battle in Cleveland between Trump and Cruz.
The Sanders supporters will obviously take longer to embrace all of this. I think everybody gets that. But, thankfully, it looks like most Democrats are willing to move together into November.
It would seem Trump has become the best Democratic party unifier we could have asked for.