Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Sanders, You Gave It a Good Run But Time To Face the Math

I like Bernie Sanders.  No, really.  I like the guy.  He clearly has an appeal with young voters that cannot be denied, and his charisma is contagious across most other demographics.  That said, his policies are about as rooted in reality as Sarah Palin's claim to be a foreign policy expert because she can see Russia from Alaska.  Most of his ideas boil down to free stuff for the people.  Hey, who can't get behind that, right?  Who doesn't like free stuff?  If you want to pay off my student loans I'm sure as hell not going to stop you.  But that's not reality.  In the real world, SOMEBODY has to actually pay for the free stuff that the masses enjoy, and by "somebody" I mean you and me.  Or as the great Snoop Dogg once said "everybody got their cups but they ain't chipped in."  Hillary may not be the most likeable of candidates (understatement of the year) but at least she has been around long enough to know better than to make promises like free college for everybody.  Full disclosure, I'm not a Hillary fan either; she certainly comes with her own set of issues.  But let's set aside, for a moment, the subjective preferences we may or may not have towards one candidate or another.  Today I want to talk about math.  Yes, that subject that you were forced to learn all throughout your time in school but then never used again after you graduated (unless you were crazy enough to major in engineering like me, in which case you are just getting started on your never ending quest towards mathematical enlightenment).

As of today's post, love it or hate it, Hillary Clinton has 2,165 of the 2,383 delegates needed to win the nomination as the Democratic party's presidential candidate.  That's a difference of 218 delegates.  Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders has 1,357 of the 2,383 delegates needed to win the nod.  That's a difference of 1,026 delegates.  As of today, there are 1,243 delegates still available in the Democratic primary.  Which means Bernie would have to win 83% of the remaining delegates in order to win the primary.  Conversely, Hillary would only have to win 17% of the outstanding delegates in order to win.  That's math.

The mathematical problem for Bernie here is that he's not batting anywhere near 83% when it comes to winning primary elections.  As of today, there have been 40 Democratic primary elections (yes, 40!  I know right?).  Bernie has won 17 out of the 40 elections, which comes out to 42.5%.  Bernie would have to increase his win rate from 42.5% to 83% over the remaining elections.  It would not be enough to beat Hillary in 50%, 60% or even 70% of the remaining contests.  Bernie would literally need to double his previous winning streak in order to seal the deal; a feat that, mathematically speaking, is simply not probable.

So to my Bernie supporters out there -- 57% of which (see pic above) apparently want Bernie to stay in this thing to the end -- sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but it's about that time to turn it in, folks.  You had a great run.  If nothing else, you can take solace in the fact that you have made it clear that Americans really are looking for a change from our normal politics (i.e. Hillary Clinton, Jeb Bush, etc.).  Perhaps next time the math will work out in your favor.
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