Deep Democrat Divide Grows Deeper: New Hampshire Primary Gets Nastier after Iowa Chaos Ups the Ante

New Hampshire primary ends in food fight between top 2020 Presidential contenders

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Texas Insider Report) —
 “There's reason for concern, because there's a good chance Democrats won’t know who the alternative to Bernie Sanders is after this primary, and maybe they won’t know until after Nevada,” said Dante Scala, a political science professor at the University of New Hampshire. “So for all the party elites who don’t want Sanders, there's been significant concern at this point because for them, if it is not Biden, then who?”

Yes, the final week of campaigning in New Hampshire is ending in much the way it began: with a food fight between the top contenders for the 2020 Democrat Presidential Nomination.

The uptick in attacks among the candidates vieing for the nomination marked a nastier phase of the race, and are feeding fears that the deep political divide which undercut Democrats’ ability to close ranks behind Hillary Clinton four years ago might again sink the party’s chances of defeating President Donald Trump.

Bernie Sanders — who won a landslide victory over Mrs. Clinton in 2016's New Hampshire primary — is again poised for another victory, and that's setting off alarm bells among the Democrat establishment nationwide.

The growing sense of urgency has been palpable on the campaign trail.

After a fiasco in Iowa, the ante has been upped in New Hampshire — in particular for the likes of Mr. Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who've struggled to live up to their pre-campaign hype. 

Indeed, a Sanders victory in New Hampshire would be a major blow to Ms. Warren, and could cement his status as the top pick of far-left voters.

A strong showing from Mr. Buttigieg or Sen. Amy Klobuchar could add to the unease among Biden backers, whose candidate has hit the skids since Iowa.

Sanders’ supporters have been targeting Mr. Buttigieg with their pent up anti-establishment zeal, chastising him the past few days for accepting checks from wealthy campaign donors and showering him with boos and chants of “Wall Street Pete” at a recent major party gathering.

“Unlike some of my opponents, I don’t have contributions from the CEOs of the pharmaceutical industry, from Wall Street tycoons,” said Sanders at one of his final campaign stops, alluding to Mr. Buttigieg's high-level campaign donors.

“We don’t want their money. We don’t need their money,” said Sanders in his appeal to New Hampshire voters.
“It’s Bernie or bust for me,” said Ryan Hirsch, a 35-year-old from Nashua, N.H., who works in information technology.

“Honestly, if Bernie doesn’t get the nomination, I’m just not going to vote. I can’t. I’m not excited for any of the other candidates. I just feel like it’s more of the status quo.

“We need an actual — not necessarily a violent revolution, but a revolution nonetheless in order to deal with the climate change crisis, in order to deal with economic inequality,” said Hirsch

But speaking in Plymouth — and campaigning alongside Hollywood actor Kevin Costner — Buttigieg cautioned voters against “chasing after the extremes,” saying Mr. Sanders has not been upfront about his “Medicare-for-All” vision.

“We cannot risk alienating voters at this critical moment, and that is where I part ways with my friend Sen. Sanders,” Buttigieg said. “This is a moment for bringing as many people as we can into the picture. But a picture where your only choice is between a revolution or the status quo is a picture where most of us don’t see ourselves.”
Mr. Buttigieg said Mr. Sanders’ math on health care doesn’t add up.

“How are we going to pay for it?” he said. “Are we going to pay for it in the form of still further taxes, or are we going to pay for it in the form of broken promises?”

Ms. Klobuchar, distancing herself from both Buttigieg and Sanders, reminded voters that she stood alone on the most recent debate stage in voicing concerns about having a socialist leading the Democratic Party ticket.

“I don’t agree with everything people say on the debate stage,” Ms. Klobuchar said. “In fact, when we were asked at the last debate if we thought a socialist should lead the ticket, I was the only one that raised my hand and said, ‘No, I don’t think so.’

“That doesn’t mean I’m not good friends with Bernie — I am. I just have a different philosophy than he does,” she said, referring to Mr. Sanders, a self-described “Democratic Socialist.”

History suggests time is running out for the candidates to make a move.
  • Over the past 50 years, Bill Clinton in 1992 and George McGovern in 1972 were the only Democratic presidential contenders who went on to clinch the party’s nomination after failing to win either Iowa or New Hampshire.
  • The latest polls out of New Hampshire show Mr. Sanders holding a 28.7% to 21.3 % lead over Mr. Buttigieg, running second.
  • Mr. Biden, Ms. Warren and Ms. Klobuchar are locked in a statistical tie for 3rd place, with each garnering roughly 11%.
The New Hampshire primary contest will be followed by the Nevada caucuses on Feb. 22, and the South Carolina primary Feb. 29.

The Democrat contest then jumps into hyperdrive on March 3rd, when voters in 14 states — including Texas and California —head to the polls on Super Tuesday March 3rd.