Donald Trump says that he does not need to unify the Republican Party to win in November. “Does the party have to be together? Does it have to be unified? I’m very different than everybody else—perhaps that’s ever run for office. I actually don’t think so.”
So where is he going to get the voters to put him over the top? From supporters of self-described socialist Bernie Sanders.
Trump makes no secret of his strategy. “I think I’m gonna go out and I’m gonna get millions of people from the Democrats,” Trump said last weekend, adding, “I’m gonna get Bernie people to vote, because they like me on trade.”
It’s not just trade. From economic policy, to foreign policy, Trump has been tacking to the left in a strategy intentionally designed to appeal to Sanders supporters.
In the days since he secured the GOP nomination, Trump has repudiated conservative positions he took during the primaries on the minimum wage and taxes. In the fall, Trump declared that “we have to leave [the minimum wage] the way it is,” but this week Trump changed course and said, “I would like to see an increase of some magnitude.” Asked whether he was changing positions, Trump said, “Sure, it’s a change. I’m allowed to change. You need flexibility.”
That’s music to Democratic ears.
That would only be music to a Democrat with a tin ear.
The Newsweek article goes on to list a number of other positions that Trump has that are similar to Sanders' positions, such as his anti-war stance, wanting to rebuild America's infrastructure, and of course taking up his attacks against Hillary Clinton.
Here is another tidbit from the article: A McClatchy/Marist poll last month found that “One out of four Sanders supporters—25 percent—say they would not back Clinton in a general election if she became the Democratic nominee for president, while just 69 percent say they would support her.” So clearly there is a significant number of gettable Sanders voters.
To be clear if you are Sanders supporter thinking of casting your vote for Donald Trump, you are neither a Democrat or a Liberal, you are an anarchist who just wants to watch the world burn.
Which is now making me carefully consider just what it was about the Sanders campaign that made it so attractive to so many young people in the first place.