And so, the door officially closes Tuesday on our ever knowing how Wall Street nemesis Bernie Sanders would fare in a general election against billionaire Donald Trump.
The Vermont senator is expected to withdraw as a candidate and urge supporters to beat back the Republican whose candidacy Sanders condemned early on as “an embarrassment for our country.”
“I think Donald Trump’s views on immigration and his slurring of the Latino community is not something that should be going on in the year 2015,” Sanders said last August.
His regard for Trump seemed to worsen with the season, evolving as it did from confident predictions Trump wouldn’t win, to wondering aloud how the country would survive if he did. Attempts to link Sanders and Trump as “anti-establishment” champions faded into irrelevance as the months passed.
Analyzing Sanders’ impact will best come after the election. If Clinton wins the White House, will it mean he could have won or might he have lost? If Trump wins, could the Democrats have made a mistake by not choosing Sanders?
Sanders ticked out his last few days as a candidate on Friday, in part by joining the national chorus of condemnation after the sniper slayings of Dallas police officers. He branded the attack “horrifying and despicable.”
Sanders was just then headed into a weekend of Democratic platform committee meetings in Orlando, Florida, where his positions were expected to receive consideration earned by a strong candidacy.
“It’s by far the most progressive platform the Democrats have ever presented,” he said last week. “I want to see it more progressive.”
At last report, Sanders was pushing for planks seeking an end to fracking, a tax on carbon emissions, a national $15-per-hour minimum wage, seven days of mandatory employee sick leave and federal reviews of all police shootings.
Clinton recently repositioned herself closer to Sanders by saying she opposes the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact and partially embracing his free-tuition proposal for state colleges.
Some asked earlier if he'd secure a promise from Clinton to give him say over a Cabinet member or two. If there are any unannounced understandings between them, however, they have yet to leak out.
Sanders is expected to address the Democratic convention in Philadelphia the week after next.
Next year, the only place to feel the Bern will be the Senate, where he’s expected to return.