Bernie has overplayed his hand. It’s a classic mistake in politics and in life. And when you overplay your hand, you lose your power and leverage.
Hillary is clinching the nomination with a majority of votes, a majority of pledged delegates and a majority of superdelegates. It is history in the making.
What is the worst thing Bernie can do to her at this point?
Keep attacking her character? He’s done that for months and she’s still winning.
Turn the media against her? They’ve already hit her harder than any candidate — according to two independent studies — and she’s still winning.
Impugn the Clinton Foundation, mention her emails, call her a war hawk, suggest she’s corrupt? He’s done all that (and did it again today) and she’s still winning.
Spend the next seven weeks until the convention struggling for air time, seeking attention by doing things like siding with Donald when Hillary questions his qualifications? He’s done that and she’s still winning.
Pretend that the nomination was stolen from him, that the process was rigged? He tried that and eventually came around to admitting it wasn’t true.
Pressure superdelegates to overturn the will of the people? He’s done that and not one has switched to him.
Try to create procedural hurdles at the convention? Hillary will still be the nominee and once the convention is in the rear view mirror, she’ll still be positioned to defeat Donald.
Create an environment where his supporters disrupt the convention? She’ll still be the nominee and once the convention is in the rear view mirror, she’ll still be positioned to defeat Donald.
As I’ve argued repeatedly, Hillary plays the long game — she knows that news cycles are ephemeral. What seems earth-shattering today is a hazy memory tomorrow. She’s weathered so many storms, withstood so many assaults that she is unfazed by temporary distractions.
Bernie can keep trying to slow her down, but she will prevail. Because that’s what Hillary does. Her focus is on Election Day and on the unshakable bond with her supporters. They will turn out for her no matter what Bernie does.
The Democratic Party may give him some nominal concessions, but the fact is this: Bernie is way overestimating his political leverage.
His only path back to power is to join Hillary’s cause and help her defeat Donald.
(AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)