Vermont socialist Bernie Sanders will be breaking from the Democratic Party and running for president as a third party, a move that "would all but guarantee a catastrophic split in the Democratic vote and ensure a Republican victory," Ed Klein confidential reports,
citing sources inside Sanders' campaign.
"Sources say Sanders believes that despite his ever-growing crowds of fired-up supporters, he'll never overcome Hillary's — or, for that matter, (Vice President Joe) Biden's — advantage in money, organization and endorsements," Klein writes.
"In Bernie's opinion, Hillary is owned by Wall Street and is a hawk," according to a source characterized by the political columnist as a "Sanders' top campaign officials."
"The decision hasn't been made when to make the announcement to go independent," according to the source, thought it's likely to occur when Clinton "starts piling up delegates with the help of Wall Street money and her formidable ground operation."
"Right now, things are going great and he very well may upset Hillary in the New Hampshire primary."
Public Policy Polling's
newest New Hampshire data found that Sanders, who holds a U.S. Senate seat as an independent, leads Clinton in the Granite State by a margin of 42 percent to 35 percent, quite a turnaround since an April survey.
"The main story in New Hampshire is how universally popular Sanders has become with the Democratic electorate," according to Public Policy Polling. "Seventy-eight percent see him favorably to only 12 percent with a negative opinion — that makes him easily the most popular candidate on either side with their party's voters.
"Meanwhile Hillary Clinton's favorability numbers have taken a little bit of a hit — she was at 78/10 with Democratic primary voters in April, but now she's at a 63/25 spread."
Should Sanders run as an independent, it would be in direct contrast to previous statements to the contrary. In late July, The Hill reported
that during a speech at the Newseum in Washington, Sanders explicitly vowed not to seek the White House as an independent if he fails to capture the Democratic nomination.
"I would not want to be responsible for electing some right-wing Republican president," Sanders said at the time.
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