If Hillary withdraws from the race

Democrats may be in shock over Hillary Clinton’s disastrous showing on the campaign trail in the last week, but if she withdraws from the race, it will not be an easy task to unify behind a substitute.  In fact, a new poll from Rasmussen indicates that a deep split remains from the primary race among the Democrats.

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 48% of Likely Democratic Voters believe Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, Clinton’s primary rival, should be their party’s nominee if health issues forced her out of the race. Twenty-two percent (22%) say Vice President Joe Biden should be the nominee, while only 14% opt for Virginia Senator Tim Kaine, the current Democratic vice presidential candidate. Nine percent (9%) of Democrats think it should be someone else. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Among all likely voters, it’s a closer contest. Thirty-six percent (36%) choose Sanders, 20% Biden and 14% Kaine. But 21% think the Democratic nominee should be someone else.

The first thing to keep in mind is that the last thing the Democratic Party is is democratic in its procedures.  In the event of a withdrawal, they won’t be asking their voters who should head the ticket; it will be the Clinton cronies on the DNC who will meet behind closed doors to choose a successor.  And it will not be Bernie Sanders, who shows dangerous signs of actually believing his rhetoric.  (In fairness, a number of DNC members may have noticed that it took Bernie only a few weeks to cash in and buy his third house, a getaway manse on an island in Vermont costing more than his reported net worth, demonstrating his pliability.)

Inevitably, should Hillary be forced to withdraw, she will want to name her successor, and one must assume that would be Kaine.  That leaves the Obama faction of the party shut out.  While Biden is probably regarded as loyal, his intellectual limitations would be worrisome, unless he agrees to install Valerie Jarrett as his controller executive aide.

The feminist faction of the party would not be happy about losing their chance for a female president.  Would they argue for Michelle Obama as a substitute?  One can’t rule that out, for it would have the extra advantage of mobilizing black voters, especially female black voters.  Mrs. Obama’s return to the campaign trail as a “surrogate” for Hillary has to have planted a few ideas in the heads of her supporters as well as Herself.

There is no easy out for the Democrats.