Democratic candidate and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders’ campaign is keeping up momentum ahead of the all-important New York primary. Sanders is essentially tying front-runner Hillary Clinton nationally according to a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll published Monday, April 18, 2016. Sanders still trails Clinton in New York state polls a day before the April 19 primary.
According to the poll, Sanders is only 2-point behind Clinton within the margin of error. Clinton has 50 percent support to Sanders’ 48 percent. Clinton’s once envious leads in national polls are evaporating. Last month in the same poll, Clinton led Sanders by 9-points with 53 to 44 percent support. Just in January, Clinton had an enormous 25-point lead over Sanders with 59 to 34 percent of voter support,
Sanders has the demographic edge when it comes to men, and independents with even Republicans liking the Vermont Senator, while Clinton’s support comes older voters and registered Democrats.
Sanders has been turning the tide on Clinton in recent national polls edging out the supposed front-runner. The campaign has become more heated and bruising between the two Democrats as Sanders won eight of the last nine primaries and sweeping the Western states, some by large margins over Clinton.
The battle between the two candidates has become fierce in New York. On Thursday, April 14, they had a bruising debate in Brooklyn ahead of the primary. Their main fight has been over qualifications and judgment to be president, Clinton’s high priced celebrity fundraisers, and her ties to Wall Street.
The Vermont Senator has one-problem New York State polls. New York has 247 delegates stake. Although each week he has been gaining on Clinton, a day before the primary Sanders was still trailing by double digits. According to a Baruch College/NY1 News and Quinnipiac poll, Clinton has a 13-point lead, and a Sienna College poll gives Clinton a 10 percent advantage. These numbers contradict that thousands of supporters have been clammeringto see Sanders at his mega New York rallies.
The New York will make or break either candidate’s campaign For Sanders it is a chance to break even, and level the pledged delegate playing field, for Clinton it is an opportunity to regain momentum and prove she should and will be the nominee.
ABC News political analyst Matt Dowd commented, The New York primary “is crucial for both of them.” Dowd explained, “This is critical for [Sanders] because he needs to reset the race… and the only way for him going forward is to win New York. It’s crucial for [Clinton] because losing her home state because makes people question is she really the best candidate.”
Currently, Clinton has 1,307 pledged delegates, while Sanders has 1,087 pledged delegates, 2,383 delegates are needed to clinch the nomination. Clinton’s significant edge is in unpledged superdelegates with 469 party leaders and insiders promising to support her, while Sanders only has 31 superdelegates. Sanders campaign believes in the states he won the superdelegates should vote for him at the convention. Sanders hopes with momentum from primary wins; his campaign will be able to change the superdelegates’ minds to support him instead of Clinton.
A recent CBS News poll showed that Sanders is the stronger Democrat in a general election. Sanders would beat any of the three GOP candidates remaining by wide margins, much more than Clinton. Sanders would beat Trump by a whopping 17 percent, 53 to 36 percent. The Vermont senator would beat Cruz by 12 points, 50 to 38 percent, but much less against Kasich, an edge of only 5 points, 46 to 41 percent.