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Wisconsin primary made the idea of a contested convention a possibility for the Democrats
by Nathan'ette Burdine: April 26, 2016 Updated-April 30, 2016

The Wisconsin primary made the idea of a contested convention a possibility the Democrats don't want to deal with.

Unlike their Republican counterpart, the Democrats never thought that they would be in a position whereby they will have to think about the possibility of a contested convention.

It was understood that Hillary Clinton would be the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee and that Sen. Bernie Sanders was just there taking up space that was supposed to be filled by progressive champion Sen. Elizabeth Warren or Vice President Joe Biden.

But oh, how things do change. Sanders’ seven state sweep has placed a kink in the party’s plan to have the former secretary of state walk into the Democratic convention crowned as the party’s presidential nominee.

Sanders has decided that he wants to be more than the speaker box for the progressive wing of the Democratic Party.

He wants to compete and become the 45th president of the United States. Sanders’ plan is to put a dent in Clinton’s lead and then go to the convention and finish battling it out there.

The Democratic Party establishment, however, has not been well receptive of Sanders being the spoiler.

They don’t particularly like the idea that Sanders is actually running to become the next president of the United States.

Earlier this month during an appearance on Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show,” Debbie Wasserman-Shultz, chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, hinted that she thinks Clinton will be her party’s presidential nominee.

Wasserman-Schultz told host Trevor Noah that she is quite confident that her party’s nominee will be chosen before the convention.

A person must ask why is it that the chairwoman is so confident that the Democrats will choose their nominee before the convention when the Democrats’ process, the proportional system, makes it difficult for anyone of these candidates to reach the magical number of 2,383 delegates needed to win the nomination.

The only answer to this is that Wasserman-Schultz believes that as long as Clinton, who some have accused the DNC chairwoman of being in cahoots with, is in the race then Sanders doesn’t have a chance of becoming the next president of the United States.

By no means is Wasserman-Schultz alone in her view. President Obama made it clear to Democratic donors that Sanders had overstayed his welcome in the race and that the senator needed to take the door marked exit.

According to Maggie Haberman and Michael D. Shear of the New York Times, President Obama told the group of donors that Sanders’ campaign was coming to an “end” and that the party needs to “unite behind Hillary Clinton.”

Sanders responded that he wasn’t dropping out of the race and turning his back on his supporters: “In my mind it would be extraordinarily undemocratic to tell the people that half the states in America, ‘Oh, you don’t have a right to get involved in the nominating process for the Democratic candidate.’”

For her part, Clinton is beginning to recognize what the establishment wing of her party won’t; which is that Sanders should not be taken lightly.

Gone now are the days of pleasantries and focusing on the big bad Republicans. The upset in Michigan, Sanders’ last eight wins, and the addition of extra delegates from the Colorado race have placed the former secretary of state on the ropes.

And in return, Clinton is starting to hit Sanders where it hurts; which is his progressive plan. Clinton’s strategy of pointing out the flaws in Sanders’ progressive plan and questioning his ability to get things done in D.C., worked in Clinton’s home state of New York.

The former secretary of state easily beat the senator by 16 percentage points. However, the beating that she gave him last Tuesday night was not enough to undermine the fact that Wisconsin was the game changer for the Democratic presidential race and it made the possibility of a contested convention a reality the Democratic Party isn’t prepared to handle.

In fact, Sanders has already done what many didn’t think he would do, which is to last this long. Sanders is a scrappy fella, and he isn’t going down without a fight.

And if the fight has to be taken all the way to the convention floor, then so be it.

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