WASHINGTON ― Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-Vt.) staunchest supporters are still feeling torn about voting for Hillary Clinton, who defeated the progressive rock star in this year’s bitter Democratic primary. But they’re acutely aware of the consequences of strategic voting that would help ensure GOP nominee Donald Trump can’t win the White House.
Norman Solomon, a former Sanders delegate and a coordinator of the Bernie Delegates Network, a group that claimed to represent two-thirds of Sanders’ delegates at the Democratic National Convention, said the decision of whether to vote for Clinton may ultimately rest on the margin between Clinton and Trump in hotly contested battleground states.
“I heard a number of delegates say, ‘I’m going to keep my eyes on the polls, and if it’s close I’ll vote for Clinton,’” Solomon told The Huffington Post on Thursday.
“Speaking for myself, I live in California, and I have no intention of voting for Clinton,” he added, referring to the overwhelming Democratic advantage there. “If I lived in Ohio or Florida, I would vote for Hillary in a heartbeat. To me the rational political choice for progressives is to vote for Clinton in swing states and don’t worry about it anywhere else.”
Clinton in recent weeks has redoubled her outreach to young voters, who comprised a large portion of Sanders’ support. But she still has more work to do. A nationwide straw poll of 461 Sanders delegates, released Thursday by the Bernie Delegates Network, found that only 37 percent plan for vote for Clinton in November.