To The Editor:
In the Jan. 11 Missourian, the editorial writer says: [Sanders] “has been very unsettling to the Democratic establishment because they are convinced he can’t beat Trump because of his radical views.”
In the 2016 Missouri Democratic presidential primary, the final vote was 49.61 percent for Hillary Clinton, and 49.36 percent for Bernie Sanders. Sanders carried Franklin County Democrats 55.41 percent to 42.89 percent. In that election Hillary Clinton was the clear fron-runner, even by March. There is no clear Democratic front-runner now.
That same year, President Trump barely grabbed Missouri’s primary votes with a 40.84 percent vote to Ted Cruz at 40.63 percent. In Franklin County, the president took 44.49 percent of Republican votes and his nearest challenger — Ted Cruz — got 39.77 percent.
Sanders was the only Franklin County presidential primary candidate to win by majority vote. Then purist Sanders voters stayed home in November guaranteeing Trump’s election through the Electoral College.
The media says “Sanders is radical and he cannot win.” Such words were cast at FDR and Truman, both with similar ideas in an earlier era, when Social Security and Medicare were proposed. Sanders knows firsthand there is no free lunch. The press needs more coverage of the nitty gritty details of his proposals. A “free” college education on the military or College of the Ozarks plan is not the same as “free” as in freeloading.
Trump has been using his silver spoon his whole life. In three years, he has eviscerated many government programs, leaving the problems they solved still hanging there.
The president and Sanders are equally bluntly spoken, which is why he clings to “socialist” as the correct word, ignoring incorrect connotations. A debate between the two would be two nor’easters face to face, with no punches pulled.
From my point of view — a moderate voter and part of the 37 percent in Missouri who must be swayed for either side to achieve victory — I’d prefer a moderate Democrat or Republican over either candidate. Since that is unlikely, let the fireworks begin!