The 2008 Wall Street crash cost Americans $12.8 trillion and resulted in Federal Reserve bailout commitments of over $29 trillion. Only Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders are addressing the structural issues that caused this debacle. They've advocated breaking up the banks and reinstating a Glass-Steagall Act to address the main issues leading to America's growing wealth gap and inequality. Trump, Clinton, and everyone else in 2016 talk about these issues, but only Warren and Sanders are willing to actually do anything about them.
Assuming that polling trajectory remains constant and the FBI's investigation of Clinton's server continues throughout the primaries, only Bernie Sanders will be capable of beating a Republican on Election Day. Also, there are ten reasons why Democratic superdelegates will choose Sanders over Clinton, illustrating why the Vermont Senator is the real frontrunner for the Democratic nomination.
Therefore, in the interest of breaking a vapid paradigm of thought (stating Bernie can't win) proven by recent events to be obsolete, let's simply address the most likely scenario in 2016. When Bernie Sanders wins the Democratic nomination, picking Elizabeth Warren as his Vice President can ensure that all the momentum he's generated will continue into the general election. After all, in many ways, Elizabeth Warren paved the way for Bernie Sanders.
Before Sanders drew hundreds of thousands of enthusiastic supporters to events and before the Vermont Senator surpassed Clinton in Iowa and New Hampshire polls, it was Warren who lit the match. In 2014, Quinnipiac University stated "little known Elizabeth Warren generates the most heat" in terms of favorability within the Democratic Party. Also, it was her voice on a national stage battling President Obama over an omnibus bill that Citigroup lobbyists "literally wrote." Unlike career politicians who'd rather cater to Wall Street than feel its wrath, Warren caused enough of a stir that investment banks threatened to withhold donations to Senate Democrats.
Wall Street actually threatened Senate Democrats because Elizabeth Warren was courageous enough to tackle its influence in American politics.
So, what was Warren's reaction?
The Massachusetts Senator remained steadfast in battling corporate greed and excess. According to a CNN Money article titled Elizabeth Warren Tells Wall Street: 'Bring it On', investment banks failed to intimidate the former Harvard professor:
Elizabeth Warren has a clear message for Wall Street:
"Bring it on."
The senator from Massachusetts said Monday that she will continue to call for financial reforms and for big Wall Street banks to be broken up, despite potential retaliation against Democratic candidates.
"You bet I believe it's a serious threat," Warren told a packed room at a Barnes & Noble in New York City's Union Square -- a few miles north of Wall Street.
"It is so brazen. If they think they can say in public, 'I don't like your tone, I don't like the way you talk about financial regulation' ... I got news for them: bring it on," the Democrat said.
Warren stressed that she only wants two things from Wall Street: banks shouldn't be able to cheat people, and no financial institution should be able to risk destroying the economy because it's too big to fail.
"If they want to fight on either one of those, I'm ready," she said to much applause.
Like Bernie Sanders, Warren wants to reinstate a Glass-Steagall Act and break up banks that control an inordinate amount of our nation's wealth. These goals are part of altering the structural foundation of wealth inequality in America; one can't begin to address the symptoms without addressing the root of the problem.
In contrast, Hillary Clinton is not in favor of reinstating a Glass-Steagall Act or breaking up "Too Big to Fail" banks. Also, POLITICO once referred to Clinton as "Wall Street Republicans' dark secret," so it's fair to say that the former Secretary of State is the antitheses of Sanders and Warren on reforming Wall Street.
In addition, Elizabeth Warren, like Sanders, is capable of bringing energy and enthusiasm to voters longing for a person who will battle entrenched corporate interests in Washington.
Even before Bernie Sanders energized millions of voters, I wrote an article titled Elizabeth Warren, not Hillary Clinton, Should Be the Next President of The United States. I also wrote an article in The Hill titled Why Elizabeth Warren should be the next president and another piece titled Democrats Need Elizabeth Warren. Not only would Warren make a wonderful Vice President, but she's infinitely more qualified than anyone on the GOP side for the presidency.
Voters want a president who will fight for them on a number of issues, especially the economy. When Ted Cruz and other Republicans are talking about the 1%, this topic has not only become mainstream, but also a key to winning the presidency in 2016. Both Democrats and Republicans are concerned about wealth inequality, it's a major issue for most Americans, and Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren have been at the forefront of this topic.
But this is all hyperbole, right?
Nobody will vote for a socialist, right?
First, to the GOP, every Democrat is a socialist, so being a Democratic-Socialist isn't a deal breaker in America today. Second, the same people who claim to be experts in politics never predicted a recent NBC/Wall Street Journal poll showing Bernie Sanders within 7 points of Clinton among Democratic primary voters.
After their inability to predict anything pertaining to Bernie Sanders, the naysayers nowadays gleefully declare that Sanders can't win a general election; ignorant of the fact Real Clear Politics has Sanders beating Trump in six out of nine (tying him in one) polls. Another NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll shows Sanders beating Trump by 16 points in a general election. A CNN/Opinion research poll has Sanders up 21 points over Trump on Election Day.
According to the RCP average, Bernie Sanders beats Donald Trump by 4.3 points.
In contrast, Clinton beats Trump by a lower RCP average of only 3.4 points.
Also, the latest CNN article about swing states in 2016 explains exactly why Bernie Sanders is better than Clinton in a general election:
But neither Clinton nor Trump fares as well as their top competitors in hypothetical general election match-ups in these three swing states.
...the former secretary of state trails retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson in both states, falls behind Rubio in Ohio and trails both former tech CEO Carly Fiorina and Bush in Pennsylvania...
Both front-runners, Trump and Clinton, have negative favorability ratings among all registered voters in these three key states, and most in all three say they have doubts about Trump's and Clinton's honesty.
Therefore, if the Democratic Party simply wants to run a popularity contest within its own party using yesterday's poll numbers, then Clinton might have the advantage over Sanders.
If Democrats actually want to win a general election, then only Bernie Sanders can save the Democratic Party in 2016.
Sanders beats Trump by a wider margin than Clinton, doesn't have a private server investigated by the FBI, and enjoys a loyal base of support from progressives throughout the nation. He's catching up to Clinton in terms of fundraising and doing so without ties to Wall Street or a super PAC. Bernie Sanders is already ahead in Iowa and New Hampshire and polling trajectory shows that both campaigns are going in opposite directions.
The notion that Clinton can win a general election, when swing state voters have "negative favorability ratings" and "doubts about Trump's and Clinton's honesty," seems to be an example of a flawed paradigm of thought.
A general election covers all kinds of voters; from independents to Republicans who at one time voted for Barack Obama. Bernie Sanders appeals not only to progressives, but also to independents and swing voters. A Sanders-Warren ticket won't be too liberal for America because according to Gallup, Americans continue To Say U.S. Wealth Distribution Unfair. This isn't 1999 and Bill Clinton didn't just team up with Phil Gramm to repeal Glass-Steagall. With Elizabeth Warren as his running mate, Bernie Sanders can go into a general election with an even greater focus upon rectifying the wrongs of previous Clinton and Bush administrations. It's time to picture a Sanders-Warren ticket, folks, because our democracy is still functioning, and we can still elect honest leaders.