The latest Morning Consult poll of New Hampshire found that Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is running closer than the experts expected to Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire. Sanders trails Clinton by just ten points, 42%-32% in the Granite State.
According to Morning Consult, “But in the state that provided Clinton her biggest boost in 2008, the margin is much closer: Among voters who say they will participate in New Hampshire’s Democratic primary, 44 percent choose Clinton, while 32 percent pick Sanders, who hails from neighboring Vermont.”
This is definitely some of the neighboring state effect happening in New Hampshire, but the polling also shows that the support for Sanders is very real. Sanders is polling at 12% in Iowa and 10% in South Carolina. Those numbers on their own aren’t good enough, but if he pulls a New Hampshire surprise, the primaries in South Carolina and beyond could tighten up a bit.
To the surprise of many in the pundit class, Democrats may have a contest in New Hampshire. None of this is surprising to Sanders himself, who said earlier this month that he was going to win New Hampshire, “Let me tell you a secret: We’re going to win New Hampshire.”
The Clintoncentric media will try to turn Sanders’ strength into a story about Hillary Clinton’s weakness, but they will be missing the point. Sen. Sanders is tapping into a very real feeling in this country right now. It isn’t that Hillary Clinton is strong or weak, but that there are millions of people who are still reeling from the Great Recession. Bernie Sanders is speaking to them.
Bernie Sanders could win New Hampshire, and I believe it will take a primary win in order for the media to take his campaign seriously. The message is the reason why Sen. Sanders has a chance to pull off a primary upset. The messenger may not win the nomination, but the message could change America.