What a Race! Clinton and Sanders Are Neck-and-Neck in California
A Sanders fan in Koreatown
File photo by Ted Soqui/L.A. Weekly
We said Sen. Bernie Sanders doesn't have a chance in California. We scoffed at you custom T-shirt–wearing hipsters who treat the old man from Vermont as if he's about to get on the turntables at Electric Daisy Carnival. We laughed at the righteousness of the so-called Bernie bros.
Welp, who's laughing now?
It looks like this is a real, honest-to-goodness race, at least as far as winning the Democratic presidential primary in California goes.
At one time Hillary Clinton was a near shoo-in in the Golden State.
This is not that time. A new Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) poll has Sanders trailing Clinton among likely Democratic and independent primary voters by only two percentage points.
Clinton is favored by 46 percent compared with 44 percent for Sanders. Wow! What a close race. Sanders is creeping up along the outside as if he has L.A.'s own Victor Espinoza on his back.
The poll of 1,704 likely California voters has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percent, which means the distance between the candidates here is essentially nothing. They're in a virtual tie.
When independents are taken out of the mix, however, Clinton leads 49 percent to Sanders' 41 percent, PPIC says.
To give you a little sense of perspective, in March the USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll had Clinton leading Sanders 45 percent to 37 percent among registered Democrats and those likely to vote Democrat.
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While common wisdom said Donald Trump was inspiring young Latinos to register to vote (against him), the Sanders campaign recently took credit for a jolt in Golden State voter registrations.
Again, we doubted. Again, maybe we were wrong. PPIC:
Voters age 45 and older are more likely to support Clinton (59 percent), while younger voters are more likely to favor Sanders (66 percent). Both men (46 percent Sanders, 42 percent Clinton) and women (49 percent Clinton, 42 percent Sanders) are divided.
Latinos, the PPIC found, were still "slightly" more likely to vote for Clinton. She leads among likely Latino voters 52 percent to Sanders' 43 percent.
Primary day is June 7. Vote. Continue to prove us wrong. We're gluttons for punishment, bros.
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