by William Sullivan
You may have noticed a curious trend recently, usually exhibited by “moderate” progressive pundits, which involves comparing the candidacies of Donald Trump in 2016 and Bernie Sanders in 2020. The most recent I’ve seen is by Andrew Sullivan at New York Magazine, where he celebrates the Democratic establishment having consolidated power behind the embarrassingly senile Joe Biden, which effectively crippled Bernie’s candidacy on Super Tuesday. “If only Trump’s rivals had exercised that discipline in the GOP primaries four years ago,” Sullivan playfully muses.
Like the Democrats in 2020, he argues, the Republicans in 2016 faced an “insistent and ascendant insurgency from its populist wing,” but the GOP was “unable to winnow the field and coalesce behind a single opponent to Trump, then staggering backward into submission.”