Rachel Bitecofer is the new hot pollster (she precisely predicted the 2018 mid-term results when no one else did) and Stephanie Ruhle introduced her this morning to talk about last night's results.
"It's exactly what I anticipated was going to happen, based on the Super Tuesday results," Bitecofer said.
"Biden just basically locking in the nomination. It was really evident to me that the Sanders revolution was going to hit the same brick wall that it hit in 2016. That's the ability to translate it into a broader appeal to the more mainstream elements of the party -- Biden is in a strong position to be the nominee at this point."
"Senator Sanders may not have broadened out his coalition, but those who support him are diehard Sanders supporters. This youth vote is a movement. What does VP Biden need to do in order to bridge that gap? It's huge," Ruhle said.
"You're absolutely right. I think like where the Biden campaign could end up getting astray is in this illusion he's converting a lot of Republicans, right?" Bitecofer warned.
"That's certainly not what we saw in 2018. We saw a suburban realignment mostly powered by turnout and demographic changes in the suburbs. Millennials and Gen-Z voters, Latinos, college educated women, voters of color and younger voters showing up. I think it's tempting to get into the cross-tabs against Democratic primary voters and see things that don't exist. White working-class voters moving towards Biden, right? We're talking about a subset of the white working class electorate that's not necessarily transferable.
"We look at the Trump returns in some of these election returns in Washington, and rural counties, Trump, in a noncompetitive primary, got way more votes in some of the rural places than the entire Democratic field did last night. It really does indicate that the realignment of the Democrats in the urbans/suburban areas and Republicans in rural areas is a major play. That means Biden should be thinking about how do I bring in that Sanders coalition, especially those younger voters, and get them excited about a candidacy that is frankly, you know, not that attractive to them because Biden -- it's not that he's moderate, but that he's a little bit boring, right?"
Ruhle noted that Bitecofer wrote that the most important olive branch is a liberal Dem. "So who would a VP be?"
"So most voters do not care about issues, frankly," she said. "A lot of people get bogged down into issues. But the fact of the matter is, what motivates people at the mass level, I argue, is big things like fear of Trump, negative partisanship, being in power, out of power. There are a set of people for whom issues do matter. For these young Bernie people, issues do matter."
She said Biden's best play at bringing in the Sanders voters is to have someone on the ticket who is going to represent a more progressive platform, someone like Kamala Harris or Stacey Abrams. "Somebody who is not a white male, right? Preferably not white. The party is very diverse."
She pointed out that Harris and Abrams "hit three metrics at once."