Stephanopoulos: Sanders Wins over Clinton 'Bogging Her Campaign Down'

May 11, 2016

Back-to-back primary victories for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) in Indiana and West Virginia over Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton are "bogging her campaign down," ABC anchor George Stephanopoulos said Wednesday.

With a rout Tuesday in West Virginia, Sanders has won 19 primaries and caucuses, but he still trails Clinton by more than 700 delegates. He is slightly behind in the pledged delegate count, but Clinton has a large lead among Democratic"superdelegates" that prefer the more establishment candidate.

Sanders told supporters Tuesday night that there was still a path to catching Clinton up with the pledged delegates, but ABC reporter Cecilia Vega explained Sanders needs to win 98 percent of the remaining delegates to clinch the nomination.

"This is an uphill climb to say the least. As much as Hillary Clinton would like to put this primary fight behind her, still a long ways away," Vega said.

"Bernie Sanders cannot catch up, can't get 98 percent of the delegates, and the Clinton team's explaining away this loss in West Virginia," Stephanopoulos said. "But it is bogging her campaign down."

Stephanopoulos formerly worked for Bill Clinton's White House as a communications aide and contributed $75,000 to the Clinton Foundation.

Vega said Clinton campaign made the excuse that West Virginia wasn't strong demographically for her anyway, but she won the state in a rout over Barack Obama in 2008. Clinton's March town hall remarks about putting coal miners out of business contributed to her loss to Sanders.

"The reality is she's got a real problem going forward," Vega said. "She's had a hard time winning over white working-class voters, George, and that, as you know, is a group that Donald Trump has done especially well with."

Sanders' effect on moving Clinton to the left continued in the past week, when she expressed support for the "public option" where people as young as 50 could buy into Medicare. Sanders espouses a single-payer Medicare-for-all system.