After a near-tie in Iowa with Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT) that some in the New Jersey legislature are calling a defeat in disguise for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Senator Loretta Weinberg (D-37) said that her support for Clinton is unshakeable. Despite Clinton’s wafer-thin, tenth-of-a-percent margin of victory over a progressive candidate many described as a longshot months ago, Weinberg believes that Clinton will secure the nomination down the line.
“The race was tight, but Hillary Clinton was the winner, which sets the stage for her to do much better than she did eight years ago when she lost the Iowa caucuses,” said Weinberg, referring to the primary loss that played a huge part in Clinton losing the Democratic nomination to then-Illinois Senator Barack Obama.
As for next week’s contest in New Hampshire, Weinberg stopped short of predicting another strong showing for Sanders, but acknowledged the advantages he will bring to the table a New England primary.
“I think New Hampshire is a different kind of a primary, and it is the neighboring state to where Senator Sanders has been the senator for so long, so it’s a different kind of place. But I believe that Hillary Clinton is going to be the nominee of the Democratic Party for President of the United States.”
Weinberg said that the Clinton-Sanders rivalry recalled the 1968 primary contest between Robert Kennedy and the outwardly anti-war Eugene McCarthy, when she chose Kennedy for the same reason she is now choosing Clinton.
“I remember saying to some friends as some of my colleagues in those years signed up for Gene McCarthy and I signed up for Robert Kennedy, saying I would rather have a pragmatist representing my ideals than an idealist representing my ideals,” she said.
“There might be a few bumps in the road while she gets there. But I think Bernie Sanders has done a terrific job of keeping the issue of income inequality in the spotlight.”
As for Trump’s second-place showing behind Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), Weinberg said that while she won’t call it a nail in real estate mogul’s coffin, she feels encouraged by the sight of Trump finally being put to the test.
“Anything that takes Trump down is a positive step as far as I’m concerned. I think it is the most weird campaign. I watch as much as anybody else does by watching TV and reading the new, and I see a man who says nothing but ‘We should close our borders’ and ‘Everybody likes me.’ It’s a very peculiar campaign.”