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What do Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump Have in Common?

Saturday, September 05, 2015

 

Donald Trump

Coverage surrounding the races for both the Democratic and Republican Presidential nomination has been dominated by two unlikely outsiders: Bernie Sanders, the Independent, Socialist Senator from Vermont, and Donald Trump, the outspoken businessman-turned-celebrity-turned-politician from New York. 

The pair seem to be almost polar opposites, but a closer look reveals more similarities than first meet the eye.

“They are both certainly doing something right,” said John Horvick, Vice President and Political Director of DHM Research, a Portland-based political research and polling firm told GoLocal. “They both represent frustrations with the status quo…that outsider label of someone that’s very critical of the establishment applies to both of them.”

Starting the Same

Both declared their candidacies earlier than many of their more established primary opponents, giving them a chance to grab the front page early. Since the campaigns have kicked off in earnest, both have stayed in the mainstream consciousness with radical ideas and harsh criticism of the Obama administration and the rest of the political establishment.

Both candidates’ supporters have been many and outspoken. Last month, Sanders packed the Moda Center, and treated the record setting crowd to a fiery and impassioned speech. He has so far been the only true opponent to Hilary Clinton, and has seized on weaknesses shown by the former Secretary of State.

Trump had butted heads with nearly every other Republican in the field at one time or another. He’s also brought on controversy by advocating for harsh immigration regulations including the building of a protective wall on the border between the United States and Mexico.

“They both have been making people feel good about being on the outside,” Horvick said. “I think Sanders has actually made Democrats feel good about being democrats…and Trump has made people feel good about being frustrated with government.”

Bernie Sanders

Ending the Same

Clinton’s favorability rating among U.S. stands at just 41 percent, according to a recent Gallup poll, and Sanders is making up ground, passing Clinton for first place in a poll of New Hampshire democratic voters released earlier this week. 

Despite his controversial stands, Trump has lead polls for much of the early goings and may gain legitimacy after signing a pledge not to run as a third-party candidate if he does not secure the Republican nomination.

According to another Gallup poll, Trump's favoribility has grown from a 56 percent mark among Republicans in July to a 63% mark among the same group as of September 1.  He is not equally popular among Republicans, however.

Men in the party like Trump far more than women. He has a 70 percent approval rating among Republican men, up from 59 percent in July. Among women, his favorability is just 54 percent, down slightly from his July figure of 56 percent.

Horvick said he would not be surprised if despite their early popularity and success, they find the same disappointing final result. 

“I think the odds are that neither of them will be their party’s nominee,” he said, noting that Trump’s party mates are beginning to catch up, and that Clinton still leads Sanders in the polls and in fundraising. 

“History would say that these are not the types of candidates that end up running in the general election.”

Not Entirely Similiar

Horvick, of DHM, said that in spite of their similarities, the two still share plenty of differences.

“When you think about Donald Trump’s campaign, it’s been all about Donald Trump,” he said. “It’s not about his vision or what his plan. It’s been about him, how he’s a winner and a great manager and how successful he has been already.”

Sanders has been singing a different tune, Horvick said, one more centered on his plans to fix some of the problems ailing America. 

“With Sanders, its all be about his vision,” he said. “It’s been about the economic problems this country is facing and his plan and his solutions for them.”

 

Related Slideshow: Bernie Sanders Rallies in Portland

The Bernie Sanders rally at the Moda Center in Portland drew the largest crowd its campaign has seen yet.  Upwards of 28,000 people showed up to the event with many being turned away and watching his speech on a screen in the spillover section.

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Sanders supporter Shelley Withee said that "he stands for everything the people really stand for.”

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Many Sanders enthusiasts who were present at the rally had choice words about Hillary.  “Democrats are forming another branch – a smarter branch. Hillary represents the corporate democrat. I believe in the social democrat and so does my grandma who is 87,” said Brett Bottorff.

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Don't Shoot Portland organizer Teressa Raiford Mazique was arrested yesterday on the anniversary of Michael Brown's death.

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The eager crowd did "the wave" in anticipation of Sanders.

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Union member Dinah Foley spoke in support of Sanders.

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PCUN member Jaime Arredondo spoke on Bernie's commitment to supporting immigrant and farm worker rights.

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Climate justice activist Mia Reback spoke in support of Sanders.

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Spokeswoman Symone Sanders

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Bernie Sanders and wife Jane O'Meara Sanders

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Sanders spoke of a broad range of social justice issues yesterday.

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Addressing the prison industrial complex in America, Sanders said “we have more people in jail than any other country on earth. I want to see this country not have more people in jail, but more people in jobs and education.”

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“That’s what this campaign is about. It’s bringing people together for a political revolution,” said Sanders.

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“We live in one of the wealthiest nations in the world –but not many people feel that. We are going to change that,” said Sanders when discussing the disparity in wealth in America.

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Don't Shoot Portland organizers attended the rally on the anniversary of Michael Brown's death.

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“It will make life easier for fourth graders from Portland who will know they will make it to the middle class,” said Sanders.

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After his speech Sanders shook hands and took pictures with supporters.

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