Tony Blair warned Democrats in the US that nominating Bernie Sanders to face Donald Trump for the presidency would be “a huge gamble”, a defeat on a similar scale suffered by the Labor Party under Jeremy Corbyn Is endangering.
The former prime minister told CNN’s Fareed Zakaria: “When I hear rhetoric around Bernie Sanders, who is a competent man, it is familiar to anyone who is just a loser in the British Labor Party and Britain I have seen our election defeat, which is essentially the worst in our 120-year history.
In December, in an election focused primarily on Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union, Corbyn’s Labor Party was heavily beaten by Bois Johnson conservatives.
Response to Blair’s comments on social media was swift, with many pointing out that Sanders’ signature policy — Universal Health Care — had been a feature of life in Britain since the founding of the publicly funded National Health Service in 1949. Critics also point out that British leftists gained support after Tony Blair began limited privatization in the NHS.
Sanders, an independent senator from Vermont who describes himself as a democratic socialist, rose early in the Democratic primaries and was an outspoken pioneer after the Nevada caucus in February.
But Joe Biden has mounted a surprise comeback, dominating Super Tuesday primaries and subsequent competitions.
The senator and former vice president will debate behind closed doors in Washington on Sunday night amid the growing chaos of the outbreak of the coronavirus and Trump’s attempts to stop it. The next votes will be in Florida, Ohio, Arizona and Illinois on Tuesday.
An NBC / Wall Street Journal poll released Sunday showed Biden leading the way with Democratic voters and outperforming Sanders in the fictional race against Trump.
But the Vermont senator has said that he would not drop out, instead of stumbling on Biden to shape the party’s ideological outlook on issues such as health care, student loans and minimum pay and perhaps to rise back into controversy.
Like establishment figures and liberals in the Democratic ranks, Tony Blair is sceptical of the wisdom of that decision.
He said, “I don’t think there is a hunger for a socialist revolution.” Wasn’t in Britain, I’d be surprised if there were in America. And so I think … if they go down that path it’s a huge gamble.
“Put it this way: You’re essentially saying, ‘Put the middle ground on one side, we’re not really going to try to reach that. Instead, we’re going to vote, and that’s actually the Corbyn Labor Party in Britain, And it has failed, entirely. “
Biden has attracted a large percentage of liberals, independents, suburban voters, and African Americans, with many seemingly simply choosing the candidate prompted the most likely to beat Trump in November.
Sanders has done well among the youth but has not yielded the hopes of a surge in voting from such voters.
Blair said, “That’s why I’m a bit confused about him.
“Now, on the other hand, I think what is important to recognize is that progressive politics has got two significant challenges.
“First of all, my view of populism is that you have to be very careful when you’re from the liberal or progressive side of politics, because if you’re not careful you say,” These people who are for Donald Trump or Brexit They are voting, they are just irrational people, I do not understand why they are doing this, and you are just hoping that a moment passes.
“No, they are doing this for reasons, and while populism complains, they cannot exploit them invention. The complaints are genuine.
Blair said he knew Biden well and thought him “highly capable and cultured”, but said it would be a challenge to effect real change while in the office if he did the White House victory.
Blair also said that he is “a passionate believer that if the left goes down the path of trying to fight a culture war with the right, it will lose wide and it really shouldn’t do that.”
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