Shut It Down! Clyburn And Carville Say Dem Primary Is Over

UNITED STATES - DECEMBER 6: House Majority Whip James Clyburn, D-S.C., attends a news conference in the Capitol on the Voting Rights Advancement Act on Friday, December 6, 2019. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-SC) attends a news conference in the Capitol on the Voting Rights Advancement Act on December 6, 2019. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)
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It’s time to wrap up the primary fight, according to two prominent Democrats.

Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-SC), who endorsed former Vice President Joe Biden ahead of the South Carolina primary, is calling for the Democratic National Committee to “shut this primary down” after Biden racked up a series of wins on Tuesday, including the key state of Michigan.

In an interview with NPR Tuesday, Clyburn said that at the end of the night, Biden will reach a point where he is “the prohibitive nominee of the party.”

Clyburn argued that “the DNC should then step in, make an assessment and determine whether or not they ought to have any more debates” following Biden’s wins, which came a week after his strong showing on Super Tuesday.

And it’s not just Clyburn — political consultant James Carville took to MSNBC Tuesday night to argue that “very clearly” voters are saying they “want to shut this thing down.” Carville appeared on the network shortly after Biden clinched Michigan, Missouri and Mississippi.

“I mean, you can just look all across the spectrum of the Democratic Party and people are saying: we’ve made our decision, this is who we’re going with,” Carville said, before adding that Sanders may not break the delegate threshold in Mississippi.

Clyburn and Carville’s sentiments reflect a growing divide within the Democratic Party. While Biden has capitalized on his time as vice president during the Obama administration and has garnered a slew of endorsements, Sanders has marketed himself as the candidate leading a political revolution. But after Biden’s wins over the past two weeks, it may be nearly impossible for Sanders to overcome the delegate gap. Sanders has relied on the support of young people, who overwhelmingly support the Vermont senator. But in Michigan, voters under the age of 30 made up just 16% of the electorate. Among those voters, Sanders received 77% to Biden’s 19%.

TPM reached out to the Sanders campaign for comment and will update this post if we hear back.

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Notable Replies

  1. Avatar for noonm noonm says:

    Not a fan of Bernie, but I have to disagree with this one.

    The Dem 2020 Turnout Machine is being built, state-by-state. Get the people to vote in the primaries and you’re going to get them to turn out in November.

    I am ok with Biden shifting to more of a general election focus. Also, no need for additional debates, I have no interest in Biden and Sanders yelling at each other for an hour.

  2. its time for Jim Clyburn and James Carville to STFU.

    We haven’t had a single Bernie v Biden debate — and in the last two debates, no one challenged Biden at all, because everyone thought he was toast.

    give people a chance to express their views – and their displeasure with Biden. Its up to Bernie to decide when Bernie is done, not Democratic establishment hacks like Clyburn and Carville.


    absolutely disagree with this. When Biden was challenged in the early debates, his support fell apart. He only did well in the more recent debates because everyone ignored him – going after Bloomberg and Sanders instead.

    Biden needs to show that he is up to the job – and up to a campaign against Donald Trump. But if he acts as addled as he did last night with Lawrence O’Donnell, the party needs to find a replacement pronto.

  3. I wonder what the Bernie Bros will do when Bernie himself endorses Joe: accuse Bernie of being “the Establishment”?

  4. Biden was fine on O’Donnell last night.

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