Sen. Feinstein: 'I don't want to go back to the '68 convention'

The fallout continues from the rowdy Democratic convention in Nevada last weekend. There is growing concern within the party that Nevada could be just a preview of a disastrous national convention this summer unless Bernie Sanders and his supporters stand down. Wednesday, Senator Barbara Boxer, who was a speaker at the event, claimed on CNN that she feared for her own safety. The Hill reports:

“There was no way to control what was happening,” she said on CNN. “I did fear for my safety and I, fortunately, had a lot of security around me. I’ve never really had anything like this happen before.”

Boxer also gave a partial (and self-serving) explanation of what happened at the event saying,”I tried very hard to get things under control. I told the crowd that Bernie and Hillary had asked for civility and that didn’t help.” She continued, “I said Bernie is my friend, he’s my good friend, and they still booed.” What Boxer left out is what happened next.

As you can see in video Jazz published last weekend, Boxer quickly gave up trying to make peace with the crowd and began to troll them saying, “Let’s hear it for Hillary Clinton. All right! We have the votes. We have the voice. We have victory. Yeah!” As the crowd continued to boo (while Boxer smiled) she added, “You know something, I grew up in Brooklyn. I am not afraid of bullies. I’m for Hillary Clinton cause she’s for all of us. So keep on booing and boo yourselves out of this election.”

Looking at the Nevada clip, Boxer seemed more angry than afraid, but it’s not hard to guess why a Clinton supporter would want to recast events to make it seem as if Bernie Bros have lost their minds. That’s a story that helps Hillary Clinton the longer it stays in the spotlight. It’s a way to make sure those boos wind up booing Bernie right out of the election, as Boxer suggested should happen.

The party isn’t really worried about what happened in Nevada. After all, most of what we’ve seen came in the form of bad cell phone videos. The big picture here is that Democrats are getting nervous because the Sanders/Clinton divide is not going away. On the contrary, the schism appears to be growing more bitter and angry by the week. If that trend continues right up to their nationally televised convention, it would obviously be a disaster for Hillary Clinton and the Democratic party. So the party is eager to shut this down now and, if possible, shame Sanders into backing off. That’s why Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and Clinton surrogates like Boxer are leaning so hard on Nevada.

But the concern Bernie won’t back down is obviously real. Later in the day, CNN asked Sen. Dianne Feinstein if she was worried where the Sanders-Clinton divide was headed this summer and she replied, “It worries me a great deal. You know, I don’t want to go back to the ’68 convention, because I worry about what it does to the electorate as a whole — and he should, too.” In other words, the way this is going we could see riots at our convention and, if we do, Democrats could lose this election.