Sources close to the Sanders campaign have reported that the Vermont Senator will begin laying off a large part of his staff starting Wednesday. The reports indicate that at least half of his staff will be laid off in the wake of Clinton’s victories in New Jersey and California, though some of them might be offered jobs in Sanders’ Senate office.
A lot of the staff members who are being laid off are advance staff who often help with the logistics of setting up a campaign, but a lot of the field staff, who often handle phone calls and door to door campaigning, are being laid off as well.
The reports of the layoff came after Clinton’s victory on Tuesday where she won the majority of delegates in California and New Jersey. It is important to note that despite Clinton’s strong lead, she does not have enough pledged delegates to earn the nomination. She currently has 2,184 compared to Sanders 1,804. There are 158 pledged delegates still available and 2,383 are needed to win the nomination.
Clinton, who has been declared the party’s nominee by many in the media, such as the AP, does have the support of more than 500 super delegates, which is what puts her over the top. Super delegates are party officials who can support either candidate. The super delegates will not vote until the Democratic National Convention, which will be held the last week of July.
Despite the layoffs, Sanders is not ending his campaign and is hoping to be able to sway the super delegates to his side. Sanders will argue that he is the strongest candidate to face Donald Trump in November. It is an argument that Sanders has made throughout this primary season and it’s one that the poll numbers back up. The majority of polls have Sanders defeating Trump by a larger margin than Clinton does. A spokesman for the campaign, Micheal Briggs, reiterated this plan during a statement at a Sanders rally that was held on Monday in San Francisco.
‘Our job from now until the convention is to convince those superdelegates that Bernie is by far the strongest candidate against Donald Trump’
Sanders has a long road ahead of him if he hopes to convince the party’s super delegates to back him over Clinton, as many of them have been strong supporters of her campaign since she first announced her candidacy. The Clintons have enjoyed strong support among the Democratic Party since Bill Clinton’s election in 1992. Whether or not Sanders can persuade the party’s leadership to back him remains to be seen, but it is a long shot.
A spokesman for the Sanders campaign, Briggs, has said that the senator is planning on heading back to Vermont on Wednesday, but will be back on the campaign trail by Thursday when he will head to Washington, DC. Sanders is planning on holding several rallies in Washington DC, which holds the last primary on June 14th.