These are the extraordinary scenes outside a sports stadium in Sacramento, California last Monday nights as thousands queued to hear a speech and rally held by Bernie Sanders, whose bid to wrest the Democratic nomination has largely been written off by the mainstream media.
An estimated 21,000 people turned up to the event as the Democratic primary campaign in California hots up to its conclusion June 7th.
While Hillary Clinton holds a lead in delegates, her lead has been inflated by the inclusion of over 400 so-called ‘superdelegates’, Democratic officials and party loyalists, the vast majority of whom were committed to Clinton before the primary race even began.
Take away the ‘superdelegates’ and her lead is much smaller. Add on to that this week’s censure of Clinton by the State Department for unauthorised use of a private email system and her lead is in even greater peril.
Clinton had, in public statements, given the impression that she had State Dept approval for the private server she used for her emails but now it seems that at the least she misled, at the worst lied about this, diminishing her already tarnished reputation as a truth-teller.
Perhaps the most significant aspect of these scenes is that they happened before this week’s new chapter in the Hillary email scandal, an embrassment that may soon be awarded that most unwelcome and notorious of suffixes and become known as ‘Servergate’.
If ‘Servergate’ continues to roll on Bernie Sanders’ chances in California will look rosier by the day, making the primary race outcome an increasingly nerve-wracking affair for the Clinton camp.
Should Sanders come close to Hillary’s toll of elected delegates, the pressure on ‘superdelegates’ to switch sides could significantly increase.