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Elections Podcast: Is The 2016 Democratic Primary As Nasty As The 2008 Democratic Primary?

We convene an emergency session of our elections podcast that asks: Is the 2016 Democratic primary nastier than the 2008 Democratic primary? Jody Avirgan, Clare Malone, Nate Silver and Micah Cohen compare how Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are attacking each other to how Clinton and then-Sen. Barack Obama sparred. We also discuss the role of social media in this year’s contest.

Some of the polling we discussed this episode:

  • A March 2008 Gallup poll shows that 28 percent of Clinton supporters say they would vote for John McCain over Obama, and 19 percent of Obama supporters say they would vote for McCain over Clinton.
  • A 2016 Marist poll asks Sanders and Clinton supporters if they would vote for the other candidate in the general election.
  • A New York Times/CBS poll from this year finds that 40 percent of Democrats think the tone of this primary has been more positive than previous primaries, and 48 percent think it’s about the same.

You can listen to the episode by clicking the “play” button above or by downloading it in Apple Podcasts, the ESPN App or your favorite podcast platform. If you are new to podcasts, learn how to listen.

The FiveThirtyEight Elections podcast publishes Monday evenings, with occasional special episodes throughout the week. Help new listeners discover the show by leaving us a rating and review on Apple Podcasts. Have a comment, question or suggestion for “good polling vs. bad polling”? Get in touch by email, on Twitter or in the comments.

Jody Avirgan hosts and produces podcasts for FiveThirtyEight.