WASHINGTON — Rev. Al Sharpton said he has decided not to “estimate” what Trump is going to do in a general election and urged Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton to “energize” her base.
“I’m looking forward — it’s going to be quite a run. I think it’s going to be eventful and I think it’s going to be a matter of who brings their base out,” Sharpton told PJM at the MSNBC White House Correspondents’ Dinner after party.
When asked if he thinks Trump has a shot at beating Clinton in the general election, Sharpton said, “Well, I mean, he’s already surprised most of us. I never thought he would go this far so I’m not going to estimate what he would do in the election. But I’m not going to underestimate what he would do if he were president, so people need to go out and vote.”
Sharpton also had some advice for Clinton.
“She’s going to have to bring her base out. She’s got to really talk about jobs, she’s going to have to talk about the economy, she’s going to have to talk about criminal justice, she’s going to have to energize her base,” he said.
As Politico and others have pointed out, it is not possible for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) to win the nomination with pledged delegates.
Despite this, Democratic National Committee Chairwomen Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) said it is too early to count him out.
“Mathematically, he’s not eliminated at this point, actually, so we’re going to continue to mutually manage this primary as we have throughout the election,” she said.
Wasserman Schultz said the DNC is going to let the remaining primaries play out and leave campaign decisions up to the candidates.
“We have 14 primaries left and we’re going to let those play out and let the candidates make those decisions on their own,” she said before the Indiana primary took place.
Sanders attended the dinner while Trump and Clinton skipped the event. However, Trump’s sons, Donald Jr. and Eric, attended.
PJM caught up with Gov. Larry Hogan (R-Md.) before the dinner began. Hogan said he would not be speaking about any specific issues with lawmakers at the event.
“I’m hoping to hear some really funny jokes from the president and other people and I’m going to try not to talk about any policy at all. We’re going to try to have a good time. Last year at this time I had to skip this dinner because riots broke out in Baltimore and I declared a state of emergency, so tonight it’s all about just having fun,” he said.
Hogan was asked if Maryland could use the help of the federal government in any specific areas.
“We’re doing great. We’re now leading the nation in job creation and that’s our No. 1 issue is turning our economy around. We’ve been doing great in our state but we could use some help from the Feds to do that as well,” he said.