Who knows whether Trump and Sanders will actually go head-to-head, after Trump last night offhandedly agreed to a debate for “charity” on Jimmy Kimmel’s show and Sanders quickly accepted the offer.
For Sanders, the calculation is simple. He needs some kind of boost before the California primary on June 7. Debating Trump could prove his claim that he’d be a better general election candidate than Clinton, while his “anytime, anywhere” fighting spirit would contrast well with Clinton’s reluctance to participate in another debate.
But debating Trump is no fun. Yesterday he said Mitt Romney walks “like a penguin,” the kind of belittling, dead-on, ad hominem attack that Sanders is not accustomed to. He could leave the debate stage firmly branded as “Crazy Bernie,” as Trump likes to call him. And the whole charade could cast him as a novelty act, not a serious candidate.
Still, he has little to lose. And needless to say, I would watch the hell out of a Sanders-Trump debate.