Assuming that existing polls hold (there is a paucity of polls in the remaining primaries—there’s only really data for CT, MD, PA, CA, and NJ, and absolutely nothing from all of May) and using the national polling data as a guide for how the states without data will go (538 has Clinton at 49.4% and Sanders at 41.7% nationally which will be wildly inaccurate in a lot of states—a lot of those smaller states will probably go heavily towards Sanders—but it’s all we’ve got) there’s no realistic way for Clinton to get 2,383 pledged delegates before the convention (she’ll probably have just under 2,000 pledged delegates by the end of the DC primary.)
Counting declared superdelegates, the earliest she’ll hit 2,383 is during the June 7th primaries. This is probably the earliest possible time that Sanders might consider conceding. (It’s about when Clinton decided to concede in 2008.)
The Clinton inevitability narrative is likely to push the Clinton and Sanders camps further and further apart. It reinforces the idea that the Democratic establishment is corrupt by trying to end the contest before it’s actually over, and Sanders is already playing up the idea that the whole process is corrupt. While Clinton is most likely going to win the first ballot at the convention, it might very well be a Pyrrhic victory depending on how her camp approaches it.
Well, I suppose pushing the Clinton inevitability narrative is one way to rile up all the Sanders voters in the next 15 primaries.1
In any case, to cement her legitimacy, especially if her candidacy is truly inevitable—in which case she has nothing to lose—it would do well for Clinton to run the process to the end anyway.
The last thing she needs is being constantly viciously attacked by Sanders supporters at same time Trump sets his sights on her.2