My Man Bernie Sanders: He’s Just Different
Vermont independent senator, Bernie Sanders, will hope primarily to make sure the left is well accounted for in the Democratic primary, and to ensure that presumptive nominee, Hillary Clinton is challenged at least in the short term.
He’s said Hillary isn’t prepared “to take on the billionaire class.” (she’s not) nor is Clinton likely to oppose the ratification of new free-trade agreements (she didn’t), to fight for the working man (she’ll have to as that is the crux of the unassailable “Obama Coalition” she’ll need to hold together), or even to tell the public what she actually believes. Sanders astutely points out that no one knows what she’s even campaigning on. (we don’t)
It’s become about electability, but Bernie presents himself to the public as he actually is which is the exact opposite of what success (reelection) has come to mean. Sanders says what he means. He’s not a “liberal” nor a “progressive” but a “democratic socialist.” Moderation is not his thing.
Sanders favors single-payer health care and voted proudly against DOMA way back in the day. He has joined Rand Paul in calling for an audit of the Federal Reserve, He is 100% in favor of amnesty, and he has proposed that the federal government should further regulate ownership of the media.
Sanders is frank, forthright, interesting, transparent, intellectually curious, and skeptical. In other words, fantastic. A debate over where the Democratic Party is headed must have Bernie Sanders and his point of view represented.
Of Course, We All Know, He Can’t Win
Forget the fundraising which is obvious he won’t have the longer the election goes. Bernie helps Hillary Clinton any way you look at it. If Sanders fervently advocates for the progressive base, Hillary gets to look like the consummate moderate she is. The kind of Democrat that wins the White house post Civil Rights (Jimmy Carter aside). If Sanders goes the Carter lovable old man rout, Hillary gets to show how she deals with her opponents with grace and civility.
Sanders Is A Leftist’s Leftist
Hillary will have to adopt some things into both her campaign and platform that she doesn’t necessarily want to. While there is no doubt of this, it is also not in doubt that the country as a whole is center right and always has been. It’s why all of the Presidents before this last one have been old, rich and white.
Sanders is in the mold of 1972 Democratic candidate George McGovern an unabashed liberal who, in the general election, lost the influence of establishment Democratic Party figures due to challenging them struggling to get endorsements from figures such as former President Johnson and Chicago mayor Richard J. Daley. Same thing would happen to Bernie if he somehow managed to gain traction in the primary which is why; unfortunately, Bernie is running a campaign for purpose and not necessarily to win.