Monday, May 11, 2015

Sanders: "I Am Running in This Election to Win"


Sen. Bernie Sanders announces his candidacy (via
Thom Hartmann, who adds his own comments)

by Gaius Publius

In too many places I've heard the speculative voices saying the Sanders candidacy isn't serious — that Bernie Sanders is running to "make a statement," or to "move Clinton to the left" (whatever that means in this world of post-2008 promises), or something.

So I did some digging, starting with this, from USA Today (my emphasis):
Bernie Sanders: 'I am running in this election to win'

... "I've been traveling around the country for the last year trying to ascertain whether there really is grass-roots support in terms of people standing up and being prepared to take on the billionaire class," the independent senator said in an interview Wednesday with USA TODAY as he prepared to officially announce his candidacy Thursday. "I believe that there is."

The fiery, 73-year-old Vermonter said Americans are disenchanted with "the greed of corporate America" and with a political establishment that doesn't talk about the issues that affect their lives. ...

"I am running in this election to win," he said. "We've got a long path forward. Most people in America have never heard of Bernie Sanders. More than 90% of Americans have heard of Hillary Clinton. ... I will absolutely be out-spent. But I do believe we have a chance to raise significant amounts of money through small, individual contributions."

About 60% of the money he received in his successful 2012 campaign for a second Senate term came from small contributions from individual donors, Sanders said. He won that election with 71% of the vote. ...

Sanders said it is up to Democratic voters — not him — to say whether he is a better candidate than Clinton, whom he did not criticize at all during the interview.
Then there's Thom Hartmann in the clip above. Hartmann has been interviewing Sanders for years in his weekly "Brunch with Bernie" segments. Hartmann says he's absolutely convinced that Sanders is running to be President.

Quoting from the clip above (starting at 5:25, though the lead-up is well worth listening to):
Do not ... do not ... underestimate Bernie Sanders. And do not think he's making this run to have an impact on Hillary Clinton. He is making this run because he's seriously running for President of the United States. As was Ross Perot in 1992. ... Ross Perot, on just one issue, trade, got 20% of the vote. ... And Ross Perot was a troglodyte on everything else....

So the question then becomes, where is America right now? Is America with Bernie Sanders? Or is America with all the various other people who have announced for president?
Then Hartmann goes through recent polling on issues that Sanders and progressives support. Turns out America strongly supports them too:

Should the government be able to negotiate drug prices for Medicare and Medicaid?
79% of Americans say Yes.

Give students the same low interest rates as big banks [less than 1%]?
78% of Americans say Yes.

Fair trade, not "free trade" [like NAFTA and TPP]?
75% of Americans say Yes.

End tax loopholes for corporations that ship jobs overseas?
74% of Americans say Yes.

End gerrymandering?
73% of Americans say Yes.

There were many more items like that, he said. It's clear to me that on the issues America is with Bernie Sanders.

Sanders Is Running to Win

I'm hearing this a lot from people who know or have watched Sanders closely — that this run is real. It's not a vanity run. It's not a windmill run.

Lindsey Graham contemplating his
candidacy, or Sancho Panza, or both

It's an issues run, like Ross Perot's in 1992, by a man strongly motivated by issues the country strongly supports. If he's going to lose, he will have to be made to lose — by Clinton, or the media, or both.

The game is on. Let the people decide. (If you wish to add your weight to the Sanders side, you can help out here.)


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At 8:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

B.S. (Bernie Sanders)! If he were effectively campaigning, he'd have already exercised his Senator's 'secret' HOLD, To STOP TPP, cold! (Same for Lizzie Warrin' Piece, who, with B.S. and a few more putative "progressive" goodoleboys; could FiliBuster the TPP and TTIP turkeys to an early Thanksgiving platter)!! It's ALL Wall $treet-theater!!!


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