As America continues its attempt at Democracy, alliances of the acceptable are not just the best option; it’s existential. Bernie supporting Biden early coalesces the movement for ultimate victory.
Bernie is progressive and pragmatic.
I took a lot of flak from the very progressive portion of my audience for supporting Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez‘s and Ilhan Omar‘s early support for President Joe Biden’s reelection. It hit the fan when Bernie Sanders went on CNN’s State of the Union with Dana Bash. Some could not understand why in addition to supporting their positions, I wholeheartedly agreed with them.
Progressives have a constancy of headwinds. Our fight is not just with Right Wing fascists but with neoliberals in both parties. The fascist fools the feeble-minded, and the neoliberals convince the timid that they must support less-than-optimal policies for the working class.
The reality is that until Progressives are able to attain, like a nuclear fission reaction, critical mass, we will have to support the optimal choice given the current reality. I was a Bernie Sanders delegate in 2016 at the Democratic. In the end, I gave Hillary Clinton my full-throated support. In 2020, I was all in for Bernie again. I flew to Las Vegas to canvass in Latino communities. I was elated when Bernie won in a landslide that sent panic through the Democratic Party, which caused the immediate coalescing of all leading Democratic candidates behind Biden. I supported Biden because he was the obvious choice, given our failure to get our preferred candidate through the manufactured headwinds.
No one will make it easy for Progressives to attain critical mass. We must build it and rebuild it over and over again. The polls tell us Americans want the policies we promote. Unfortunately, we are made to fear campaigning on them in a full-throated manner because of the fear that others would see us attempting to attain Utopia. And they vote for the next best option out of that fear. I wrote the book “How To Make America Utopia” as my contribution to help dispel the fear.
Bernie laid it out in his interview with Dana.
“Senator, President Biden announced his campaign officially for reelection this week,” said Dana Bash. “He would be 86 years old by the end of his second term. You’re one year older than President Biden. Is his age something that voters should consider in 2024?”
Maybe Dana should have listened to Michael Steele’s response to a similar question on MSNBC. But Bernie had the right answer.
When you look at a candidate, you consider a lot,” Senator Sanders said. “I think age is one thing. I think experience is another thing. I think the record that you have established is another thing. But to my mind, Dana, when you put it all together, what you have to look at is what does the candidate stand for? Which side are they on?”
Sanders understood that while Biden may not support all of his progressive ideals, he is at least sufficiently there and effective. The reality is that Biden turned out to be more progressive than I expected.
“But when we live in a nation where you have a major political party, the Republican Party, where many, not all, but many in their leadership don’t even believe in democracy, they maintain the myth that Trump won the last election,” Sanders said. “They’re trying to keep people from voting. They’re trying to deny women the right to control their own bodies. So that’s a whole issue out there. If you believe in democracy, you want to see more people vote, not fewer people vote. I think the choice is pretty clear, and that choice is Biden.”
Bernie then made it clear that democracy requires a real commitment to the working class.
“Democrats and the president have got to be stronger on working-class issues,” Bernie said commitedly. “They’ve got to make it clear that we believe in a government that represents all, not just the few, take on the greed of the insurance companies, the drug companies, Wall Street, all the big money and trust and start delivering for working-class people. If you do that. I think Biden is going to win in a landslide.”
Progressives have a lot of work to do. There will be continued headwinds. But we must paddle upstream indefinitely to win the trust and faith of those being misled.
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