I have been a long and consistent supporter and admirer of self-declared socialist politician Bernie Sanders, the US Senator for Vermont.
He should have been the Democratic Party candidate against Trump in 2016 but for blatant cheating by the Democratic Party elites and hierarchy who fixed the nomination process to allow the weak and tarnished Hilary Clinton to face up to Trump. Trump lost the popular vote by more than 3 million four years ago but such are the vagaries of the US Electoral College system that Trump with his consistent association of Clinton with the Washington political elite, the ‘swamp’, was able to record a victory and plunge America and the world into a dark and reactionary period.
Sanders is once again seeking the Democratic Party mandate to take on Trump, and the incredible news to emerge from America over the last few days is the light that managed to break through the chaos of the Iowa Caucus selection process that Sanders is once again the front runner despite all the obstacles. I said a few months ago that Sanders carried the torch of hope for humanity and his consistent grassroots campaigning allied to his radical and visionary policies to tackle America’s grotesque levels of inequality, racism and wasteful warmongering are igniting a towering inferno of hope, enthusiasm and commitment that will not just carry him to nomination victory at the Democratic Convention in mid-July but to victory against Trump in the November Presidential contest.
Sanders is an anti-elites candidate, an anti-Establishment candidate, an anti-poverty, anti-racism, anti-war and anti-hypocrisy candidate. He is for a radical new America where the billionaires are compelled to actually pay their taxes and multi-billion dollar corporations are bound by law to pay their workers a living wage. That is why so many trade unions are backing Bernie. He wants an America where access to quality healthcare is determined by your need not the size of your bank account. He wants a universal healthcare system, not one run by the insurance companies for the rich and powerful.
Sanders is a man of enormous integrity with a peerless track record of opposing racism, discrimination, illegal wars and poverty. He is a thorn in the side of the billionaire corporations, arms companies and individuals who run America. They despise him and all he stands for. That goes for the elites within the Democratic Party itself who tend to be comfortable individuals in their own right and have their hands on the Democratic Party apparatus. They really don’t want to see a radical fly the Democratic flag in a Presidential election.
It is known that Sanders should have won the Democratic nomination in 2016 because his base of overwhelmingly young Democratic members and supporters were sick to the back teeth of the Tweedledum/Tweedledee politics of America where nothing ever changes as far as inequality of wealth and power is concerned.
He was written off as a hopeless contender at the beginning of the 2016 nomination process but by the time Super Tuesday was reached in June of 2016, when the majority of registered Democratic Party voters cast their votes for the contender they want to win the Presidential nomination, he was heading for victory. The elite apparatchiks at the top of the Democratic Party intervened to cheat him of the nomination one month later at the July 2016 Democratic Party Convention.
This week saw the first contest of the five month long nomination process which takes place in each of the fifty US States. Sanders was the front runner in the opinion polls. Although Iowa is a small State, it is significant because more often than not the candidate who wins in Iowa ends up winning the nomination. By a quirk of fate, or more likely a deliberate act of Democratic Party sabotage, the Iowa Caucus result, where Democratic Party registered supporters go along physically and express their support for one of the candidates, descended into chaos.
A ‘glitch’ in the technical apparatus was blamed but what couldn’t be denied is that Sanders won the nomination clearly by a significant margin in the popular vote. The convenient chaos cannot be allowed to hide two salient facts. Firstly Sanders won and is therefore now officially the front runner despite the combined efforts of the corporate media and Democratic Party elites to undermine him. And secondly, the preferred candidate of the Democratic Party elite, former Vice-President under Obama, Joe Biden not only lost in Iowa, he may actually have trailed in fourth or fifth place.
That is a disastrous result for someone hoping to secure the nomination. Of course the convenient chaos and talk of mistakes in the Iowa count have covered up some of the significance of the actual outcome for Biden but I predict now the party apparatus and corporate media will go into super-overdrive booster mode to try and stop Bernie getting the nomination in July. Hopefully they won’t succeed because Bernie carries the hopes and dreams of millions across America.
Sanders is not just popular with young Democratic Party supporters and ordinary trade union members, he articulates the outlook of millions on big issues. He is demanding urgent and radical action on climate change including restrictions on the fossil fuel industry. 56% of Americans agree. He is demanding a rise in the minimum wage, free college tuition, paid maternity leave, universal healthcare and government supported childcare. All of those policies are supported by a majority of Americans.
Sanders sticks his neck out on marijuana/cannabis use and calls for it to be decriminalised. Conservative Americans and most Republicans attack him for promoting that policy. Yet an incredible 84% of Americans agree with Sanders, not the Republicans. Bernie Sanders is the man to beat Trump and bring sanity and compassion to America. He is not just a decent human being with a gigantic heart, intellect and policy prospectus for a new and better America, he is a beacon of hope for everyone in the world who believes in humanity, justice and peace. He can win and he must win.