Is Bernie’s ‘Political Revolution’ the Real Thing or a Pathetic Joke?
Bernie Sanders had a shining moment last week at a massive rally in Philadelphia at the Temple University Liacouras Sports Center. The high point came when he mentioned that his opponent, Hillary Clinton, had implied that he was “not qualified” to be president -- a charge that she has continued to make in a tense campaign for the April 19 Democratic primary in New York state.
As 10,000 people in the stadium erupted in an enthusiastic chorus of boos, Sanders declared that in his view it is Clinton who’s “not qualified” for the presidency. He cited her $15 million in “donations” from Wall Street banks, her vote to support the Iraq War, and her support for “almost every trade agreement” sent to Congress during her years in Washington.
If Sanders had at that point said, “Well I’m nonetheless going to endorse her for president if she ends up winning the nomination in this primary campaign,” I am certain he would have been shouted down. He didn’t though. Instead, he made that submissive statement two days later in a CBS interview with the execrable Charlie Rose, who pressed him and pressed him (but who has not pressed Clinton similarly) to renounce his claim that Clinton is “not qualified” for the White House.
Sanders caved, and said “of course” he would endorse her candidacy if she were the Democratic nominee.
Right there in that moment, Sanders lost half his support -- at least the die-hard support from people who were ready to stand in freezing rain if need be on April 19 in New York or April 26 in Philadelphia to vote for him, and to come to Philadelphia in sweltering July to take the streets and demand that he get the Democratic Party’s nomination.
Those fighters are not going to go to the mat for a guy who, if he has the nomination stolen away -- which is what is happening -- just gives his blessing to a candidate he has rightly described as a craven shill for the nation’s corporate elite, including the criminal elite who run the Wall Street banks, and walks away from the primaries.