Senator Bernie Sanders is an FDR progressive who describes himself as a democratic socialist. And if elected, he wouldn't be the first American "socialist" President. And comparing Sanders to Joseph Stalin is as ridiculous as comparing Ronald Reagan to Adolf Hitler. Bernie Sanders's "Mister Smith Goes To Washington" message was made very clear in The Washington Post:
"The voters were saying they believe Congress is out of touch with the needs of ordinary Americans — working people, poor people, the elderly — that they feel Congress is dominated by big money and they want to send somebody down there to fight for them ... There is something wrong when the wealthiest 1 percent of the population has seen a doubling of real income over the last 10 years while the middle class and the working class have lost ground."
The Washington Post had quoted this from Bernie Sanders on November 11, 1990 when they wrote: "Sanders, the former mayor of Burlington, Vt. will become the first socialist in the House in decades. The 49-year-old Sanders sees his win as the natural expression of the electorate's alienation from Washington."
No member in congress was raising the Red Scare flag back then, especially the way they are today.
When asked by the Washington Post 26 years ago about his specific political agenda in the House, Sanders pointed first to a national health-care system like Canada's. That was before Hillary Clinton's failed attempt at her so-called Hillarycare in 1993. She wasn't very "pragmatic" back then, and neither was she ever "a progressive who gets things done". She was, and still is, a new Democrat. Every time she claims to be progressive in her new campaign ads and during the debates, she is lying every single time. She does it for political expediency after witnessing Senator Elizabeth Warren's rise in popularity with her progressive views on the issues.
When Bernie first ran for congress, he was, and always has been, an Independent — caucusing and legislating as a progressive within our current political duopoly — Democrats and Republicans, who many times, are more the same than they are different on many economic issues. All his life Bernie's concern has been about social and economic "fairness"— racial injustice, the rigged tax code, the bloated defense industry, Wall Street, wages, women's rights, housing, education, the environment (etc.). And 26 years later, ever since first running for congress, Bernie still advocates for these very same things today. He hasn't "evolved" or "flip-flopped" on the issues like Hillary Clinton has.
The are 70 members of congress who belong to the Congressional Progressive Caucus, a group that Bernie Sanders co-founded in 1991 after he was first elected to the House. Bernie is now a Senator and the only Senator to belong to this group, who almost everybody now knows, is running for President. Hillary was never a member of Congressional Progressive Caucus. Hillary was never a progressive. Hillary will never be a progressive.
For decades, no one in congress had ever complained about Bernie being a "socialist". It wasn't until 2012 when Florida Rep. Allen West said: "I believe there's about 78 to 81 members of the Democrat Party who are members of the Communist Party". He had been referring to the Congressional Progressive Caucus; and he had also claimed that the Communist Party had publicly referred to the Progressive Caucus as its "ally". PoliticFact rated that claim as Pants on Fire.
At that time, the vice president of the Communist Party USA had said "There are no members of Congress who are members of the Communist Party. The Progressive Caucus promotes policies that the Communist Party thinks are better for the country than some promoted by other caucuses, but our support of their policies does not mean they support us or our policies."
The same can be said for the Socialist Party USA. From the Daily Beast:
Despite the fact that Sen. Bernie Sanders has long identified himself as a “Democratic Socialist,” socialists in America aren’t feeling the Bern. In fact, it’s hard to find a socialist in America who seems to believe that Bernie Sanders is even socialist at all, apart from Bernie Sanders himself.
And what’s the difference between Marxism, communists and socialists? Marxism is more of a philosophy. Communists draw more on Marxism than socialists do, and are generally critical of socialists for being too moderate. FDR wasn't a Socialist; he was a real progressive who got things done. (And Hillary Clinton is no FDR.)
But ever since running for President against Hillary Clinton, SUDDENLY — according to Clinton supporters, a few media pundits, Republicans in congress (including some Democrats) — Senator Bernie Sanders has been portrayed as an evil socialist threat to American democracy. For the past 26 years, these red-baiters remained silent until, SUDDENLY, they came pouring out of the woodwork like the cockroaches they are. Other than Rep. Allen West, where have they all been hiding before?
A Real Progressive Fighting for Black Rights
In 1988, when Bernie Sanders had first ran for a House seat, he endorsed the Reverend Jesse Jackson for President. When Bernie had caucused for him in VT, it prompted one caucusgoer to slap him in the face. At that time, Arkansas governor Bill Clinton had endorsed Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis. Then four years later, Bill Clinton was elected President and passed laws devastating the African-American community; but in 2016 most Blacks are currently supporting Hillary over Bernie. Why?
In 1963, Bernie marched just a few feet away from MLK (pictured here, just to the right of the American flag in glasses, white shirt and dark coat). During that time Hillary Clinton was campaigning for Barry Goldwater, who was running against Lyndon B Johnson. At one time, Bernie and Hillary were polar opposites of one another. And in many ways, within the Democratic party, they still are. (Even though, after once being a Republican, Clinton has since "evolved".)
Bernie is a real progressive and Hillary is only saying she's a progressive — "who likes to get things done", but rarely does. She says she heroically battled the big insurance companies, big pharma and Wall Street; but at the same time, she still takes money from them for speeches and campaign contributions. She's been hiccupping and farting at the same time.
As for who has the longest history in fighting for the rights of the Black community, here's what Bernie Sanders actually did in the Civil Rights Movement — so the Black community can decide for themselves.
VIDEO BELOW: Bernie Sanders is talking with Cornel West, "Killer Mike" and Senator Nina Turner about the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
After the New Hampshire vote, which will be followed by Nevada very soon, the focus of the Democratic primary race will largely become South Carolina. Senator Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton are making concerted efforts to win the state’s African-American vote.
VIDEO BELOW: After the Congressional Black Caucus "PAC" endorsed Hillary Clinton, Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) speaks about why she has not yet endorsed either Democratic candidate. She also points out that the Clinton endorsement is coming from the Congressional Black Caucus Political Action Committee (corporate lobbyists), not the Congressional Black Caucus.
Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders had met with the Rev. Al Sharpton in Harlem and also received an unexpected boost when the acclaimed writer Ta-Nehisi Coates announced that he would vote for Bernie Sanders.
Bernie Sanders has achieved some of the highest ratings on the issues from leading Civil Rights organizations: A frequent critique of Sanders is that he is from a very white State. While this is true, he certainly has not ignored issues that matter to people of color. A very good argument for Bernie on these issues is here at the Young Turks, who takes on the Black politicians endorsing Hillary — but only because they're politicians. But now, today, Hillary Clinton is being hailed by some as some kind of hero for Civil Rights, and as a friend of the African-American community, and as a progressive. It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.
Harry Truman: Address at the National Convention Banquet of the Americans for Democratic Action (May 17, 1952)
"I've seen it happen time after time. When the Democratic candidate allows himself to be put on the defensive and starts apologizing for the New Deal and the fair Deal, and says he really doesn't believe in them, he is sure to lose. The people don't want a phony Democrat. If it's a choice between a genuine Republican, and a Republican in Democratic clothing, the people will choose the genuine article, every time; that is, they will take a Republican before they will a phony Democrat, and I don't want any phony Democratic candidates in this campaign. But when a Democratic candidate goes out and explains what the New Deal and fair Deal really are — when he stands up like a man and puts the issues before the people — then Democrats can win, even in places where they have never won before. It has been proven time and again."
Madam Secretary, I served with Harry Truman. I knew Harry Truman. Harry Truman was a friend of mine. Madam Secretary, you’re no Harry Truman. And you're not a progressive who gets things done. You are a "new" Democrat — a "moderate" Democrat — who is just a Democrat in Republican clothing. A Republican Lite.