Monday, January 25, 2016

Will Congressional Progressive Caucus endorse Bernie Sanders?

Or will they endorse the moderate/centrist Hillary Clinton? So far she has the vast majority of congressional endorsements — and as of last month Clinton had 359 supper-delegates to Bernie's 11. Out of 4,764 votes at the Democratic National Convention, one of the candidates will need 2,383 votes to secure the nomination.

The Des Moines Register recently endorsed Hillary Clinton, and wrote "No other candidate can match the depth or breadth of her knowledge and experience." But it can also be argued that Senator Bernie Sanders has plenty of experience as well — and certainly much more than President Obama had before he became our two-term president.

  • Bernie was the mayor of Burlington Vermont from 1981 until 1989, and served in the House and Senate of Congress from 1990 to the present in 2016 (35 years of political office experience).
  • Hillary was the First Lady from 1993 until 2001; a New York Senator from 2001 to 2009; and was secretary of state from 2009 to 2013 (20 years of political office experience if you count First Lady as experience).
  • Obama was an Illinois State senator from 1997 to 2004, and a U.S. Senator from Illinois from 2005 to 2008 (11 years of political office experience).
  • The 87-year-old Michigan Democratic Rep. John Dingell served in the House from 1955 until 2015 — and had the MOST experience (60 years of political office experience). Would that make him the best candidate for President of the Untied States of America?

And it's not necessarily the length or quantity of experience, but the outcome and quality of their experience that should also matter — via the L.A. Times: Hillary Clinton's legacy at State: Splendid but not spectacular. And don't forget, Hillary voted for the Iraq war, Bernie didn't.

All the online polls show that PEOPLE (not other politicians) prefer Bernie over Hillary; so it's hard to understand why establishment politicians aren't endorsing Bernie. The following article explains why Bernie Sanders does so well in all the online polls: Bernie Sanders gets group endorsements when Members decide; Hillary Clinton gets endorsement when Leaders decide.

Bernie Sanders' Senior Advisor (Tad Devine) recently said that Bernie Sanders will not attempt to do what most candidates do after winning their primaries: move to the mythical center.  When Tad Devine appeared on Hardball with Chris Matthews to discuss the Bernie Sanders campaign (video below), Matthews noted that Hillary Clinton was a center-left Democrat and Bernie Sanders was a hard-left democrat. He asked Devine how Bernie would move to the middle if elected. Devine's answer shocked Matthews.

"We are not going there, OK? You want to know why? It is not 1968 anymore. Let me tell you, America is a very different place than it was when I worked for Walter Mondale and 89% of the vote was white. There are two theories on how to win this election. Go to the middle — which I think is the Clinton theory — or expand the electorate, which is the Sanders theory. Okay, we are going to bring new people into the process. We are going to get people excited. We are going to get young people participating like they did in 2008. And that is the coalition that will win."

Chris Matthews continued to push . . . Would Bernie run with a "centrist" candidate as vice-president? Tad Devine replied:

"I have no idea who he would pick as a running mate. But I do know this: our strategy to win the election is to expand the American electorate. To bring young people in. To bring disaffected people in. To give people hope who don't participate in the process. We will expand it to such an extent that it will bring Democrats up and down the ballot."

Matthews asked if Bernie Sanders will be the McGovern of our time. Tad Devine said Bernie Sanders is no McGovern. He sees a Johnson-like landslide if Bernie is elected.

The list below is the 69 members of congress in the House of Representatives who belong to the Congressional Progressive Caucus, a group that Bernie Sanders co-founded in 1991 when he was once in the House. Bernie is now a Senator and the only Senator to belong to this group. A red X below marks the endorsements he currently has from these members in congress (So far Bernie only has two). The letter H designates members that also belong to the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.

* You can look up your zip code to contact your congressperson to let them know if you would like them to endorse a particular candidate.

Alma Adams
Karen Bass
Xavier Becerra (H)
Don Beyer
Suzanne Bonamici
Corrine Brown
Michael Capuano
Andre Carson
Matt Cartwright
Judy Chu
David Cicilline
Katherine Clark
Yvette Clarke
Steve Cohen
Bonnie Watson Coleman
John Conyers
Elijah Cummings
Danny Davis
Peter DeFazio
Rosa DeLauro
Mark DeSaulnier
Debbie Dingell
Keith Ellison X
Sam Farr
Chaka Fattah
Lois Frankel
Marcia Fudge
Ruben Gallego (H)
Alan Grayson
Raúl Grijalva (H) X
Luis Gutierrez (H)
Janice Hahn
Michael Honda
Jared Huffman
Hakeem Jeffries
Eddie Bernice Johnson
Hank Johnson
Joe Kennedy III
Brenda Lawrence
Barbara Lee
Sheila Jackson Lee
John Lewis
Ted Lieu
David Loebsack
Alan Lowenthal
Carolyn Maloney
Jim McDermott
James McGovern
Gwen Moore
Jerrold Nadler
Grace Napolitano (H)
Rick Nolan
Eleanor Holmes Norton
Frank Pallone
Chellie Pingree
Mark Pocan
Jared Polis
Charles Rangel
Lucille Roybal-Allard (H)
Jan Schakowsky
Jose Serrano (H)
Louise Slaughter
Mark Takai
Mark Takano
Bennie Thompson
Nydia Velazquez (H)
Maxine Waters
Peter Welch
Frederica Wilson

* Senator Elizabeth Warren is not listed.


Jan. 25, 2016 -- Tonight Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley will appear at a CNN town hall at Drake University in Des Moines Iowa at 9 p.m. Eastern. Recently on Meet the Press, Chuck Todd didn't ask Hillary Clinton about reparations, but only only Bernie Sanders. Maybe the CNN moderator Chris Cuomo might. (I tweeted him to ask)

CNN: Hillary Clinton sought to turn Bernie Sanders's "establishment" label right back on him, saying he served in Washington much longer than she did. But then she also attacked his experience. (So, Bernie was in office longer, but has less experience?) NBC News: Hillary Clinton Emails Held Info Beyond Top Secret (Is that "good" experience?)

At two recent campaign rallies in Clinton, Iowa (with a population of 26,900 people) Bernie Sanders drew a crowd of 700 and Hillary Clinton drew a crowd of 450. In his speech Bernie Sanders spoke about the rigged economy, the corrupt campaign finance system and the broken criminal justice system. In Clinton's speech she recalled being in the White House Situation Room analyzing intelligence of a terrorist plot pegged to President Obama’s 2009 inauguration. “It came down to experience and judgment,” she said. (The big problem with THAT story was, she wasn't the Secretary of State at the time...unless she was in the Bush administration.) And she also railed against Big Pharma. Boston Globe: "Hillary Clinton has said she is proud to have drug companies as her enemies – but she is also taking their money. Lots of it."

Washington Post: "Clinton allies try to discredit Sanders on women’s issues. Will it stick?" (Spoiler Alert: No it won't.)

Hillary said on “Meet the Press” her understanding is that Michael Bloomberg will run for president only if she is not the Democratic nominee. She said the question is moot because she is going to win. (Of course, she's been wrong many other times before.)

Washington Post: What proved decisive for Obama in 2008 was the surge in first-time caucus participants that benefited him far more than it did Hillary Clinton. Organization counted, but inspiration counted more. That is the danger for Clinton on Feb. 1 — and the opportunity for Bernie Sanders ... Enthusiasm counts, and expanding the electorate is another key to winning. This is the key to Sanders’s hopes of defeating Clinton in Iowa ... Sanders’s challenge will be to boost the percentage of newcomers substantially ... Clinton’s burden is to find a way to overcome the lack of enthusiasm for her candidacy.

Washington Post: Martin O'Malley's supporters could sway the vote: Sanders could direct some of his supporters to join O’Malley in a given precinct and in doing so, deny Clinton a delegate there. That would boost O’Malley’s total but make it more likely that Sanders prevails statewide over Clinton. >>> Here’s how the Iowa caucuses work.

Two of the most-shared stories about Clinton over the past week are negative . . .

  1. The Intercept (Jan. 23 2016) Hillary Clinton Laughs When Asked if She Will Release Transcripts of Her Goldman Sachs Speeches
  2. New York Times (Jan. 20, 2016) ’90s Scandals Threaten to Erode Hillary Clinton’s Strength With Women

Other Updates Today

In “The Devastating Cost of Monetized Elections,” Ralph Nader describes the money corrupted elections, controlled by corporations as a set back to US democracy. He advises us to take the election system from the corporate media and the corporate debate system.

Bill Moyer of the Backbone Campaign, notes there are two strands of populism in the US – negative and positive, urges people to reject the negativity coming out of some of the presidential campaigns. Instead we must come together to build community and “to build power for a positive populism.”

In our rigged electoral system, what can we do? Many progressives are excited by the Bernie Sanders campaign. And while we admire Senator Sanders for his long history of speaking about wealth inequality and many of his domestic politics, such as his support for single payer and labor unions and for confronting Wall Street, social transformation requires building third parties that are independent of corporate money, among other updates to the US electoral system.

George Lakey reminds us that our power is not in the electoral arena because at this time, elections are dominated by money and corporations. People power is better wielded outside of manipulated elections in resistance campaigns. We hope that if Sanders loses the primary, his supporters will consider Lakey’s words: “What if the Sanders campaigners maintained their commitment to a progressive analysis and vision and simply acknowledged what so many Americans already know: The system is too rigged to be changed from within.”

If Sanders loses, it will be because the Democratic primary process is rigged by the elite, not because his ideas don’t resonate with the people. Sanders is articulating much of what the movement for economic, racial and environmental justice supports. It is up to his supporters to take the momentum built through the campaign to fight for change, not the change chosen by the campaign, but change chosen by the people. That is democracy.

The Real Terrorists: The .01% — The 0.01% have wealth equal to the bottom 80% of people in the US and that more than half of US corporate foreign profits are held in tax havens.

Oxfam’s newest report on wealth inequality finds that just 62 people have the wealth equal to the bottom half of the global population, down from 80 the year before and 388 in 2010.

In the US, almost two-thirds of people cannot handle an unexpected expense of $500 or more, (half don’t have any savings). In 2011, that figure was $1,000.

In cities, people of color and of lower income are being forced out from disinvestment in their communities and gentrification.

We hear warnings that another financial bubble is ready to burst that will have global impacts. Debt is high and bonds are over-leveraged. Central banks are running out of solutions to stimulate the economy, but they won’t admit it.


  1. In an editorial The Boston Globe just endorsed Hillary Clinton, but about 99% of their readers disagree. Below are a few comments:

    AgeEighty (01/24/16 07:09 PM) The media are really circling the wagons around her in the final days.

    TheVastConspirator (01/24/16 07:26 PM) Hillary's only real "experience" is attributable to one thing: marrying Bill Clinton. If she hadn't done that she'd be an unheard of housewife/lawyer in Illinois doing real estate closings.

    Bostonbrave (01/24/16 07:12 PM) Bernie dragged her to the left ... for the time being.
    In response: Stuck_On_the_T (01/24/16 08:39 PM) A light breeze could drag her left or right.

    PBNelson (01/24/16 07:20 PM) Hillary may be a Democrat, but she is NOT a "liberal". She represents the right wing segment of Democrats who are "moderate" and to the right of center. She is much too close to Wall Street for most Democrats. Even worse, she has Bill as an advisor!

    LeoTheLion4 (01/25/16 08:51 AM) I am a conservative, I'll be voting for Trump, and I have no dog in the Democrat fight; but if I did its name would be Bernie, not Hillary. When a newspaper that purports to be serious and principled generates an editorial like this, one grasps instantly why the American news media ranks near the bottom of America's most trusted institutions, very close to congress.

    WesternSuburbDad (01/25/16 06:36 AM) In march the [Boston Globe] editorial board begged Warren to run because of her potential to fix income inequality and Clinton's Wall Street ties, TPP, vote on bankruptcy and her reluctance to address income inequality. So what happened between then and now?

    cindyloulou (01/24/16 08:05 PM) Hillary needs a full term in the Big House, NOT the White House.

  2. UPDATE !!!!!!!!!!!

    According to a poll released on 1/15/16 support for Clinton in South Carolina is plummeting. Last month Clinton had a 36-point lead over Sanders — that lead has been cut nearly in half.

  3. Will Clinton’s Flailing Protect Her Glass Jaw?

    Vermont, which Sanders represents, is New Hampshire’s neighbor. However, New Hampshire is also the state with “Live Free or Die” on its license plates — and it’s also famously anti-tax and anti-big government. So if New Hampshire goes for Sanders, that says nothing but good about Sanders’ character.

    In a CNN/WMUR poll last week of likely Democratic primary voters in New Hampshire, 55 percent called Mrs. Clinton the least honest candidate in the party’s field.

    Clinton’s firewall in South Carolina is melting away.

    Bill Clinton is getting nervous.

    The Clinton campaign is handling the stress by reverting to the time-honored Democratic establishment tactic of “hippie-punching”.

    They’ve got Chelsea doing fundraisers in private now, so I guess the campaign stuffed her back in her box.

    David Brock, again, smearing Sanders as a racist.

    Hillary dodging when she’s asked whether she’ll release the transcripts of paid speeches she gave to Goldman Sachs.

    Red-Baiting the Base

    Wall Street donors