Thursday, April 9, 2020

The Lonesome Legacy Of Bernie Sanders - What A Long Strange Trip Its Been

Thursday, April 9th, 2020

My Dear America:

Yesterday was a sad day for all of us, America.  Although it was the right thing to do for the Democratic Party, It certainly didn't feel right to those of us who respected and admired the Old Socialist Democratic Senator from Vermont, Bernie Sanders, when he gave up the Ghost of Health Care For All and abandoned his dream of becoming President of the United States.

Clearly Bernie was influenced by the insanity of the Wisconsin and United States Supreme Courts overruling the Democratic Wisconsin Governor who wanted to postpone this week's Wisconsin State Primary Election due to the fact that an incredibly dangerous pandemic was going on.  Once again, though, we have seen the selfishness and disregard for others and the prospect of cutting down on poor and middle class Democratic voters rear its ugly head in the Republican Party and the Republican Dominated Courts. 

On a Self Centered level Bernie's unselfish action has made my life easier.  It clears the way for me to vote for Joe Biden with a clear conscience.  I probably would have voted for Joe anyway, but if I did I probably would have felt bad about it because Bernie's more liberal agenda more closely fit my own political views.

I was holding onto a dream for awhile that Joe would sit down with Bernie and work things out to the point where they could form an unbeatable Democratic President and Vice President Team.  Unfortunately, however, Joe Biden put an end to that dream when in his last debate with Bernie he made a firm commitment to choose a woman as his Vice President.  It was a brave commitment and one that was truly warranted but it certainly makes it impossible to put Bernie and Joe together as a Democratic Dream Team.

Bernie Sanders has been a politician for a long time.  He began his political career as the Mayor of Burlington, Vermont.  After being elected Mayor in 1981 he was reelected 3 times.  In 1990 Bernie was elected to the United States House of Representatives where he served for 16 years.  Bernie moved on to the United States Senate in 2006.  He was reelected to the Senate in 2012 and 2018.

In 2015 Bernie announced that he was running for President of the United States challenging Hillary Clinton for the Democratic Nomination.  Although Bernie's initial poll numbers were almost nonexistent, Bernie's dynamic campaigning eventually brought him success in 23 Primary wins and 43% of the Democratic Delegates in contrast to Hillary's 55 percent of the Democratic delegates.  

Bernie was criticized in 2016 for not endorsing Hillary Clinton soon enough.  Bernie had advocated many controversial ideas during the campaign.  His ideas, such as Medicare for all caught on with many young people in our country who worked for his election.  Bernie was blindsided at the Democratic Convention when Democratic National Committee E Mails were released on the first day of the Democratic Convention in 2016 by Wikileaks that showed bias on the part of the DNC leaders favoring Hillary Clinton's campaign.  

Although Bernie is still criticized for not supporting the Clinton Campaign soon enough in 2016 I find it amazing that he supported her at all.  Certainly if Bernie was vindictive he could have blown up the Convention in Philadelphia.  He did not do that.  Bernie gave a speech at the Philadelphia Convention in 2016 in which he was booed by many of his own delegates as he made it clear that he fully supported Hillary Clinton and would work for her election going on the road with her in an effort to help her defeat Donald Trump.  He did campaign vigorously with Hillary and he urged his supporters to join him in supporting Hillary Clinton.  Some did and others did not.  

It seems to me that Hillary Clinton's obvious disdain for Bernie Sanders ("Nobody likes him" Hillary has said) is unwarranted since Bernie did what it was possible for him to do to help her get elected.  Hillary did, in fact, get three million more votes than Donald Trump but got the shaft not from Bernie Sanders but from the Electoral College.

In the 2020 Primary Election Season Bernie did well, overall, in the many debates with his numerous rivals and at the beginning of the voting Bernie fought for first place with South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg in Iowa and New Hampshire.  

Indeed, things were looking good for Bernie, overall, until South Carolina showed that Joe Biden's campaign was alive and well.  By the time both Super Tuesdays were over Bernie's initial lead was done and suddenly there were only two candidates in the race, Bernie and Joe.

Now, with Bernie on the sidelines there is only one viable Democratic Candidate for President and that is Joe Biden.  

Although, at the beginning of this Democratic Race for the big prize there were so many candidates that they could not all fit on a stage together and debates had to be split between 2 nights, that is not the case any more.  Although the Candidates fought their fights it looks as though the impossible has happened.
All of the Former Democratic Candidates seem to have gathered around Joe Biden.  

Bernie was on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert last night.  Although he did not come right out and say he fully supports Joe Biden, it was clear that he would live up to his pledge at the beginning of the Democratic Presidential Campaign.  Namely, that Bernie Sanders would support the eventual Nominee of the Democratic Party for President.  He also talked about the fact that he and Joe Biden have been friends for a long time despite their political differences

Bernie made it clear on Colbert's show that his political life is not over and that he will be concentrating initially in the Senate on dealing with the deadly Coronavirus.  

We will miss you, Bernie.  But we will be glad that you are in the Senate where your leadership will be appreciated especially if Joe Biden is elected and you, America, begin a new and exciting chapter of your history starting in January of 2021.

Sincerely Yours

Jerry Gallagher