Sanders Movement Plots Democratic Party Takeover At Weekend Gathering
CHICAGO ― After Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) finished his speech to a packed theater of his supporters on Saturday night, he took time to answer a few pre-taped questions from activists.
They wanted to know Sanders’ advice for talking to kids about climate change, overcoming Republican gerrymandering in the South ― and how to deal with losing elections, something a questioner comically noted Sanders knew a thing or two about from his early years in politics.
“To those people who are losing right now, I’m sure they’d like to hear what got you through those dark times of losing over and over and over again. … What got you through in those dark times?” television actor Kendrick Sampson asked, affectionately teasing Sanders.
“Thank you very much, Kendrick,” Sander deadpanned, eliciting laughs from the audience. “Kendrick makes a good point: Don’t get locked into a moment, because things change and sometimes they change very, very rapidly.”
Sanders went on to recount how he lost several campaigns for governor and senator before finally securing a post as mayor of Burlington, Vermont, then after two attempts, a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Most recently, he won re-election to the Senate in 2012 with 71 percent of the vote.
“The point is really that persistence is extremely important,” he concluded.
It was a light-hearted exchange, but it summed up the political philosophy Sanders has sought to impress upon the grassroots movement that he built over the course of his ultimately unsuccessful presidential campaign. Organize people around an unabashedly progressive political platform and eventually, you will win the power you need to implement it, Sanders maintains. […]