Bernie Sanders: “Despair is not an option”

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to read the interview with Bernie Sanders published in The Guardian, March 10, 2017, click on
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/mar/10/bernie-sanders-interview-trump-democratic-party-resistance
The senator talks about his fight to make the Democratic party more attractive to working-class people – and on taking his progressive populism to the heartland in order to topple Trump

by Ed Pilkington in Washington

“Over the last 30 or 40 years the Democratic party has transformed itself from a party of the working class – of white workers, black workers, immigrant workers – to a party significantly controlled by a liberal elite which has moved very far away from the needs of … working families in this country.”

The liberal left’s focus on sectional interests – whether defined by gender, race or immigrant status – has obscured the needs of a shrinking middle class suffering from huge levels of income inequality. It didn’t need to have been that way. “The truth is, we can and should do both. It’s not an either/or, it’s both.”

“My job is to substantially increase the number of people participating in the political process. We’ve been quite successful in this, getting more and more people to run for office. That’s what I’m focusing on.”

Here’s where a shaft of light pierces through the gloom: he is convinced that the resistance is already working. In a 14-minute video posted to Facebook Live immediately after Trump’s joint session to Congress, Sanders went so far as to say that Republicans were on the defensive.

These are very difficult and frightening times. But also understand that in moments of crisis, what has happened, time and time again, is that people have stood up and fought back. So despair is absolutely not an option.”

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