Bernie Sanders ran a good campaign. I voted for him in my state’s primary, I sent him money, and I even stood in line for hours with my two small children just to hear him speak. As a Gen-X voter, I fall outside his major demographic, but he had my full support. He lost, though, and I, as someone who understands the issues facing us, can handle that and support Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. And Bernie Sanders understands it, too.
Bernie Sanders: ‘Get Beyond Personality’
The “Bernie-or-bust” folks have some valid concerns about the two-party system, Clinton’s support from Wall Street, and the like. That, however, does not change the fact that it will not be changed from the top-down, and it will not be changed by November.
One of ONLY TWO people will be inaugurated on January 20, 2017. Not one of four or more. One of two.
Bernie Sanders, himself — the man on whom many, particularly younger people, hung their hope — is imploring people to vote for Clinton.
Sanders, as someone who’s been in politics for decades, understands how the system works. It’s not necessarily an endorsement of the system to cast a vote for Clinton. He told ABC News:
“People have got to get beyond personality, and they’ve got to take a hard look at the issues that impact the lives of middle-class and working-class people. That’s what this campaign is really about.”
This is not an election in which a protest vote is a good idea. This is about much, much more than the presidency.
If you can’t stomach the thought of Clinton as president, just remember these two words: Supreme Court.
Do you really want Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump to be the one who nominates two or three Supreme Court justices? Those are lifetime appointments, and the Supreme Court’s actions have a MASSIVE impact on your life. Much more so than the President’s actions. If you are a progressive voter, the Supreme Court alone is a good enough reason to vote for Clinton.
Bernie Sanders: ‘Look At The Issues’
Senator Sanders brought up the issues facing the country in his ABC News interview as well. He said:
“I think if you look at the issues — whether it is making public colleges and universities tuition free, dealing aggressively with climate change, raising the minimum wage, overturning this disastrous Citizens United Supreme Court decision … On all of those issues and many more, Hillary Clinton’s positions are far, far, far superior to Donald Trump.”
There will never be a perfect candidate. Clinton is not a perfect candidate. Bernie Sanders was not a perfect candidate. Nor is Jill Stein, by the way.
We have to think beyond the next four years, though. Casting a protest vote, especially if you live in a swing state, could have disastrous consequences. This is not a matter of “I’m gonna show them!” This is a matter of the next president choosing people to sit on the Supreme Court who could very well still be sitting there by the time my five-year-old child has children of her own.
Consider, too, that we’ve seen these protests before, and that they had the opposite effect. When people sat out the election in 1968, we got Richard Nixon. And, when the Democratic party dusted themselves off from that trouncing, they had moved to the right, not the left.
Sanders’ inclusion in the primaries had the opposite effect. Many of his ideas were incorporated into the Democratic party platform. He has helped push the party to the left. If you were with Bernie when he was in the race, stick with him now in support of Clinton. And remember that he is heading back to the Senate, where he can continue his good work.
Then, after the election, do not back down and forget about politics for the next two or four years. Hold Clinton and your state and local representatives accountable. Hold Democrats to their platform, which is, by the way, the most progressive platform in history. Remember that.
Watch a clip of Sanders on ABC News here:
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) September 28, 2016
Featured Image via Twitter video screen capture