Bernie’s new organization fractures from within

Opinion+Editor+Carsten+Savage+believes+that+Bernie+is+still+too+involved+in+the+Democratic+Party%2C+and+has+thus+neglected+the+health+of+the+nation+as+a+whole.+

Opinion Editor Carsten Savage believes that Bernie is still too involved in the Democratic Party, and has thus neglected the health of the nation as a whole.

Carsten Savage

BY CARSTEN SAVAGE (’17)

Bernie Sanders launched a political movement called Our Revolution this August, which relies on a nonprofit 501(c)(4) organization to elect sympathetic politicians into office. Sanders’s primary goal is to find positions for his supporters in the national and state legislatures, on school boards and in state governments. While Our Revolution promises the rebirth of Bernie’s political independence, though, many of his followers during the Primary Election are doubting his current judgement and are turning away.

Bernie’s conversion to the Democratic Party shook many of his fans who had been supporting him up until 2015. These supporters did not necessarily lose faith during in his goals during the election, seeing that his adopting the Democratic banner would increase his electoral chances considerably, but they were disappointed that he had decided to conform rather than forge his own path.

In July, though, Bernie became an Independent again, creating harsh conflict within his fan base. The primary cause is that Bernie chose Jeff Weaver, his campaign manager during the Primaries, to become the leader of Our Revolution, and since Bernie’s defeat during the Primaries can be attributed to Weaver, members of both his fan base and his staff forsook him. Deserters argue that Weaver is too much of a Democrat to belong in the new Independent organization; he was willing to collect money from billionaires during the Democratic Primaries, which did not clash with the Democratic Party’s ideals, but the possibility that he would try to accept money from billionaires as a member of Bernie’s Independent organization clashes with the politics of Our Revolution.

Bernie has retained too much of the Democratic Party’s influence, resulting in his neglecting the general interests of the United States. As a result, Claire Sandberg, one of Bernie’s key staff members, has resigned, along with his whole organizing department. If Bernie replaces Weaver, he may regain members of his staff and his fan base, but until then, Bernie will have to struggle to keep a divided platform- and organization- together.

As a nation, we need to emphasize that we want leaders who will care about the whole nation instead of just the members of one party. Bernie believes that he must sacrifice some of his ideals for success, but he knows that does not work; even  when he converted to the Democratic Party to run against Hillary Clinton, he found that the system was rigged against him. Now is the time to show Bernie that we support his partial detachment from the Democratic Party, and that we encourage him to become fully independent in order to achieve his goals. Write to his Senate office and tell him what you think, and the bright beacon of independence that was Bernie Sanders may soon return.